Local cyclists react to Armstrong admission

By Chad Weber

January 15, 2013 Updated Oct 26, 2013 at 1:17 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- He's without question the face of professional cycling.

A name that's meant so much to so many in the sports community across the world.

A name now tarnished by his own doping admissions.

"It's really damaging to our sport," said Kevin Lantz, president of Peoria bicycle club. "Everything from the local race we have in Morton all the way to the Midwest and at the highest level."

Local cyclists have mixed feelings about what Lance Armstrong has done for the popularity of their sport.

"It brought a lot of people into a sport that is very positive," said Jerry Porter, a member of the Peoria bicycle club, "and I think very good for everybody involved."

"I think it conveys that if you want to be successful that you have to use these performance enhancing drugs," said Lantz, "and it is really sending the wrong message to the kids."

Even though cyclists said it is a dark day, they believe Armstrong's admission is necessary for the sport to continue to grow.

"It's unfortunate it takes something as large as this for there to be a cultural change," said Porter.

"It has to be clean, people have to be transparent," said Kevin Lantz. "This is what they have done in the past, and this is what they are doing moving forward."

To many, the man who carried the message live-strong, now carries a negative one.

"I'd like to see this chapter closed and let us move on," said Lantz.

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