Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 10/10/12
Lance Armstrong was perhaps the most beloved athlete of his time and an inspiration due to his historic cycling achievements and triumphs over brain and testicular cancer. His reputation will be forever tarnished after the United States Anti-Doping Agency released details of an investigation that proved Armstrong was at the epicenter of the most sophisticated doping program in sports history to date on Wenesday.  The New York Times reported that a 202 page report of the Armstrong investigation was finally made public. Within the report, 26 people, including numerous ex-teammates of Armstrong's United States Postal Service and Discovery Channel teams, testified that they witnessed Armstrong doping for each of his seven Tour de France titles.  The testimonies convinced officials that Armstrong gained an advantage by using banned performance-enhancing drugs and blood transfusions.  It was widely speculated that Armstrong used performance-enhancing drugs from 1999 to 2005 -- the period in which he won seven consecutive Tour de France titles -- and in June 2012 the anti-doping agency brought charges against him. Armstong continually denied the charges, but solid testimonies from 11 former teammates, including Floyd Landis, who was stripped of his 2006 Tour win for doping, proved otherwise. While Armstrong was the ring leader of the USPS doping extravaganza, the entire team used performance-enhancing drugs while professionally cylcing. "The USPS Team doping conspiracy was professionally designed to groom and pressure athletes to use dangerous drugs, to evade detection, to ensure its secrecy and ultimately gain an unfair competitive advantage through superior doping practices," the anti-doping agency stated. “A program organized by individuals who thought they were above the rules and who still play a major and active role in sport today." While the evidence against Armstong is the main takeaway from this investigation right now, the entire USPS program has created perhaps the most scandalous doping controversy in sports history. Photo via Facebook/Lance Armstrong
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