Lance Armstrong just issued an extraordinary statement, ahead of reports he will be stripped by the USADA of his seven Tour de France titles and banned from cycling:
“There comes a point in every man’s life when he has to say, ‘Enough is enough.’ For me, that time is now.”
Armstrong, a Colorado resident, describes the USADA probe into doping allegations as one-sided and unfair:
“The only physical evidence here is the hundreds of controls I have passed with flying colors. I made myself available around the clock and around the world. In-competition. Out of competition. Blood. Urine. Whatever they asked for I provided. What is the point of all this testing if, in the end, USADA will not stand by it?”
The world-renowned athlete staked a claim on his racing career:
“I know who won those seven Tours, my teammates know who won those seven Tours, and everyone I competed against knows who won those seven Tours. We all raced together.”
“Going forward, I am going to devote myself to raising my five beautiful (and energetic) kids, fighting cancer, and attempting to be the fittest 40-year old on the planet.”
How Armstrong’s public image holds up now becomes the stuff of what will certainly be a legendary effort at reputation management.