Lance Armstrong’s recent and long-overdue admission that he used performance-enhancing drugs to win his seven Tour de France titles has perhaps begun to settle some of the controversy in his own life. But for Sheryl Crow, the pop singer who dated Armstrong during two of those Tour de France victories, the questions are only beginning, especially after allegations from Armstrong’s former teammate that she was present during conversations about covering up doping.
After more than 4.3 million viewers tuned in on Thursday night to watch Armstrong make his confession to Oprah Winfrey, people are now raising questions what role Crow may have played in the scandal. In his televised interview, Armstrong admitted to participating in a wide range of sophisticated cheating that included using erythropoietin, human growth hormone, testosterone and blood doping. Armstrong also acknowledged that everyone who had accused him of doping had been on the money, including people that he had publicly attacked for exposing him.
"I'm a flawed character," Armstrong said. "I viewed this situation as one big lie that I repeated a lot of times."
But one person Armstrong did not discuss was Crow, despite the fact that her name has come up more and more in the months since he was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles.
During their more than two-year relationship, Crow was routinely called upon by the press to defend Armstrong against his accusers, and she seemed to comply willingly. Seven years ago, just after the couple had announced their engagement, Crow held an interview with USA Today in which she downplayed the charges against her then-fiancé.
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"I don't think the French people are on a mission to strip him of his integrity,” Crow told the paper. "It's just a handful of people pursuing that theory, and it's tiresome and a nuisance, and it will eventually end, I hope."
But according to the testimony of former teammate Frankie Andreu, Crow was present during a conversation in which he and Armstrong discussed concealing their doping. In an affidavit, Andreu mentioned a conversation in an Indiana hospital in 1997, in which asked Armstrong asked him and his wife to formally retract statements they had made that mentioned his doping.
According to Celebuzz, Betsy Andreu had claimed that during his cancer treatment, Armstrong told doctors he had taken steroids, human growth hormone, cortisone and EPO.
"His girlfriend at the time, Sheryl Crow, was in the room, and I felt uncomfortable talking about this in front of her so I did not say much,” Andreu said.
Betsy Andreu corroborated his claim, saying in her affidavit, "Lance’s then girlfriend, Sheryl Crow, was in the room and Frankie did not not want to discuss this in front of her."
According to the Huffington Post, Crow’s name was submitted in affidavits to the United States Anti-Doping Association twice, and she was subpoenaed in 2012, just weeks before the grand jury concluded its investigation into Armstrong. Her testimony has not been made public, but in an interview in September, she admitted to Katie Couric that she sympathized with Armstrong when he was stripped of his titles.
"I felt bad. I felt bad for him, I felt bad for his family and I kinda felt like the rest of America,” Crow said. “He is a hero that we watched and looked up to and admired."