Cycling could be dumped from Olympics: Pound
Patrick Kovarik/AFP/Getty Images Lance Armstrong, during happier times as leader of the Tour de France back in July, 2004.
Cycling could be dumped from the Olympic program if Lance Armstrong implicated the sport’s governing body of covering up a widespread doping scheme, International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound said on Tuesday.
Pound said the IOC might be left with no choice other than to take drastic action if Armstrong was able to prove the International Cycling Union (UCI) had acted improperly.
“We could say, ‘Look, you’ve clearly got a problem, why don’t we give you four years, eight years to sort it out?’ ” Pound said.
“And when you think you’re ready come on back we’ll see whether it would be a good idea to put you back on the program.”
A former head of the World Anti-Doping Agency, Pound said it was clear the IOC needed to take matters into its own hands in the wake of theArmstrong doping scandal.
“The only way it (cycling) is going to clean up is if all these people say ‘hey, we’re no longer in the Olympics and that’s where we want to be so let’s earn our way back into it,’ ” Pound said.
“The IOC would have to deal with it, the (UCI) is not known for its strong actions to anti-doping.”
Pound made his comments after talk show host Oprah Winfrey confirmed media reports that Armstrong admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs in an interview that was taped on Monday.
The full details will not be known until the interview is broadcast on Thursday and Friday although CBS reported that Armstrong indicated he might be willing to testify against others.
“You have to wait to see to what degree he has admitted, to what degree he is prepared to help,” said Pound.
“Some of the press reports I’ve seen say he had a lot of help from high cycling officials and he is willing to tell all about that.”
The Canadian lawyer said any possible changes to cycling’s status were unlikely to happen until after the next IOC presidential election, in August of this year.
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