Cyclist and rubber bracelet artisan Lance Armstrong filed a federal lawsuit and requested a restraining order against the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) on Monday, to prevent its punishing him for doping violations that could cost him his seven Tour de France titles.
The Washington Post reports that Armstrong accuses the agency of severe jock-riding, claiming the organization and its CEO Travis Tygart "have engaged in an obsessive, unlawful, and meritless campaign" against him, stemming from a personal vendetta against him perpetuated Tygart.
If stripped of his titles, Armstrong would have his official profession downgraded to "Sheryl Crow's Ex-Boyfriend Who Loved Bikes." He also faces a lifetime ban from Olympic sports and the forfeiture of the prize money that accompanied his Tour de France wins.
USADA announced in June it would charge Armstrong with a doping violation for his role in a steroid distribution conspiracy that rocked a world in which grown men ride bicycles for fun and profit. The agency said it had testimony from at least 10 witnesses with "firsthand" knowledge of the doping violations.
Armstrong's lawyers complain that Armstrong has been unable to obtain the witnesses' identities and learn about the specific charges each makes. USADA argues that it must maintain the witnesses' anonymity to prevent "intimidation and retaliation" from such a roid-ragey-sumbitch.
It was reported last week that four of Armstrong's former cycling teammates may have received reduced suspensions in exchange for testifying against him.
Armstrong has never tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
If Armstrong's requests to halt the agency's court proceedings are denied, his case will likely be heard by an independent three-person arbitration panel (which, Armstrong claims, has been "populated with arbitrators who predictably find in the USADA's favor") on Saturday.
If the panel finds him guilty, Armstrong could appeal the decision, at which point the case would be heard by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which the New York Times identifies as "sport's highest authority."
Technically, God is sport's highest authority, however, as God is known to be in the back pocket of the Court of Arbitration for Sport, whatever they ruled would be final.
[Washington Post // Image via Getty]