Monday, August 20, 2012

Lance Armstrong Investigation: Judge Sparks' Ruled for USADA

Photo from CyclingNews
It was announced today that Judge Sparks has ruled that USADA has the authority to bring its case against Lance. In cycling lingo, this is one more attack that Lance needs to cover in this last stage of his race to hold on to his yellow jerseys. The stage isn't over yet but Lance needs to respond by Thursday. Here are a few more details from the news outlets...
From CyclingNews:
USADA CEO Travis Tygart was pleased with the outcome.
“We are pleased that the federal court in Austin, Texas has dismissed Lance Armstrong’s lawsuit and upheld the established rules which provide Congressionally mandated due process for all athletes...
Armstrong's suit was aimed at blocking USADA from pursuing anti-doping rule violation charges against Armstrong. In June, USADA notified Armstrong and five others of the violation, which included allegations of doping with EPO, blood transfusion and other performance enhancing drugs and methods, as well as trafficking, administration of banned drugs, and conspiracy to cover up doping during his time at the US Postal Service team.
Armstrong's attorneys filed the suit in Texas arguing that USADA's procedures were a violation of his constitutional right to due process, and also contended that USADA did not have jurisdiction over the case. ...
The judge chose to dismiss the case because "Armstrong's due process claims lack merit" and "the Court lacks jurisdiction over Armstrong's remaining claims, or alternatively declines to grant equitable relief on those claims".
As for the next decisive moment, the article concludes with this:
Armstrong now has until August 23 to either accept a lifetime ban and the loss of all results during the period of USADA's claims, which encompass most of his professional career including his Tour de France victories, or take the case to arbitration where all witness testimony and other evidence will be aired publicly.
I will be very surprised if he accepts the loss of his Tour de France (and other) titles. I think he will go down fighting to the end. However, my question is whether he will go to arbitration next or appeal today's ruling. I'm guessing he may try to appeal today's ruling, especially if he can find a judge who isn't as noble, competent or ethical as Judge Sparks appears to be.

All I know is USADA's case won't be over until the proverbial fat lady sings. I just hope the key players including Travis Tygart and any judges and arbitration panelists stay strong in the face of any political or other pressure they experience.. They are dealing with someone who doesn't know what it means to lose gracefully and honorably...

1 comment:

  1. Love to see Lance do a lie detector test! He is so arrogant he would think he could beat it. Lets hope this all gets sorted soon and the cheats don't prosper! as another case of lance 'getting off the hook' would send out the wrong messages to young cyclists coming into the sport.