Sports Outside the Beltway

Armstrong Says LeMond ‘Not in Check with Reality’

The Lance Armstrong-Greg LeMond feud grew hotter today, as Armstrong vehemently denied LeMond’s claims that he’d threatened him with bodily harm.

Lance Armstrong denied Monday that he threatened three-time Tour de France champion Greg LeMond, calling the allegation “ridiculous.” “Greg is just not in check with reality,” Armstrong said Monday from New York City. “It’s ridiculous. Greg is obsessed with foiling my career. I’m apoplectic when I read stuff like that,” Armstrong said.

LeMond was the first American to win the Tour de France with victories in 1986 and 1989-90. Armstrong came back from life-threatening testicular cancer that had spread to his lungs and brain to win seven in a row from 1999-2005 before retiring last year.

LeMond told the French weekly edition of L’Equipe Dimanche that he had testified in a recent legal dispute involving Armstrong. “He threatened my wife, my business, my livelihood,” LeMond told the newspaper. “His biggest threat consisted of saying he would find 10 people to testify that I took EPO. Of course, he didn’t find a single one.”

America’s top cyclists have had a public feud since 2001 when LeMond said he was unhappy about Armstrong’s association with Italian doctor Michele Ferrari, who had been linked to doping accusations but later was cleared by an appeals court.

Quite bizarre. LeMond was a legendary cyclist, the first of whom I’d ever heard, but he’s clearly been overshadowed by Armstrong. Not once has Armstrong had more success as a racer, but he’s got the “cancer survivor” story and been a major celebrity, including a widely publicized romance with Sheryl Crow.

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