The fallout from Lance Armstrong’s doping scandal has reached the Olympics. The IOC has announced that thirteen years after giving Armstrong the bronze medal in the 2000 Sidney Olympics, they will be stripping him of the honor. The IOC made the move to strip Armstrong back in December, and by rule he had 21 days to appeal.
No appeal ever came and the medal has been officially stripped from Armstrong.
“Having had confirmation from UCI that Armstrong has not appealed the decision to disqualify him from Sydney, we have written to him to ask for the return of the bronze medal,” IOC spokesman Mark Adams said. “We have also written to USOC to inform them of the decision.”
Armstrong has sent waves lately with his admission that he did indeed use performance enhancing drugs during his career, which took off when he won his first Tour de France in 1998. The IOC clarified that their decision to strip Armstrong of his medal was set in motion last month, and had nothing to do with Armstrong’s interview with Oprah Winfrey, which is set to air Thursday.
Rather than reallocate the medal to fourth place finisher Abraham Olano Manzano, the IOC will be leaving Armstrong’s bronze medal vacant, just as the Tour de France has elected to do with the seven titles they stripped from Armstrong. So in the record books, when our children’s children are looking back at the 2000 Sidney Games, there will be a Gold medalist, a Silver medalist but no bronze medalist for the road time trial.