Tyler Hamilton, who rode together on the US Postal Service team along with Lance Armstrong, has claimed in his new book that the American cyclist gave him a banned blood booster at his house before the 1999 Tour de France.
Hamilton has made theses allegations in his book, “The Secret Race. Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France, Doping, Cover-ups and Winning at All Costs,” which is set to be published September 5.
Armstrong’s agent Bill Stapleton did not immediately respond to a request for a comment on the allegations made by Hamilton.
Armstrong has long denied doping but last week chose not to fight drug charges made by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).
Consequently, USADA has erased 14 years of Armstrong''s competitive results, including his seven Tour de France title.
Hamilton details his own drug use and said doping in the team started even before Armstrong joined in 1998.
Hamilton added he and Armstrong soon became roommates and sounding boards who would discuss using the blood-booster EPO and other performance-enhancing drugs.
He said while visiting Armstrong's home in Nice just before the 1999 Tour, he asked the Texan if he had any EPO and Armstrong pointed to the refrigerator.
Hamilton described a doping plan put in place by the team for the 1999 Tour de France, with Armstrong''s knowledge, that included a motorcyclist riding behind racers with a thermos full of EPO. It was to be doled out to riders in the team camper after race stages.
Hamilton added the team leaders, doctors and mangers encouraged and supervised doping and performance-enhancing drugs were handed out to cyclists in white lunch bags.
Armstrong has previously sought to disgrace Hamilton as drugs cheat who was twice banned for doping and was recently stripped of his 2004 Olympic gold medal.
According to USADA, Hamilton is among its key witnesses, along with ten other former teammates, ready to testify against Armstrong.