Thursday, January 20, 2011


NEW YORK (AP) - Disgraced cyclist Floyd Landis has retired from professional racing, saying the battle to fix the sport's drug-tainted image is "not my fight.''

Landis told late Monday that he "spent five years trying to get back to a place that I can never really go back to, and it's causing more stress than is worth it.''

Landis won the Tour in 2006 but was stripped after an arbitration panel upheld the results of a positive test for synthetic testosterone. Landis later acknowledged using performance-enhancing substances and has alleged widespread doping on his U.S. Postal Service team, which included seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong.

Armstrong, competing this week in the Tour Down Under in Australia, has steadfastly denied doping. He has also declined to comment on Landis and was uanavailable after Tuesday's stage.

Landis said the effort to get back to the level he reached five years ago had been stressful and he finally told himself "there must be more to life than this.''

"I've been riding my bike a lot, trying to figure out life, which is the same reason I did it to start with, so I've come full circle,'' Landis told "But I'll never start on a line on a road and try to get to another line on a road faster than another guy. That's over.''

Landis claims he's been unable to find a salaried position in cycling since May, when he publicly alleged widespread drug use in cycling, specifically identifying Armstrong. Landis rode sporadially during 2010 as an unaffiliated rider.

"I don't want it to come across that I'm quitting because I'm bitter,'' Landis said. "I'm relatively sure this sport cannot be fixed, but that's not my job, that's not my fight.''