SBD/3/Events Attractions

"SADDENED" BY SCANDAL, FESTINA STICKS WITH SPONSORSHIP

          The Tour de France concluded yesterday, and during
     ABC's weekend coverage Festina, which sponsored the team
     that was thrown out of this year's race for doping, ran an
     ad during Tour coverage.  The spot showed a pack of bikers
     riding in slow motion towards the camera, with the Festina
     logo in the bottom right corner of the screen.  The
     following text scrolled: "An Important Announcement From
     Festina Watches: We are saddened that the Festina team was
     removed from the Tour de France.  Festina Watches will
     remain a major sponsor and will continue its proud heritage
     and ties to the sport.  Festina and cycling are a great
     marriage, but -- the use of performance enhancing substances
     should be eradicated from cycling."  The message was signed
     by Festina USA President Renny Swift (THE DAILY).
          NOTES: ABC's Terry Gannon reported that two-time Tour
     de France stage winner Lance Armstrong, who worked the Tour
     as an analyst for ABC, "has come to terms with the U.S.
     Postal Service team and plans to race in the Tour next
     year."  Armstrong, on the doping scandal: "Clearly it's been
     a bad situation. ... One thing that sticks out in my mind is
     that the riders have been abused, and the system has been
     abused a little bit. ... It's been a very unfortunate
     situation, and the riders, I think, are fair in being a
     little upset" (ABC, 8/1).  ESPN's Michael Wilbon: "While
     France's first summer bash -- the World Cup -- was exalted,
     the Tour has been one scandalous embarrassment after
     another. ... There's one tiny little fact that keeps me from
     feeling sorry for the riders: Police keep finding doping and
     masking products in their raids. ... The cyclists object to
     being treated like criminals, but the real objection is to
     so many riders bringing such disgrace to themselves and what
     used to be cycling's crown jewel" ("Sports Reporters," 8/2).

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