Lance Armstrong has been stripped of his seven Tour de France titles as ordered by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, banning him from the sport for life.
The International Cycling Union announced Monday that it would accept the report issued on Armstrong, 41, which charges him with steroid use as well as using a blood boosters and transfusions to mask performance-enhancing substances in his system. He has continued to deny these allegations.
“Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling,” UCI president Pat McQuaid said at a press conference in Geneva on Monday, announcing the ruling.
A special UCI management meeting on Friday will discuss whether to demand the return of Armstrong’s prize monies as well as whether to recommend reassignment of his titles to another rider.
Armstrong will have his name wiped from Tour de France record books, erasing his victories from 1999-2005. He has also been dropped by his corporate sponsors Anheuser-Busch and Nike.
On Sunday, Armstrong made a public appearance in Austin, Texas, for a fundraiser for his Livestrong charity. “I’ve been better, but I’ve been worse,” Armstrong told the crowd of about 4,300 cyclists who had gathered for a Ride for the Roses charity bike ride.
• Additional reporting by PETER MIKELBANK