Armstrong in swimming hole dispute

Having sorted out most of his legal disputes in recent months, Lance Armstrong has now become embroi

Having sorted out most of his legal disputes in recent months, Lance Armstrong has now become embroi


Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong has become embroiled in his dispute with neighbours to his 200-acre Texas ranch over the deteriorating condition of a local swimming hole known as Dead Man's Hole. According to his neighbours, a dam-building project on Armstrong's land has led to the previously clear waters of the pool turning green and opaque.

"Lance is a spokesman for 'Don't Mess With Texas'," 52-year-old landowner John Davis told the Houston Chronicle. "He's lent his name to this great cause and then, when it comes to cleaning up his own mess, he won't do it."

Armstrong, though, refutes this claim. "To say that we're not making progress and that we're just stalling is completely and patently false," he told the Houston paper. "I'm really sorry they're upset, but I've done everything I can do and I'm going to continue to ultimately fix it."

Armstrong says he has spent half a million dollars attempting to restore the creek bed to its former pristine state, and admitted he was unaware he needed permits to build the dam designed to create a water hole for animals on his land, and that he abandoned construction immediately when he found this out.

The former Tour winner's neighbours also claim Armstrong has turned down invitations to meet with them, while Armstrong counters that some his the treatment directed at him has become rather unneighbourly. "These people are incredible. I've never seen anything like it. And then they wonder why I don't come and hang out with them," he said, admitting he has been sent nasty notes and even given a bottle of Arrogant Bastard Ale.

Armstrong maintains he will do and spend whatever is needed to clean up the problem, and insists he has his eye on the wider environmental picture as well. "I'm a guy who drives a hybrid (car). I care about the planet, period."

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