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« Brave prospect's juicing earns 50 games off: Jordan Schafer | Main | NASCAR driver -- Aaron Fike -- fired up on heroin before he fired up his ride »

04/09/2008

Comments

GaryB

Lemond is a jealous idiot. He couldn't stand being 2nd rate when it came to Americans and the TDF.

Regardless of what his belief or opinion of Lance Armstrong is, and it was purely opinion, most of America is in love with Lance Armstrong and will not ever believe that he took any PEDs.

To think Armstrong did not take any PEDs is silly. However, to run your mouth about someone who is a huge money maker simply hurts others in their bank account. Nothing personal just business.

grg

Is it legal to fire a guy because of his comments on a colleague? Or is it suppression of freedom of speech?

Paula Kirsch

Sorry, but the crack about Floyd Landis was gratuitous and adds nothing to the discussion.

GaryB

Greg LeMond is not having his freedom of speech suppressed, he was, is, and will be, free to say whatever he wants to say. However, the company he works for is also free to employ anyone they want. Mr. Lemond does not have the right to work for them. As long as Trek has honored any contract they may have entered into with him they are free to do what ever they want. Once the customer speaks with their shopping habits the company must make a decision. Again, just business.

Drew

The thing that LeMond fails to realize is that there is such a thing as being TOO outspoken, especially when you come across as being spiteful. Greg talks as if he is all knowing when it comes to cycling and doping, but by his own admission, he has never been party to doping, seen anyone dope, or had actual first hand knowledge of doping offences. In my opinion, this makes any comments to the subject that he makes un-credible and makes him look petty and hurtful.

Given LeMond's propensity for making outlandish comments about things that he seemingly knows nothing about, I for one will never purchase or use a product that bears his name.

That is why Trek is dropping him like a bad habit. Not because of pressure from Lance, but because his actions have hurt sales.

Drew

The thing that LeMond fails to realize is that there is such a thing as being TOO outspoken, especially when you come across as being spiteful. Greg talks as if he is all knowing when it comes to cycling and doping, but by his own admission, he has never been party to doping, seen anyone dope, or had actual first hand knowledge of doping offences. In my opinion, this makes any comments to the subject that he makes un-credible and makes him look petty and hurtful.

Given LeMond's propensity for making outlandish comments about things that he seemingly knows nothing about, I for one will never purchase or use a product that bears his name.

That is why Trek is dropping him like a bad habit. Not because of pressure from Lance, but because his actions have hurt sales.

Matt

Sad day for cycling in general. Sad that a private business dispute has been dragged out into the public. Real classy move...

What will be interesting though is Trek's reaction if a shoe ever drops regarding their favorite son Lance and PED usage. How damaging could that ever be to the brand in the eye of the consumer?

I for one choose to not evaluate a brand based solely upon it's endorsers or namesake. Just because Tiger Woods drives a Buick and hits Nike golf balls doesn't make them superior products. Brands need to stand alone on their quality and customer service. I am not better at what I do simply because of who patronizes my services. Brands should be the same way.

Finally, who of the two has more to gain from being staunchly against doping in sport? And yet, who has still not taken a firm stance; willing to risk reputation for integrity?

GRG

I would say our remark about Landis wasn't 'gratuitous' but was 'sarcastic'...which is the fun of writing on a blog. It may not add to the discussion but it certainly helps us ventilate.

Yes

Sarcastic and funny. Plus you get extra points for irritating Floyd's personal police force.

D

grg, are you an American? If so, could you either kindly retake Civics class or turn in your citizenship please.

What kind of idiot thinks this is suppressing freedom of speech? Hello - the 1st Amendment guarantees freedom of speech from government impingement. Private actors can do what the fuck they like unless it is violative of public policy. The Bill of Rights is protection against creeping government powers - every 10 old kid should know that!

And Trek sucks ass with this move. Lance is a doper and LeMond should call him out relentlessly.

Where's my shoe?

Matt -

We don't care if Lance doped or not.

- Yellow Bracelet Wearers

GRG

"What kind of idiot thinks this is suppression of free speech"..I suppose idiots like us.

First, although you're correct on free speech of the 1st ammendment extending to government employess, you're way off on the development of 10 year-olds. We could ask "What kind of i---t thinks 10 year olds know US Constitutional law", but we won't.

Second, the more appropriate question would concern 'breach of contract', and what clause allows Trek to violate an apparent contract with LeMond.

Here seems to be the key issue:

"Contrary to the contract promises and Trek’s reasonable expectations, Greg LeMond has repeatedly damaged his brand, and Trek’s other business interests. Instead of helping to grow a valuable business, Greg LeMond has for years impaired, and now
destroyed, 13 years’ efforts by Trek and its dealers."

