Paper Claims Armstrong Witness Deal

Riders named deny USADA suspension

Lance Armstrong

Lance Armstrong     Photo: Velo Steve/Flickr

A Dutch newspaper reported on Thursday that four of Lance Armstrong's former teammates have testified against him in exchange for partial immunity from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. Holland's De Telegraaf cited unnamed "well-informed sources" in its claim that George Hincapie, Jonathan Vaughters, Levi Leipheimer, David Zabriskie, and Christian Vande Velde had admitted to doping and cut a deal with USADA, whereby they would receive curtailed, six-month suspensions to be served over the winter if they gave evidence against Armstrong. A spokesperson for Zabriskie and Vande Velde categorically denied the claims. "We can confirm that our Tour team is entirely focused on the Tour and media reports of suspensions are untrue," a Slipstream Sports statement read. USADA CEO Travis Tygart condemned the report as witness intimidation, saying that attempts to bully those who are willing to testify against Armstrong "cannot be tolerated."

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