Australian Triathlete Challenges Lance Armstrong

December 30, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. triathlete [trahy-ATH-leet] (n.) – an athlete who participates in a three-part sports event
Example: A triathlete needs to be good in running, swimming, and bicycling.

2. one-on-one [WUHN-on-WUHN, -awn-] (adj.) – consisting of two people who compete against each other
Example: The one-on-one race involved only John and Eric.

3. doping [DOH­-ping] (n.) – the use of banned drugs to improve one’s athletic performance
Example: Athletes involved in doping were suspended from competitions.

4. avenue [AV-uh-nyoo, -noo] (n.) – a chance or opportunity to achieve something
Example: Doing sports is a good avenue to be physically fit.

5. set in stone [set in stohn] (idiom) – final, can no longer be changed
Example: The athlete’s resignation is not yet set in stone; he may still play next year.


Read the text below.
A 40-year-old Australian triathlete has recently challenged Lance Armstrong in an unofficial one-on-one triathlon.

Chris McCormack, known as Macca, is a multi-awarded triathlete recognized throughout the world. He has won championships in the previous years. Recently, he became the executive chairman of a sports resort in Thanyapura, Phuket, Thailand.

The Australian triathlete wants to compete with Lance Armstrong because he believes that Armstrong is still a good competitor. McCormack also acknowledges the fact that Armstrong is an amazing athlete despite his doping records.

In a recent interview, Armstrong claimed that he can still win the world championships. Thus, McCormack thinks that his challenge is a good avenue to prove Armstrong’s claim.

McCormack proposed that the race be held in Austin, Texas, Armstrong’s hometown. He also said that the race between him and Armstrong will have no audience, since it is unofficial.

Armstrong has responded positively with McCormack’s challenge. He said that he is interested with the challenge and that he is very open to discussion. All McCormack has to do is give him a call, Armstrong added.

Because of doping cases, Armstrong has been prohibited from participating in any official competition. His titles were also taken away from him as part of the punishment. Last year, Armstrong attempted to join the triathlon events in Hawaii before he was banned.

On another note, the unofficial race that McCormack proposed is not yet set in stone. Nonetheless, McCormack has been attending meetings to make this event possible.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         In your opinion, how would winning the race affect Lance Armstrong?
·         If you were Armstrong, would you take on the challenge by McCormack? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         How do you think athletes can improve their performance without doping?
·         How can sports authorities help fight doping?


December 30, 2013