January 15, 2013 (Chicago, Il) – Lance Armstrong has now admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) as revealed today by CBS. Interview host, Oprah Winfrey, confirmed from Chicago that she conducted a two-and-a-half hour interview with Armstrong yesterday at his home in Austin, Texas, and the interview will be broadcast as two separate shows instead of one because of the amount of material.
Armstrong, of course, was stripped last year of his seven Tour de France titles because of his use of PEDs. Until now, Armstrong has vehemently denied ever doping.
“He did not come clean in the manner that I expected. We were mesmerized and riveted by some of his answers,” said Winfrey. “I had read the [USADA’s] reasoned decision; I watched Travis Tygart interview on 60 Minutes; I read L A Confidentiel and David Walsh’s books and read the Seven Deadly Sins. I felt like I was studying for a college exam. I went into the interview w/112 questions…”
“He answered the questions in a way that he was ready. Most important questions – and the answers that people were waiting to hear – were answered…I can only say that I was satisfied by answers.”
“He was thoughtful, serious, and well-prepared; he met the moment. At the end of it, after literally 2.5 hours, we were both exhausted at end of interview. I was satisfied. After a while, we took a break and Lance said ‘…will there be a point where you lighten up? What about questions about my mom or my run today?’ He was so forthcoming. I was prepared to dig and to reference, but I didn’t have to do that…”
Winfrey described the Armstrong interview as “the biggest interview of my career,” in her career of extraordinary interviews, but also compared it to a Michael Jackson interview she did many years ago. And she related humorous anecdotes of getting together with Armstrong in Hawaii last month for a clandestine meeting.
During yesterday’s interview, Winfrey did not allow lawyers in the room, telling them that, “If you have something to say, you have to make issue after I’m done.” But apparently none of the lawyers had anything to say.
Winfrey also expressed surprise that news of Armstrong’s confession was confirmed by CBS before her airplane arrived in Chicago – and this despite secrecy measures employed by Winfrey. She carried the interview tapes personally, not trusting them to be beamed up to satellites.
While details of the Armstrong interview were being revealed on CBS’s “Eye Opener” show, clips were shown of USADA CEO Travis Tygart talking on 60 Minutes about anonymous death threats that he received; including one that promised to put a “bullet into my head.” Tygart said that the FBI are investigating that threat.
In other Armstrong news, the Texan is apparently now trying to mend fences with his former team mate Floyd Landis reports USA Today. Landis, who finished first at the 2006 Tour de France before being stripped of his win there due to a positive drug test, later became one of Armstrong’s key accusers. There is now much animosity between them, but if the two men can settle, Armstrong should avoid facing a lawsuit that could cost him $30 million.
Also, South Australian premier Jay Weatherill is asking Armstrong to repay an undisclosed amount of money used to lure him to compete at the Tour Down Under in past years. Pedal understands that this new development was precipitated by the legal ramifications of Armstrong’s confession to Oprah Winfrey.
The Oprah interview will air both Thursday and Friday this week on various channels across Canada and also be streamed live on OWN (the Oprah Winfrey Network). Broadcast information will be posted once it is confirmed.
CBS report HERE.
USA Today HERE
The Australian HERE.