Friday, October 8, 2010

Fast Company-Lance Armstrong and the Nightmare of a Doping Scandal?

Lance Armstrong:
(Story reported by Chuck Salter for Fast Company)

Two positive drug tests for Tour de France winner Alberto Contador have raised new questions about doping in cycling, U.S. champion Lance Armstrong's own involvement, and how a scandal might affect his charity work. But the CEO of Armstrong's Livestrong insists the Contador news "isn't on my radar." Here's why.
The Tour de France is notorious for twists and turns and uphill battles. The same can also be said of its champions. Seven-time winner Lance Armstrong has been the subject of a federal investigation since last spring, when the disgraced 2006 winner and his former teammate, Floyd Landis, accused him of doping and fraud. Now this year's winner, Alberto Contador, has been tied to two positive drug tests.

For once, maybe Armstrong is happy to have Contador, a fierce rival last year, bump him out of the headlines. The Spaniard could wind up making doping seem so common that he diminishes the blowback of future charges against Armstrong. Last week, Contador's drug test from this summer's race revealed trace amounts of clenbuterol, a banned muscle-builder. The steak must have been contaminated, claimed Contador, who was suspended by cycling authorities.

A second failed test this week made his protestations more dubious. The Associated Press reported that a different blood sample taken from Contador on the eve of the Tour's tortuous mountain climbs contained abnormally high levels of plastic residue, which some cycling experts say is a sure sign of a blood transfusion.
(Click here to read the full story on the Fast Company website.)

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