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Tygart stands by Armstrong USADA payment accusation

  • By Matthew Beaudin
  • Published Jan. 19, 2013
  • Updated Jan. 19, 2013 at 10:40 AM EDT

BOULDER, Colorado (VN) — U.S. Anti-Doping Agency CEO Travis Tygart stuck by his assertion that Lance Armstrong’s camp attempted to make a $250,000 donation to the organization prior to his 2005 retirement.

In his interview with Oprah Winfrey, aired in two parts over Thursday and Friday nights, Armstrong contested statements from Tygart on “60 Minutes Sports” claiming that Armstrong attempted to give USADA the money in 2004.

“I was stunned,” Tygart said in the interview, according to USA Today. “It was clear — it was a clear conflict of interest for USADA. We had no hesitation in rejecting that offer.”

In the interview segment aired Friday night, Armstrong said that never took place.

“No, that is not true. That is not true,” Armstrong said, a defiant look upon his face. He questioned why the reported donation attempt wasn’t in USADA’s Reasoned Decision, which laid bare the Armstrong affair in striking detail. “Why wasn’t that in there?” he asked. “Pretty big story. Oprah, it’s not true.”

On Friday night, Tygart stood by his story.

“We stand by the facts both in the Reasoned Decision and in the ‘60 Minutes’ interview,” he said in a statement.

A similar donation — of $100,000 — to the UCI has become a point of contention in the governing body’s treatment of Armstrong and accusations surrounding his use of performance enhancing drugs.

Armstrong’s lawyer, Tim Herman, has said there was never a donation attempt from the cyclist.

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Matthew Beaudin

Matthew Beaudin

Matthew Beaudin graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder's journalism school in 2005 and immediately moved to Telluride, Colorado, to write and ski, though the order is fuzzy. Beaudin was the editor of the Telluride Daily Planet for five years. He now lives in Boulder, where he joined VeloNews in the spring of 2012. Music. Coffee. Bikes. His dog, Anabelle. That about sums it up. Follow him on Twitter @matthewcbeaudin.

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