Armstrong hopes for ‘dope free’ cycling

Lance Armstrong says he hopes for a “dope-free” future for cycling

as a report revealed

the sport continues to struggle with the problem.

Armstrong, who was

stripped of his seven Tour de France titles

for doping, was spoken to twice by the body which compiled the document.

“I am deeply sorry for many things I have done,” he said in a statement.

“However, it is my hope that revealing the truth will lead to a bright, dope-free future for the sport I love.”

Lance Armstrong

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Armstrong on drugs, history and the future

The 43-year-old had his Tour de France titles taken off him and was banned from sport for life by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (Usada) in August 2012.

Five months later, he finally confessed to cheating in a two-part interview with

US talk-show host Oprah Winfrey.

The American recently told the BBC that he believed the time is coming when he should be forgiven for doping and lying, although that he would probably do it again.

Armstrong recalled

his decision to dope was “bad”, but taken at “an imperfect time”.

The Cycling Independent Reform Commission (Circ) was set up last January to investigate cycling’s drugs problem during the 1990s and 2000s.

Following the release of its report, Armstrong said he hoped young riders would be able to “chase their dreams without having to face the lose-lose choices that so many of my friends, teammates and opponents faced”.

He added: “I hope that all riders who competed and doped can feel free to come forward and help the tonic of truth heal this great sport.”

Hein Verbruggen (left) and Lance Armstrong

Hein Verbruggen was UCI president when Lance Armstrong won his Tour de France titles

Circ’s 227-page document included a criticism of the sport’s leadership throughout the 1990s and 2000s.

Former International Cycling Union’s (UCI) presidents Hein Verbruggen and Pat McQuaid were accused of failing to follow their own anti-doping rules and showing preferential treatment to Armstrong.

Current UCI president Brian Cookson is set to ask Verbruggen to resign his honorary presidency role.

Verbruggen was president from 1991-2005 when Armstrong won his Tour de France titles.

Cookson says he is “frankly appalled by some of the things” in the report and will ask Verbruggen “to consider his position”.

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