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Cycling Weekly LA Interview

Cycling Weekly LA Interview

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Published by Cycling Fan
A great piece of journalism right here, from Edward Pickering of Cycling Weekly. A straight faced Pickering interviewed Lance Armstrong in Dec 2008, asking him many important questions - about his training variables, his relationship with Ferrari, his race fees, his alleged "black list" of reporters he doesn't want to talk to, the UCI "gift" he gave, his stance on doping today, his opinion on Paul Kimmage and so on. If you're knowledgeable in LA's revisionist history, you maybe able to count more than a couple of lies in this Q&A.
A great piece of journalism right here, from Edward Pickering of Cycling Weekly. A straight faced Pickering interviewed Lance Armstrong in Dec 2008, asking him many important questions - about his training variables, his relationship with Ferrari, his race fees, his alleged "black list" of reporters he doesn't want to talk to, the UCI "gift" he gave, his stance on doping today, his opinion on Paul Kimmage and so on. If you're knowledgeable in LA's revisionist history, you maybe able to count more than a couple of lies in this Q&A.

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Published by: Cycling Fan on May 28, 2010
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09/27/2013

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LANCE ARMSTRONG: EXCLUSIVEINTERVIEW
 
Wednesday, 3 December 2008
 
 
Edward Pickering
 
Source : http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/news/latest/345599/lance-armstrong-exclusive-interview.html
 It’s been a long time since Lance Armstrong spoke to us – some time back in the day, we
 
wereadded to his infamous blacklist. The blacklist never existed, he now informs us, in thisexclusive interview. He also denies that he’s having a mid-life crisis, keeps us in the dark about whether he’ll ride the 2009 Tour, and tells us he doesn’t even know his own VO2 Max  figures.
 This interview first appeared in the November 27 issue of 
Cycling Weekly
, and is a companion piece to the exclusive Lance Armstrong feature in the current edition of 
Cycle Sport 
. Since theinterview, conducted in Austin, Texas, on November 17, Armstrong has admitted that he intendsto ride the Tour de France, although race organisers ASO have yet to confirm his participation.
CW: Is it a problem if you don’t ride the Tour?
 LA: It depends. I’m not foolish - It’s the biggest bike race in the world, you have a certainamount of exposure that comes with that if you’re talking about the global issue. I’m arguablynot the best person to talk about it.If it comes with other hostility and distractions. Do you want to subject yourself and the cause toa lot of distraction?We’ll just have to see. I’m in no hurry and I don’t think they [Tour organisers ASO] are either.Everybody needs to calm down and get into the season and decide.
 
 
But I love the event. I’ve said it many times. I’ve won it a lot. I know what it means to me andwhat it means to win it.But I’m not trying to play games with them or with you or with anybody.We’ll just have to waitand see.
Will that be a success in terms of US fans? American sports fans don’t know the Girod’Italia as well as the Tour de France.
 The American people, from New York, San Francisco, Montana or wherever, they know theTour. It’s all on the table and we understand its significance.
ASO have conditions for entry. Do you have any?
  No. The only conditions I would hope we could have are safe conditions. Meaning I don't wantto ride down the road and get hurt.I don’t want to deal with that. I wouldn't look forward to going into that environment. The roadsare open and the spectators are there, anything can happen. It would be bad for that to happen. Itwould change cycling. I think they’d be forced to change the dynamic between the athlete andthe people, which would be a shame.I don’t need to have a love fest for three weeks, I’m not asking for that. I think [ASO]understands what the race means to the sponsors and media. Patrice Clerc [ex-ASO chief] – didhe understand that? No he didn’t. He believed the Tour was bigger than any individual or groupof individuals. He believed that the Tour was the star.But that is not the case in sport. I think we all agree that sports grow and thrive because of athletes. That’s the way it is. They need each other, but the athletes are the ones that really drivethe interest in events. Not that I have any control over this, but I would encourage the UCI and ASO to follow the leadof the French Open at Roland Garros and not send samples to Chatenay Malabry.
With this comeback are you trying to rewrite history?
 How so?
 
 
In terms of the fact that the sport has been talking about the dirty generation of the 1990sand 2000s. It makes you look bad.
 But why was [this year’s Tour] perceived as being cleaner? Speeds were just as high. But thathappens – people evolve, training evolves, roads evolve, equipment evolves.
Garmin, Columbia, the French teams have been outspoken in the anti-doping fight…
 I don’t think it’s fair to highlight Garmin and Columbia without highlighting CSC and Astana.I won’t buy the argument that those programmes are any cleaner than Riis or Johan. I think Damsgaard is as comprehensive if not more than them.Some of it is PR. The people who work hardest and have the most talent win.Am I trying to rewrite history? No. I don’t have a problem with the history. Were therequestions? Absolutely. Was there criticism, scepticism? Absolutely.But I was around not only for the seven Tours, which wasn’t easy to do if you are cheating. ButI’ve been around longer than that.I put my nose in front of the peloton and stayed at the front from 1992 all the way through. My performance never suffered or diminished. You can see in the latter years I would not haverisked my family’s reputation, my savings, my foundation, all those people who believe in thatcause. I wouldn’t have risked that.I left with a clear conscience. I went to bed in the last three years, totally fine. Did it strike methat I could still do it, wanted to do it, still felt strong? Yeah.If people like yourself or other journalists want to pooh pooh that and say that this is “bullshit”,you might. I feel bad for you, though.
Are you undergoing a mid-life crisis? A lot of men in their late 30s think they can still dowhat they could when they were young.
 I don’t know the answer to that. I read that Savoldelli said I’d gone out and done the tests andcould still do it. But I don't know that.

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