Lance Armstrong hits the comeback trail with ‘smart’ confession

e9064845a7eafaa16ce8115500bcae94

First there was a tear-stained apology to charity staff, to be followed by a humiliating confession for a global TV audience. Lance Armstrong’s descent from icon to disgrace has been dramatic, but may not be irreversible.

Details of the Texan’s date with Oprah on Thursday have leaked, most crucially that he confesses to using performance-enhancing drugs after decades of denial. This barely covers the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) allegation that Armstrong ran “the most professionalized and successful doping program in the history of sport”, but could still land the ex-cyclist in serious trouble.

The confession could cost Armstrong tens of millions of dollars in lawsuits from the Sunday Times to the US government, with a possibility of jail time for perjury. The former seven-time Tour de France champion has already received a lifetime ban from cycling and Olympic sports, lost his lucrative sponsorships and resigned from the Livestrong cancer foundation.

A gamble, but also a step forward. “Rebuilding Lance Armstrong’s reputation is the biggest challenge imaginable, but it starts now,” John David, CEO at David PR, told Metro. “He has supporters and if his story is believable, he has a chance.” David adds that appearing on Oprah Winfrey’s show, rather than hard news alternatives, will help as “she would not skewer him”.

Charity will be key; Livestrong has raised over $500 million for cancer sufferers and its patron continues to benefit from goodwill. Donations were “twice normal levels” after the damning report, the charity claims. Despite his resignation, Armstrong remains in close contact with Livestrong.   

Armstrong has also met with USADA chiefs to discuss co-operation with a wider investigation, naming corrupt officials, in exchange for a reduced ban that allowed him to compete in triathlon events. His first events in 2012 were a success and the ‘Ironman’ authority would not rule out a return to the sport.

Other drug cheats have returned to sport, such as baseball player Mark McGwire, now a coach. “It won’t happen tomorrow, but there’s a path back for him if he is smart,” says David.   
 

Paying the price:  What Armstrong could lose

US Justice Department: $50 million – value of sponsorship with Armstrong’s US Postal Service team, which it could pursue with fraud claims.
Prizes and bonuses: $16 million which authorities are now seeking – including $12 million to SCA Promotions.
The Sunday Times: $1.5 million from a libel case alleging drug use.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Astoria minivan crash kills 1, injures 6: NYPD

Anthony Boyd, 45, died soon after what investigators believe was some sort of medical emergency as he drove his family through Astoria on Sunday afternoon.

Local

NYC pension funds valued at $160b: Scott Stringer

The five NYC pension funds that thousands of city employees contribute to saw its fifth year in a row of increased returns, up $23 billion from last year.

Local

Man dies trapped in elevator shaft at Bronx…

A man in his twenties died after being trapped in an elevator shaft of a Bronx building early Monday, police said.

International

Sierra Leone Ebola patient, recovered from family, dies…

An Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer has died.

Music

Newport Folk Festival: Photo gallery of 35 moments…

As has been the tradition since Bob Dylan plugged in a bajillion years ago, the Newport Folk Festival embraces more musical genres than its name implies.

Music

MKTO: Behind the bromance

MKTO's Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller talk about the American Dream tour, Demi Lovato and getting turned down by girls.

Arts

James Earl Jones and Rose Byrne head to…

Two-time Tony winner James Earl Jones returns to the New York stage next month as an eccentric grandfather in a revival of the 1930s comedy…

Movies

Box office: Scarlett Johansson wins battle of brains…

Scarlett Johansson's "Lucy" handily dispatched with Dwayne Johnson's "Hercules" over the weekend.

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

MLB

Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Auto racing

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Wellbeing

This Week In Health: Friends share similar DNA,…

Friends share similar DNA, study finds Location: U.S. Study subjects: Nearly 2,000 people Results: When it comes to our social networks, it seems that birds of…

Education

Are liberal arts colleges turning away from the…

Bryn Mawr College, a small women's college located just outside of Philadelphia, announced last week that it would be making standardized tests like the SAT…

Education

Recent grads discover school superintendent plagiarized parts of…

  Two recent high school graduates made a surprising discovery about the commencement speech their school superintendent delivered at their graduation: portions of it was copied…

Career

Feeling stuck? Get out of the entry-level job…

Television and movies may be littered with 20-something characters who seem directionless when it comes to their careers, but author Mary Traina says she finds…