CyclingTips Podcast, Episode 11: Floyd Landis interview, Part 2 (with Dave Zabriskie)

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Floyd Landis is back.

After several years spent in a state of self-imposed exile, the first rider to be stripped of a Tour de France title for doping, has reemerged. And this time around, he’s selling marijuana.

In Part 1 of our podcast interview with Landis, he discussed his new business, Floyd’s of Leadville, and the many changes in his life since August 2006, when he’d tested positive for synthetic testosterone, and more significantly, since May 2010, when he blew the lid off former doping practices at Lance Armstrong’s U.S. Postal Service team.

Those revelations ultimately led to Armstrong’s lifetime ban, televised admission, and an ongoing federal lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice, of which which Landis stands to collect up to 25% of any damages recouped — a figure that reportedly could amount to three times the sponsorship, or $100 million.

It’s no stretch to say that that Landis is a completely different person than he was in May 2010. Today, he is in a long-term relationship, and has a two-year-old daughter. “I had to face reality,” Landis says. “I like myself better now than I did back then.”

What was already a tale stranger than fiction took an unexpected turn when Landis announced, in June, that he was launching the Floyd’s of Leadville marijuana brand, along with former U.S. Postal Service teammate Dave Zabriskie, who is also a witness in the federal lawsuit. A long time friend of Landis’, Zabriskie is a product tester and creative director for the marijuana business.

Zabriskie and FLoyd Landis, 2006 Amgen Tour of California. Photo: Casey B. Gibson.
Zabriskie and FLoyd Landis, 2006 Amgen Tour of California. Photo: Casey B. Gibson.

Now, in Part 2, Landis and Zabriskie discuss a wide range of topics, including disc brakes in the pro peloton (they’re in favor), memories from their racing days together, the strain Landis’ revelations put on their friendship, the spectre of doping in today’s pro peloton, the role of anti-doping agencies in professional and amateur sport, and, of course, the federal lawsuit against Armstrong, their former teammate.

“I don’t think we’ll ever reconcile our friendship,” Landis says of Armstrong. “He has his way, and I’ve got mine. But if he ever decides to race again, we would like to sponsor him.”

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