Roche backs Armstrong for Tour charity cycle

Former Irish cycling legend Stephen Roche says he has “no problem” with drug cheat Lance Armstrong riding a Tour de France charity ride this summer.

Roche backs Armstrong for Tour charity cycle

The disgraced American, stripped of seven Tour de France titles and banned from the sport for life, is due to ride in the event which takes in part of this year’s Tour route days before the official race.

Armstrong received the invitation to take part in the event from former England footballer Geoff Thomas. A charity, the Geoff Thomas Foundation raises funds to fight cancer.

Despite the controversy the invitation has caused, Ireland’s only Tour de France winner Mr Roche said he had no problem with Armstrong taking part in the event.

“I know people are going to despise me for saying so, but we have got to move on. I think he faulted — he wasn’t the only one that faulted — he’s been punished.

“ He’ll be punished for the rest of his life for what he did.

“But there is a redemption somewhere as well.

“Where does it start? Does it start this year, next year, in 10 years’ time? Does it start by doing a charity cycle?

“I believe in what he’s doing,” the Dubliner told the Newstalk Breakfast show.

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