Friday, July 23, 2010

Lance's Last Stand


There are a couple of days left for the 2010 Tour de France, but for all intents and purposes and barring a fluke crash, Alberto Contador of Spain will win his third tour. A big question remains for many -- what does it mean for Lance Armstrong? He gave his all a few days ago to try to win a final stage for him on his final tour. He was in the first finishing group, but did not win. Lance climbed his final mountain stage yesterday...and is an afterthought in the standings, being over 30 minutes behind the leader. So, was his final tour a success or failure? We will have to let him answer this. He has certainly opened himself up to further scrutiny by coming back for this final go round. Disgraced former winner and teammate, Floys Landis continues to press his charge that Lance cheated by using performance enhancing drugs to win those seven tours from 1999-2005. Why the likes of Landis wants to bring him down is beyond me, other than misery loves disgraced company, I guess. I have a hard time believing that anyone would even believe Landis, since his credibility was exploded some months ago. The other struggle that Lance has is that another former American winner, Greg LeMond, is also trying to bring Armstrong down. I guess I don't understand their rivalries, resentments, etc...and would just as soon not understand them. So, Lance's greatest and final climb may be to continue to keep his name clean. He has weathered many attacks over the years and maintained his integrity. We will see if his name continues to hold up. I hope so, because if it is eventually proven that he did cheat...given all that he has done and having survivied cancer...Lance would certainly join the ranks of Barry Bonds and Tiger Woods as being among the most despised athletes of the current era. Will I be surprised if he gets toppled? No, unfortunately...since there have been so many others who have been proven to be preformance enhancers. If a person has not been a ped user, it is now, seemingly, more the exception than the rule. Yet, here is hoping that Lance is able to stay above it all and continue to be the great champion that he has been for so many.


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