Somebody Lied

The Armstrong UCI payments

Can you nominate in order now the degrees of the lie?

…. I will name you the degrees.
The first, the Retort Courteous; the second, the
Quip Modest; the third, the Reply Churlish; the
fourth, the Reproof Valiant; the fifth, the
Countercheque Quarrelsome; the sixth, the Lie with
Circumstance; the seventh, the Lie Direct. All
these you may avoid but the Lie Direct; and you may
avoid that too, with an If. I knew when seven
justices could not take up a quarrel, but when the
parties were met themselves, one of them thought but
of an If, as, ‘If you said so, then I said so;’ and
they shook hands and swore brothers. Your If is the
only peacemaker; much virtue in If.
Shakespeare’s As You Like It, V, IV

Somebody lied about some money just a little while ago.

More generally somebody lied about having doped in professional cycling, got caught, and after a four-year interval, the suicide of his best friend, the destruction of his marriage, a costly arbitration hearing, a tell-nothing book, a suspension and a grudging return to the uglamorous domestic racing scene, admitted to some key cycling officials in a private email that he lied about having doped.

But somebody perhaps lied before that, and it seems this earlier lie is a key to the unravelling.

Cast back to the deposition Lance Armstrong gave in 2005 in order to get his money from SCA Promotions, the company that wanted to check out whether Armstrong had in fact doped to win any of his Tours de France before they paid out on an insurance policy bonus the cyclist’s management company Tailwind Sports had bet on.

Fair enough, after all David Walsh and Pierre Ballester’s 2004 book LA Confidentiel, published in French so as to avoid the libel-friendly UK courts, was chock-full of interviews with former Armstrong associates who said that Big Tex, the Nike-sponsored athlete, the cancer survivor who inspired millions, was using performance enhancing drugs to win. A $5 million payout without due diligence on this would be like a government bailout of a too-big-to-fail financial institution without a stress test.

An attorney for SCA asked Armstrong in the deposition whether it was true that he had, as a competing athlete subject to the governing sanction of the sport’s highest body, made a lump-sum payment to the UCI at some point?

"Yeah", the cyclist said in a videotaped statement.

The attorney asked him why.

"I’m doing it to — to fund the fight against doping," Armstrong said. "It’s still a fight I believe in."

In the transcript of the deposition it becomes clear that Armstrong remembers pledging between $25,000 and $30,000 to the UCI after taking a tour of their offices. Probably in 2000, maybe later. Armstrong says several times in the deposition that he can’t recall, or that he doesn’t remember the exact dates.

Now cast forward to the damning email leaked to the press during the Tour of California, subsequently confirmed to be a communication between Floyd Landis and key officials in the US Cycling federation and USADA concerning, among so many other things, Armstrong’s contact with the Italian trainer Michele Ferrari in 2001.

"In the first year that the EPO test was used he (Armstrong -ed.) had been told by Mr Ferrari, who had access to the new test, that he should not use EPO anymore but he did not believe Mr Farrari (sic) and continued to use it. He later, while winning the Tour de Swiss (sic), the month before
the Tour de France, tested positive for EPO at which point he and Mr Bruyneel flew to the UCI headquarters and made a financial agreement with
Mr. Vrubrugen (sic) to keep the positive test hidden."

On May 20th this year Armstrong stood outside his team bus and faced a phalanx of reporters with cameras and, amid some rolling confusion as to whether the accusations were about the Tour de Suisse in 2001, which he won, or 2002, which he skipped, admitted he had seen the Landis accusations prior to the start of the Tour of California, and, when asked about the allegations therein, denied he had ever given money to the UCI.

"Absolutely not. No. That is the other thing, if you get into it. Obviously we’ve seen the email and that is not correct. But a lot of other things in the email, the timeline is off, if you go year by year," Armstrong said on a Thursday morning in Visalia.

Armstrong a little more than a day later published a clarification on the internet when pressed over his known donations with regard to the UCI.

"The question was did I pay off the UCI wrt a pos test in 2002 from TdS (which I didn’t contest). Answer – of course not, no way," Armstrong tweeted on May 21st.

Flip back to the 2005 court deposition in Texas with Armstrong and his $5 million bonus on the line. The lawyer for SCA Promotions asks him a question.

"Did you ever tell the public that you had made that donation?"

Armstrong, under oath, remembers a detail.

"Hein Verbruggen told them at some point, and I confirmed that."

Hein Verbruggen, it should be said, was the president of the UCI from 1991 to 2005. In his years at the helm the Dutchman oversaw the merger of amateur and professional cycling federations, the creation of the UCI ProTour, the 1998 Festina doping affair that nearly killed bike racing and the seven Tour de France victories of Lance Armstrong.

