The case against Lance Armstrong is a cause for great sadness.
Sad that his name has been besmirched, sad that all he has done for cycling culture, all he has done for cancer research -- is all gone.
In a blink of an eye, Armstrong's legacy for charity and philanthropy have been tarnished with allegations of drug use and lying.
On Oct. 10, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency released its evidence against the once-famed cyclist. It was a massive dossier of more than 1,000 pages with sworn testimony from 26 people, including 15 cyclists with knowledge of Armstrong's doping activities on the U.S. Postal Service Cycling Team.
According to the report, not only was he a fraud, he was also a bully. He was not only a guy who did the same thing that everyone else did, he was the ringleader.
The documents lay out events that are hard to imagine: getting blood transfusions in hotels, avoiding testing by dropping out of races and having his wife drop off pills wrapped in aluminum foil and calling them care packages.
It seems Armstrong let us all down.
A few months ago, he announced his lawsuit against the anti-doping agency would be dropped; that probably should have been the first clue that something wasn't right.
Lance, it's time to come clean, or it's time to fight. But don't just lie down and let your name get dragged through the mud -- unless it's deserved.
Armstrong and his yellow-banded wrists was such an important cultural figure whose determination alone beat a bout of testicular cancer, became a record-breaking athlete that every time a doping allegation came up, the public was willing to to give him the benefit of the doubt.
Over and over again.
But, that's all over now. It has come to light that he would do just about anything to take the banned blood booster erythropoietin and then conceal it. It has become difficult to deny the facts, the evidence is so damning that both Armstrong and the public's trust in him are now in a free-fall from grace.
The once inspirational athlete, akin to Mohammed Ali, is a fraud and he took us all for a (bike) ride.
He has been stripped of all his medals, including his Tour de France victories. Union Cyclinge Internationale's (cycling's governing body) chief Pat McQuaid says Armstrong has no place in cycling and deserves to be forgotten.
But his place in the cycling community can't just be scrubbed from our memory.
The fact remains that every day during the Tour de France, Armstrong woke up, got on his bike and pedaled as fast as he could all day for 23 days. If he had a secret mo-ped that was helping him up hills, or if he took a shortcut by deeking through a cemetery, then that would be a violation. Instead, he took treatments to help his body recover more quickly from the devastation exacted by the competition itself.
But he still did the work.
Yet he has still disappointed me.
He made me care about cycling and he made me get excited in my living room when he approached the finish line first.
Now, I'm the fool.
If the allegations are just that, allegations, then why didn't Armstrong fight to clear his name? He was too tired to fight anymore? A man who cycled for 3,200 kilometres seven times, but is too tired to clear his name? Really, Lance?
He traded in his yellow jacket for a white flag.
I remember being in the backseat of my dad's car in front of my elementary school when my dad broke the news to me that Ben Johnson was a cheater.
Before that I didn't care about sprinting and since Johnson was disqualified, I still don't.
Johnson wasn't the first, and Armstrong won't the last.
One thing is for sure, cycling will never be the same.
--Associate news editor Ashley MacDonald