Lance Armstrong spoke yesterday in Montreal at a World Cancer Congress and despite a recent doping case, underlined his Tour de France wins.
“My name is Lance Armstrong,” he said, according to the Montreal Gazette. “I am a cancer survivor. I’m a father of five. And yes, I won the Tour de France seven times.”
The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) stripped all of his wins since August 1, 1998, as part of its ruling on Friday. Over that 12-year period, it ruled he possessed, trafficked and administered banned drugs and methods. The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) and Tour organiser, Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO) have yet to remove his results.
Bruyneel disappointed with Armstrong quitting the fight
Johan Bruyneel, Armstrong’s long-time sports director, said that he is disappointed Armstrong decided not to face USADA’s arbitration panel.
“I’m disappointed for Lance and for cycling in general that things have reached a stage where Lance feels that he has had enough and is no longer willing to participate in USADA’s campaign against him,” Bruyneel told Reuters news agency.
“Lance has never withdrawn from a fair fight in his life so his decision today underlines what an unjust process this has been. I hope that it will soon be determined that the case that USADA initiated against me should never have got as far as it has.”
Bruyneel is also named in the investigation on similar charges, however, he elected to face an arbitration panel.
Boogerd waiting for Camenzind to pay 40,000
Former Dutch pro, Michael Boogerd says Oscar Camenzind never paid him 40,000 Swiss Francs for winning the Tour of Lombardy.
“We arranged: who wins pays. That happens sometimes in cycling, though I was there not a fan of because it often results in whining,” Boogerd told Holland’s Wielerland Magazine.
Camenzind won the World Championships and six days later, won Lombardy in Bergamo, Italy, over Boogerd. Felice Puttini led a small group for third at 1-21 minutes.
“Camenzind was slightly stronger [at the Worlds in] Valkenburg and won. I thought, he can win, I’ll take the money. But to this day, I’ve never got anything from him. Even our team leaders knew of that deal.”
“He’s already said this in 2000,” Camenzind explained. “I was super strong that day. [Before the finish] he offered me a sum of money if I would let him win. I told him that I wanted to win. Anyway, it was such a small amount, I could not take it seriously.”
Brixia Sport takes over team Liquigas
Brixia Sport announced on Monday that it will take over the structure of team Liquigas-Cannondale. The Italian team is expected to race as Brixia-Cannondale in 2013.
“It’s a difficult time economically, and not only for our team,” team manager, Roberto Amadio told Cycling Weekly ahead of the announcement. “So, to find sponsors in this environment is difficult. However, I have my group of riders and the points to be in the WorldTour, so… Certainly, it will be a transitional year. Even so, we will be competitive.”
Peter Sagan, Ivan Basso, Elia Viviani and Moreno Moser will help lead the team. Vincenzo Nibali will leave to race for Astana.
Nibali hungry for more
Vincenzo Nibali wants to lead team Italy to a win in the World Championships on September 23 in the Netherlands. He just finished the Tour of Colorado, coming after a season that included a win in Tirreno-Adriatico and third place in the Tour de France.
“I’ve always liked being competitive all year long and often I am,” Nibali told Italy’s La Gazzetta dello Sport newspaper. “I have 71 race-days in me, but I don’t feel tired. Yes, The Shark is still hungry.”
Nibali, nicknamed Lo Squalo or The Shark, will race the Giro di Padania next week in preparation for Worlds.
World Ports Classic welcomes Boonen
The new World Ports Classic race, running this weekend between Rotterdam and Antwerp, welcomed Tom Boonen as one of the favourites. Organiser ASO said its race would be “familiar turf” for Boonen, who won classics Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix this year.
On Friday, the race travels 201 kilometres along the coast to from Rotterdam to Antwerp, near Boonen’s home. It returns to Rotterdam on Saturday via a 161.5-kilometre run further inland. Winds are expected to shatter the race as the highest point is only 28 metres.
“Cycling is more and more international. But it’s also important not to forget about the “Old Europe” and to preserve our sport, a true tradition in Belgium and the Netherlands,” Boonen said. “For riders like us, it is always wonderful to race before a crowd that deeply loves cycling. I’m curious to find out about the World Ports Classic.”
Marcel Kittel (Argos-Shimano), André Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) and Theo Bos (Rabobank) are also favourites.
Tour of Hangzhou postponed
The Tour of Hangzhou organisers announced on Tuesday that they would wait until next year to debut its Chinese stage race.
“We put in a lot of work to stage the first edition of the event in 2012, but we needed a little more time to fine-tune certain internal matters in China,” said Global Cycling Promotion Director Mr Alain Rumpf.
“In choosing to delay the first edition, we can ensure that the event will meet the expectations of all our partners, as was the case last year with the Tour of Beijing.”
The race was scheduled for October 17 to 21 and on the heels of another Chinese race, the Tour of Beijing.