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AUSTIN, TexasA person familiar with the situation says Lance Armstrong confessed to Oprah Winfrey during an interview Monday that he used performance-enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France.
The admission — made in an interview to be broadcast Thursday on Winfrey’s network — was first revealed by the Associated Press and later confirmed by CBS News. Winfrey will appear on “CBS This Morning” on Tuesday to talk about the Armstrong interview.
After the interview, Winfrey tweeted: “Just wrapped with @lancearmstrong More than 2 1/2 hours . He came READY!”
The confession was a stunning reversal for Armstrong after years of public statements, interviews and court battles in which he denied doping and zealously protected his reputation.
Just hours before the revelation, Armstrong appeared at the cancer charity he founded and tearfully apologized to the Livestrong charity that he founded and turned into a global institution on the strength of his celebrity as a cancer survivor.
Armstrong later huddled with almost a dozen people before stepping into a room set up for the Winfrey interview at a downtown Austin hotel.
The group included close friends and advisers, two of his lawyers and Bill Stapleton, his agent, manager and business partner. They exchanged handshakes and smiles, but declined comment when approached by a reporter. Most members of that group left the hotel through the front entrance around 5 p.m., although Armstrong was not with them.
No further details about the interview were available immediately because of confidentiality agreements signed by both camps. But Winfrey promoted it as a “no-holds barred” session
Winfrey and her crew had earlier said they would film the interview at his home but the location apparently changed to a hotel. Local and international news crews staked out positions in front of the cyclist’s Spanish-style villa before dawn, hoping to catch a glimpse of Winfrey or Armstrong.
Armstrong still managed to slip away for a run Monday morning despite the crowds gathering outside his house. He returned home by cutting through a neighbor’s yard and hopping a fence.