Cycle of Lies is an excellent book. A page-turner. It not only gives an account of what happened and who did what when; it also shines a light on sport, sponsorships, sport federations, government agencies, and various legal systems. I conclude that there is hope in cleaning up drug use in sports - not easy but doable and important.
A must read. Well researched and fun. Lots of information maybe overwhelming to some but for those ho followed LA is a detailed compilation of facts.
I bought the "snake oil" LA was selling: I bought his books , followed his races and even defended him against accusations. After the Oprah interview I felt (not betrayed as LA supposed most of us were feeling) but like a fool for drinking the Lance kool-aid and avoided any sight of the guy...Fast forward to 2017 and I ran into his podcast, which has interesting guests and it is entertaining although at times LA has a hard time listening. I decided to relive the details of the LA saga (this book, 7 deadly sins, and watch doumentaries ) to close the loop..
My 2 cents:
LA regrets nothing but being caught and was pretty much willing to do anything to win and bulldoze anybody who stood in his way. Ditching close friends that did not serve his purpose any longer did not face him either.
There was a criminal investigation in California, with LA possibly being convicted of drug distribution, mail fraud, wire fraud and witness tampering. The case was dropped, not necessarily beause of his innocence, but probably due to political pressures, long legal battles and/or jusrisdiction concerns as offenses happened in Europe.
As a kid who grew up worshipping Lance, this was a hard read for me; watching heroes fall is tough. However, I agree with the consensus in these comments. This book was well researched, and decently written. If I have any qualm, it would be that at times the author seems to lose objectivity because of a personal beef with Armstrong. The actual facts are damning enough, we don't need her speculation about what his taste in art has to do with it.
Sure, everyone cheated. But was any cyclist a bigger ass than Armstrong? Geez.
This is a depressing book. Depressing because common sense said Lance Armstrong was cheating but his PR and sheen worked aggressively to dismiss any suggestions that he was. Two stories, however, speak to his true character. One was a charity bike ride where children were competing and he was the celebrity rider, and he purposely won to make sure none of the children did. Another was of a friend who helped him out well before the doping started and Armstrong gave him a Rolex, then when the friend was in dire straits himself Armstrong spurned him. Equally outrageous, though, was the complicity not just of the majority of the American media who weren't asking the tough questions (unlike their European counterparts), but also that of UCI, the world cycling federation, who knew about multiple positive tests at the Tour de France and other events but kept them under the rug because Armstrong meant huge ratings. Canadians who think of doping can often think of Ben Johnson, but he was an amateur compared to Armstrong's systemic and well-timed use of drugs, growth hormones and blood transfusions to stay one step ahead of the game. Simply stated, he doesn't deserve the time of day. The author was one of the few in the States who refused to buy into the hype. Here she tells how it got to where it did, and how it all came down. (Incidentally, one of the people he double crossed and who blew the whistle, was Toronto Maple Leafs enforcer Dave "Tiger" Williams. Seriously.)
Exhaustively researched and detailed, sometimes overwhelmingly so.
If you want to know what the real story of Lance Armstrong's meteoric rise and fall were really about, read Cycle of Lies...... A story about deception, bullying, and the relentless pursuit of money and fame at the expense of all that is good in humanity. A true cautionary tale and eye-opener about international sport all rolled into one almost unbelievable account!
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