Wada would not appeal against armstrong verdict

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) will not be appealing against the ban imposed on American cyclist Lance Armstrong, according to an announcement by the anti-doping agency.

Armstrong, the winner of seven Tour de France titles, was banned by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) after testimony from former teammates, including Tyler Hamilton, George Hincapie, Frankie Andreu, and Floyd Landis, who all were involved in what the USADA called the most sophisticated doping program ever seen in sport. The ex-teammates of the disgraced cyclist testified that Armstrong used and even encouraged the use and provided performance enhancing drugs and threatened cyclists in the team who didn’t doped of losing their place in the team.

The evidence against Armstrong showed prolonged use of a range of performance enhancing drugs including erythropoietin (EPO), blood transfusions, testosterone, corticosteroids, human growth hormone, and masking agents, according to the USADA.

The 41-year-old Armstrong, a cancer survivor, has denied cheating and never failed a doping test but was stripped of all titles and given a lifetime ban after electing not to fight the charges made against him. The USADA banned Armstrong for life and stripped him of all his titles and results since August 1, 1998, a decision that was later ratified by the UCI, the governing body of cycling.

After the USADA sent the report to the the governing body of cycling, UCI, and World Anti-Doping Agency, they had the option of taking the matter to the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS) or ratify the sanctions imposed by USADA on the cyclist. The UCI said Lance had no place in cycling and annulled all his results besides banning him for life. Now, WADA that had the option to challenge the ruling made by USADA has joined USADA and UCI against the cyclist.

WADA President John Fahey said in a statement that the anti-doping agency has no concerns as to the complete process and the overwhelming weight of evidence against Lance Armstrong. Fahey added that the Armstrong doping scandal has resulted in a proper and right sanction for the cyclist and has served as a revelation to the world of sport for which USADA must be applauded. WADA also called on the governing body of cycling to disclose details of its independent investigation that it vowed to undertake after widespread doping revelations. Fahey said the anti-doping agency has had no communication from the UCI with regard to the Armstrong-reasoned decision, the UCI management decisions, or their upcoming inquiry and added that WADA would like to make a contribution to the inquiry, if it is established and resourced beyond reproach. Fahey further added that this is not a situation wherein just because an athlete didn’t return a positive test there was nothing for the UCI could do.

After being exposed as a drug cheat, Lance Armstrong has been asked to pay back millions of dollars in prize money, threatened with lawsuits, dropped by sponsors, and stepped down as the chairman of his charity foundation, Livestrong. The International Olympic Committee is even considering taking back his 2000 Olympic bronze medal.

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