/ Cycling

Team masseuse recalls 'drug running' episode

Updated: Tuesday, 16 Oct 2012 13:46

Further testimony evidence of Lance Armstrong's doping is surfacing daily
Further testimony evidence of Lance Armstrong's doping is surfacing daily

A former aide of Lance Armstrong has alleged she was used as a "drug runner" during her time working for the US Postal team.

Emma O'Reilly, who was Armstrong's personal masseuse and assistant in the 1990s, says she rented a car to travel down to Spain to pick up tablets from US Postal team director Johan Bruyneel before returning to France and giving them to Armstrong.

O'Reilly makes the claims in a Radio 5 Live documentary which will be broadcast tonight.

She said: "I went down in an unmarked car, a good six hours drive, and also that was another reason I knew it was something (untoward) because Lance had said to me 'don't tell your boyfriend'.

"There's no way in hell am I going to bring him down, crossing over a border (and) pick up a package. Basically as I used to say to some of the soigneurs (team assistants), 'you are drug runners', and that's what I was being for the weekend.

"And to involve (her boyfriend) in it, without letting him know that 'here, you can come with me if you want, but here's what I'm doing'....

"Johan gave me the tablets, very discretely, without letting anybody else know that I was getting them" - Emma O'Reilly

"So we went down, six hours down that way, Johan gave me the tablets, very discretely, without letting anybody else know that I was getting them, and the following day we went back up to France and then the following morning I met Lance in the car park at McDonald's and just handed them over."

Armstrong was last week labelled a "serial cheat" and a bully who led "the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen" by the United States Anti-Doping Agency, which has stripped him of his seven Tour de France titles and banned him from cycling for life.

Despite repeatedly denying accusations of doping, in August Armstrong announced he would not fight the doping charges filed against him by USADA, saying in a statement he was "finished with this nonsense" and insisting he was innocent.

On Friday, Bruyneel quit as general manager of the RadioShack Nissan Trek team by mutual agreement, having chosen to contest the USADA charges in an arbitration hearing.

The USADA report states one rider testified "his use of prohibited substances was performed at the direction and with the full knowledge and approval of team director Johan Bruyneel".

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