Armstrong ordered to return Olympic medal

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LONDON: Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his 2000 Olympic Games cycling time trial bronze medal by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

“We have written asking for the return of the medal from the Sydney 2000 Games,” an IOC official said yesterday after the decision was made to revoke the last major title won by the disgraced American.

The retired Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and banned for life by the International Cycling Union (UCI) in October after several riders testified that he took drugs.

The testimony came in a US Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) report in which the 41-year-old’s former US Postal team was accused of running “the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen”.

Armstrong, a cancer survivor who founded the Livestrong Foundation, has always denied wrongdoing. The 2000 bronze was the only Olympic medal Armstrong ever won, despite dominating cycling by winning the Tour de France from 1999 to 2005.

He retired from cycling, for a second time, in 2011.

The IOC had been preparing to make a move for the medal for months, but decided at its executive board meeting last month to wait for the UCI to inform Armstrong of the titles that would be taken from him and give him the right to appeal.

“Following the recent decisions of Usada and the UCI regarding the competitive cycling results of Lance Armstrong, the IOC has disqualified Armstrong from the events in which he competed at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games,” it said. – Reuters

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