Verbruggen told Eurosport in the Spring of 2005 that Armstrong made the payment to the UCI in order "to discover new anti-doping methods."

“He gave money from his private funds, cash. He didn’t want this to be known but he did it," Verbruggen said, according to Eurosport in 2005.

Last week the current president of the UCI, Pat McQuaid, gave a press conference at the Giro d’Italia, where he upped the donation Armstrong gave to $100,000, pegged it’s promise to 2002, and said the money did not arrive in their accounts until 2005. Allegations of bribery and positive-for-EPO drug results were harshly denied, and McQuaid said the UCI used the money to buy an expensive blood testing machine.

"The UCI take seriously the accusation that the UCI took a bribe to hide the positive test of Lance Armstrong in 2001," McQuaid said. "We’ve contacted in recent days the labs involved for testing for EPO at that time. I have statement here from those labs that support what I am about to say … that there is no way that the UCI or its former president Hein Verbruggen could have accepted a bribe. It’s just not possible."

McQuaid also said that accepting a donation from Armstrong while he was an active, testable athlete under their sanction, was, in hindsight but not at the time, a conflict of interest.

"You have to consider that at the time, in 2002, no accusations against Lance Armstrong had been made. They’ve all came up since then. We accepted the donation to help develop the sport," McQuaid said. "The UCI is not a rich organisation and we have many demands from around the world for demands for support and material. We will listen to anyone who can help us."

Further muddying the pool are claims from 2005 by Sylvia Schenk, who was president of the German cycling federation from 2001 to 2004 and a key member of the UCI, and who now heads Transparency International, a global nongovernmental organisation tracking corruption around the world.

She told German sports television channel at the time that Verbruggen had done much to clean up doping in cycling since 1998, but that "everything is suddenly different when it comes to Armstrong…There is obviously a close relationship to Armstrong. For example, the UCI took a lot of money from Armstrong – as far as I know, $500,000. Now of course there is speculation that there are financial relationships to Armstrong as well as to the American market."

Armstrong, for his part in 2005, as quoted by Eurosport, said, "If I’ve donated money to the UCI to combat doping, step up controls and to fund research, it is not my job to issue a press release. That’s a secret thing, because it’s the right thing to do."

There is much virtue in Armstrong’s "If", and at face value it’s a laudable notion. After all, Armstrong was earning more in annual sponsorship fees and advertising contracts than he was in combined salary and race winnings. His story of cancer, survival and victory is responsible for the initial rise in cycling’s popularity in the past 10 years, and with it the increase in money flowing to the sport. He could afford to share some of the largesse.

But in the end what we are left with are some truths and some lies, and our position as fans of the sport and also journalists is to wade around in the marshy shallows and discern, perhaps by smell alone, which words float and which sink into the mire.

Armstrong, Verbruggen and McQuaid all confirm that the cyclist gave the federation a lot of money. Landis says it was to cover up a positive EPO test, the other three say it was to fight doping in some unclear way.

But the other three versions differ in degrees. Armstrong, under oath, said it was between $25,000 and $30,000. McQuaid, many years later, said it was $100,000. Verbruggen said it was to discover new detection methods. McQuaid said it was for a machine. Armstrong said it was a secret.

Schenk dropped a subtle bomb in 2005 with what seems to be a fourth version when she claimed Armstrong had given as much as half a million dollars.

Landis lied at least once, and now pays the price of shattered credibility in the court of public opinion.

But Armstrong, in order to claim his full $5 million from SCA Promotions in 2005, under sworn oath, said he gave one quarter of the sum that McQuaid admitted to this year. Either they both told the truth, and there are other, unknown payments out there, or one of them at some point, for reasons that are unknown but increasingly curious, fudged the numbers.

The question we are left asking is, to what degree is somebody lying?


Gabriel Rear Entry

make millions or….make $10 an hour wrenching and forever just win cat 1 races on weekends in Prospect Park? hand me the syringe !


The authors last statement starts with WE.
I’m really sorry to inform him that not EVERYONE cares.
Perhaps he should change the ending line to something like
“Myself and a few others are left…..”

Sacha Swage

Seems to me that the ones making the most noise are the ones who did not capitalize on there cycling success.

Lukas Limit Screw

The only fools bigger than the ones who believe cycling is clean are the ones who believe the UCI is clean. ASO isn’t much better.

Fausto Coppi

And of course there is Julien DeVries who was telling people in 2002 that Armstrong paid the UCI $500,000 to cover up a positive.

While Armstrong, McQuaid, and Verburggen cannot get their story straight Julien, Floyd, and Sylvia don’t seem to have that problem.

Dr. Maserati

…the other lie.

