Armstrong affirms support for NYC

Posted: Friday, March 11, 2005

MONTELIMAR, France (AP) — Lance Armstrong backpedaled a bit Thursday, saying that while he backed Paris for the 2012 Olympics, New York City was ''the bid of my heart.''

The six-time Tour de France winner lent his support to Paris's Olympic bid the day before.

''To be fair, I think that Paris deserves the Olympics,'' Armstrong said Wednesday before starting a stage of the Paris-Nice race. He later pulled out with a sore throat.

On Thursday, Armstrong said he believes Paris has an excellent bid, but he is rooting for New York.

''If I were on the selection committee, I would be rolling for New York City,'' Armstrong said. ''Because of its stature in the world and the fact that it's one of the most influential, beautiful cities in the world.''

Moscow, Madrid and London also are competing for the games. The host city will be determined by the International Olympic Committee in July.

Armstrong appeared to back Paris just as the IOC began assessing the French capital on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, he said Paris would be ''outstanding,'' and ''deserves the Olympics.'' He added: ''If (New York) don't win in 2012, they could win in 2016.''

Armstrong reaffirmed his support for New York on Thursday from Girona, Spain, where he trains.

''I don't want to change a word of what I said about Paris yesterday. I do think that Paris has an excellent bid, but I also think that all of the cities have excellent bids,'' Armstrong said.

But, he added, ''New York City is the bid of my heart.''

He said he formally reaffirmed his support for New York in a conversation with Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff.

''New York is the greatest city in the world. Everybody agrees on that,'' Armstrong said.

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