AUSTIN, Texas — Tyler Hamilton says Lance Armstrong gave him an illegal blood booster before the 1999 Tour de France and that the teammates took blood transfusions together during the cycling race the following year.
Hamilton makes the allegations in his book, “The Secret Race. Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France, Doping, Cover-ups and Winning at All Costs,” set to be published Sept. 5. The Associated Press purchased a copy Thursday.
Armstrong has long denied doping but last week chose not to fight drug charges by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. USADA has erased 14 years of Armstrong’s competitive results, including his seven Tour de France titles.
The books covers much of what Hamilton said in a 2011 interview with “60 Minutes” and what he said he told federal criminal investigators looking into doping allegations on the Postal team. Officials closed that investigation in February without bringing any charges against Armstrong.
But Hamilton also provides sharper, personal details of what he says was an alleged doping program encouraged by Armstrong and other team leaders. He describes in detail how he and other cyclists doped and how they avoided getting caught.
Hamilton discusses at length his own descent into performance-enhancing drug use and said the team started even before Armstrong joined in 1998. He and Armstrong soon became roommates and confidants who would discuss using the blood-booster EPO and other PEDs.
“Nobody sets out wanting to dope,” Hamilton said.
While visiting Armstrong’s home in Nice shortly before the 1999 Tour, Hamilton said he asked him if he had any EPO and Armstrong pointed to the refrigerator. Hamilton took it, thanked Armstrong and remarked to himself how cavalier Armstrong was about simply keeping it in the refrigerator.
Hamilton described a doping plan put in place by the team for the 1999 Tour de France, with Armstrong’s knowledge, that included a motorcyclist riding behind racers with a thermos full of EPO. It was to be dispensed to riders in the team camper after race stages.
He said team leaders, doctors and mangers encouraged and supervised doping and PEDs were handed out to cyclists in white lunch bags.
Hamilton said he and Armstrong sat near each other to take a blood transfusion after the 11th stage of the 2000 Tour de France, under the watchful eye of team director Johan Bruyneel. That would have been right before the Tour’s punishing and famous Ventoux mountain stage.
Bruyneel is also facing doping charges by USADA and a lifetime ban if found guilty of leading what the agency has referred to as a vast doping conspiracy on his teams. Bruyneel has taken his case to arbitration.View Entire Story
By Elaine Donnelly
Extending sexual misconduct to combat units
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
Video reviews of today's hottest trends in Minecraft (servers and mods) along with a look at the latest video games with your host MCairsoft14 (alias Jerad Zad).
Covering the world of soccer, including the World Cup, Major League Soccer, D.C. United and the English Premier League and other interesting sporting events.
Contributions to the Communities Sports desk from readers.
Straight talk on climate science, energy economics, and public policy.
Benghazi: The anatomy of a scandal
Vietnam Memorial adds four names
Cinco de Mayo on the Mall
NRA kicks off annual convention