Trek says LeMond bought bikes at wholesale then sold them on the side. Trek also says by discussing doping accusations against Armstrong, LeMond damaged his brand, as well as damaged a Trek supported athlete.

Probably Trek would need to prove these points to break the contract.

CBIN

GRG, this is not a freedom of speech issue. Not even close. LeMond is attacking a fellow Trek "employee." I put that in quotes because LeMond isn't some factory line worker or some guy living on this paycheck, he's paid to be a public figure of the Trek company. Trek is well within their rights to fire him for ANYTHING he says, because he's a voice of the company.

If he has "freedom of speech" (again, quotes, this time because I don't think you know what it means) here, then shouldn't he be able to say whatever he wants, and not be fired? So according to you, he could come out and say, "Trek makes the worst bike on the planet," and there's nothing Trek could do about it? Not a very good celebrity endorser, if he did that.

Well, actually he might as well have. By publicly attacking another Trek figure, he's damaging the company, and Trek has every right to fire him. He can say whatever he wants about Lance, that his Constitutional right, but it's not his right to say whatever he wants while acting as a voice of the Trek company.

Mike

What do the LeMond supporters expect. Trek is only protecting their business interests. LeMond was asked to tone it down and didn't, free speech has nothing to do with this. Those that think it does know absolutely nothing about business. It appears neither does LeMond.

Hellbender

Trek has made a lot of money off the doping game. Lance's output of well over 420 watts sustained, on the big climbs in the Tour, at a weight of around 155#, confirms his doping status. This is outside the envelope of undoped human physiology. Plus, he smacked around a very large cast of other riders proven to be under doping. That is impossible from a standpoint of the advantage that blood doping brings.
Trek now provides the bikes for Astana. Astana is a team built on doping. Funded by the Kazaks, with Bruyneel being the DS and he comes up under the tutelage of Manual Saiz a legally shown to be doping maestro, Contador their star rider is implicated in Operacion Puerto, Levi is associated with Dr. Ferrari and the list goes on for many, many members of that team. The doping pedigree is strong.
Bike companies, such as Trek, bid cash and supplies for their bikes to be raced by a team. Their bidding and selecting of Astana, says all that needs to be said.
The base of this public spat, has a tremendous amount to do with doping and who supports it, especially through sponsorship. Trek is a blood for money company, that is an ardent supporter of marketing through icons who benefit from doping. They can't claim innocence or lack of knowledge in any way shape or form. They are a sponsor intimately involved in the bike industry, and they've chosen to side with dopers time after time.

Jamey

Way to take the high ground, Trek. Way I see it, this is analogous to Phil Knight/NIKE's brittleness in the face of questions about their labor practices: "Because shut-the-f**k up, that's why."

"Lemond ... 2nd rate." Obviously, GaryB, you know "alot" about cycling -- and even more about Greg Lemond. Bravo!

Doug

OK, I just have to point out a couple of things.

1. Lemond was the one who got the ball rolling on this, and I'm not referring to his remarks about LA. In 2004 he threatened to sue Trek for breach of contract, and then he finally filed almost the same suit in 2008, alleging a failure by Trek to properly promote the brand, among other things.

2. Trek had 20 days to respond to his action. They decided that it was in their best interest to countersue to break the contract, as they felt that they had honored the contract and that Lemond was the one who hadn't lived up to the terms of the agreement (e.g. by defaming LA, a Trek-sponsored athlete, and using his employee discount to resell $2.5 Mil. of product in direct competition with Trek's franchised dealers).

I know that if I were Trek, I would have done the same thing. Now it's gonna be up to the courts to decide.

The fact is that a Lemond bike is just a Trek with a famous person's name on it, and everyone knows it. Now if that famous person starts trash talking against one of Trek's other famous people (LA), then a certain percentage of the potential customers may well decide to just avoid the whole mess and shop elsewhere. Trek offered up some anecdotal evidence to support that claim, though they haven't yet disclosed any specific sales data.

I find it interesting that many of you have commented that you don't know anyone who would decide not to buy a Lemond because of GL's accusations. I have found quite the opposite to be true. I don't know anyone who WOULD buy a Lemond bike anymore. The ones in my local Trek store are busy gathering dust.

Trek seems to believe that Lemond has damaged both his brand and the Trek brand as well. This isn't about Lemond taking a stand on doping (which I support, by the way). This is about Lemond deliberately and repeatedly engaging in actions which are harmful to the success of Trek, with whom he has a promotional contract. It's not about opinions, it's about money. Pure and simple. And that's the American Way, like it or not.

