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Factfile: Controversial cycling ace

1971: Born September 18, in Dallas.

1991: Signs with Subaru-Montgomery and becomes US national amateur champion.

1993: Crowned US national champion. Wins first stage in Tour de France but fails to finish. Beats Miguel Indurain to win World Championship.

1996: October 2 - Diagnosed with testicular cancer. The disease later spreads through his whole body. Founds Lance Armstrong Foundation for Cancer.

1997: Declared cancer-free after brain surgery and chemotherapy. Signs with US Postal Service team after being dropped by Cofidis.

1998: Wins Tours of Holland and Luxembourg.

1999: Claims first Tour de France title, winning four stages.

2000: Wins second Tour. Secures time-trial bronze in Sydney Olympics.

2001: July 29: Becomes only the fifth rider to win three Tour de France titles in a row.

2002: July 28: Becomes only the fourth person to win four successive Tour de France titles.

2003: Equals the record of five victories in the Tour de France.

2004: July 25 - Clinches record sixth Tour de France victory.

2005: July 24 - Wins his seventh Tour de France, two more than anyone else, before retiring.

September 6 - Claims he is considering coming out of retirement after being angered by drug allegations against him.

2008: September 9 - Announces he will return to professional cycling.

2009: March 23 - Suffers a broken right collarbone when he crashes out on stage one of the Vuelta a Castilla y Leon.

May - Appears in first Giro d'Italia, finishing 12th. Tour is marred by financial cloud over Armstrong's Astana team and the American is linked to a takeover.

June - Astana's financial issues are resolved and Armstrong is named in the Tour de France team, but with 2007 champion Alberto Contador of Spain as leader.

July - Contador and Armstrong endure a fractious relationship. Contador claims a second Tour title, while Armstrong finishes third. Armstrong announces he will launch his own squad in 2010, Team Radio Shack.

2010: January - Team Radio Shack make their debut at the Tour Down Under in Australia. Armstrong finishes 25th.

May - Armstrong's former US Postal team-mate Floyd Landis, who was stripped of the 2006 Tour de France title for doping, launches doping allegations at the Texan.

June 28 - Announces that the 2010 Tour de France will be his last.

July - Finishes final Tour in 23rd place, 39 minutes and 20 seconds behind winner Contador.

2011: February 16 - Announces retirement for second time.

May - Forced to deny claims made by former team-mate Tyler Hamilton that they took performance-enhancing drugs together.

2012: February 4 - An investigation into alleged doping by Armstrong is dropped by federal prosecutors in California.

June 13 - The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) confirm they have initiated legal proceedings over allegations of doping against Armstrong.

June 30 - USADA confirm they will file formal doping charges against Armstrong.

July 9 - Armstrong files a lawsuit in a US federal court asking for a temporary restraining order against the agency. Armstrong also claims the USADA offered "corrupt inducements" to other cyclists to testify against him.

July 11 - Armstrong re-files lawsuit against the USADA after initial lawsuit was dismissed by a judge as being a "lengthy and bitter polemic", designed to attract media attention and public sympathy.

August 20 - Armstrong's legal action against the USADA dismissed in court.

August 24 - Armstrong announces he will not fight the doping charges filed against him by the USADA, saying in a statement he is "finished with this nonsense" and insisting he is innocent. He is stripped of all his titles and banned for life from cycling by USADA.

October 10 - The USADA claim 11 of Armstrong's former team-mates have testified against him. The organisation say the US Postal Service team "ran the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping programme that sport has ever seen", with "conclusive and undeniable proof" of a team-run doping conspiracy.

October 17 - Armstrong resigns as chairman of his cancer charity, Livestrong, on the same day that he is dropped by sponsor Nike.

October 22 - The UCI ratifies USADA's decision to ban Armstrong from cycling for life and to strip him of his seven Tour de France titles.

November 2 - The World Anti-Doping Agency announces it will not appeal the USADA's decision.

December 5 - The International Olympic Committee postpones a decision on whether to strip Armstrong of the bronze medal he won at the 2000 Sydney Olympics until the International Cycling Federation formally notifies him of their decision to annul all his results since August 1998.

December 17 - Armstrong is stripped of the BBC overseas sports personality award won in 2003.

December 23 - The Sunday Times announces it is suing the American for the damages and legal fees it paid him in settlement of a libel action he brought in 2004, in an action likely to total more than #1 million.

2013: January 5 - The New York Times claims Armstrong is close to confessing to his doping past.

January 9 - Armstrong announces he will break his silence over the allegations in an interview with Oprah Winfrey.

January 14 - Armstrong apologises to the staff at his Livestrong cancer foundation ahead of recording his interview with Winfrey.

January 15 - Winfrey claims Armstrong came clean to her about his use of performance-enhancing drugs during their interview, saying he was "forthcoming" when she asked him in detail about the allegations.

January 18 - Admits to doping in the recorded Winfrey interview.

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