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No role for Armstrong in RadioShack-Nissan-Trek

  • By Andrew Hood
  • Published Jan. 9, 2012
  • Updated Nov. 5, 2013 at 5:11 PM EST
US President Bill Clinton(L) checks the weight of one of the bikes used by 1999 Tour De France champion Lance Armstrong(R) of the US 10 August 1999 during a reception in the Rose Garden 10 August 1999 in Washington DC. Armstrong presented President Clinton with the bike, a helmet along with one of his yellow jerseys he wore during the race. AFP PHOTO/Tim SLOAN (file)

ESCH-SUR-ALZETTE, Luxembourg (VN) — Lance Armstrong will not have a public role in the newly merged RadioShack-Nissan-Trek team.

That’s according to team manager Johan Bruyneel, who said the seven-time Tour de France winner will not play any formal role in the management of the team.

“Lance has a personal relationship with a lot of us here and he’s a big fan of the Schleck brothers, but he’s not actively involved in the team,” Bruyneel said Friday.

Team owner Flavio Becca’s Leopard SA retains ownership of the newly merged RadioShack-Nissan-Trek team that saw the fusion of RadioShack and Leopard-Trek at the end of the 2011 season.

The team is listed as registered in Luxembourg on the UCI’s web site (with Bruyneel’s name curiously missing from a list of management).

One of the team’s co-sponsors is LiveStrong, a partner of the Lance Armstrong Foundation, the subject of a critical piece in this month’s Outside Magazine penned by Bill Gifford.

Bruyneel suggested that Armstrong will act as unofficial team advisor and perhaps appear at such marquee events as the Tour de France.

“He has the experience and knowledge. If we need his advice, we can use him from a strategic point of view. He might come to the Tour to give some advice and morale to the team,” Bruyneel said. “He will not be involved in the day-to-day running of the team.”

Armstrong, meanwhile, has been keeping a relatively low profile, at least within cycling, since retiring at the beginning of the 2011 season as an ongoing federal investigation continues.

Bruyneel’s sport director staff for 2012 will include three from each team, with Alain Gallopin, Dirk Demol and José Azevedo from RadioShack while Kim Andersen, Lars Michaelsen and Luca Guercilena stay on from Leopard-Trek.

One name missing is Russian veteran Viatcheslav Ekimov, who joined as a sport director within the Bruyneel camp following his retirement after the 2006 season. Ekimov has since joined the Russian cycling federation and will act as an advisor to Katusha this season.

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Andrew Hood

Andrew Hood

Andrew Hood cut his journalistic teeth at Colorado dailies before the web boom opened the door to European cycling in the mid-1990s. Hood has covered every Tour de France since 1996 and has been VeloNews' European correspondent since 2002.

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