Following the broadcast on ESPN’s 30 for 30: Lance. ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap hosted a conversation with three of Armstrong’s former close friends and teammates. They provide a deeper look on the effects of doping on the sport of cycling and Armstrong’s role. Here is a bit about each panelist, and what we learned from them.

Tyler Hamilton:

        About Tyler:

  • Eight appearances in the Tour de France
  • Finished 4th in 2003
  • Teammate of Lance for first three wins.

        What He Said:

  • On Doping in Cycling: “It was not possible to compete without doping.”
  • On the Widespread Use of Doping. “My first Tour de France was 1997. There were 200 starters, and I’d be surprised if five were clean.
  • On the Current State of Cycling: “I do believe systemic doping… is no longer out there.”
  • On the Validity of Their Results: “I decided to take that red testosterone pill, and from that moment on… I don’t look at the results the same anymore.”

George Hincapie:

About George:

  • Record 17 Tour de France appearances.
  • Only rider to support Lance through all 7 tours.
  • Also rode on winning teams in 2007 and 2011.

        What He Said:

  • On the Tour de France: “I still wake up with these crazy dreams that I’m falling off the side of a cliff. That’s how stressful it was.”
  • On the Doping Era: “I regret being a part of that era.”
  • On Lance: “Lance didn’t invent doping. He didn’t start it and it didn’t finish with him. To hear it called the Lance Armstrong era is very frustrating.

Bobby Julich:

        About Bobby:

  • Nine appearances in Tour de France.
  • Finished 3rd in 1998 Tour de France.
  • 2004 Olympic Silver Medalist.

        What He Said:

  • On the Stress of the Doping Era: “Mentally that messed me up more than anything. All we were talking about was what the other guys were doing.
  • On Lance Armstrong and Michael Jordan: “You can’t tell me there’s not some similarities between these two personalities (Lance and Michael Jordan). Did they make their teammates better? Absolutely, yes. Did they go too far? Absolutely, yes.”
  • On Lance Armstrong: “Love him or hate him, Lance motivated you to be better.”
  • On Armstrong’s wins: “When Lance started winning and we knew everything wasn’t on the up and up, I could accept it because I knew how good he was.”

 

Inside 30 for 30 continues over the next two weeks with Be Water and Long Gone Summer.