Local Cyclists, Fans Speak Out About Armstrong Doping Confession

By Geena Martinez
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - We're just one day away from the interview that everyone is already talking about.

Lance Armstrong will finally come clean in a sit down interview with Oprah that's set to air Thursday night.

The queen of talk told reporters Armstrong did admit to doping during his professional days.

It's a fall from grace many hoped wasn't true.

"Sad, because he was always saying he never did," John Beane, manager at Peyton's Bikes, said.

"There's always gotta be some disappointment when your hero is not doing everything by the book," cyclist, Ed Nicks, said.

For fans everywhere, the news of Lance Armstrong's admission to doping during his days of riding is bringing mixed emotions.

"It would help the sport if he would've come out sooner," Beane said.

"You know everybody was hoping that maybe he was the one that didn't, but now that it's out, I think everybody has just kind of accepted it and we're ready for it to be over," David Ham, owner of Peyton's Bikes, said.

Ham has watched Armstrong climb to the top.

"I think most of the customers are very disappointed," Ham said. "Lance inspired a lot of people to start riding, some to race and a lot more to just get out and ride."

Nicks was one of them. He started riding in 2003 after his wife was diagnosed with cancer. Nicks said the admission has tarnished Armstrong's reputation.

"The only thing really I hope on that is that he didn't force other people to do it to be on his team," Nicks said. "I don't understand why they're doing this so far after he retired."

Shirley Murphy feels the same.

"I think it's kind of a witch hunt," Murphy said. "They should just let it be. He's done what he's done."

Despite Armstrong admitting to doping, the majority of people NewsWest 9 spoke with said this does not outweigh the good he's done for cancer awareness.

"He raised the awareness because of his cancer and that's the sad part about all of this," Beane said. "He has done a whole lot of good with raising money for Livestrong."

"He's got love for people or he wouldn't do what he does for the cancer fund," Murphy said.

"I certainly hope that it does not affect any kind of donations to Livestrong," Ham said.

While that remains to be seen, for now, these fans are anxiously awaiting what else the interview could reveal.

"I'm still just behind him and support him," Nicks said.