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
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

Movies

Shia LaBeouf disorderly conduct case pushed to September

A judge on Thursday adjourned until September the disorderly conduct and harassment case against actor Shia LaBeouf, who was charged with disturbing a Broadway theater…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.