Another “come back”

Lance Armstrong… Tour de France…


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Peter says:

    I hope he gets caught this year.

  2. Lance lost me once he left his wife and family for that Rock Star.

  3. RBrown says:

    I hope he gets caught this year.
    Comment by Peter

    I assume you’re referring to doping. My attitude is that until he tests positive, I won’t assume he’s doing it.

    1. Most of the athletic superstars are people who have unusual natural talents. Although highly disciplined (almost maniacal) training is involved, the platform is always extraordinary physiological or anatomical gifts. This includes people like Sandy Koufax, LeBron James (the current Greatest of All Time), Roger Federer, Usain Bolt, Joe Montana, and Lance Armstrong.

    Sometimes the gift is hand eye coordination. Other times it’s what coaches call “great feet” (which has many components), balance, or, in Armstrong’s case, extraordinary heart-lung capacity.

    It’s a matter of the right gifts in the right situation, e.g., Warren Buffett.

    2. I know an owner of a bike shop who is a competitive cyclist. (If you’re into running, he is the nephew of Dr Sheehan.) He has said that LA’s approach to the Tour de France is more analytic than others.

  4. Sed says:

    I just can’t root for the guy, I’m sorry. I want to, but the whole thing just seems like steroids to me all these years. Sorry, Lance.

  5. Jeff says:

    Innocent, until proven guilty.

    It’s the charitable route, and it’s what our laws are based upon. Unfortunately, cycling (and so many other sports) is filled with unethical dopers, and it really turns me off to watching sports. I wouldn’t even mind if doping was legal, and they all did it, but the cheating has to stop.

  6. Robert says:

    I am finding it more and more heartbreaking that so often when I read almost anything on Catholic blogs, there are SO many who are SO ready to assume the worst and make judgments, or just out-right say mean and unkind things about other people. Its a scandal to non-christians, it does great disservice to Christ and to his Church, and ultimately, it just eats away at the hearts of those who do it.

  7. Chris says:

    I am an avid cyclist, rode transcontinental in 2005, and watch the tour religiously. Part of me really wants to be a Lance fan but can’t bring myself to do it due to his support of embryonic stem-cell research.

    Nevertheless, despite recent scandal regarding doping in cycling, I believe he is clean for one very important reason: the French *hate* him. Though France holds the largest number of victories at 36 of 95 races, the last frenchmen to win the Tour was Bernard Hinault in 1985, nearly 25 years ago. Currently, the highest ranking frenchman, Jerome Pineau, does not even stand in the top 10. Further, this year could mark Armstrong’s eighth Tour victory, fully twice that of any other cyclist in history. Clearly, this is a bitter pill to swallow for the infamously arrogant French! One fact is certain, Lance Armstrong has never tested positive and not for lack of trying.

    That said, I am willing to call Lance Armstrong the greatest athlete of all time.

  8. Jacob says:

    LeBron will never be greater than MJ. (I’m glad though that you didn’t mention that fraud Kobe.)

  9. Girgadis says:

    I lost all interest in Lance Armstrong when he ditched his young family to
    run after a rock star. I bear him no ill will and I do give him credit for
    putting himself out there again but I have a very hard time separating
    professional athletes from their personal lives. For my money, the greatest
    athlete of all time is not a human one – take a look at Secretariat tearing
    up his paddock.

  10. hum, how many French do you know who hate him? The media is reporting it, but the media in France is the same in the US leftist, hater of achievers.
    I am french and I like Armstrong for his dedication and work ethics. I like him like I like Reagan, not for his personal life….

    For the drug…well they all take “something”, it must not be banned, so far he didn’t take it, the tests are negatif, so go Lance.
    Bernard Hinault was also criticized ( he is from my home country, next village from mine :-); some people just can’t stand or believe that someone can be a honest hard worker and win.

    As for Lance’s personal life it is a shame, I agree.

  11. DJY says:

    I have tried to separate Lance’s personal life from his accomplishments (look at our other athletes, and let’s not even discuss movie stars), but I admit that my admiration for him as a consequence is somewhat “detached”. Where has Joe DiMaggio gone, indeed. (And Gehrig and…)

    That said, when I first heard he was coming back, I braced myself for the sadly common (cf. MJ, Bird, Favre, etc) failed attempt to recapture the former glories. But to have him right that scaring everyone? It is truly remarkable and speaks to a certain inner quality that other athletes would do well to find within themselves.

  12. DJY says:

    right there scaring everyone…

  13. Jim Dorchak says:

    I have seen interviews with Lance and he is a devout, commited, dyed in the wool humanist. He attributes his beating cancer to “THe Power of Lance” and Live Strong, what ever the h e double tooth pics that means. To say that he is anti Christian would not be a stretch in my opinon.

