Wow, what a crazy, sad ending to this whole Lance Armstrong saga. After winning all of our hearts (who didn't own one of those yellow LIVESTRONG bracelets?) by defying all the odds, beating cancer, and going on to win seven Tour de France titles, he's now being stripped of those titles and banned from the sport for the rest of his life by the USADA. He's also disqualified from all competitive results obtained on and since August 1, 1998. He'll have to give up his medals, titles, winnings, finishes, points, and prizes.
Now that the USADA has stripped Armstrong of everything he's worked for, due to charges of consuming performance enhancing dugs, I'm experiencing a multitude of feelings, especially as a fan who once really believed in him. He was an easy guy to cheer for, and looking back, it's difficult to believe that in one day, the USADA has essentially taken away and eliminated his entire, storied career.
From making headlines for being an up-and-coming amateur cyclist to his battle and ultimately defeat of cancer to winning (and now losing) a historic seven Tour de France titles, I'm still trying to come to terms with the fact that Lance's journey has ended this way. After more than a decade of court battles and accusations from teammates and other competitors, Lance has thrown in the towel, and who knows what's next for him and when he'll make headlines again.
As of now, let's take a quick look back at everything Lance has accomplished and what he's ultimately lost.
Are you a Lance Armstrong fan? What do you think about him not fighting the USADA?
Image via Bensmcc/Flickr
Lance was a talented cyclist from a very young age. In 1987-1988, he was the number-one ranked triathlete in the 19-and-under group. In 1987, he had more points than five professionals. At 16, he became a professional triathlete and was the national sprint-course triathlon champion in 1989 and 1990. He then found his love in cycling after becoming the U.S. Amateur Championship in 1991.