Contract news

Landis got a one-year contract extension and the rest of the team got two-year extensions. I'm not sure what the difference means for Landis' future, but at the very least we know that the iShares logo will move from his butt to his chest as iShares takes over lead sponsorship.

Discovery will announce a major signing tomorrow. Well, we know it's not Landis. Update: It's Levi! (paceline registration req'd for link. via)

Trouble is brewing at T-Mobile, as if there weren't enough trouble for the team that fired its former leader by fax. The speculation is that general manager Ludwig and team manager Kummer will be shown the door for their inability to use cycling tactics, among other things.

related articles: Pro Tour 2006
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Comments (6)

Eric:

My money's on Vino to Disco.

kwc:

Vino at Disco would definitely liven things up, I hope you're right, though I wish Disco had more American riders to cheer for like CSC.

I wonder how that would alter their Tour plans -- not that they had a good plan for this year's Tour, but if their problem was too many leaders before, the addition of Vino only muddles things as I don't seem him as the clear leader they need.

kwc:

Update: it's Levi!

glynn:

I know nothing about the business side of things. Is that Landis contract a hedge against his hip situation? Could the team get locked into trouble if his hip were to go bad with several years left on a contract? Could Landis have wanted something short in anticipation of continued success? Is a one-year contract even unusual in cycling, for someone who just won the TdF after a great season in addition?

Eric:

Wow. Didn't see that one coming.

kwc:

I don't know much about cycling contracts. It seems to me that both sides have a bit of a hedge bet. From Landis' perspective, if he recovers strong, then he is probably worth more money than iShares is paying. From iShares' perspective, they get another year of great publicity without too much risk. So perhaps both wanted the short contract. From what I do know of cycling, nothing is nearly as long term as a baseball contract. Riders moving around every two years, or even every year, seems pretty standard, partly due to the fact that the sponsors themselves are not committed for a very long period of time. If you watch the 2000 Tour de France, you might not recognize a lot of the teams anymore.

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