Austin | Dallas | Houston
Drug Wars

The saga continues: Lance Armstrong's restraining order against U.S. Anti-Doping Agency quickly dismissed

UPDATE: Late Monday afternoon, the federal judge assigned to Armstrong's lawsuit dismissed the claim filed by his lawyers earlier in the day. The judge, however, did not rule against the merits of Armstrong's claims and has granted him the opportunity to refile an ammended complaint within the next 20 days. A new claim is expected on Tuesday.

---

The Lance Armstrong doping saga just won't quit. On Monday morning, news broke that Armstrong's attorneys filed a restraining order to keep the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, a quasi-governmental organization, at bay — at least for now.

The motion was filed to prevent the USADA and its chief executive from moving forward with a drug conspiracy case against Armstrong, which includes a July 14 deadline for the Tour de France winner.

 Filed in the U.S. Federal court in Austin on Monday, the restraining order cites the investigation as unconstitutional — a violation of Armstrong's Fifth Amendment rights — calling it the result of a "vendetta" against the retired Tour de France champion. 

According to the Austin American-Statesman, "The complaint lists USADA and Travis Tygart, the agency’s chief executive officer, as defendants. It is asking a judge to halt USADA’s case, which it said is 'causing irreparable injury' to Armstrong.'"

As CultureMap reported in June, Armstrong's long battle against doping allegations received new fuel to the fire with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's letter to Armstrong on June 12 and official doping accusations on June 28.

They included "a damning statement that alleges blood samples provided by Armstrong in 2009 were 'fully consistent with blood manipulation including EPO use and/or blood transfusions.'"

The accusations also came with a deadline of July 14 by which Armstrong must agree to USADA proceedings or accept the agency's sanctions, including being stripped of his seven Tour de France championships and a lifetime ban from competitive sports. Armstrong's restraining order aims to change that.

Filed in the U.S. Federal court in Austin on Monday, the restraining order cites the investigation as unconstitutional — a violation of Armstrong's Fifth Amendment rights — calling it the result of a "vendetta" against the retired Tour de France champion.

Mr. Armstrong will suffer irreparable harm absent a stay, as he will be forced to accept USADA’s ultra vires sanctions, including the permanent loss of his livelihood and the stripping of all his numerous cycling titles, or be forced to partake in a process that violates his Constitutional and common law due process rights. 

Armstrong's complaint also asks that the USADA be prevented from stripping him of his championships, in addition to reimbursing his lawyer fees and "further equitable relief" to which he may be entitled.

But perhaps in its most interesting accusation, the complaint postulates that the entire investigation was prompted by Floyd Landis after his own Tour de France medal was revoked upon positive drug tests.

Given the looming July 14 deadline, this is a battle that won't lose steam any time soon. The restraining order should be approved or denied this week. Until then, Armstrong's esteemed legacy hangs in the balance. 

Newsletters for exploring your city

Daily Digest

Austin news, views + events

Insider Offers

Curated experiences at exclusive prices

Promo Alerts

Special offers + exclusive deals

We will not share or sell your email address