The Lance Armstrong interview - part two - Live coverage - The Independent

The Lance Armstrong interview - part two

The second part of Lance Armstrong's interview with Oprah Winfrey which follows last night's confession that he doped throughout his seven-time Tour de France victories

  • Lance Armstrong discusses the effect of his cheating on his family and his cancer foundation, Livestrong, in the second half of his interview with Oprah Winfrey.

    1/19/2013 2:44:01 AM
  • Aaaand we’re back. Those who’ve stayed up until 2am to watch the rather-less-hotly-anticipated second round of Lance vs Oprah, I salute you. After yesterday’s balls-out confessions (or weasel-like evasions, depending on your point of view), we’re in the strange position of having to watch another hour of Armstrong being interviewed prior to today’s hullabaloo and recriminations.

    Based on yesterday’s preview, it looks as if this evening might consist primarily of yawnsome human interest, do-gooder stuff: Armstrong’s family, his charity, and so on. There is one chink of light: the possibility that talking about his mother, say, might bring him to tears. But judging by yesterday’s calm, almost breezy performance, I’m not sure I’d want ‘weeping’ on my Lance Armstrong bingo card.
    1/19/2013 1:39:24 AM
  • Just in case that bothersome British snow caused a communications blackout for the last 24 hours, here’s what happened yesterday.
    1/19/2013 1:44:20 AM
  • And here’s my colleague Simon Usborne on some of the reactions from Lance’s opponents and former associates.
    1/19/2013 1:47:22 AM
  • Interestingly, Tyler Hamilton, a former teammate who testified against Armstrong and then wrote a book, The Secret Race, describing US Postal’s doping regime, was pretty positive about the interview. “I think it’s a huge, huge first step for Lance Armstrong,” Hamilton told NBC’s Today Show. “For a lot of people, it’s raw. I’ve known about it for a long time, since 1998… You can tell, it’s real. He’s very emotional and he’s definitely sorry... I think it’s going to be a hard next few weeks for him, next few months, years… He did the right thing, finally. And it’s never too late to tell the truth.”
    1/19/2013 1:51:08 AM
  • And here’s what The Independent made of it all in an editorial:

    “Even if Lance Armstrong had come across as the most contrite of penitents – which he did not – an interview with Oprah Winfrey on American TV is not sufficient to allow the cyclist to draw a line under his disgrace and "move on". Not by a long chalk.

    The only advance made by this much-anticipated encounter was that the viewing public heard from his own lips what so many had claimed for so long, that his glittering career had been fuelled by banned drugs and techniques, over a very long time. Yes, his reputation is destroyed; yes, his charities are likely to be shunned; yes, his income from sponsorship will dry up. But the damage that Armstrong has done to his sport warrants considerably more.

    First, he should be left in no doubt that any thought of a comeback in another speciality is out of the question. Second, he should be required to name the names of those who were complicit in his fraud. And third, former funders, sponsors and prize donors should use every means at their disposal, including the law, to recover the money that they clearly paid out under false pretences. Until he feels, and the public feels, that Armstrong has paid a proper price for his cheating, this canker will not have been excised.”
    1/19/2013 1:54:50 AM
  • Today it was announced that Paramount Pictures and Star Trek director JJ Abrams have acquired the rights to make a movie based on the upcoming Lance Armstrong book by the New York Times’s Juliet Macur. Who should play Armstrong? The Atlantic has some casting suggestions.
    1/19/2013 1:59:52 AM
  • A list of the things Armstrong claims he feels: Disgraced. Humbled. Ashamed.
    1/19/2013 2:02:21 AM
  • Also, broke.
    1/19/2013 2:02:39 AM
  • This feels fairly scripted. Lance building up to "his most humbling moment" - his resignation from Livestrong - via the marginally less humbling experience of losing his sponsors.
    1/19/2013 2:06:03 AM
  • Here we go. Oprah tells a cancer tale; the camera zooms in a little; Armstrong aaaalmost sheds a tear. Cut to commercial.
    1/19/2013 2:09:11 AM
  • This just in: looks like last night's interview segment was the most-watched programme in the Oprah Winfrey Network's troubled history, with 4.3m tuning in to the US broadcast.
    1/19/2013 2:10:56 AM
  • Armstrong says he doesn't believe that his drug use contributed to his cancer. Here's The Independent's Jeremy Laurance on the possible links:

    "Lance Armstrong admitted to taking four drugs: human growth hormone (HGH), testosterone and cortisone – all of which help increase muscle strength – and EPO which boosts the body's oxygen-carrying capacity.

