Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Armstrong cycles?

Cyclingnews has a story announcing the dissolution of the Trek-LeMond partnership, citing Greg LeMond's repeated disparaging statements as the reason for the split. I certainly don't have the legal expertise to comment on the competing motions filed in court -- first by LeMond and then by Trek -- but LeMond's record of anti-Armstrong statements are pretty well documented (check out this forum from way back in 2004),* and if you equate Armstrong with Trek -- something the company has worked hard to do -- I guess it begins to make sense. But what do I know? Not a damn thing.

What I'm wondering is whether or not this clears the way for a Lance Armstrong brand of bikes being marketed by Trek. Since there's a long tradition of Tour de France riders starting their own brands this seems like a good bet, and I'm sure that Lance still has some sort of obligations to the Trek brand stemming from his official rider days. Since the Madone=Lance for all intents and purposes, they could just rebadge that and call it a Lance.

One interesting thing is that with Klein all but dead, and LeMond leaving the fold, the Trek mothership is definitely getting smaller.

*Of course, no matter how bad that controversy got, it was never as bad as the brief flare-up between LeMond and Floyd Landis. Here's just one article documenting that rather absurd episode.

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