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Austin Community Debates Renaming Lance Armstrong Bikeway
The six-mile Lance Armstrong Bikeway runs right through the heart of Austin. Amid Lance Armstrong's possible doping confession during an interview with Oprah set to air Thursday, the local Austin community is questioning whether the city should strip the trail's name.
Some Austinites said keeping the name intact is an unfit tribute to a cheater. Volma Overton has used the trail for nearly three decades and said to revoke Armstrong's name would set a standard for future cyclists.
"It would do it justice to have the name taking off," Overton said. "This sport is really tainted with drug usage, and it's becoming a joke. Something has to be done to further encourage future cyclist to want to do it the right way."
Several locals said the bikeway is good for the community and renaming it would be a mistake. Many said it is a proper honor for a cancer survivor who has helped raise $500 million through his foundation.
Austin resident, Marc Andonian, said people should remember the good that Armstrong has done, instead of focusing on his mistakes.
"He's done a lot of good for the community and a lot of good stuff for cancer research," Adonian said. "He did that because of his popularity," Adonian said.
Some of those from the cycling community are standing by Armstrong and praise the work he has done for the sport.
Preston Tyree, a member Austin Cyclists Association, has been in the cycling community for more than 20 years. Tyree said he thinks the city should continue to honor Armstrong's name on the trail.
"If all this controversy impacts that work than it's a real shame," Tyree said. "He was important to Austin and I think you leave it that way. It's the Lance Armstrong Bikeway; we all know what that means."
By Cassie Gallo