In 2007 at the ‘Play the Game’ conference Pat McQuaid said the payment of $100,0000 was “15 months ago”, which would hav made it July 2006 – one month after the release of the Vrijman report.

The comments are in tthe second recording on this website.

Arnaud Drainhole

Landis has never said that Armstrong tested positive for EPO at the Tour de Suisse in 2002. What he did say was:

2002: … Mr Armstrong was not witness to the extraction but he and I had lengthy discussions about it on our training rides during which time he also explained to me the evolution of EPO testing and how transfusions were now necessary due to the inconvenience of the new test. He also divulged to me at that time [i.e. in 2002] that in the first year that the EPO test was used [i.e. in 2001] he had been told by Mr Ferrari, who had access to the new test, that he should not use EPO anymore but he did not believe Mr Farrari and continued to use it.

Tigweld McGee

The total disregard for domestic racing by the USAC now makes sense.

Everyone should know by now that the USAC is run by the pinnacle of Armstrong fans who have contributed large amounts of cash to his causes. Weisel(sp?) and Co. I think it’s not controversial to state that the USAC members, race promoters are ignored and have been for quite a while.

What I see is Armstrong is set up as the middleman for importing UCI racing to the U.S. Continental pro teams bothering to travel to the Tour of California (starring Lance Armstrong!) now makes sense.

The goal of the executive leadership at USA Cycling is to capture revenue from the production of UCI cycling events, not for USA Cycling, but for Weisel/Armstrong’s benefit.

Paranoid ramblings aside, a promise of uncertain provenance in 2002 is not made good until 2005. 3 years? Lots of doping happened in those three years. Does the UCI actually have said blood testing device?


why lance didn’t just pay floyd is beyond me. bribery is obviously in his repetoire, and it would’ve been pretty cheap in retrospect.


I have been re-reading (and reading to my GF) Lances book recently- “its not about the bike”- as my gf goes through surgery, chemo and radio treatments for stage 3A cancer. And while we both admire him, and he serves as an inspiration to her as she is a competitive cyclist who hopes to come back to racing, his acts of cheating lessen the sport. We are passionate about the sport, but his Tour wins were not those of the athlete who spent the most time doing the honest work that we all can relate to- his wins represent the achievements of someone who had the most dollars to fund a PROgram. I will always applaude the work he has done for cancer- but his work as a sportsman is a joke. And sporting histroy deserves an honest account of what really happened so that in the future we will have some basis of the periods accomplishments in order to compare them to current achievements.
Lance cheated and he marginalized everyones accomplisments by doing so.

me not us

Armchair forum analysts are a bunch of big titty babies. What a joke, get a real life people. LMAO

Alessandro Tigweld

agreed with 1:04….i appreciate the ongoing NYVC crusade, but the repetition of these articles and comments is getting more than a little old…

Lukas Tubie

Landis is really Armstrong’s mom’s secret love child with Hein Verbruggen. You heard it here first.

Maxence Topcap

People get paid to try to make the problem go away with “get a life people” comments to be-little the facts. Armstrong is a cheat. As soon as he admits it, we can get on with having something else to do. Kinda like with Sarah Palin, as soon as she does hard-core porn, we’ll stop paying attention.


This whole doping situation is just cycling’s version of a dumb ass media scandel. Floyd should just go hire Gloria allred to complete the bullshit circle he’s drawing up. He may or may not have – who cares, he never officially came up pos, end of story. When a test is devised to change this (which there will be I bet) The truth will come out.
The governing bodies,IMO, seem to be doing a pretty good job since o6′. The racing seems to be getting better each year. The leveling of the field appears to be working and a lot of the riders are commenting as such – so let the UCI shake-em out. Lance might have maybe 1 more season at best. He’ll never win another tour and Landis will never pay back the money he took from his public (which should be the real story)

Marcus Camby

….Armstrong was bangin’ Verbruggen, with Schenk on the side. But ol’ Hank got jealous when Lance hooked up with Floyd, and Sylvia had some polaroids of her and Lance together…….ohthisisgettingGOOD!

And now Floyd is SEXTING to this Novitsky guy. SCORE!

Can’t wait ’til Betsy Andreu’s video hits TMZ. It’ll make the Bowie/Jagger rumor look like Sunday School!

I love biking.

Andrea Steerer

lee3, I disagree. When you have someone like Danilo DiLuca who won the Giro last year yet was stripped of the title after the race. How effective is a test when it cannot catch someone during a 3 week tour?

I grew up watching cycling which is the reason I love cycling and race and it was difficult to see a person like Marco Pantani who was extremely charismatic be revealed as cheater. The sport is moving forward by revealing many of the past transgressions. People have forgiven Bjarne Riis and Alex Zulle who admitted doping yet were never served suspensions during their cycling careers. Honestly, if Lance would admit to doping then cycling can move forward. Until he does, there will always be this doubt of whether cyclists are really telling the truth.