    God has no place in Lance’s life.

    Live Stong………yea right.

    Jim Dorchak

  14. Bob says:

    “Hi honey, great news! Cheryl Crow wants me!”
    “Yeah, after I started winning, people started to care about cycling, including celebrities.”
    “But Lance, you took all of those steroids. You’re a fraud. You cheated.”
    “What? Sorry honey, you cut out. But I didn’t test positive for anything, except awesomeness and cancer. Oh, and I’m totally in the clear on that. Oprah LOVES ME!”
    “You cheated, Lance!”
    “Honey, I gotta go. I got one of the Olson twins on the other line, but say tuck the kids in for me. Oh, and I’m sending these divorce papers overnight from Paris. If you need some money, let me know. Cheryl Crow! Can you believe it?!?!”

    (Dial tone)

  15. Jacques says:

    L. Armstrong was caught once by a French lab who kept his urines samples for some years, after the 3rd or 4th Tour de France he raced: In the time the samples were taken, the analysis method wasn’t accurate enough to find doping substances at very low concentrations..
    The new method proved he used them without any doubt. But it was impossible to cancel his victory since there weren’t samples of the other racing cyclists available (and probably that was better like that, don’t you think so?)

  16. Jacques says:

    Anyway using illicit drugs to cheat in a race not only is immoral but silly too since it is playing a dangerous game with one’s health.
    The cheater has to pay the bill earlier than the fair cyclist.
    Wait and see how many years Lance has to live yet.

  17. Brendan says:

    I was curious why Lance, an atheist, would wear a crucifix. I found an article on the UK Times Online and he wears it because it is “a link with a fellow cancer patient.”

    According to the UK Times, Lance is “against mixing up State and Church, not keen on guns, pro women’s right to choose” as well as “very anti war in Iraq.”

    His wife, the one he left for Sheryl Crow, was apparently a “devoted Catholic.”

    He’s a pro-abortion, embyronic stem-cell research supporting, unfaithful atheist. I don’t like the guy, although he is an incredible athlete.

  18. Tom A. says:

    Father, Robert commented about the disservice we do when we say negative things about Lance Armstrong or any other public figure. I was always told, “If you can’t say something nice about someone, don’t say anything at all.” So how are we to point out the evil that public figures commit and still remain charitable. Is there a middle road, or should we do what Grandma said, and say nothing at all?

  19. Ann says:

    I agree he is an amazing athlete but it is very sad that he could not stick with his wife and children. While it is good to avoid saying things that are not nice, it hardly does any good to put one’s head in the sand and refuse to accept the reality that his private life is not as God’s way would have it. Never-the-less he has free will and his decisions are his own.

    I will applaud his cycling and leave his spiritual health to the Holy Spirit to handle.

  20. Robert says:

    I think we may often have an obligation to correct someone, but I don’t see how we have a right to sit around discussing them. If I go to Lance Armstrong, or write a letter to Obama or Kerry, or have coffee with a friend, and charitably and firmly correct them, that’s an act of charity. But when I go on a blog and discuss Lance’s infidelity to his marriage, and whether or not he uses performance enhancing chemicals, that is just gossip. And that is the stuff that scandalizes unbelievers, and does a disservice to the Church.

  21. Joanne says:

    “I have a very hard time separating
    professional athletes from their personal lives”

    This, exactly, no matter who the athlete is. It’s fun when the off-the-field good guys win; I’m kind of indifferent when the not-so-great guys do.

  22. irishgirl says:

    Lance Armstrong is an atheist? Didn’t know that-and I always rooted for him when he won seven Tours de France.

    But I didn’t like it when he dumped his wife-with three young children-for Sheryl Crow. And I don’t like it now, when his new girlfriend bore a child out of wedlock to him and he ‘twittered’ the news for all the world to know.

    Sheesh-doesn’t anyone ever GET MARRIED anymore and THEN have kids?

    Girgadis-thanks for posting the video of Secretariat! Loved seeing ‘Big Red’ dashing around the paddock! Was that background music by Mozart? Whoever it was, it was a perfect match!

    Secretariat is THE BEST athlete EVER!

  23. Ohio Annie says:

    Before I got so sick I used to love riding bikes and watching racing. (I still have my 1992 Bridgestone RB-2 hanging in the garage). I read It’s Not About the Bike and was a huge Lance fan… until he was better from the cancer and he ditched his wife who had nursed him through the whole thing, like she was disposable. I was crushed but ultimately not surprised. Our only heroes should be Jesus and maybe his priests who bring him to us at Mass.

    And I agree about Secretariat. Too bad his “cousin” Ruffian had such thin legs. I loved her even more than Secretariat. I love horses. And some people (!).

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