USADA slaps down UCI request to take over Armstrong investigation.

The answer is no, Pat.

Pat McQuaid, the colossally inept president of the UCI, has been quiet for a number of months. This is out of character for the blustery Irishman who often has trouble controlling his need for rambling pontification. Since the successful surgery back in May to remove his foot from his mouth, he’s kept a relatively low profile.

But McQuid and his private club, the UCI, is back in the news trying to take over the USAFA doping investigation into Lance Armstrong (and company) during his Tour de France domination with the United Postal and Discovery teams.

The UCI request was a surprise and not a surprise. McQuaid had previously said that USADA has jurisdiction and the UCI had no interest in running the investigation. No doubt they were hoping the embarrassing case would simply go away eventually — like the Federal one that was dropped after two years on the whim of Federal attorney Andre Birotte.

However, the USADA case isn’t going away and the agency CEO Travis Tygart isn’t backing down. Today he turned down the UCI request and made no bones about the position of USADA. “The USPS Doping Conspiracy was going on under the watch of UCI, so of course UCI and the participants in the conspiracy who cheated sport with dangerous performance enhancing drugs to win have a strong incentive to cover up what transpired,” said Tygart. That’s legalese for”stick it where the sun don’t shine.”
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McQuaid was perhaps thinking he and the UCI could stall the investigation and let it die a protracted but media-silent death. Not gong to happen and Tygart has shown he doesn’t take crap from anyone, not Lance, not Bruyneel, not McQuaid and the UCI.

Should USADA win its case against Armstrong, it will be damaging for the reputation of the UCI in general and McQuid in particular. This is a man who lied about not one but two financial “gifts” from Armstrong to the UCI — s staggering conflict of interest and blatantly unethical. McQuaid has gone out of his way to support Armstrong and dismiss the allegations of former teammate Floyd Landis.

In fact, one wonders why the UCI even bothered to make the request. Perhaps it was just part of a larger strategy to make USADA look hell bent on persecuting Armstrong — a strategy the Armstrong camp has used in their battle over public perceptions of the case.

So far Tygart and USADA had done a terrific job of steering the case through the media and past Armstrong’s lawyers. “The participants of the USPS Doping conspiracy made their decisions to use dangerous banned drugs to win and our job is to apply the rules whether someone is famous or anonymous,” said Tygart. “We will do that on behalf of the millions of people who demand clean sport despite these external pressures.”

The UCI tried to exert some external pressure to no vail. As is so often the case, the UCI would have done better not making the request. When it comes to McQuaid, making noise generally backfires.

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  • http://twitter.com/therealfakebill Bill Hue

    Andre Birotte Jr is A United States Attorney. He is not a judge. Also, UCI is suing Floyd Landis for making some of the same allegations relevant here so UCI has a HUGE conflict of interest there, too!

    • http://www.atwistedspoke.com walshworld

      Yup and yup. I’m always surprised by mcquaids arrogance. He is so blind to his own corruption and lack of ethics that he isn’t even embarrassed to demand jurisdiction over the USADA investigation. Matt

  • LauraLyn

    It seems that the UCI and McQuaid have a good deal at stake in this investigation into doping in cycling.

    The USADA’s charges against Lance Armstrong and his gang of LiveStrongs is now beginning to show the real depth of corruption, racketeering, and drug dealing that this self-proclaimed American hero brought to sport. All the payments and conspiring between Armstrong and the UCI may never reach the full light of day. However, it is clear now that this criminal behavior is not something of the past. Thank goodness the sport of triathlon has been saved from this same kind of hooliganism at the last moment.

    Those who gave their hard-earned money to the Lance Armstrong Foundation might be wise now to request a refund so their money can indeed be spent on cancer researcher and helping cancer victims.

  • Lyndon

    You have to hit the bottom of a hole before you can crawl back out again. I fear the sport of cycling has a long way to fall yet….
    I honestly believe the best thing would be for the UCI to cave in on itself, and for none of McQuaids inner cirlce to be involved with whatever replaces it. I can see the former happening, not the latter.

    • http://www.atwistedspoke.com walshworld

      Lyndon, I honestly can’t explain how mcquaid retains power. A corrupt and clueless hack destroying the sport almost single-handedly. Matt