Tyler Hamilton: 'Lance Armstrong paid for EPO'

Lance Armstrong
© PA Photos
Tyler Hamilton claims that former teammate Lance Armstrong paid for EPO prior to his Tour de France success between 1999 and 2005.

Lance Armstrong's former USPS teammate Tyler Hamilton has claimed that the 41-year-old paid around £12,500 for the banned substance EPO during his stint of seven straight Tour de France victories up until 2005.

The full scale of Armstrong's deceit was revealed in a 1,000-page document by the United States Anti-Doping Agency last week.

"We used to have a man on a motorbike stationed nearby - Motorman. He would have the dope. Lance paid him $20,000 (£12,445) per Tour to do it," Hamilton told BBC Radio Five Live.

"Then, as Lance had won the Tour, we would all club together to buy him a Rolex watch. Somewhere he's walking around now wearing a big gold Rolex."

Hamilton went on to confess that he had also taken the substance, thus boosting his performance. In turn, Hamilton was promoted within his team.

"The first PED I took was a small, red pill which was testosterone. I knew what it was. I was told I had to take it now, in a small window, and by the next race it would not be traceable," he added.

"It wasn't cheating. I felt different in the next race. I wasn't Superman, but I knew I had recovered thanks to the help of the team doctor. This had happened in my room, and it was just between my doctor and I.

"I knew others were taking this stuff, because white lunch bags were being passed around. Later I found out what was in those lunch bags: EPO. I wasn't proud of my actions. I felt guilt, but there was also excitement because I was being invited up to the next level of my team."

The 41-year-old also revealed the lengths that the team members would go to in order to keep their rule-breaking under wraps.

"We used to called it Edgar Allan Poe, for EPO. Or Edgar. Or Poe. To be more secretive," he said.

"I was super-paranoid about having it at my home in Girona, Spain. Whenever I had it I wanted to conceal it. I would cut up the cartons into tiny pieces and flush it down the toilet. I would hide the stuff in the back of my fridge, behind vegetables."

Armstrong has been stripped of all his Tour de France titles as a result of the recent revelations.

Lance Armstrong
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