TRAVIS TYGART, THE Chief Executive of the United States Anti-Doping Agency, believes the sporting body can still clean up the sport of cycling without the help of Lance Armstrong.
The disgraced Texan revealed on Wednesday that he was not prepared to testify under oath to USADA officials, despite admitting in his much publicised interview with Oprah Winfrey that he had doped extensively during his career.
Armstrong was initially given until until February 6 to disclose everything he knows to the authorities, but that deadline was extended by two weeks.
Finally, on Wednesday, his attorney Tim Herman said that the 41-year-old would not participate in something that allowed “USADA’s efforts to selectively conduct American prosecutions that only demonise selected individuals.”
Now, a defiant Tygart says that his organisation will carry on regardless.
“We have provided Mr Armstrong several opportunities to assist in our ongoing efforts to clean up the sport of cycling,” Tygart said in a statement.
“Following his recent television interview, we again invited him to come in and provide honest information, and he was informed in writing by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) that this was the appropriate avenue for him if he wanted to be part of the solution.
“Over the last few weeks he has led us to believe that he wanted to come in and assist USADA, but was worried of potential criminal and civil liability if he did so.
“We learned from the media that Mr Armstrong is choosing not to come in and be truthful and that he will not take the opportunity to work toward righting his wrongs in sport.
“At this time we are moving forward with our investigation without him and we will continue to work closely with WADA and other appropriate and responsible international authorities to fulfil our promise to clean athletes to protect their right to compete on a drug-free playing field.”