Continuing Lance Armstrong's long descent from cycling champion to tragic, cautionary tale, SCA Promotion confirmed Monday that an arbitration panel has decided that Armstrong and Tailwind Sports, the owners of the U.S. Postal Service team for which Armstrong rode, owe the Dallas-based company $10 million for bonuses SCA paid after three of Armstrong's Tour de France victories.
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In a 2013 interview with Oprah Winfrey, Armstrong admitted for the first time that he'd cheated in each of his seven consecutive Tour de France victories. Armstrong's admission came despite his having repeatedly denied doping, often under oath. One of those denials came in 2005 during another arbitration dispute with SCA. The company, because of widespread rumors about performance enhancing drug use, didn't want to pay Armstrong his third bonus, which he'd earned for winning the 2004 Tour de France. SCA eventually settled that claim by paying Armstrong $7.5 million.
Based partially on information from SCA, the United States Anti-Doping agency would eventually strip Armstrong of his seven Tour de France wins. Armstrong claims that SCA violated a confidentiality agreement when it gave information to the USADA.
Nevertheless, the arbitration panel hearing the the current fight gave Armstrong a scathing rebuke in its 2-1 ruling.
Perjury must never be profitable. Justice in courts of law and arbitration tribunals is impossible when parties feel free to deliberately deceive judges or arbitrators. The case yet again before this Tribunal presents an unparalleled pageant of international perjury, fraud and conspiracy. It is almost certainly the most devious sustained deception ever perpetrated in world sporting history. Tailwind Sports Corp. and Lance Armstrong have justly earned wide public condemnation. That is an inadequate deterrent. Deception demands real, meaningful sanctions. This Arbitration Tribunal awards sanctions of Ten Million Dollars ($10,000,000.00) against Mr. Lance Armstrong and Tailwind Sports Corporation.