World cycling champion Lance Armstrong stands to lose seven Tour de France titles after his decision to stop contesting the doping charges alleged against him.
According to the Guardian, Armstrong's decision that he will stop fighting the US Anti-Doping Agency's charges against him, essentially means that he has admitted his wrongdoing, conceding that he won his titles by doping.
Armstrong has continued to deny that he had ever used performance enhancing drugs, and has called the USADA's charges “an unconstitutional witch hunt,” The New York Times reported.
“There comes a point in every man’s life when he has to say, ‘Enough is enough,’ ” Armstrong said in a statement. “For me, that time is now.”
His decision not to fight has far reaching consequences. For starters, he's likely to lose his seven Tour titles, his bronze medal from the 2000 Olympics, and every other title, and award (including money) that he's won after August 1998.
Furthermore, Armstrong is expected to be banned from competing, coaching, or having any other official role with any sport that follows the World Anti-Doping Code.
According to the BBC, the USADA has also given three of Armstrong's former medics lifetime bans. The men, Luis Garcia del Moral, Michele Ferrari, and Jose Marti, have been charged with possessing, trafficking and administering doping products, along with covering-up Armstrong's use of the drugs.
“It’s a sad day for all of us who love sport and our athletic heroes,” said Travis Tygart, chief executive of the United States Anti-Doping Agency to the New York Times. “It’s yet another heartbreaking example of how the win-at-all-costs culture, if left unchecked, will overtake fair, safe and honest competition.”
According to the Telegraph, the USADA will make the evidence against Armstrong public.
Here's a video of the cyclist in a Nike ad, in which he states that he doesn't use any drugs: "Everyone wants to know what I'm on, what am I on, I'm on my bike busting my ass six hours a day."