Tag Archives: Lance Armstrong

Lance Armstrong Drops Bold Statement

By Kaleb Page

January 29, 2015

Back in January 2013 a confession was made that not only rattled the cycling community, but also rattled fans around the world for this mega-star cyclist. That athlete being none other than U.S. cycling legend and seven time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong. A man who so many gravitated to, even if they didn’t know anything about cycling, now sat on Oprah confessing he had been using performance-enhancing drugs.

In his first interview on television since that time in 2013, Armstrong had an interesting sit down with BBC Sport.

Now at age 43 and no longer the holder of a record seven Tour de France titles; Lance had this to say:

“If I was racing in 2015, no I wouldn’t do it again because I don’t think you have to,” Armstrong said, “If you take me back to 1995, when doping was completely pervasive, I would probably do it again.”

Quite the answer to hear from Armstrong after so many years out of the spotlight and having such the fall from grace that he did. This part of the video interview below shows Armstrong shedding light on the past. From what I could see, this was a man being honest as well as someone who looked to be serving the time to reflect on what they did.

I think this was good reporting by BBC Sport and a great piece in the works as the full documentary set to come out this Thursday on BBC News. This allowed for an update on what is happening since the last time we saw Armstrong in 2013 and how his demeanor has changed since then as well.

Another thing that struck me about this interview was something Armstrong said. He mentioned that even though what he did was wrong, at the same time the things associated to him saw growth that they had never seen prior. Whether it was his bike supplier, charity foundation or even the sport itself; Armstrong knew he made a big and helpful impact. Posing this question about all the good he did pretty well:

“Do we want to take it away (the growth/charity awareness)? I don’t think anybody says ‘yes’.” -Lance Armstrong

Is Armstrong going to be another one of those second chance stories we see all the time here in America? It still is too early to tell especially with a lot more legal battles to go between Armstrong and numerous other parties. I do see it happening where as time passes and the wounds heal Armstrong is placed back in the public eye.

For now it looks like he must wait for his chance at redemption. A chance I think he desperately wants and needs.

The Power of Oprah

BY ANTHONY ALFORD

During an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Lance Armstrong finally admitted he was doping during his cycling career. He also doped before all seven of his Tour de France victories. But this article is not about Lance Armstrong’s wrongdoings. It is about how Oprah Winfrey returned to the spotlight and did something no sport or news journalists were able to do. She got Armstrong to open up about everything he had done wrong. But why did he open up to Oprah and not anyone from ESPN,  CNN or other media outlets?

The answer is actually much simpler than people may think. For the last 25 years, Oprah has developed a reputation people in the media profession can only dream of. If a superstar wants to repair their image, they talk to Oprah. Just ask Jay Leno who did his only sit-down interview with Oprah after he was largely blamed for Conan O’Brien losing The Tonight Show on NBC after only hosting for seven months.

So, what makes Oprah different from everyone else?

Oprah has a unique interview style. Unlike many journalists, who just fire away questions just for a “got you” moment, Oprah conveys a comforting presence for the person she is interviewing through the setting and the tone of her voice. Notice during the Armstrong interview how the set looked like a living room in someone’s house.

However, despite her comforting presence, her questions are direct and straight to the point, unlike another set of journalists’ who avoid asking tough questions because they want to maintain contact with the person they are interviewing for future reference. It helps Oprah is able to perfectly transition from a serious interview with a damaged superstar to a joyful celebrity interview. She has the rare ability to interview any human in this country and not only get something out of them, but make the interview interesting for her viewers. If anyone wants to study how to conduct an interview, there is nobody better to watch than Oprah.

Lance Armstrong is going to have some rough days ahead of him. Who knows what will happen with him and the people he affected. But one thing he did right was he told the truth, even if it took him eight years after his last Tour de France win to do. Armstrong understood if he wanted to begin the process of repairing his image, he had to start with Oprah.

Sportswriter Questions Lance Armstrong’s Doping Admission

BY LORI RAUDIO

Lance Armstrong has once again captured headlines after he admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs. In an interview with Oprah, yet to air, Armstrong reportedly came clean about what most people have known for a long time. Yahoo Sports reporter Dan Wetzel analyzed the situation in an article titled “Lance Armstrong’s Doping Admission: Questions Oprah Should Have Asked.”

Most people know cycling is riddled with performance-enhancing drugs, so this shouldn’t be a surprise. Rather, people are questioning the time of his admission and his motives. As Wetzel asks, “Why now, Lance?”

Wetzel made many great points in his article. For one, he mentions Armstrong did some positive things in his career. He did beat cancer and used his platform to inspire millions of others through his Livestrong foundation. Beyond this, however, Armstrong’s choices negatively impacted the lives of people who tried to reveal his secret.

If Armstrong simply admitted to doping a long time ago, I think it would be easier to forgive him. But, as Wetzel showed in his article, there is a laundry list of people who Armstrong took down in his denial. He falsely sued the Sunday Times of London for libel, he threatened those who spoke against him including former teammates and employees, and created many other lawsuits just to protect his lies.

There are probably more people Armstrong hurt to keep the truth from coming out. Why is he now choosing to admit his wrongdoings, and will he be forgiven by his fans and the sports world? These are all questions to be answered in the next few weeks. After the Oprah interview airs, it will be interesting to see if Armstrong is truly sorry for his actions or has ulterior motives for his doping admission.