In a gripping interview with Oprah Winfrey that aired Thursday night, now-disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong came clean about using performance enhancing drugs. Armstrong said that through most of through most his cycling career he had multiple blood transfusions in addition to using a cocktail of drugs, including testosterone, cortisone, human growth hormone and the blood booster EPO. The interview in which Armstrong did not get deep into the details of how exactly he doped and who assisted him is set to continue on Winfrey's OWN cable network on Friday night.
Cyclist and 2008 Olympic Champion Nicole Cooke, legal reporter for the Wall Street Journal Reed Albergotti, and sports agent Drew Rosenhaus weigh in on whether it is possible for him to rehabilitate his image.
In order for cycling to move forward Cooke says Armstrong has to “definitely” come clean. On Armstrong’s interview with the TV legend, Cooke says, “we haven’t even scratched the surface.” She adds, “Oprah isn’t an expert on the ins and outs of cycling and what happens with the anti-doping.” Cooke went on to say that she hopes Armstrong “can be put under oath and actually have to answer those hard questions.”
In order for Armstrong to get back in the public eye and have any credibility Rosenhaus says he has to “come completely clean, be totally remorseful, absolutely apologetic.” He adds that the disgraced cyclist “can not continue to be defiant. He’s got to lay it all out there publicly and privately with these agencies.” Rosenhaus says by doing these things Armstrong “has a chance to start over again and get a fresh start.”
With lawsuits and threats of legal action against Armstrong many wondered if his public statement would help him but Albergotti says, “I don’t think it does at all.” He adds, “I think they’re going to look at this and they’re going to say great you know at least we have the doping admission.” Albergotti adds, “they’re going to continue forward saying well look you admitted to this in a contract with the U.S. Postal Service – you swore that you would not dope and you would not break the rules of cycling. You violated – you’ve got to pay back that money.” Money that he says could make him liable for roughly $100 million.