Reading this story on Outside Online earlier had me shaking my head and thinking "life really is stranger than fiction."
It has been a really odd couple of months in the ongoing story of whether or not Lance Armstrong used performance enhancing drugs in his historic wins in the Tour de France. We all know the rumors and allegations have been swirling around for years and that Lance has been the subject of an on going investigation by a federal grand jury. Things came to a head a month back when Tyler Hamilton claimed that he saw Armstrong use EPO while they were teammates back in 2000. That was followed up by some legal wrangling, denials, and more verbal sparring. More recently, there was that run-in between the two riders in an Aspen restaurant that has widely varying accounts of what happened depending on who you talk to.
Now, coms this new story from Outside that shares the details of an odd, yet systematic, Twitter campaign, being orchestrated by former pro rider and disgraced Tour de France champion Floyd Landis, who is using the Twitter feed of @GreyManrod to take jabs at Lance and his closest associates, in an attempt to discredit him and change public perception of the seven time Tour winner.
Even that is just the beginning however, as Landis was also set to go to court with the International Cycling Union (UCI) who were suing him over defamation because he continually accused them of covering up a failed drug test administered to Armstrong back in 2001. In response to the notice of the case, Landis set up a website for a fictitious law firm called Grey Manrod Associates.
You'll have to read the full story to get the entire scope of what Landis has been up to, but it comes across has very odd to say the least. There are even some that speculate that it won't help any case against Armstrong, as it could be pointed to as an obsessive fixation with bringing Lance down. Landis once sent out 47 tweets in 44 minutes, for example.
The article reminds me of just what a circus this whole story has become, or perhaps more of a soap opera, I haven't decided which. All I know is that the Tour de France starts a week from tomorrow and I'll be happy to be writing about the actual event again.
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