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Former teammate claims Team Armstrong forced him into ‘doping’

Updated: Oct 11, 2012, 14:52 PM IST

Johannesburg: Michael Barry, who is a former teammate of disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong, has claimed he was pressured to take performance-enhancing drugs for the US Postal Service Team.

Barry, who rode for the US Postal Service team from 2002 to 2006, was among 11 former teammates of Armstrong`s to provide sworn testimony for a United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) report investigating the seven-time Tour de France wins.

“As a boy my dream was to become a professional cyclist who raced at the highest level in Europe. I achieved my goal when I first signed a contract with the United States Postal Service Cycling team in 2002,” Sports24 quoted Barry, as saying.

“Soon after I realized reality was not what I had dreamed. Doping had become an epidemic problem in professional cycling,” he added.

“After being encouraged by the team, pressured to perform and pushed to my physical limits I crossed a line I promised myself and others I would not: I doped,” he said.

Barry further added: “It was a decision I deeply regret. It caused me sleepless nights, took the fun out of cycling and racing, and tainted the success I achieved at the time. This was not how I wanted to live or race.”