I’ve been a Cycling fan for the past 26 years. Ever since I watched Greg LeMond first win in 1986 I’ve been hooked. But in as much as I followed and rooted for LeMond, I was a true fan of Lance Armstrong’s and it was through him that I truly became a cycling fanatic. And it was through Lance Armstrong and his race teams that I branched out, becoming fans and following many other riders and teams. Who but a true cycling fan would watch the full 3-week Tour de France every year, as well as countless other races in Europe and the United States?
Of all of the competitive sports though, Cycling is one of the dirtiest. Its a cesspool of Performance Enhancing Drugs, cheating, lying, and scandal. And it was with revulsion that I watched, year after year, as so many of the well known and popular riders were caught doping. And for much of his career Lance Armstrong endured claims that he doped as well. Despite his vehement denials and outspoken criticism against doping in cycling the accusations remained. And Despite it all, I believed Lance Armstrong’s continued denials. All the way to the end. Yet now, despite years of denials and blatant lies to his fans comes news that Lance Armstrong will finally confess to doping in front of Oprah Winfrey.
With his confession will go the very last vestige of faith I have in Athletes. I’ve become increasingly jaded over the years, yet I hung onto this last thread of idealism believing — wrongly — that humanity can not be completely bereft of honor, sportsmanship, and altruism. I now know humanity has none of those things, and more, I am through with Cycling. I followed probably 40 cyclists on Twitter, had various Season Passes set up on my Tivo, had subscriptions to cycling newsletters and magazines, and had a ton of cycling related links in my bookmarks. Those are all gone now. I’ve cancelled my subscriptions, my season passes, and deleted all of my links and unfollowed every cyclist from my Twitter feed. July will be filled with Golf instead of Cycling now and for that I can certainly be thankful.
But to Lance Armstrong I only have this last left to say; your name is not worth even muttering after this. You aren’t fit to lead anything, including the foundation which still bears your moniker and which you were forced to step down from. I hope you look back on your life in future years to come, that you realize what you’ve done and the damage you’ve caused to your sport and your fans. Don’t dare ask for forgiveness on Monday after the years of denials and lies to your fans. You don’t deserve it and certainly won’t get it from me.