Trek Drops Lemond

18

by Byron on Apr 08, 2008 at 6:25 PM

I think everyone saw the Trek/Lemond split coming …

Trek Company Update, ‘Trek to Immediately Sever Relationship with Greg LeMond’

There’s a Press Release and a whole media primer. If this is public, you can bet it got real nasty – you can even smoking gun it yourself in this initial summons and read a ways into the complaint to find that it’s an alleged Bro deal gone wrong (page 4, para 16)!

… since 1999 Greg LeMond has made numerous purchases of LeMond bicycles at employee pricing from Trek with a suggested retail value of over $2,500,000. Upon information and belief, Greg LeMond has resold, bartered for value or otherwise distributed many or most of these bikes, harming Trek and its dealers

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Comments: 18

What a punk man. Ripping off the company that builds bikes named after you. poetry. 

I use to think he was epic for getting shot in the leg and then winning the “tour de France” the following year… actually, that’s still cool.  So, I guess he’s just a jerk then.

I wonder if Trek is going to keep the LeMond line (after they rename it of course).

I really hope they do, that line has the classic road bike look (which I crave) spot on. :: drool :: 

1) Trek’s Gary Fisher line was about to take the plunge into road bike territory when Trek bought the rights to the Lemond name.  I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a Fisher branded road line within a couple years.  However you look at it, it’s not like Greg Lemond is a bike designer or composites engineer.  All the bike making stuff belongs to Trek.

2) Sooner or later, Lemond rubs everyone the wrong way.  I guess it could be said that Armstrong’s friendships have sometimes ended badly (Andreu), but the difference is that Armstrong has had a keen business sense….something that no one has ever accused Lemond of having (though he was one of the first cyclists to use a sports agent to negotiate his contracts).  Greg Lemond will not be able to make a Lemond Bicycles brand work by himself.  Period.

3) Who would want to be partners with Lemond?  All he brings to the table are his name and a preference for long top tubes.  One of those two is still popular with some riders.

Re- Mark V.

Wow. I didn’t know that about G. Fisher line.  Something about that brand though doesn’t click when I think of road bikes. 

Humm, they currently offer a fixie called the Triton. The bull horns are nice but thats about it.

Victor:

Well, Gary Fisher was a Cat1 road racer before he allegedly invented the mountain bike.  I think Tom Ritchey was a top level road racer too.  People still by Ritchey road bikes.  So why not a Fisher road bike?

Then again, right after my first response I was kicking myself in the head.  Why have a Fisher road line when you just as easily can have an ARMSTRONG road bike line? Duh.

Wow, that would really stick in Greg’s craw.

A couple notes:

Allegations are not facts and this is a volley from Trek in a broader fight; lawsuits include broad accusations as negotiation tactics. By Trek’s statement, if true, those Bro Deal violations have been going on for nearly 10 years. I don’t know any dealers of Lemond to inquire about them, but that is rather sensational.

One of my first bikes was a Lemond, while it had crap welds, it was a great bike and it was a Lemond, not a Trek Lemond.

Ironically Lemond and Lance share the fact that “not everyone loves them.”

I didn’t post to start a Lemond bashing thread.

I own a Lemond Reno and the Gary Fisher Triton. My Triton came with stupid mustache bars, which I immediately switched to drops. With it’s geometry it was obviously meant to be a road bike, I just assumed they didn’t put drops on it because that would be encroaching on Trek/Lemond territory.

what i wonder about is all those Lemond dealers…image and brand appeal have a lot to do with bike sales, and this scuffle isn’t going to help move bikes.

plus, what happens to their identity? I thought the Trek empire sold bikes under different names as a way to reach more dealers without overlapping territories on the same product line.  You know, one dealer in a town is a “Trek” dealer, and the one across the street is a “Lemond” dealer (though I can think of many stores where those brand labels are under the same roof).  What happens to the Lemond-only dealers, are they no longer with Trek Corporation?

Personally, I’ve always seen a lot less of Greg Lemond in the Lemond bikes then I see Gary Fisher in Fisher bikes.  Gary Fisher seems to be a bike geek guy, and if he isn’t on a CAD/CAM computer designing the next rear suspension, I honestly believe he’s out riding it to see if it works and giving input back. It seems like he enjoys that, and having Trek as his backer allows him to do that.

With Eddy Merckx, I think it’s a bit different.  He’s a businessman now who rides his establishment’s product.  I’m sure he has the last decision on the designs but it’s my impression that he isn’t immersed in the design process to the extent that Gary is.  But he runs the company and does it well by most accounts. 

And he can say whatever he wants because he’s Eddy f*%#ing Merckx. 

 

Let’s not forget Bontrager . .  .

nate…the fisher triton and the lemond fillmore are the same bikes, just different branding.

Yeah, I remember the sales guy telling me that about the Fillmore and the Triton. I ended up going with the Triton because I like the paint better and because the fork came with fender mounting points. The Lemond fork was really cool too, but alas, no mounts.

I cannot believe that Trek would put that crap in their letter about Greg taking advantage of ProDeals. Show me a shop employee that has not taken advantage of ProDeals to make a little coi on the side. Get a bike at cost, ride for a few months, sell. Repeat and rinse.

@John

I’m sure that Lemond’s lawyer agrees with you and apparently they’ve been negotiating this for months behind-the-scenes.

LeMond was shot in the chest, not in the leg, and still has a small piece of lead lodged somewhere near his heart.

And I still don’t understand why anyone would buy anything just because someones name is on it. Merckx, Armstrong, Indurain who cares whos name is on something.

It would be interesting to know how much money LeMond got from Trek for the licensing of his name.

Somebody here said it and it is true LeMond is so easy to dislike. He is just crazy, he says stupid stuff.

350K a year was his fee—there’s more details in the pleadings.

I bet Lemond thinks that 350K/yr is chump change and maybe it is in this era of sports endorsements, but it’s a lot of money to buy six letters in a row to spell L-E-M-O-N-D on a bike’s down tube. All Lemond had to do was lend his name, probably do a few public appearances, and keep a positive public face…it’s not a bad gig.  But it is all about public relations and image, and to Trek Lemond wasn’t doing his job.

I think it’s clear that Lemond thinks that the cycling world owns him a debt, and maybe it does.  Who would say that there would have been an Armstrong if there had not been a Lemond?  What about Julich, Hincapie, or Zabriski? 

The problem is that Lemond comes off so bitter…I mean, there are people who go to him for quotes, but only when they want to tear someone else down.  And Lemond loves to tear down Armstrong.

Back in the day, the media painted Fignon as such the bad guy, but time has looked favourably on him.  In contrast, I’d like to remember Lemond from his covers of Sports Illustrated when he was a hero and I was a kid, but his mouth keeps ruining that image in my head.

And you can’t have that if your image is what makes a bike desirable. 

The bitterness is the he made this amazing comeback only to get beat by el dope—I’m not justifying it, just that’s how he must think—and no one was talking about it. He said as much about Riis when he came to visit Seattle and I asked him about the 2 speeds in the peloton. I agree that old heros should just fade away, become a commentator, make some appearances, but stay out of the limelight of the new heroes. Example is Indurain who I think hasn’t said anything about being unseated by dopers.

To his credit, bitter or not, at least he sticks to what he believes; we saw that in the Landis trail where the story about this talented amish kid revealed a darker side.

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.

lol Indurain has said anything cause he was doper himself

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