Jean-Pierre Verdy, ex-director of the French Agency for the Fight against Doping, suspects Lance Armstrong of having resorted to mechanical doping. But he doesn’t have proof, he says.
If you are told ‘cheat’ and ‘cycling’, who do you think first? To Lance Armstrong, no doubt. The Texan is the subject of new accusations from one of his former rivals, Jean-Pierre Verdy, former leader of the French Agency for the Fight against Doping (AFLD).
He publishes a book in which he retraces his career, and in particular his fight against the scourge of doping in sport. Cycling is not the only discipline mentioned, since it tells of the difficulties he may have known to control the tennis player Rafael Nadal, or the players of Olympique Lyonnais. But it is obviously cycling that is most present in his book, and in the interview he gave to L’Equipe.
Armstrong and Sarkozy’s visit
About Armstrong, he describes a star protected by the governing bodies of cycling, and even by the political class. “Each time he should have been caught at fault, he was not worried,” says Verdy. On the announcement of his return to cycling, in March 2009 a vast operation was launched at his residence in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat. He had slammed the door in our face. He should have been suspended for refusing to submit, but no. On the 2009 Tour, he had received a visit from President Nicolas Sarkozy while since 2005, everyone knew he was doped. We were stunned. “
Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France victories after an investigation by the American anti-doping agency (Usada). But nothing has been proven regarding mechanical doping, despite the suspicions that the former AFLD boss may have: “I don’t have proof. But we might find her one day. I believe it. “ The specter of the motor bike has haunted the pelotons for several years, even if no rider has ever been caught with his hand in the bag, except a young Belgian during the Cyclo-cross Worlds 5 years ago. Fabian Cancellara has been suspected, as Christopher Froome. We can add Armstrong’s name to the list …