Author of the week: Tyler Hamilton
For Lance Armstrong’s former teammate, it all began with a little testosterone pill, a “red egg,” from a team doctor in 1997.
For Tyler Hamilton, Lance Armstrong’s former teammate on the U.S. Postal Service cycling team, it all began with a little testosterone pill, a “red egg,” from a team doctor in 1997, said Nathaniel Vinton in the New York Daily News. Where it ends, for both men, is yet to be determined. In a new book, The Secret Race, Hamilton tells an ugly story about doping in his sport, complete with blood bags in his fridge and a motorcyclist trailing his Tour de France team carrying performance-enhancing drugs in a thermos. And then there’s Lance. From the beginning, Hamilton says, Armstrong was as competitive about doping as he was about every other aspect of cycling. Armstrong didn’t just work the system, Hamilton writes; “Lance was the system.”
Armstrong’s take-no-prisoners approach is the reason Hamilton was caught by surprise at his teammate’s recent decision to quit fighting the drug allegations, said Bonnie D. Ford in ESPN.com. But he doesn’t think Armstrong will sit quietly for long. “I’ve never seen Lance throw in the towel before,” he says. “The day he puts up the white flag is the day he dies.” Though Hamilton is prepared for an assault on his reputation—he was stripped of his 2004 Olympic cycling gold for doping—he says it’s past time for cycling to come clean. “Before we move forward, we have to address the past,” he says. “It’s been addressed to a point, but people only wanted to go so far. The whole truth needs to be told. Cycling needs to be weeded out from the top.”