Update: Armstrong Pulls Out of Masters Meet After FINA Protest

When the swimming community found out that disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong was to enter the South Central Zone Masters Championship meet, reactions were mixed. Some were outraged, while others took more of a “live-and-let-live” approach.

FINA, the world’s governing body for swimming, it turns out, fell into the camp of the former.

The National Post reports today that USMS Executive Director Rob Butcher says Armstrong has pulled out of the meet. Though U.S. Masters Swimming is not specifically a signatory of the World Anti-Doping Code, it’s umbrella organization FINA is. Though Butcher was quoted as saying that USMS doesn’t fall under the same rules that issued Lance Armstrong a lifetime ban, FINA felt differently.

In a letter to USMS, FINA said that they did, in fact, fall under the auspices of the World Anti-Doping Code, even though they don’t drug test.

Armstrong has decided to withdraw from the event after the outcry. He was scheduled to swim the 500, 1000, and 1,650 yard freestyle.

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This is nuts! Let the man live his life. Look at all the lives he has helped save!


He only got to where he was because he cheated his way to the top. Stop worshipping this guy. You wouldn’t even know his name if it weren’t for the doping…


I wouldn’t want to spend 3 minutes walking in his shoes. It seems a bit extreme to ban him from swimming in a masters meet.


I dont know what to think about this… Part of me is like, its masters… everyone should be included but the other part of me completely understands FINAs protest. Maybe its just too soon for Lance to be competing. I totally get that he created an amazing cancer awareness charity, but he really made some horrible decisions and hurt a lot of people too.

Steve Nolan

Feel the same way. If he was just some random athlete who took steroids (I dunno, like, A-Rod or something) wanted to swim in a masters meet I wouldn’t care. But man, he ruined people’s lives that were literally just telling the truth about him.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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