Truncated thoughts on a complex topics.
Contador - I'm not happy that it came down this way, but I would have been very unhappy if they excused him with no "proof" of the source. And why are all of the mainstream sources ignoring the plasticizers. Seems pretty important to me and it certainly was to the arbitrators.
Armstrong - I wouldn't be happy if he and others had been indicted, but I do think the way this happened basically stinks. Think there will be some follow-up on that? Yup, I think so too.
Check out this article from CyclingNews.com:
close down a two-year investigation
into allegations of fraud and doping that involved the US Postal
Service Team and Lance Armstrong. Armstrong has denied ever taking
performance enhancing and welcomed the decision to close the case. He may still face investigation from USADA.
NPR has alleged that sources in the FBI, FDA and US Postal Service
were ‘shocked, surprised and angered’ and that federal authorities only
had 30 minutes notice before the United States Attorney's Office
released a press release to the media on Friday afternoon.
According the NPR, sources indicated that charges were close to being
brought against a number of individuals, which included fraud, witness
tampering, mail fraud, and drug distribution. One source, NPR says, said
there were ‘no weaknesses in the case’.
However, NPR also adds that a person with knowledge of the decision
said that US Attorney didn’t agree that there was sufficient evidence of
Cyclingnews spoke to a source who had co-operated with the federal investigation. The source indicated that the NPR reports held weight.
“I talked to someone within the investigation but the reason why the
case was shut down was due to a one-man decision. The evidence against
those involved was absolutely overwhelming. They were going to be
charged with a slew of crimes but for reasons unexplained he closed the
case saying it wasn't open for discussion,” the source said.
A press release from United States Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. stated
his office was "closing an investigation into allegations of federal
criminal conduct by members and associates of a professional bicycle
racing team owned in part by Lance Armstrong."
Armstrong stated: “I am gratified to learn that the U.S. Attorney's Office is closing its investigation," Lance Armstrong said in a statement.
"It is the right decision and I commend them for reaching it. I look
forward to continuing my life as a father, a competitor, and an advocate
in the fight against cancer without this distraction."
Cyclingnews attempted to contact federal investigators and Armstrong's attorney for comment.