Sponsors flee in wake of USADA evidence
Following the decision of Nike, another Lance Armstrong corporate supporter has turned its back on the now-disgraced former cyclist. Beer maker Anheuser-Busch confirmed today that it will not renew its association with Armstrong, according to Reuters.
Armstrong today stepped down as chairman of his Livestrong foundation following the release of the US Anti-Doping Agency's reasoned decision, which included hundreds of pages of evidence related to his past doping activities..
Anheuser-Busch, like Nike and RadioShack, expressed its support of Armstrong's cancer foundation, but in ending its relationship with Armstrong, it will not continue to use him as a spokesman for its Michelob Ultra beer, as it has in the past.
RadioShack, which signed on as sponsor of Armstrong and Johan Bruyneels WorldTour team in 2010, also used Armstrong as its spokesman in an ad campaign for its mobile phones which starred him as "chief mobility officer".
On Wednesday RadioShack told the Wall Street Journal that it no longer had a contract with Armstrong, but said it "continues to be proud of what we've accomplished with our customers in generating more than $16 million to date for the fight against cancer."
Nike cut its ties with Armstrong today after coming under scrutiny by the media for a purported half-million dollar payment allegedly made to the former UCI president Hein Verbruggen. Nike denied having made any such payment.
It said it would re-name the Lance Armstrong Fitness Center at its headquarters, "due to the seemingly insurmountable evidence that Lance Armstrong participated in doping and misled Nike for more than a decade," according to a statement.
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