Tour de France champ who lost his title in doping scandal is now selling dope, ahem, cannabis, in the heart of Amish country.
Professional cyclist, Floyd Landis’s 2006 Tour de France victory was nullified after a doping scandal, leaving him adrift and perhaps, prophetically, predicting his second career over a decade later: producing and selling marijuana and its derivatives to bicyclists.
Since the doping scandal, Landis has rebuilt his reputation, says the Philadelphia Inquirer, and become a marijuana entrepreneur, growing and selling it in multiple states where it is now legal. He’s built an online empire of CBD products under the brand name ‘Floyd’s of Leadville’--that is Leadville, Colorado, where he has a marijuana growing operation. He has another in Oregon as well. He also has dispensaries located in both states.
This April, Landis is returning to his hometown of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, in the heart of Amish country and coincidentally once a major hemp-producing region (two towns in the county are even named East and West Hempfield Township), to open a hybrid hemp-bicycling shop.
The shop, another Floyd’s of Leadville location, will showcase high-performance racing and mountain bikes by the brand Van Dessel, and sell cannabidiol and hemp, as well as have a coffee shop. It will be located on Prince Street, in Lancaster County’s Red Rose City.
“I’d like to make sure we’re front and center with Pennsylvania’s growing hemp industry,” Landis told the Inquirer. “It’ll be a place to relax and a resource to learn about hemp cultivation."
As for a local hemp processing operation, which Landis also hopes to set up at, "We’re not sure where that will be, but we’ll be encouraging local farmers to plant hemp, and we hope to build a facility to turn crops into a refined product,” he said.
Landis told the Inquirer that he got into marijuana and hemp as relief from an opiate addiction he acquired after a surgery in 2006 left him in pain. His title had been stripped, and he had entered a downward spiral. Marijuana helped save him from that. “I was addicted to opiates for a long time," he said. “Marijuana and CBD products helped me get through that. That’s why I have a strong interest in it.”
Now he and an increasing number of other athletes are seeing marijuana as a potential alternative to opiates, a huge danger for any competitive athlete. “Anyone who trains that much is going to have aches and pains and general soreness,” Landis said. “They use CBD as a replacement for Advil or opioids.”
If and when Pennsylvania ever legalizes recreational marijuana, Landis says he’d like to get into that market as well. But for now, he sees the great potential of hemp and CBD in the state and wants to be a part of it.
“The people I’ve talked to there have a lot of interest in growing hemp. But there’s a lot of missing information on how to farm it,” Landis said. “I hope our Lancaster shop will become a clearinghouse for information farmers can use. When you’re growing industrial hemp for CBD and cannabinoids, it’s exactly like growing marijuana on a big scale. There are things that need to be taught, but they’ll figure it out.”
Header Image: Floyd Landis (left) sporting Floyd’s of Leadville biking gear. Photo via Floyd’s of Leadville.