Reporting Mike Parker
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CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago cyclists are reacting, some of them bitterly, to news that Lance Armstrong is being stripped of his seven Tour de France victories because of doping charges.
CBS2’s Mike Parker reports.
Along the lakefront Friday night, Chicago bicycling enthusiasts were talking about Armstrong’s decision to stop fighting charges that he used performance-enhancing drugs.
“I can understand just being tired, you know, and not wanting to push and fight this,” bicyclist Dennis Morrison said.
“Enough is enough,” Armstrong said on his website. “I refuse to participate in a process that is so one-sided and unfair.”
That decision led the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to strip Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles.
“I mean it’s a shame to see and American that did so great in the sport have everything taken away from him,” said cyclist Michael Hamilton, “but a cheat’s a cheat.”
Last year, a teammate – Tyler Hamilton – told “60 Minutes” he watched Armstrong use illegal substances.
“I saw it in his refrigerator,” Hamilton said, “I saw him inject it, more than one time.”
Seyamack Afzali is a Chicago bicycle racer who got into the sport when he was 14 because Armstrong was his idol.
“I really think that people will always be willing to cheat in order to get ahead at the highest level of sport. It’s sad, but unfortunately, I think it’s the truth,” he says.
The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency claims 10 former teammates were prepared to testify against Armstrong.
Armstrong now faces a permanent ban from sports competition and is vowing not to speak about the charges again.