Lance Armstrong (born 1971) was an American professional cyclist and atheist who was striped of seven Tour-de-France wins from 1999 to 2005 due to “the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen.” The only American who won the Tour-de-France legitimately was Greg LeMond in 1986. Armstrong also competed in the Olympics, in 1992, 1996, and 2000. In the 2000 Olympic games, held in Sydney, Australia, he won a bronze medal, which the International Olympic Committee may revoke and order him to return.
As a young man, Lance Armstrong reportedly overcame heart, lung and testicular cancer.
Armstong is an agnostic having had poor experiences in his childhood from a step-father who claimed to be religious. Lance never became involved in organized religion, although he wears a crucifix to remind him of a fellow cancer patient.
"I don't have anything against organized religion per se. We all need something in our lives. I personally just have not accepted that belief."
Throughout the latter half of his career Armstrong received negative media attention due to allegations of taking performance-enhancing drugs.
In 2012, on the heels of an FDA investigation, Armstrong was stripped of all his titles on the grounds of his refusal to testify before the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). As the International Cycling Union (UCI) announced on Oct 22, 2012 that it would not appeal the USADA's ruling to bar Lance Armstrong for life from Olympic sports for doping and for playing an instrumental role in the teamwide doping on his Tour de France-winning cycling squads, Armstrong now has formally lost the Tour titles he won from 1999-2005.
In October 2007 Lance made the news by supporting an Oregon cigarette tax that would use the proceeds to help fund health insurance for children. In Oregon he has a great deal of pull having just hosted a charity event that raised 2 million dollars.
In 2008 Armstrong announced that he would return to professional cycling and compete in the 2009 Giro d'Italia and the 2009 Tour-de-France, as well as other races on the professional circuit. For the 2009 season, he joined Team Astana.
- Statement From USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart Regarding The U.S. Postal Service Pro Cycling Team Doping Conspiracy