After openly admitting to doping on a very special episode of Oprah Thursday, shamed cyclist Lance Armstrong will no doubt lose his Sydney bronze.
The IOC actually has an eight-year statute of limitations on changing results, but it won’t be difficult for them to circumvent the rules, especially to make an example of Lance, and of doping.
“USADA and the UCI went outside the eight-year limit on the basis that the statute simply doesn’t apply if you have broken the law,” Australian IOC member John Coates previously stated. “So I imagine our lawyer will see if that applies with us.”
But after losing his seven Tour de France titles, all his endorsements, his beloved fans, and his foundation, what’s one more revoked accolade?
Lance was initially outed by the USADA, which claimed that he was part of the “most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen.” But despite the scorn, including having his effigy burned in Edenbridge, England back in November, he still held that he never doped.
Now he’s out, and good for him. We’re not sure what, if anything, we’ll learn from the Oprah interview now that most everything has been leaked, but here’s hoping he doesn’t jump on the couch.
But Swiatek is not as dominant as in 2022, when she went 16-0 in the spring clay season during an overall 37-match win streak.
She retired from her last pre-French Open match with a right thigh injury and said it wasn’t serious. Before that, she lost the final of another clay-court tournament to Australian Open champion Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus.
Sabalenka, the No. 2 seed, and Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan, the No. 4 seed and Wimbledon champion, are the top challengers in Paris.
No. 3 Jessica Pegula, the highest-seeded American man or woman, was eliminated in the third round.
No. 6 Coco Gauff, runner-up to Swiatek last year, is the best hope to become the first American to win a Grand Slam singles title since Sofia Kenin at the 2020 Australian Open. The 11-major drought is the longest for U.S. women since Seleswon the 1996 Australian Open.
But the No. 1 seed is Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz, who won last year’s U.S. Open to become, at 19, the youngest man to win a major since Nadal’s first French Open title in 2005.
Now Alcaraz looks to become the second-youngest man to win at Roland Garros since 1989, after Nadal of course.
Alcaraz missed the Australian Open in January due to a right leg injury, but since went 30-3 with four titles. Notably, he has not faced Djokovic this year. They could meet in the semifinals.
Russian Daniil Medvedev, the No. 2 seed, was upset in the first round by 172nd-ranked Brazilian qualifier Thiago Seyboth Wild. It marked the first time a men’s top-two seed lost in the first round of any major since 2003 Wimbledon (Ivo Karlovic d. Lleyton Hewitt).
No. 9 Taylor Fritz and No. 12 Frances Tiafoe are the highest-seeded Americans, looking to become the first U.S. man to make the French Open quarterfinals since Andre Agassi in 2003. Since then, five different American men combined to make the fourth round on eight occasions.