Armstrong's Tragic Flaw: His Ego
He shouldn't have attempted 2009 comeback: Dan Levy
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Aug 24, 2012 12:35 PM CDT
This July 23, 2000 file photo shows Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong riding down the Champs Elysees with an American flag after the 21st and final stage of the cycling race in Paris.   (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours, File)

(Newser) – Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his titles and banned for life from pro cycling. But don't blame performance-enhancing drugs for Armstrong's downfall—blame his ego instead, writes Dan Levy at Bleacher Report. After winning his seven Tour de France titles, Armstrong attempted a 2009 comeback. "If it weren't for that comeback—that 'see, I told you I was clean, and I told you I could still do it' moment of hubris—Armstrong would not be where he is now."

People had long whispered that Armstrong might have cheated, and his public image made him "the most polarizing athlete the world has seen in almost half a century." He was a "professional celebrity" who "let success get to his head," but he was also doing "priceless" work to raise awareness and cash for cancer research. He could have simply been satisfied; instead, he had to return to the sport in 2009, and his tests were "fully consistent" with blood doping. His true flaw: "He could never figure out when to give up the race." Click through for Levy's full piece.