Vaughters stated: ‘Early on at a Postal Service training camp I had a conversation with Lance in which he told me that the UCI should have detected a high level of HCG in his doping controls when he had cancer but had failed to do so.

‘Thus, in Lance’s eyes the UCI was somewhat at fault for the extent of his cancer…Lance said, “if I ever have a doping problem, I have this card to play.”’

It is a disturbing insight into the calculating character of the man and raises troubling questions that strike at the heart of the UCI’s doping programme.