Lance Armstrong, in the first half of a wide-ranging, two-and-a-half hour interview with Oprah Winfrey, publicly confessed for the first time to having doped throughout his professional cycling career.
“It was the mythic, perfect story,” Armstrong said. “And it wasn’t true.”
In an interview taped Monday in Austin, Texas, Armstrong opened up to U.S. talk show host Oprah Winfrey in his first interview since he was stripped of his record yellow jersey haul and banned from sport for life.
“I made my decisions. They’re my mistakes,” said Armstrong.
“And I’m sitting here today to acknowledge that and to say I’m sorry for that… I view this situation as one big lie that I repeated a lot of times.”
“Certainly, I’m a flawed character,” said Armstrong, who was once revered as a cancer survivor who beat the odds to succeed on cycling’s greatest stage, then used his fame to help others fighting the disease.
Winfrey’s much-anticipated interview opened with a rapid-fire series of “yes” or “no” questions that saw Armstrong admit to using the blood-booster EPO, blood-doping transfusions, testosterone, and human growth hormone.
He said he didn’t believe that in his years of competition it was possible to win the Tour without performance enhancers.
“All the fault and all the blame here falls on me, but behind that picture and behind that story there’s momentum, momentum,” Armstrong said.