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Lance Armstrong fears drug use led to testicular cancer – admits to first doping ‘probably at 21’

Texan says he took testosterone in his first season as a pro and says he considers EPO a relatively ‘safe’ drug

Lance Armstrong has admitted doping as early as the age of 21 and expressed fears that his drug-taking may have contributed to his testicular cancer in 1996.

The comments come as part of ESPN’s rather functionally titled two-part documentary, Lance, which will be broadcast on May 24.

News.com.au reports that when asked how old he was when he first doped, Armstrong replies, “probably 21.”

Strikingly, that would be before his world road race title in Oslo in 1993 after turning professional the previous season.

“My first professional season,” he says. “It was cortisone; drugs that stimulate your body’s own production of cortisone.”

Asked whether he feels he got cancer from doping, he replies: "You know, I don't know the answer to that.

"I don't want to say no, because I don't think that's right either. I don't know if it's yes or no, but I certainly wouldn't say no.

“The only thing I’ll tell you is the only time in my life I ever did growth hormone was the 1996 season.

“So in my head: growth, growing hormone and cells – if anything good needs to be grown, it does. But wouldn’t it also make sense if there is anything bad in there, it too would grow?”

Armstrong says he was however less concerned about possible negative effects of EPO.

"In many ways – and this is not going to be a popular answer – EPO is a safe drug," he says.

"Assuming certain things. Assuming [it is] taken properly, taken under the guidance of a medical professional, taken in conservative amounts – there are far worse things you can put in your body."

In 2018, Armstrong settled the long-running ‘whistleblower’ case originally initiated by his former US Postal Service team mate Floyd Landis, paying out a total of $111m in compensation and legal fees.

As you might imagine, he and Landis are not on speaking terms.

“Hey, it could be worse,” he says at one point in the ESPN film. “I could be Floyd Landis. Waking up a piece of shit every day. I don’t think it, I know it.”

Landis responds: “Everybody wanted to treat me like I was this evil, cheating liar. I told the truth and then I was a rat, turning on his own people. It was a no-win situation.

“I said this is what happened to everybody. Of course, it became about Lance because everything is always about Lance. That’s the way he wants it.

“He cannot pin that part on me. That’s his approach to life. It’s about ‘me’. When you’re that protected by the organisation that runs cycling, you can take out personal vendettas as well as win. He liked that. That was his thing.”

Speaking last year, Armstrong claimed he "wouldn't change a thing" about his doping.

“It was a mistake. It led to a lot of other mistakes. It led to the most colossal meltdown in the history of sports. But I learned a lot.”

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the road.cc team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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25 comments

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marcswales | 3 years ago
2 likes

Who's Lance Amstrong?

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gazzaputt | 3 years ago
0 likes

Question is who would have beat Armstrong on a level playing field over that time period?

We now know in the 7 years he won the top 20 and more were on the juice.

So without the juice who could have toppled Armstrong?

Also those who didn't dope who would have beat Armstrong?

 

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Stebbo replied to gazzaputt | 3 years ago
0 likes

You fail to grasp just because many were on drugs, doesn't mean it was a level playing field for the druggies. 
people respond to drugs differently, that is why you basic premise is false.

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rayjay | 3 years ago
0 likes

Funny how all the lies and strong evidence piled up at Sky . Yet your all happy to believe they are clean .....funking unbelievable.   Because Froome and Wiggo all of a sudden turning into world class climbers at a late age is down  to training and marginal gains ....or maybe at Garmin a team full of dopers wigg just got on the programme and at Sky when they hired doping dr Leinders they started getting results . Having 5 riders from one team drop top climbers week after week , nothing suspicious going on there ....
 

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Kestevan | 3 years ago
4 likes

Why does anyone continue to give this waste of space the oxygen of publicity?

Just treat him with the contempt he diserves, and ignore his self serving whining.

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sneakerfrfeak | 3 years ago
5 likes

"I'm gonna tell you........my truth"

We've had that before, I'd rather have the truth.

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Eg3ftp1 | 3 years ago
0 likes

So he's now admitted doping before he even turned professional... When's he going to admit to doping for his 2009 comeback tour, or is there still a statute of limitations period to expire on that so he can keep the money from it?

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NZ Vegan Rider | 3 years ago
6 likes

It amazes me that one human being can have an ego this big!

He's the Narcissists Narcissist.

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rayjay replied to NZ Vegan Rider | 3 years ago
0 likes

Like all champions he's self obsessed,selfish and no time for anything else that doesn't focus on the job in hand , Winning the Tour de France. 
You will find Armstrong's behaviour no,different than that of other champions. What he did wrong was returning to cycling and dealing with something  no one  else has had to deal with before on that level .  The fact still remains he won his 7 tours riding against a fully doped up peloton , all of his rivals have been busted since . No one has clean hands if you count doping as cheating . He won fair square simple as that. 
 

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ErnieC replied to rayjay | 3 years ago
4 likes

What I do enjoy about the ardent armstrong adorers that when he was competing and the non-fans, also known as haters (daft term if ever I've heard one), mentioned that he waa doping the response was "never, im sorry if you cannot dream, out busting his ass 8 hours a day training etc etc. Now that he has admitted to doping their story changes accordingly and now it is "ok, he was doping but it's ok, apparently everyone else was". Sheeesh make your mind. 

