Disgraced former American cyclist Lance Armstrong on Thursday settled federal fraud charges against him for $5 million.
It ended a protracted legal battle that involved former teammate Floyd Landis and the US government on behalf of the US Postal Service, Armstrong’s Tour de France team sponsor from 1999 through 2005. Landis filed the original lawsuit — which had sought $100 million — in 2010 and is eligible for up to 25% of the settlement.
The deal came as the two sides prepared for a trial that was scheduled to start May 7 in Washington, The Associated Press reported. Armstrong said he was happy to have “made peace with the Postal Service.”
For a decade, Armstrong was not only one of the world’s most dominant athletes but also one of its most recognizable figures. Armstrong did what no one had ever done: He won the Tour de France seven times, and he did so consecutively from 1999 to 2005.
But that was all before the US Anti-Doping Agency found that his team had run “the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen.”
As we know now, Armstrong used a variety of performance-enhancing drugs, and all his wins in the greatest bicycle race were eventually stripped from him.
As recently as 2016 Armstrong still blasted USADA, calling it “one of the most ineffective and inefficient organizations in the world” and claiming its CEO, Travis Tygart, went after him only because he needed a case and a story.
Armstrong didn’t act alone, and it was, darkly so, a team effort. A calculating tactician, Le Boss handpicked his teammates carefully, and together they were cycling’s most successful team.
Several of the riders who served under Armstrong’s tainted reign are still involved in the sport.
Here’s a look at what he and his old teammates have been up to:
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An indelible image from the era was that of the US Postal Service’s “Blue Train” setting a blistering pace at the front of the peloton, one that no one could match, let alone beat.
Levi Leipheimer was an all-rounder who rode with Armstrong on a few different teams at the Tour. He later admitted doping during his career.
He now lives in Santa Rosa, California, where he runs a mass-participation bike ride. He also does promotion videos and coaches cyclists.