Hard to believe that just over two years ago, Lance Armstrong was appearing at the State Capitol with then-Governor Bill Ritter to announce the launch of what is now known as the USA Pro Challenge. His association with the race is long over, and so is his credibility following last night's interview with Oprah Winfrey, when he admitted to lying about blood doping and so much more. His confession confirms what his critics have been saying for years -- among them Boulder's Tyler Hamilton, who pointed the finger at Armstrong on 60 Minutes back in 2011.
As we noted last year, Armstrong's fall has been a long time coming. Well over a decade ago, when he was still winning Tour de France accolades that have since been stripped from him, a friend of mine who works at ESPN The Magazine told me he had sources who felt certain the Live Strong hero had been improperly enhancing his pedaling performances, and those whispers grew steadily louder as time went on. Indeed, Floyd Landis, another Boulder cyclist, branded Armstrong a charlatan in May 2010. But in the months that followed the August 2010 team-up of Armstrong and Ritter at the State Capitol to announce what was originally dubbed the Quiznos Pro Challenge, they became impossible to ignore.
In April 2011, Bicycling editor and Tour de Lance author Bill Strickland joined the Armstrong-is-doping chorus. Then, that May, Hamilton -- himself an accused doper -- stepped up with his damning, and totally on-point, allegations.
Afterward, Armstrong and Hamilton got into a pissy altercation at an Aspen bar. One account of the dust-up quotes Armstrong as telling his onetime teammate on the U.S. Postal Service bike team, "We're going to destroy you on the witness stand and we're going to make your life a living hell."
Not so much. Armstrong's bullying days are over, once and for all. Look below to see the 2011 60 Minutes report featuring Hamilton and Armstrong's passionate claims of innocence, followed by two web extras from the broadcast.
More from our Sports archive: "Lance Armstrong a doper? Boulder's Floyd Landis says 'yes.'"
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