Scott Mercier was one of the few elite American riders of his generation who refused to engage in the doping practices of the time. He left the sport in 1997. He told the BBC he believes that Lance Armstrong was the clear winner of seven Tour de France titles and can still be a force for good.
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Cycling Central

7 Apr 2015 - 5:20 PM  UPDATED 13 Apr 2015 - 3:35 PM

"This drug usage did not start with the Americans, it was part of the culture long before the Yankees invaded," said Mercier.

"The Europeans have gotten a far easier ride than our riders.

"It's time to be honest, it may be painful, but I believe honesty and transparency are the best path forward.

"In my mind, Tyler (Hamilton) is the gold medallist from 2004 and Lance Armstrong the winner of seven Tours of France.

"Nearly every rider who donned a USPS kit was involved in some sort of doping, and yet only Lance defrauded the government? All those guys were paid real money.

"I was never much of a Team Lance fan, I knew he was lying and his arrogance and boorish behaviour made me cringe.

"However, my issue with him was never about his performance. He was, quite simply, the best of his generation and is one of the fiercest competitors the world has ever seen.

"He says if there was anything he could change, it would be the way he treated people. I believe him. I've seen the way he treats people today and it's with humility and grace."

Via the BBC.