One doping case at the Tour de France,and it could spell the end of Gerolsteiner's sponsorship, the mineral-water bottling company has said. "Doping doesn't go with the purest food product that there is," said company director Jorg Crossek to the German press agency sid. "Nothing more like that may happen, because that would have a negative impact on our decision."
The company's sponsorship contract runs throught the 2008 season. It has sponsored the team since 1998.
"It's at 50/50 right now," said Stefan Goebel, the firm's communications director. "We haven't had any crash in our marketing research figures after the doping affairs of the last few months, but there is a slow dropping trend. This trend has to turn around."
The company will hold talks the end of August with team manager Hans-Michael Holczer. He holds the team's ProTour license, which runs through 2010.