Lance Armstrong has found a new outlet for his brazen and blithe nature: his own podcasts, The Forward and Stages.
The latter is the more cycling-centric show, and he uses this week's to delve into the Chris Froome issue that arose last week. It was revealed that Froome, the four-time Tour de France winner, returned an adverse analytical finding regarding the substance Salbutamol, following an in-competition test at the Vuelta Espana.
Froome is permitted a certain level of Salbutamol under a Therapeutic Use Exemption, but the test recorded twice the acceptable level. Froome has not been suspended and is cooperating with the UCI while admitting that he did not break any rules.
Should he fail to prove his innocence, he faces the prospect of being stripped of his Vuelta title and a suspension of 12 months.
It is always interesting to listen to Armstrong on his podcast. You always get the impression he feels wronged by the world, and the supporting, subsequent admission of culpability for his previous sins rarely convince.
Speaking on the Stages podcat, Armstrong gave his opinion on the Froome issue, and criticised the media's handling of the story. While he did put in a cursory, "I'm partly to blame here", Lance nonetheless felt fine about putting on record his sympathy for Froome.
He could be completely exonerated and he is tarnished forever. Damage is done.
You might think I am talking about him caring about whether they write negative articles about him - he may or may not. I don’t know and it doesn’t really matter. But, come next July, when this all gets cleaned up, it is already unpleasant for him, this is going to be complete mayhem and I know exactly what that fucking feels like. And it ain’t any fun.
Cycling is the sporting world’s doormat. I have to say that I take a lot of blame for that. The article the day after in the New York Times was the biggest bunch of bullshit that I have ever read. If you are a fan of Baseball who gets the New York Times every day and you read that story, and it is just so harsh on Chris Froome, and our sport, and our sport’s history.
I am sure we deserve a lot of that and I am trying to accept some responsibility here because I have sort of you know tainted the entire equation obviously. But you don't get an accurate depiction of this situation by reading that article. I read that and I was like, 'you have got to be kidding'. You had read that article and thought Chris Froome had a gallon of EPO for breakfast. And that is not accurate and fair to him.
This writer remains slightly unconvinced by the repentant and reformed Lance.