World Anti-Doping Agency chief John Fahey said on Friday that American cyclist Lance Armstrong's decision not to fight doping charges meant there was 'substance' to those allegations and that he should be stripped of his seven Tour de France titles.
On Thursday, Armstrong said he would no longer fight charges by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which quickly said it would strip him of his titles and ban him from competitive cycling.
"He had the right to rip up those charges but he elected not to, therefore the only interpretation in these circumstances is that there was substance in those charges," Fahey told Reuters in a telephone interview.
"My understanding is that when the evidence is based upon a career that included seven Tour de France wins then all of that becomes obliterated."
This is not the first time Lance Armstrong has hit the headlines and is unlikely to be the last.
To bring you up to speed this is what has been happening around the famous cyclist since June.
The Armstrong saga
June 12, 2012 - The USADA notifies Armstrong that formal procedures against him have commenced over allegations he used performance-enhancing drugs. The USADA tells the cancer survivor they have forwarded their allegations to the Anti-Doping Review Board, which would decide whether to proceed. In response, Armstrong releases statement describing the allegations as 'baseless' and 'motivated by spite', highlighting the U.S. Justice Department's decision not to pursue charges after a two-year investigation.
June 22 - Lawyers for Armstrong ask the agency's review board to recommend to the USADA to end its pursuit of the allegations.
June 29 - USADA review board unanimously recommends bringing charges, meaning the case will go to an arbitration hearing should Armstrong elect to challenge the charges.
July 9 - Armstrong files a federal lawsuit seeking to stop the USADA from proceeding with their case. However, later the same day, a federal judge dismisses the lawsuit, calling it a "lengthy and bitter polemic" rather than the "short and plain statement of detailed facts".
July 10 - Three former associates of Armstrong are handed lifetime bans for their involvement in the alleged doping conspiracy. Team doctor Luis Garcia del Moral, consulting doctor Michele Ferrari and trainer Jose "Pepe" Marti were all banned from the sport for life after USADA found they had violated a series of anti-doping regulations. Armstrong refiles lawsuit seeking to stop the USADA's case.
July 11 - The USADA gives Armstrong 30 more days to answer charges that he used performance-enhancing drugs.
Aug 5 - The International Cycling Union (UCI) says its dispute with the USADA over who should handle the Armstrong
doping allegations should be settled by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
Aug 20 - A U.S. federal judge dismisses Armstrong's efforts to block the USADA's probe.
Aug 23 - Armstrong announces he will no longer fight the USADA's doping charges, which quickly says it will strip him of all results dating back to Aug. 1, 1998, including his seven consecutive Tour de France titles from 1999, and ban him from competitive cycling.