Alex

Armstrong has been poked and prodded by scientists and judges for the last decade, and has yet to fail a drug test. Yes, he beat proven dopers, but he passed the same tests they failed, and his blood samples from every Tour are still available for testing.

He showed from his teenage years on that he was an athletic freak. To label him as a cheater just because "it's too good to be true" is unfair.

As for Astana, the entire team is new, including Brunyeel, so it's tough to say it's a team "built on doping" when Vino and the rest of old Liberty Seguros/Astana team is gone.

Since Greg Lemond started complaining, it always seemed like sour grapes to me. I never bought a bike of his, but I'll probably never have a Trek either. I have a Litespeed just because I prefer titanium over carbon fiber.

Jez

Personally, I always thought that LeMond was the only way to but a Trek bike without looking like a Mellow Johny fanboy. At a time when Trek's stock will be falling (they won't be in the tour this year) and when Lance's influence was unable to get a new sponsor for the Disco Team, I think Trek has made a mistake.

As for LeMond being second rate...he was a very successful cyclist and came back from serious injury.

Furthermore, Lance made the greatest cycle race in the world into a high speed procession by surrounding himself with team mates who should have been GC contenders.

There are suspicion about bruyneel, it seems suspicious that cyclists who are clean whilst with him suddenly turn out to be cheats once they leave his team/methods (Hamilton and Landis). With Astana's bad name, it's not surprising that ASO have taken the opportunity to remove them.

Many still seem oblivious to how bad doping is within cycling, LA himself may well have been clean, but the rest of the team, who knows, there has already been some admissions. At a time when anti doping is becoming a popular stance (Slipstream for example) Trek ending their relationship with a great cyclist seems a silly decision.

Reid Rothchild

Trek is synonomous with doping, fraud, and cheating.

They made a decision to ignore reality and continue to do so by associating with Bruyneel. If they wanted to take an anti doping stance they could have very easily had LeMond run a team riding LeMond bikes. The truth is out about LA, and Treks "values." Not that fraud is a value....

Reid Rothchild

Dear Tim Herman,

I just finished From Lance to Landis. In the author’s note Walsh mentions about 100 people. In addition to Walsh and Betsy Andreu, you have a lot of liars to sue. You probably should be getting to work on the lawsuit. Btw, my training is stalled and I’d like to know if you could ask Lance about the timing and dosage for r EPO and if he has recommendations for any other helpful medical products. No bovine hemoglobin, but I think he has some experience with Actovegin.(sp?)

By the way, me and Dirk are working on a new series of films and if Lance is ever in the SFV tell him to stop by the set and maybe we can have him do a couple of scenes. We usually take a couple of shots to help with endurance. Sorry to disappoint but porn is fake too.. At any rate if he’s in the valley we could set him up with hookers and blow…

Sincerely,

Reid Rothchild

Colnagowi

So Greg has been screwed over by Trek. Who hasn’t? The so called “American bicycle company” that can’t manage to sell any American bikes for under $2500, has put $ well ahead of ethics over the last 10-15 years. Greg deserves better. The bikes Trek is “designing”(maybe) and “purchasing” from their Asian sweat shops in his name are a disgrace to Greg’s name and renown as the greatest (drug free) American racer to ever win the Tour. I hope he seeks out another builder (I.F., Ellsworth, Waterford, etc.) here or in Europe that will be proud to build his bikes, not merely contractually obligated. Trek and Lance deserve each other! Now I have to hope Lance’s lawyers don’t sue me too.

Reid Rothchild

Lance just put in an amazing performance in the last Brock Landers film. He is playing Chest Rockwell's brother, who steals the girl.

For good endurance Lance took a 10 mg Cialis 2 hours before the shoot, then a 50mg Viagara 1 hour prior. He wanted some r Epo but we have a connection which could get him Cera.

After the shoot we understood why he need the doping products. He had a 5 and a half hour erection that necessitated a trip to the ER. After patiently signing autographs, ER doctors drained his penis with a syringe, they took out about 4 vials of blood. Which Lance immediately reinfused so he could perform at a party later that night. He didn't want to waste the packed cells and the Cera. He wore out 7 actresses and was going for 8 but the pain in his schwanz force him to stop.

Later,

Reid

Retro Jordan

Excellent post. It makes me realize the energy of words and pictures. I learn a lot, thank you! Wish you make a further progress in the future.

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Greg Lemond deserves every bit of it. Not sure what he expected to get out of all of this. Nobody cares if Armstrong doped!

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Reid Rothschild

The under/over on Wonderboy's possible prison sentence has been established at 7 years by both Las Vegas and British oddsmakers.

Sincerely,

Reid Rothschild

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