• Cycling

Landis admits EPO use

ESPN staff
May 20, 2010
Floyd Landis has finally admitted his drug use © Getty Images

Floyd Landis has admitted in an interview with ESPN.com that he took performance-enhancing drugs for most of his career as a professional road cyclist.

Landis was stripped of his 2006 Tour de France win after testing positive for synthetic testosterone and despite maintaining his innocence over that offence, he has admitted extensive and consistent use of the red blood cell booster erythropoietin (commonly known as EPO).

The American has confirmed he sent a series of emails to cycling and anti-doping officials over the past few weeks, implicating dozens of other athletes, team management and owners and officials of the sport's national and international governing bodies.

Landis spent much of his personal wealth launching an ultimately futile defence of his 2006 Tour win and is aware there will be those who doubt his claims, but wanted to clear his conscience.

"I want to clear my conscience," Landis told ESPN.com. "I don't want to be part of the problem anymore.

"With the benefit of hindsight and a somewhat different perspective, I made some misjudgments. And of course, I can sit here and say all day long, 'If I could do it again I'd do something different,' but I just don't have that choice.'

"I don't feel guilty at all about having doped," Landis told ESPN.com. "I did what I did because that's what we [cyclists] did and it was a choice I had to make after 10 years or 12 years of hard work to get there; and that was a decision I had to make to make the next step. My choices were, do it and see if I can win, or don't do it and I tell people I just don't want to do that, and I decided to do it."

To read the full interview with Floyd Landis, which first appeared on ESPN.com, click here.

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