The International Cycling Union (UCI) decided on Monday October, 22 to strip Lance Armstrong of his seven Tour de France titles and to impose a lifetime ban upon him for repeated doping offenses . If Armstrong is not the first champion to be deprived of his titles, the number of – prestigious – victories cancelled is unprecedented in sport history.
Summary of the ten most known and important disqualifications in the history of sports.
- 10 – Floyd Landis – USA – Cycling – Tour de France (2006)
Controlled just after his victory of the 17th leg of the Tour de France with an unusual level of testosterone , he became the following year the first cyclist to be stripped of his Tour de France’s title. But he is also the first teammate who accused publicly Armstrong of doping.
On May 20, 2010, after almost four years of contesting the allegations against him, Landis admitted to continual doping and, because Lance Armstrong would not help him get back in the sport, revealed that Armstrong and many other top riders who rode on his team doped as well.
- 9 – Kim Jong-Su – North Korea – Sport shooting – Silver, Bronze Medals at the Olympic Games of Beijing (2008)
Unknown sportive, he is the proof that doping is not only for sports that required an extraordinary physical effort, like cycling or athleticism.
Winner a silver and bronze medal at the Olympic Games of Beijing (2008), he was banned from the Olympic Village after testing positive for propanolol. This drug is usually used for people who suffer of migraine but also sometimes to reduce tremors.
- 8 – Mohamed Ali – USA – Boxing – World-s champion (1964)
No, one of the most famous sportive of the XX century was not a cheater. In 1967, the New-York State Athletic Commission decided to strip Mohamed Ali of boxing Crown – won 3 years earlier – for an amazing reason: he refused to go to the Vietnam war.
He had also to stop boxing for 4 years until the Supreme Court judged his conviction unconstitutional in 1971, but he never got back his boxing title.
- 7 – Alverto Contador – Spain – Cycling – Tour de France (2010), Giro d’Italia (2011)
The Tribunal Arbitral du Sport (Sport court in France) striped Contador of his title in 2010 but also all the titles won in 2011, such as the Giro d’Italia. Contador was tested positive for Clenbutorol in July 2010.
Contador has stated that food contamination was to blame and later in 2011, the Spanish Cycling Federation cleared him of all charges and allowed him to compete for the Giro d’Italia that he won. But in 2012, all the titles won in 2011 were cancelled by another justice decision.
- 6 – Turin’s Juventus – Italy – Football – Italian Championships (2005, 2006)
In 2006, the Calciopoli, the biggest scandal of rigging game in the history of Italian Football just started. The main club were involved, like AC Milan, Fiorentina, Lazio, Reggina and accused of referees’s corruption. They all could have been relegated from Serie A to Serie B.
But finally, only Juventus was relegated to serie B and lost its 2 titles. The main manager of the club, Luciano Moggi, was banned for life of the Italian Federation.
- 5 – Larisa Lazutina, Olga Danilova et Johann Mühlegg – Spain, Russia, Skiing – 8 medails, Salt Lake City Olympic Games (2002)
The winter Olympic Games were almost untouched by doping (only 5 cases until 2002). But when the committee decided more accurate testing, at least 7 people were tested positive for drugs.
Two Russians and one Spaniard were banned of the competition. The Spanish Johann Mühlegg lost his three gold medais for using doping products.
- 4 – Ben Johnson – Canada – Sprinter – Seoul Olympic Games (1988)
This is the first very big scandal of doping at the Olympic Games. On September, 24th 1988, Johnson beats the American superstar Lewis at the 100m final race, lowering his own world record to 9.79 seconds. The following day, after being tested positive, he admitted having used steroids. Consequently, his Olympic title but also the World championships title (Roma, 1987) were withdrawn. This race is still one of the “dirtiest” one, at least 6 sprinters over 8 were tested positive.
- 3 – Marion Jones – USA – Sprinter – Olympic Games (2000)
If Ben Johnson lost his titles in less than 24 hours, it took longer for Marion Jones to be stripped of her titles, her 7 major titles including 2 Gold Medals at the Sydney’s Olympic Games.
Marion Jones was famous for her performance at the Olympic Games: 3 Gold and 2 Bronze Medals. But seven years later, after decision of the Olympic Committee, she admitted she was a drug cheat and consequently agreed to forfeit all other results dating back to Sept. 1, 2000.
- 2 – Joe Paterno – USA – Football – 111 victories (1988-2011)
Until 2011, Joe Paterno was a true Hero of college football. Head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions from 1966 to 2011, he was elected to the College Football Hall after the National Football Foundation decided to change its rules and allow any coach over the age of 75 to be eligible for the Hall of Fame instead of having to wait until retirement.
But after investigation involving his former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky in a child sex scandal , FBI discovered that Paterno persuaded university officials not to report Sandusky to authorities. The NCAA announced the most severe sanctions . All his victories from 1988 to 2011 (so 111 over 409 victories in his careers) were withdrawn.
- 1 – Lance Armstrong – USA – Cycling – 7 Tour de France (1999-2008)
Seven years after his last victory at the Tour de France, the International Cycling Union decided to strip Armstrong of all his victories since 1998, according to the conclusions of United States Anti-Doping Agency report.
The report highlights “the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen.”
The director of the Tour de France announced that he will pursue Armstrong for cheating and to be reimbursed of the 3 Millions Euros Armstrong won during the competitions.