Floyd Landis has responded after Lance Armstrong called him a “piece of s***” in a new documentary.
Landis, winner of the 2006 Tour de France before he was stripped of the yellow jersey for doping, was one of the key players in Armstrong’s downfall after he accused the Texan of doping in 2010 and later filed a whistleblower lawsuit against his former team-mate.
In 2012, Armstrong finally admitted he had doped through all of his Tour de France victories, but his animosity towards Landis has not faded even now.
Armstrong is the subject of a new ESPN documentary, which will be available online from May 25, in which he criticises Landis.
He said: “It could be worse, I could be Floyd Landis, waking up a piece of sh** every day.”
Landis, who retired in 2010 and now runs a legal cannabidiol company in Colorado has said he doesn’t feel any animosity towards Armstrong.
In an interview with ESPN radio, Landis said: “I have some empathy for him because I went through some real public humiliation and it hurts.
“You want to blame somebody and sometimes it’s easier to find the most obvious thing or person and blame them. He can blame me. Maybe it would still be a secret if it wasn’t for me.
“I had to come clean. He’s obviously not happy about that. I hope he finds some peace in his life. I don’t have any further animosity towards him.”
The whistleblower lawsuit against Landis was settled in 2018, when Armstrong was ordered to pay out $5 million.
Landis received around $1.1 million from Armstrong and used the leftover money to start his own Continental team, Floyd’s Pro Cycling, which folded late last year.
But Landis still has respect for Armstrong, saying he was “the best cyclist that I’ve ever raced with.”
He added: “There’s a lot more to it than just one bad guy that got a bunch of other people to dope and was kind of mean. It’s complicated.
“Lance was also a kid one time and had dreams of racing his bike and didn’t realise probably what he was walking into.”