Sounding convinced that Lance Armstrong is guilty of doping, the director of the Tour de France said "we were all fooled" and the seven-time champion owes an explanation for "proven scientific facts" from a newspaper report alleging he cheated to win cycling's most prestigious event.
Jean-Marie Leblanc's comments appeared in the French sports daily L'Equipe on Wednesday, a day after the newspaper reported that six urine samples provided by Armstrong during the '99 Tour tested positive for the red blood cell-booster EPO.
Have the French press not been beating this drumb since the FIRST STAGE WIN back in '99?
EPO, formally known as erythropoietin, was on the list of banned substances at the time Armstrong won the first of his seven Tours, but there was no effective test then to detect it.
The allegations took six years to surface because EPO tests on the 1999 samples were carried out only last year _ when scientists at the national doping test lab outside Paris opened them up again for research to perfect EPO screening, with the blessing of the World Anti-Doping Agency.
Another five-time Tour champion, Miguel Indurain, said he couldn't understand why scientists would use samples from the '99 Tour for their tests.
Smells like rotten cheese to me.