09/05/2003 at 01:00 AM EDT
Five-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong and his wife, Kristin, have separated and are divorcing after five years of marriage, the Associated Press reports.
The couple, who have three children, separated two weeks ago, soon after returning to Austin, Texas, from Girona, Spain. The couple is currently working on reaching a divorce settlement, while maintaining separate homes in Austin.
The New York Post reports that earlier this year, there were supermarket tabloid reports claiming Armstrong, 31, had been unfaithful to Kristin, also 31, with a 21-year-old coed from San Francisco.
But Armstrong (who successfully battled cancer on his way to his Tour victories) tells the Austin American-Statesman about his wife: "The craziest thing is, we're closer now and better friends than ever before. We're truly committed to maintaining a good relationship, but not a marriage."
Jogi Muller, a spokesman for Armstrong's U.S. Postal Service team, tells AP: "They tried, over the whole summer period, to reconcile. But somehow, now in the month after the Tour, it just didn't work out. They tried probably for the children, for themselves."
Muller said the couple originally planned to remain in Europe until the middle of this month, but decided to return home early.
Armstrong and Kristin reportedly met in January 1997, shortly after he completed chemotherapy for advanced testicular cancer. They married a year later, after she had been there for his convalescence.