Hamza Swage

if everyone was doping, is it cheating?

if you’ve never been near the pinnacle of any endeavour/professional ambition, have never actually understood or been asked to make the sacrifices that need to be made and dealt with the people you needed to beat to get there, and haven’t walked in another man’s shoes, can you really feel righteous judging someone?

isn’t it easier to tear things down then build them up?

if millions of cancer survivors are given comfort/strength by the power of myth, even assuming they were complete pawns to provide a protective shield, is it really better for the ‘truth’ to come out?

isn’t myth more powerful than reality?

don’t anonymous sources helping you break a story have their own ulterior motives?

do you ever feel used like the cancer survivors were used?


Basso just won the Giro…
Vino has been tearing it up since his return…
Contador is winning everything and will most likely win the TDF…again…
Lance has been racing like sh*t lately.
My only problem with this constant coverage of Lance, is that you are letting the other cheaters get away with murder.
NOBODY said anything about Basso’s win on this website. Nothing. Zilch. Zero.
Yet every week it’s a new Toto about Lance, and a new article or interview about Lance.
Even it out a bit, or it really seems like you’re just on a witch hunt.


Witch hunts are when the innocent are persecuted. Convicting a crook is not a witch hunt. You might also want to check this week’s toto.


The testing is a bit behind the curve but the bottom line is HE DID GET CAUGHT. Danilo had a shady past too so I’m pretty sure he’ll never swing his leg over a bike with a race # ever again.
Guys like Sastre, Menchov, and Cunego seem to ride like guys that arent super human but have athletic talent. I dont discount this in light of all the bs going on in the sport.
If Floyd would;ve fessed up when it happened he probably would be riding on a decent Conti-team right now. It seems wierd that Pat Sinkewitz is coming back but Floyd got the boot right? – the difference (confessions and giving up the procedure)- Why isnt floyd telling us exactly what he did in 06′? He went about everything in a shitty way + he stole money (which is worse than cheating the public) Floyd dumped on the sport and picked the pockets of its fans. I lump him in with Chad Gerlach.


He also devastated a guy trying to put together a good team here in the states. I feel for the R. Bahati team that got caught up in the floyd crap. I was really hoping that that team could rise up to Pro-Continental status. It would be great to see a team with some color get exposure in this sport.

titanium fork

“Basso just won the Giro…
Vino has been tearing it up since his return…
Contador is winning everything and will most likely win the TDF…again…
Lance has been racing like sh*t lately.
My only problem with this constant coverage of Lance, is that you are letting the other cheaters get away with murder.
NOBODY said anything about Basso’s win on this website. Nothing. Zilch. Zero.
Yet every week it’s a new Toto about Lance, and a new article or interview about Lance.
Even it out a bit, or it really seems like you’re just on a witch hunt.”

West Coast Reader

Aghmm… its definitely more than a few others! Even out here its been “Lance doped” and we’re talking since 1999, well 1998 Vuelta to be exact. It was a nice sugar coated come from death bed to a tour contender story but many of US knew something was up. Every year since then we’ve gain more knowledge piece by piece. How others who race can’t see the writing on the wall is beyond me. The classic quote of “You don’t make a race horse out of a donkey” still holds today as it did when the phrase was coined.

Luca Tarmac

“In another sign that the Justice Department is seeking to disrupt cycling’s notorious doping underworld with the help of Floyd Landis, the government has assigned the case to Doug Miller, an experienced federal prosecutor who played a small but hardnosed role in the BALCO saga.”

Read more:

steel karma

Hyperbole sells papers and garners hits on website.
Bring me the head of Lance Armstrong!!! It’s FUN watching people who achieve get crushed, it makes me and my mundane hypocritical world feel oh so special. LMAO indeed


It’s FUN watching people comment with at least three different names and basically repeat the same message.

Amerigo Tank

6 degrees of Sexploitation

Who’s was doing who? with the meat needles and the doped needles, or can you testes positive for a blowjob of a someone taking it analmously…what SHITE SHITE SHITE and Full of CRAP thus all is…

Palin should be the giving head of the UF-me Federation…

go ride your Di2 pink Meivici foot long headtube and sissybar saddle with Powertap Clincher Carbon with Armadillos so you dont get flat…



i always race on ‘dillos (read it correctly, not how your perv mind read it) … u can’t win if you don’t finish

i also am so looking forward to 2015 when DI2 is affordable, shift up two/down once banished forever … about time bike technology got focused on the real issues facing us

Nathan Dropout

Most pilots’ last words are just hurled profanities. Armstrong’s will be, too. It’s a controlled flight into ground.

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