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rayjay replied to ErnieC | 3 years ago
0 likes

No . I always new he was doping.  . I don't have a problem with it . Common sense , tells  that . Look at his climbing  it was unreal , that's because he was doping . All the journalists knew he was doping . No one said anything . 
I have never been nieve to think  pro top level athletes are clean . They never have been and never will be those are the facts . So I agree some fans were sucked in like a certain commentator but personality I wasn't.  Have you ever been to the tour , I have been many times and to other  pro European races .when those riders hit those climbs it's quite unbelievable. The focus and concentration they have .there physically condition and strength in comparison to there size . You cannot perform at that level without doping . 
By the way my fav rider was Cadel Evans . He has a spell for a year or 2 where he was virtually unbeatable. .

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brooksby replied to rayjay | 3 years ago
1 like
rayjay wrote:

No . I always knew he was doping.  . I don't have a problem with it .

But you know its against the rules, and cheating, right?

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Kronsteen replied to rayjay | 3 years ago
2 likes

"All the journalists knew he was doping. No one said anything." David Walsh? Paul Kimmage? 

Are you broken?

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rayjay | 3 years ago
0 likes

No way that EPO can give you cancer . Steroids do not give you cancer . Plenty of bodybuilders who are well into there old age and are doing very very well some look amazing .  Growth hormone  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16430706/.   Plenty of studies , but also plenty of  body builders athletes  who have used it and did not  get cancer .   I'm surprised by Armstrong's comments .  But he was the greatest tour winner and a genetic freak to some extent.   And to all those  Armstrong haters ,get over yourself, everyone was doping he was just beating all the other dopers and also think about this Porte and Froome both beat Armstrong's col d madone time . If you think they beat that clean then your living in a delusional world of make believe.  About time sport just came clean about doping . It's not a big deal  ,nobody cares anymore and  the sports can stop wasting money and resources on something they can never stop . I have taken many steroids as a body builder when I was  young and it was  all good ,not one health issue .  Suck it up people it's what professionals in sport do .  

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Hirsute replied to rayjay | 3 years ago
8 likes

"I have taken many steroids as a body builder when I was young and it was all good ,not one health issue"
Apart from my many incoherent posts.

You might want to edit your libelous post.

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rayjay replied to Hirsute | 3 years ago
0 likes

Not agreeing with someone is fine . You don't like my posts then just ignore it. Obviously it bothers you. My posts are quite clear and concise. I even post links . There is nothing libellous about my post . 
Just  to point out that taking steroids in the UK is not illegal. You just can't buy them or sell them on line .   There are legal ways to take certain steroids as well.  I recall Sky getting a package of testosterone in the post yes

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wingmanrob replied to rayjay | 3 years ago
3 likes

You clearly have no idea how EPO works and how they benefit some more than others. It wasn't a level playing field and not everyone doped.

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rayjay replied to wingmanrob | 3 years ago
0 likes

I know exactly how EPO works .  Some riders respond better than others.

if you happen to have better genetics concerning your lactic threshold then you have a advantage  full stop .  That's why for instance you look at some riders and they seem to be more talented climbers  but they  don't have the ability to recover  better than another rider  again this is genetic . 
There are so many variables.  But the fact is if you are not doping in a peloton that is doping then you are going to be left behind . Go take some EPO . Go ride or run with your friends you will soon see the benefits it gives you . 
I have taken EPO . I know exactly what it does and how it differs from just training  in high altitudes ( I've done that as well)  It's very different.  
so before  you make a comment about what I know or don't know try engaging your brain first . 
kind regards .

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tarquin_foxglove | 3 years ago
3 likes

Honestly I preferred the "never failed a test / omerta" version of Armstrong than this whiney faux reflective version. Should've taken his ban on this chin, riden off into the sunset (none-competively), retained a shred of dignity & fan boys would be still be defending him. He'd probably be in politics by now.

“Hey, it could be worse, I could be Floyd Landis. Waking up a piece of shit every day."

Still got it.

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Kronsteen replied to tarquin_foxglove | 3 years ago
2 likes

Some fan boys are still defending him... See above 😂

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Legin | 3 years ago
2 likes

The story I was told in 1999 was that he'd admitted to the doctors that he'd doped and they'd concluded that his immune systems had been suppressed by the doping and that allowed the cancer to progress rapidly. I.e. doping didn't give him cancer but it made the effects on him a lot worse.

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Yorky-M | 3 years ago
5 likes

he is a dick

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pwake replied to Yorky-M | 3 years ago
1 like

That's a fair assessment...

FWIW I live in Austin and have spent a little time around the guy. I won't be watching this 30 for 30; we won't learn anything new. It's just recycling the same old story and keeping Lance in the public eye. 

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matthewn5 replied to pwake | 3 years ago
0 likes

Exactly. Lance who is a narcissist.

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ErnieC replied to Yorky-M | 3 years ago
0 likes

Naaaa. A dick is a useful thing. 

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