In a documentary, the American Lance Armstrong gives new insights into his sophisticated doping system and admits that he had already cheated as a teenager.
For years, Lance Armstrong fooled professional cycling and its fans. He won the Tour de France seven times in a row between 1999 and 2005. He was the undisputed high-flyer of the scene until he was finally convicted of doping in 2012 – according to constant rumors. All tour victories were subsequently revoked and the American was banned for life.
In a new documentary by the TV broadcaster «ESPN» new details about Armstrong’s career come to light. The abuse of doping began much earlier than previously known. The 48-year-old reveals that “probably at the age of 21” he used cortisone for the first time. That means: Armstrong must have been doped with his World Cup title in Oslo in 1993.
Four years later, he experimented with growth hormones. “I thought: ‘If there is something good that should grow in my body, it does so.’ In retrospect, it could also be that the hormones promoted the growth of something bad,” says Armstrong, referring to the im October 1996 testicular cancer diagnosis received concerns.
The role of stepfather Terry Armstrong
But Armstrong emphasizes that he has known about the practices at all times. “Nobody said, ‘Don’t ask, that’s what you get.’ I never would have let that happen to me. I found out what I was getting and I made it conscious. »
Nevertheless, the two-part documentary, which will be broadcast on May 24th and 31st, suggests that stepfather Terry in particular had a negative influence on Lance at a young age. «Without me, Lance wouldn’t be the champion he is today. I drove him like an animal, »he describes himself meaningfully. And Lance agrees: “He killed me.”
That leaves traces. As a teenager, Armstrong violated the rules as a triathlete. “Fake the birth certificate, start illegally and then beat them all” – that’s how Armstrong describes his beginnings in competitive sports.
“Hey, it could be worse”
Armstrong is an athlete who quickly learns to see his competitors as rungs on the ladder to success. In his time as a cyclist, he doesn’t shy away from anything. He makes life hell for possible traitors who know too much. To date, he does not seem to be really aware of the effects of his actions.
He shows empathy for former doping sinners like Marco Pantani or Jan Ullrich, who were “destroyed by the media”. On the other hand, when it comes to the suffering and humiliation that Armstrong inflicted on those who spoke the truth and testified against him at the time, he seems largely unaffected.
Above all, his hatred of Floyd Landis, who unwraps about Armstrong’s machinations in 2010, remains unbroken. “Hey, it could be worse,” says Armstrong, adding: “I could be Floyd Landis and wake up every day as a piece of *****”.