Nope. You can’t compete when there are accusations about your athletic character. This “you” belonging solely to Lance Armstrong.
Did you think I meant “you,” the reader? No. Sorry. You can compete. You can run a 5k, 10k, marathon, compete in a triathlon or do whatever you’d wanna do if someone accuses you of cheating via performance enhancing drugs or blood doping techniques.
Here’s the deal–and allow me to separate all emotion and bias from the scenario. There are two possibilities within this latest probe that is set to determine the legality of Lance Armstrong, the competitor. Either he is innocent of the charges, or he is guilty of the charges. At present, the fact remains, according to the governing bodies that supersede any governing sports agency in this nation, he should be innocent until proven guilty.
The latest accusations reek of corruption, and agenda. No big surprise. I’m sure every triathlete who doesn’t want to compete against Armstrong is hoping the witch hunt continues until at least late October. And that’s not to say that Armstrong isn’t a witch–if you’re pickin’ up what I’m layin’ down. A lot of people think that his success hasn’t been enjoyed within the rules. The sport of cycling is always riding through a funk, and it’s easy to get a little stank on ya. However, the timing of the competition bar just seems a little too perfect, considering Armstrong’s recent success within the triathlon realm.
If there are questions about Armstrong’s ability, and whether he’s proving to be a stellar triathlete, why doesn’t the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), or the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) babysit the guy between now and the October competition. Some of the allegations and accusations within the scope of Armstrong’s Tour de France run are understandable–the biggest of which were blood doping. Charges that have been investigated, and were eventually dropped. It would seem that such an activity wouldn’t be taking place during a triathlon, or during training. But to alleviate any shadow of a doubt… Can Armstrong not be tested? Then retested? Just as he has over 500 times in his career–always passing…Then be monitored by a third party independent?
Not according to the USADA. That’s not good enough. The charges are rooted as far back as the late 1990s, and they include all of his Tour de France victories. Because of these present charges, Armstrong will be barred from any and all athletic competition that requires drug testing. The World Triathlon Corporation has declared Armstrong ineligible, until the investigation has been completed. This means Lance, who has won his last two events, will not be allowed to compete in the Ironman World Championship which takes place in Hawaii on October 13. And if convicted–if the charges hold and considered to be true–Armstrong will be banned from competition for life.
This all boils down to the USADA admitting at least one of two things–that the organization believes their testing and monitoring program has failed dismally (remember, Armstrong has never failed a test), or that they prefer the testimony of others–people like Floyd Landis–over the testing process itself.