The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency has announced that it will strip Lance Armstrong of his record seven Tour de France titles and ban him from cycling for life, mere hours after the legendary cyclist announced he was ending his fight against doping charges leveled against him by the USADA in June.
Armstrong, a native of Plano, Texas and current resident of Austin, won seven consecutive Tours de France from 1999-2005, and took home an Olympic bronze medal in 2000. He officially retired from the sport last year.
Armstrong had denied the renewed allegations of doping, and claimed the arbitration system used by the USADA to settle such disputes was unfair. On Tuesday, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit brought by Armstrong against the USADA, rejecting Armstrong's claim that the Anti-Doping Agency's case and arbitration system violated his due process rights. The lawsuit's dismissal meant that Armstrong had until Thursday to decide whether to defend the claims in arbitration or allow the USADA to enter judgment. As the AP reported, he chose the latter:
"There comes a point in every man's life when he has to say, "Enough is enough." For me, that time is now," Armstrong said.
"I have been dealing with claims that I cheated and had an unfair advantage in winning my seven Tours since 1999. The toll this has taken on my family and my work for our foundation and on me leads me to where I am today - finished with this nonsense."
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