In a new interview with BBC's Dan Roan, disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong says that if placed back in the same circumstances he faced in 1995, he’d “probably” still decide to cheat. From the interview, available in its entirety at BBC:
Dan Roan: When it comes to the doping, would you do it again?
Lance Armstrong: You know, if I was racing in 2015, no I wouldn’t do it again, because I don’t think you have to do it again. If you take me back to 1995, when it was completely and totally pervasive, I’d probably do it again. People don’t like to hear that.
Dan Roan: But that’s the honest answer?
Lance Armstrong: Yeah, that’s the honest answer.
Armstrong added that the admission should be placed in the context of the growing popularity of competitive cycling at the time he cheated, as well as the growth of the larger cycling industry and his foundation. The cheating, he implies, was a catalyst that helped to drum up larger interest in the sport.
Two years ago, in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Armstrong finally admitted for the first time that he cheated throughout a significant portion of his cycling career. Months before, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency released 1,000-plus pages of evidence of his doping, which led the International Cycling Union to strip Armstrong of all seven of his Tour de France titles and institute a lifetime ban.
Once one of the world’s biggest endorsers of sports products, Armstrong could only watch as sponsor after sponsor quickly made the decision to drop him.
"I will spend the rest of my life trying to earn back trust and apologize to people," he said at the time.