In a story courtesy of Spanish newspaper Marca, disgraced American cyclist Lance Armstrong says that he feels that all the cheating and lying he did throughout his once impressive career, was overblown.
Armstrong was speaking in light of the “Operacion Puerto” scandal in Spain and events in Germany.
“I think things have been blown out of proportion in the way my own doping and doping in general have been described. People have said US Postal had the most sophisticated programme in the history of sport. But there’s also Puerto and the revelations about East Germany”, Armstrong stated in an interview alongside former French cyclist Christophe Bassons, printed in Saturday’s edition of ‘L’Équipe’. This was the American’s response to Bassons’ follow-up to an initial question about whether he feared for his health after having used illicit substances so extensively.
Basson was forced into quitting professional cycling when Armstrong threatened him after he spoke up about doping in the sport. Armstrong says that he regrets the aggressive approach he took while desperately trying to protect his once lofty image.
“That’s the episode in my life that I regret the most. Being competitive and aggressive in a race is normal, but when it gets personal, it detracts from the competition. I failed to make that distinction in what I said and at press conferences”, he stated.
The biggest beef people have with Armstrong is that he tried to destroy the life of others as he fell from grace. He isn’t the first athlete to cheat via doping and surely wont be the last.
But he once wowed the world with his miraculous comeback from cancer, and once stood for something truly inspiring but lost it all with acts of deception and vindictiveness, and folks just have a hard time forgetting that.