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Lance Armstrong’s statement on continuing French investigation

Once again, this so-called investigation by the French Judicial System baffles me.It was with great disappointment that I read Saturday's Le Monde article (June 1) regarding the "US Postal Affair." I am still confused as to why it has taken nearly two years to validate what I said after first learning of this investigation: the investigators will find nothing because there is nothing to find.I do not condone the use of banned substances and certainly understandhow problematic this issue has become in sport. In my case, it's unfortunatethat some people, including a few in the French

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June 5, 2002

Once again, this so-called investigation by the French Judicial System baffles me.It was with great disappointment that I read Saturday’s Le Monde article (June 1) regarding the “US Postal Affair.” I am still confused as to why it has taken nearly two years to validate what I said after first learning of this investigation: the investigators will find nothing because there is nothing to find.I do not condone the use of banned substances and certainly understandhow problematic this issue has become in sport. In my case, it’s unfortunatethat some people, including a few in the French Judicial System, are seemingly unable to acknowledge that intense and calculated training, not drugs, has been the key to my success on a bicycle.What more can I do? In Saturday’s Le Monde article Mr. François Franchy said the investigation has found no evidence of wrongdoing by our team and that there is no reason to put me under further examination. Yet, they will not declare this case closed. They will not clear my name. I find this ridiculous.As this investigation unfolded, I, along with the United States PostalService Team, willingly aided the process. Despite feeling that it wasnothing more than a witch-hunt, we cooperated out of respect for the Tourde France and the people of France. There wasn’t anything to hide. We hopedfor a quick resolution to the investigation. But this was not the case, as the French Judicial System dragged their feet rather than quickly testing our samples and releasing the facts — no positive tests for any banned substance.As a gesture of my willingness to cooperate, I personally contactedthe French Judge overseeing the investigation. Several months after thematter was made public, I wrote to the judge. I said I would be happy tomeet anytime, anywhere if it would help the investigation. To this daymy letter remains unanswered.  As months and months went by, it becameobvious that this investigation was, simply stated, collecting dust. Werescinded our cooperation. It was obvious that the French Judicial Systemwas sitting on their hands.The nation of France, the Tour de France and the fans of cycling shouldnot have to endure another Tour with this cloud hanging over it. I havesearched for a single credible reason as to why this case should remainopen — just one — and I have found none.As comparison, it usually takes no more than two days to test competitors’samples for banned substances at the Olympic Games. The French Investigatorshave had nearly two years. Can anyone explain this in a way that makessense? As in sport, when you challenge someone and then lose, youshould have enough dignity and respect to admit you have lost. For someunknown reason, the French Judicial System refuses to concede.I appreciate the tremendous support that the people of France have givento me over the years. I consider the Tour de France the greatest athleticevent in the world and am honored to be part of it. But enough is enough.I urge the people of France to do what they can to bring about a closureto this investigation. It is in the best interest of everyone — exceptthose who have a malicious bias against my teammates and myself.I consider this issue dead. It is without merit and I will no longerpay attention to it. My steadfast focus is on the upcoming Tour de France.– Lance Armstrong