    When he was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 1996 the age of 25, it was rumoured it might have been caused by doping. Now, he has said he was taking drugs when he received the diagnosis. While HGH, testosterone and cortisone bulk up muscles, they can also fuel tumour growth and reduce the body's immunity. Doping may not have caused Armstrong's cancer, but it may have speeded its development.

    EPO (erythropoietin), his chief drug of choice, is a hormone that stimulates the bone marrow to produce extra red blood cells, increasing the blood's capacity to carry oxygen – a big advantage in endurance sports. But EPO also thickens the blood increasing the risk of blood clots, heart disease and strokes. To avoid detection, Armstrong had blood transfusions, removing a half-litre of his blood, waiting a month while his body regenerated it, and then re-infusing it before a race. That too carries risks if it is not handled properly."
    1/19/2013 2:15:14 AM
  • To the millions of people who wore Livestrong bracelets, Armstrong says: "I understand your anger, your sense of betrayal. You supported me through all of this, you believed and I lied to you. And I'm sorry... I'm committed to spending as long as I have to, to make amends."
    1/19/2013 2:18:20 AM
  • On the possibility of being banned from competition for life: "I deserve to be punished. I'm not sure I deserve a death penalty."
    1/19/2013 2:20:40 AM
  • That notorious tweet. "I thought it was a good idea at the time."

    1/19/2013 2:22:14 AM
  • Want to know what the ads between the US broadcast are for tonight? Still no Nike. Instead: Kleenex. Toyota. Ensure Clear nutritional drink. Pretty sure none of them ever sponsored Armstrong.
    1/19/2013 2:25:37 AM
  • Armstrong says his ex-wife Kristin was aware of his doping, though "she didn't want to know". When he decided to make his comeback in 2009, he claims, he went to her to seek her blessing, and she said he should do it on one condition: that he didn't dope.
    1/19/2013 2:32:08 AM
  • Lots of guys do what their ex-wives tell them to do.
  • Tonight's #Lance & Oprah a poor imitation of last night. All gone very Oprah. "But, how do you feel?" zzzz
  • RT @BuzzFeedSports: #Armstrong on his girlfriend: "She believes the truth will set you free. We believe a lot of different things."
  • Armstrong is talking about his son. He's going. He's GOING. THOSE ARE TEARS. #tears.
    1/19/2013 2:37:32 AM
  • Good job, Oprah. #tears
    1/19/2013 2:39:18 AM
  • Armstrong is recalling the moment he told his son that he was a cheat: "I said, 'Don't defend me anymore.' He's been remarkably calm and mature about it."
    1/19/2013 2:40:45 AM
  • "Thank God he's more like Kristin than he is like me." Ouch.
    1/19/2013 2:41:40 AM
  • Ladbrokes offered even money on tears. Could be stewards enquiry. Did that count? #lancearmstrong
  • Oprah gets to bask in the sniffles a bit. She earned them. Came back again and again to kids until she got him to come undone.
  • Lance Armstrong denies the claim that he tried to pay off USADA with a six-figure donation. "Oprah, it's not true."
    1/19/2013 2:49:59 AM
  • The financial cost of being caught? "I've certainly lost all future income. The day all [my sponsors] left... That was a $75m day. Gone - and probably never coming back."
    1/19/2013 2:51:31 AM
  • Armstrong says this isn't the worst part of his life; the cancer diagnosis was worse.
    1/19/2013 2:52:36 AM
  • He's talking about his mother now. More tears...?
    1/19/2013 2:53:09 AM
  • We're on the home straight now. The last lap. The final stage. Etc. "Are you a better human being today because this happened?" asks Oprah. "Without a doubt," replies Lance. *Spit-take*.
    1/19/2013 2:58:02 AM
  • Oh man. "It's an epic story. What's the moral to the story?" What's the moral to the story?! Don't be a cheat and a douchebag, surely.
    1/19/2013 2:59:24 AM
  • Okay, that's your lot, folks. Not many revelations tonight - but at least he cried, right?
    1/19/2013 3:01:52 AM
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