/ Cycling

Nike ends contract with Lance Armstrong due to 'insurmountable evidence' of doping

Updated: Wednesday, 17 Oct 2012 20:15 | Comments

Lance Armstrong: 'To spare the foundation any negative effects as a result of controversy surrounding my cycling career, I will conclude my chairmanship'
Lance Armstrong: 'To spare the foundation any negative effects as a result of controversy surrounding my cycling career, I will conclude my chairmanship'

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Nike has ended its long-standing contract with Lance Armstrong due to the 'insurmountable evidence' of the disgraced cyclist's doping offences.

The American was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and banned from cycling for life by USADA after he chose not to contest doping charges.

A report last week, which featured evidence from 11 of Armstrong's teammates, said his US Postal team ran "the most sophisticated doping programme that sport had ever seen."

In a statement this afternoon, NIke said it had been misled for over a decade.

"Due to the seemingly insurmountable evidence that Lance Armstrong participated in doping and misled Nike for more than a decade, it is with great sadness that we have terminated our contract with him."

"Nike does not condone the use of illegal performance enhancing drugs in any manner."

"Lance Armstrong participated in doping and misled Nike for more than a decade" - Nike

Nike, which only days ago had publicly backed Armstrong, today withdrew that support and stressed that it did not condone the use of illegal performance enhancing drugs.

Shortly before the announcement, Lance Armstrong revealed that he would be stepping down as the head of his Livestrong cancer charity "to spare the foundation any negative effects".

Nike has since confirmed that it would continue to support Livestrong.

Armstrong set up Livestrong in 1997 following his recovery from cancer and the charity has raised nearly $500 million to help people affected by the disease.

In a statement, Armstrong said: "It has been a great privilege to help grow it from a dream into an organisation that today has served 2.5 million people and helped spur a cultural shift in how the world views cancer survivors.

"Today, therefore, to spare the foundation any negative effects as a result of controversy surrounding my cycling career, I will conclude my chairmanship."

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