Lance Armstrong’s website www.facts4lance.com has been taken down from public view with immediate effect after his legal team told Cyclingnews that there was ‘no need’ for it to remain up.
The website has been set up in a bid to discredit accusations made by Tyler Hamilton and Floyd Landis. The pair had each individually alleged that they had seen Armstrong take performance enhancing drugs during their stints with the US Postal team, while also accusing Armstrong, his former team boss Johan Bruyneel, and the sport’s governing body the UCI of covering up a positive EPO test from the 2001 Tour de Suisse.
Landis’s accusations were made in the May 2010, while Hamilton’s hit the front pages roughly a year later in an exposé interview with US show "60 Minutes."
“Now that the heart of the "60 Minutes" story has been completely debunked by subsequent revelations, there's no need for the CBS-focused site any longer,” said Armstrong's lawyer, Mark Fabiani.
During the interview with "60 Minutes" Hamilton told the show that, "I saw him inject it [EPO] more than one time like we all did, like I did many, many times. He was the leader of the team. He doped himself like everybody else, being part of the culture of the sport."
When asked by "60 Minutes" reporter Scott Pelley about Armstrong's repeated statement that he'd never tested positive, Hamilton said, "I know he's had a positive test before...for EPO [at the] Tour of Switzerland, 2001."
Armstrong’s legal team reacted by writing a public letter in which they asked for an apology from the show’s producers CBS. The producers held firm, with Armstrong’s legal team now considering their options.
Asked if he was surprised by CBS’s response, Fabiani said, “No, because the host of the show, Scott Pelley, is the new CBS Evening News anchor, and it would have been very difficult for CBS to criticize Pelley – no matter how obvious the flaws in Pelley’s reporting, and in this case they were very obvious.
“The centrepiece of the '60 Minutes' allegation has now been completely destroyed, and we are evaluating all our options.”
However, the letter to CBS addressed the allegations surrounding the 2001 cover up, and did nothing to counter the allegations surrounding witnessed drug use.
“We addressed the general Hamilton allegation in our original statement, released on Thursday night, prior to the broadcast, when CBS Evening News featured Hamilton,” Fabiani said.
Armstrong has bolstered his legal team in recent weeks, adding John Keker and Elliot Peters of Keker & Van Nest LLP to the fold. The two new additions are directing the legal team. Other members of the team include Bob Luskin, Tim Herman, Mark Fabiani, and Bryan Daly.