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Sat Apr 19 08:56:28 SAST 2014

Repentant Armstrong will be asked to testify

Reuters | 15 January, 2013 14:280 Comments
Power of Four Mountain Bike Race
Lance Armstrong finishes the Power of Four mountain bike race on August 25, 2012 in Aspen, Colorado. Armstrong spoke to Oprah Winfrey about the controversy surrounding his cycling career
Image by: Riccardo S. Savi / Getty Images

Lance Armstrong will be asked to testify to the commission investigating allegations made against the International Cycling Union (UCI) if reports about his doping confession are true, world cycling’s governing body said on Tuesday.

The American — stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and banned for life — has finally admitted using performance-enhancing drugs in an interview with Oprah Winfrey to be aired on Thursday, USA Today reported.

The UCI set up an independent commission after the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) report which led to Armstrong’s fall from grace said the 41-year-old had told former teammates he made a positive test go away with a payment to the UCI in 2001.

The UCI acknowledged it received a $100 000 donation in 2002 but has denied the money was part of covering up a positive test.

“The UCI will not be making any further comments on matters concerning Lance Armstrong until it has had the opportunity to view his much publicised interview with Oprah Winfrey,” the body said in a statement on Tuesday.

“The UCI notes the media speculation surrounding the interview and reports that he has finally come clean and admitted doping during his cycling career.

“If these reports are true, we would strongly urge Lance Armstrong to testify to the independent commission established to investigate the allegations made against the UCI in the recent USADA reasoned decision.”

The independent commission, chaired by former International Court of Appeal judge Philip Otton, is set to hold a hearing on the matter in London in April and will submit its report to the UCI by June 1, 2013, or shortly afterwards.

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