It was in 2010 when Lance Armstrong’s good friend and former teammate, Floyd Landis, went public with the testimony that he, along with other members of the U.S. Postal Service cycling team, took performance-enhancing drugs during competition. Landis already had his own history with the United State Anti-Doping Agency (USADA,) after suing them in 2006 for accusing him of using testosterone during the Tour de France. Now he’s under his own grand jury investigation, and his friend Lance Armstrong is too.
The evidence against Lance Armstrong came out two years ago, and was based not only on Landis’ story, but those of 10 other cyclists as well and 38 different samples Armstrong submitted during the years of 2008 – 2012. This testimony pointed not only to Armstrong, but to the core of the International Cycling Union, who have been accused with all but giving the athletes drugs before looking the other way and hiring teams of lawyers to cover up their tracks. So says the USADA.
But Armstrong has called the case a “witch hunt” put on by Travis Tygart, chief executive officer at the USADA. According to the seven-time Tour de France winner, Tygart has a “vendetta” against him and is simply trying to destroy the Armstrong name. But that may be far-fetched, seeing as how Tygart has recently taken on other doping cases and levied sanctions against other athletes that have nothing to do with the Armstrong case.
Those include Joshua Gilbert, 19, an Olympic weightlifter that was charged with doping charges; and Patrick Mendes, 21, who has received a ban of two years, also for weightlifting. Were these witch hunts, too? Or just part of Tygart’s job as CEO? What’s to happen should Armstrong and the International Cycling Union should they be found guilty? Or maybe more importantly, what will happen if they’re cleared of all charges?