Last week’s treat was a viewing of Alex Gibney’s much anticipated documentary, “The Armstrong Lie.” It screened at Seattle’s Sundance Cinema, one of their latest remarkable theaters; instantly one of my favorite all-time venues.
Gibney started when Lance announced his unexpected comeback in 2009, the project was suspended as legal battles grew, and was finished following the confession. Gibney’s rare talents combine with a unique opportunity to see the whole story. This is a must-see. You’ll never hear or see Lance, Frankie, George, etc., the special way Gibney presents.
Resonating throughout is how Armstrong’s trajectory so frames much of recent cycling history. In 1993 his World Road Title gave us a big hint at what was to come. In November, we invited him to Wheelsmith. He arrived with entourage, including then-buddy Frankie Andreu. There was pandemonium in the shop, freshly decorated for the Christmas season. The line to meet stretched the length of the store, out the door and around the block.
These images are by Shane Brentham, shop marketing pro. In a world of Enron’s, Savings and Loan collapses, tech and housing bubbles, corporate and environmental crimes, missteps in professional sports should be examined but not magnified. To mete out justice, excuses must be heard. To understand the lessons, we spectators need explanations. Thanks to Gibney and other thoughtful commentators, it is clearer how Lance’s personality + his bionic potential + a drug-infused sport = a trap and journey that no one, especially Lance, can recommend.
They’re posed with a Serotta Ti bike Ben and we provided as a stipend for the appearance. Wonder where it is now? They’re standing on a fake cobbled path made to look like Paris-Roubaix, in front of a wall of memorabilia riders fresh from EU adventure would share.