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Livestrong, USADA react to Armstrong confession

Zeenews Sports Bureau

Texas: There’s been a lot of mixed reactions to cyclist Lance Armstrong’s confession, admitting that he had taken performance enhancing drugs to win his seven Tour de France titles, with many feeling the apology bit of it was very sketchy.

But US Anti-Doping Agency chief executive Travis Tygart called the admission "a small step in the right direction," for Lance.

"Tonight, Lance Armstrong finally acknowledged that his cycling career was built on a powerful combination of doping and deceit," said Tygart, who led the USADA probe that uncovered Armstrong’s illegal drug use and saw him banned from the sport.

"His admission that he doped throughout his career is a small step in the right direction," Tygart said,

"But if he is sincere in his desire to correct his past mistakes, he will testify under oath about the full extent of his doping activities."

The other major, relevant reaction came from Livestrong, the cancer charity founded by Armstrong. The organisation said it was "disappointed" that he had deceived the organisation and the world.

"We at the Livestrong Foundation are disappointed by the news that Lance Armstrong misled people during and after his cycling career, including us," it said following the broadcast of Oprah Winfrey’s interview of Armstrong.

Armstrong had, earlier, personally visited the Livestrong Foundation to apologize to its staff before the headed to the interview with Oprah.

"We accepted his apology in order to move on and chart a strong, independent course," the foundation said in its statement.

"Even in the wake of our disappointment, we also express our gratitude to Lance as a (cancer) survivor for the drive, devotion and spirit he brought to serving cancer patients and the entire cancer community," it said.

"Lance is no longer on the foundation`s board, but he is our founder and we will always be grateful to him for creating and helping to build a foundation that has served millions struggling with cancer."

"Our success has never been based on one person. It`s based on the patients and survivors we serve every day who approach a cancer diagnosis with hope, courage and perseverance."

Lance had founded Livestrong in 1997 after overcoming testicular cancer. He had already stepped down from the board of directors last year when the controversy first came up.

The second part of the interview, meanwhile, will be aired on Friday.