ASPEN, Colo. (AP) -- For a few hours, Lance Armstrong was back in his element -- on a bike and in a race.
No controversies, little fanfare.
The escape Saturday into the mountains around Aspen, Colo., comes a day after the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency disciplined Armstrong with a lifetime ban from professional cycling and vacated his seven Tour de France titles after deciding he used performance-enhancing drugs.
There were only a handful of fans at the start of the Power of Four mountain bike competition, a 36-mile trek that includes plenty of climbing.
Asked if he was ready, Armstrong said, "I hope so."
Armstrong's busy weekend includes a marathon Sunday. He may be banned from cycling, but it hasn't diminished his passion for competition.