When did Lance Armstrong start doping?

Lance Armstrong
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Lance Armstrong said he first doped at “probably 21” years old, according to ESPN.

ESPN published a teaser video for its upcoming two-part Armstrong film that premieres Sunday night. The clip aims to show Armstrong and U.S. Postal Service teammates Tyler HamiltonGeorge HincapieJonathan Vaughters and David Zabriskie being asked the first time they doped.

Armstrong saying “probably 21” was mixed into the clip after he was asked the question and then after Hincapie and Zabriskie were asked, but the video’s message is clear that Armstrong’s answer was to that specific question.

“There’s a bunch of ways to define doping,” Armstrong later said. “The easiest way to define it is breaking the rules. Were we getting injections of vitamins and other things like that at an earlier age? Yes, but they weren’t illegal. … I always asked [what I was being given]. I always knew, and I always made the decision on my own. Nobody said, ‘Don’t ask, this is what you’re getting.’ I never, ever would have gone for that. I educated myself on what was being given, and I chose to do it.”

In 2012, Armstong was stripped of his record seven Tour de France titles from 1999-2005 for doping during that stretch. He was also stripped of a 2000 Olympic time trial bronze medal. All of his results from Aug. 1, 1998 forward were annulled.

USADA said numerous witnesses provided evidence that Armstrong doped going back to at least 1996.

In 2016, Armstrong told a University of Colorado class that he and his then-team Motorola started a program in late spring 1995.

If Armstrong began doping at age 21, it would have been in 1992 (at least a month after his Olympic debut) or 1993, possibly before he won the 1993 World Championships road race (which he has not been stripped of).

Armstrong also competed in the 1996 Olympics, two months before his cancer diagnosis. His Olympic results from 1992 and 1996 have not been disqualified, though he earned no medals.

MORE: Giro, Vuelta overlap in new cycling schedule

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Asher Hong leads U.S. men’s gymnastics world team selection camp after first day

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Asher Hong, 18, posted the highest all-around score on the first of two days of competition at the U.S. men’s gymnastics selection camp to determine the last three spots on the team for the world championships that start in three weeks.

Hong, bidding to become the youngest U.S. man to compete at worlds since Danell Leyva in 2009, totaled 84.6 points in Colorado Springs. He edged Colt Walker by one tenth. Tokyo Olympians Shane Wiskus (84.15) and Yul Moldauer (83.95) were next. Full apparatus-by-apparatus scores are here.

Brody Malone, who repeated as U.S. all-around champion at August’s national championships, and runner-up Donnell Whittenburg already clinched spots on the five-man team for worlds in Liverpool, Great Britain. They did not compete Monday, though their results from the first day of nationals are shown in the official scores.

The three remaining team spots will not necessarily go to the top three all-arounders at this week’s camp, which is supposed to be weighed equally with results from August’s nationals. Hong was third at nationals, but if excluding difficulty bonus points from that meet that will not be considered by the committee, would have finished behind Walker and Moldauer in August.

A selection committee is expected to announce the team soon after the second and final day of selection camp competition on Wednesday evening. The committee will look at overall scoring potential for the world team final, where three men go per apparatus, and medal potential in individual events.

Stephen Nedoroscik, who last year became the first American to win a world title on the pommel horse, is trying to make the team solely on that apparatus. He wasn’t at his best at nationals and struggled again on Monday, hurting his chances of displacing an all-arounder for one of the last three spots.

The U.S. has reason to emphasize the team event over individual medals at this year’s worlds. It will clinch an Olympic berth by finishing in the top three, and its medal hopes are boosted by the absence of the Russians who won the Olympic team title. All gymnasts from Belarus and Russia are banned indefinitely from international competition due to the war in Ukraine.

In recent years, the U.S. has been among the nations in the second tier behind China, Japan and Russia, including in Tokyo, where the Americans were fifth.

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Ironman Kona World Championships return for first time in three years, live on Peacock

Ironman Kona World Championship
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The Ironman Kona World Championships return after a three-year hiatus with a new format, live on Peacock on Thursday and Saturday at 12 p.m. ET.

The Ironman, held annually in Hawaii since 1978, and in Kailua-Kona since 1981, was not held in 2020 or 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The world championships made a one-time-only stop in St. George, Utah, on May 7 to make up for the 2021 cancellation. The winners were Norway’s Kristian Blummenfelt, the Tokyo Olympic triathlon champion, and Swiss Daniela Ryf, who bagged her fifth Ironman world title.

Both are entered in Kailua-Kona, where the races are now split between two days — Thursday for the women and Saturday for the men.

An Ironman includes a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike and a marathon — totaling 140.6 miles of racing. It takes top triathletes eight hours to complete. Very arguably, it crowns the world’s fittest man and woman.

WATCH LIVE: Ironman Kona, Thursday, 12 p.m. ET — STREAM LINK

Ryf, 35 and a 2008 and 2012 Olympian, can tie retired countrywoman Natascha Badmann for second place on the women’s list at six Ironman world titles. Only Zimbabwean-turned-American Paula Newby-Fraser has more with eight.

The field also includes German Anne Haug, the 2019 Kona champ and only woman other than Ryf to win since 2015. Brit Lucy Charles-Barclay, the Kona runner-up in 2017, 2018 and 2019, returns after missing the St. George event due to a stress fracture in her hip.

Blummenfelt, 28 and in his Kona debut, will try to become the youngest male champion in Kona since German Normann Stadler in 2005. His top challengers include countryman Gustav Iden, the two-time reigning Half Ironman world champion, and German Patrick Lange, the 2017 and 2018 Ironman Kona winner.

Also racing Saturday is Dallas Clark, a retired All-Pro NFL tight end with the Indianapolis Colts, and Tony Kanaan, the 2013 Indy 500 champion who completed the 2011 Kona Ironman in 12 hours, 52 minutes, 40 seconds.

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