Lance Armstrong is back; disgraced cyclist returns in book, film

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If you were like me, you might have thought (hoped) that Lance Armstrong would disappear from the public eye after he finally admitting to doping during his pro cycling career.

Cover of new book on Armstrong

Cover of new book on Armstrong

It turns out that Oprah Winfrey interview wasn’t the media swan song for Armstrong. A book and documentary are both coming in the next couple of weeks that rehash the Armstrong saga.

First is the book — “Wheelman, Lance Armstrong, the Tour de France, and the Greatest Sports Conspiracy Ever.” Publication date is Oct. 15.

The authors of “Wheelmen” are Reed Albergotti and Vanessa O’Connell, who also report for the Wall Street Journal. Press for the book says they conducted some 100 interviews with former teammates, investigators, and anti-doping officials.

The publicity at says Wheelmen reveals “the broader story of how Armstrong and his supporters used money, power, and cutting-edge science to conquer the world’s most diffcult race.

The Wall Street Journal was kind enough to reprint a few sections of the book. They take a “fly on the wall” approach to telling some of the developments in Armstrong’s downfall, such as this meeting between Armstrong’s attorney and a couple of Anti-Doping officials.

The meeting had a down-to-business feel. There was no spread of food or even coffee for the participants, just bottles of water. [USADA attorney Bill] Bock and [USADA chief executive Travis] Tygart wanted [Armstrong attorney Tim] Herman to know they were concerned about Armstrong’s well-being. They had actually been shocked by the magnitude and velocity of Armstrong’s downfall and had worried about how he was dealing with it emotionally.


Coming to the big screen is the documentary “The Armstrong Lie,” the first of several films in the works about Armstrong’s downfall.

Oscar-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney started shooting in 2009 as a documentary about Armstrong’s comeback battle to win his 8th Tour de France title.

After the wheels came off the Armstrong juggernaut in 2010, the film became an expose.

You can tell that Gibney is more than a little miffed. “He lied to me, straight to my face, all through 2009,” he says. “When the truth came out, I told him he owed me an explanation.”

So Armstrong sits down with Gibney for a post-disclosure interview. There also are interviews with George Hincapie, Frankie Andreu and others as well as lots of footage showing how Armstrong bullied people to deflect accusations of doping.

The documentary will be shown at the Hamptons International Film Festival on Oct. 12 and is scheduled for limited release in New York and Los Angeles on November 8.

Gibney and some others involved in the film have appeared at press conferences during a couple of film festivals where the documentary has been on the bill. If you care to read more about “The Armstrong Lie”, has more about the film, those press conferences, and an interview with Gibney.

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