Lance Armstrong is getting back on his bike, this time to raise money for the charity he founded and was later pressured to leave.
By
AAP

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

Armstrong has set up a fundraising team for the Livestrong Challenge ride in Austin in October.

It will be his first return to the event since 2012, when a report by the US Anti-Doping Agency exposed performance-enhancing drug use by Armstrong and his US Postal Service team.

Armstrong registered for the charity ride and made a $6,420 donation on Feb 2.

He also set up a "Lance & Friends" team that has drawn several longtime Livestrong ride participants and has surpassed $10,000 in total funds raised.

Livestrong officials said they welcome his contribution. Spokeswoman Ellen Barry said he has "no official role with the foundation and there are no plans for him to."

The organisation, which had informally adopted the Livestrong slogan, changed its name in late 2012.

In a statement to The Associated Press, Armstrong says he remains "humbled and proud" of Livestrong, which he founded in 1997 as the Lance Armstrong Foundation.

Armstrong's fame and story as the testicular cancer survivor who won the Tour de France every year from 1999-2005 transformed the foundation small a charity into a $500 million organisation with an international brand.

"When I started the Livestrong Foundation 18 years ago, I never dreamed it would realise the growth and success it has achieved," Armstrong said. "I look forward to supporting that effort."

The charity has struggled after Armstrong's cheating was exposed. It reported a large drop in donations and revenue in the year after his downfall.

The Livestrong Challenge ride is the foundation's marquee event and Armstrong used to serve as host and master of ceremonies. Barry said Livestrong officials learned of his return the day he registered for the ride. She said he had not been asked to stay away the past two years.