Nike fights subpoena in federal lawsuit against Armstrong

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) Athletic apparel giant Nike Inc. is fighting subpoenas for financial documents and witness depositions in the federal government’s lawsuit against former cyclist Lance Armstrong, arguing they are irrelevant to the case and could compromise trade secrets.

Armstrong and the government both have subpoenaed Nike, which was one of Armstrong’s major sponsors until it dropped him in 2012 after his use of performance-enhancing drugs was exposed.

The government is suing Armstrong to recover more than $30 million the U.S. Postal Service paid to sponsor his teams from 1998-2004. Damages could go as high as $100 million. The lawsuit was initially filed by former Armstrong teammate Floyd Landis, who stands to collect a portion of any penalty against Armstrong.

The subpoenas seek Nike financial records and documents of any discussions about Armstrong’s doping.

In court filings this week in Portland, Oregon, the company asked a federal judge to modify the subpoenas to sharply limit evidence and keep any documents or testimony provided secret under a protective order.

Armstrong wants records of how profitable Nike’s sponsorship was for the company, and hopes to draw parallels to his claim that the U.S. Postal Service made more money off him than it paid him. Nike lawyers said the company’s sponsorship records are tightly held trade secrets, and potential disclosure would help competitors.

“Nike takes considerable effort to maintain the secrecy of its records regarding athlete sponsorships,” company lawyers wrote.

The company also argued that its sponsorship of Armstrong is irrelevant to any deal he and his team had with the Postal Service.

The government wants Nike to turn over any communications with Armstrong about performance-enhancing drug use and records the company previously gave a federal criminal grand jury that investigated Armstrong in 2010-2011. Nike lawyers insisted the company didn’t know about Armstrong’s doping, which he has now admitted publicly and in sworn testimony.

The subpoena dispute was set for a Sept. 29 hearing.

Norway takes gold-medal lead at world road cycling titles

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WOLLONGONG, Australia – Soren Waerenskjold repeated Norway’s gold medal success at the world road cycling championships a day after Tobias Foss finished first in the elite men’s time trial.

Waerenskjold won the men’s under-23 time trial on the second day of the championships with a dominant performance. He clocked 34 minutes, 13.40 seconds over the 28.8-kilometer course to beat Belgian Alec Segaert by 16.34 seconds.

British rider Leo Hayter, the younger brother of elite rider Ethan Hayter, was 24.16 seconds off the pace for the bronze medal.

Foss beat a strong field to win the elite time trial, the biggest win of his career.

Norway has two gold medals, while Dutch ace Ellen van Dijk beat Australian Grace Brown to take out the women’ elite time trial.

The mixed relay time trial is set for Wednesday. The championships conclude on the weekend with the women’s road race on Saturday and the men’s on Sunday.

Ellen van Dijk defends time trial title at cycling worlds

95th UCI Road World Championships 2022 - Women Individual Time Trial
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WOLLONGONG, Australia – Ellen van Dijk defended her title and claimed a third women’s time trial gold medal at the opening event of the world road cycling championships on Sunday.

Taking advantage of a technical course the Dutch star maintained a perfectly paced cadence to beat Australia’s Grace Brown by 12.79 seconds to defend the time trial gold she won last year. Swiss rival Marlen Reusser took bronze.

Local favorite Brown was one of the early staters and set a blistering time around the 34.2 kilometer (21.3 miles) course at the scenic coastal town center of Wollongong, south of Sydney.

No other in the 45-strong field could get close to Brown’s time of 44 minutes 41.33 seconds until the final pair of van Dijk and Reusser, who claimed silver at last year’s world championships in Belgium, both clocked faster at the first time check.

Reusser then faded to finish more than 41 seconds off Brown’s time, but van Dijk powered on to claim her third gold medal in a time of 44:28.60.

Olympic time trial champion and two-time world champion Annemiek van Vleuten finished seventh, more than 90 seconds behind compatriot van Dijk.

Later Sunday, Vuelta a Espana winner Remco Evenepoel from Belgium, Italian two-time defending world champion Filippo Ganna and two-time Tour de France winner Tadej Pogacar from Slovenia headline the men’s event.

Other major races are the mixed relay time trial on Wednesday and the women’s road race next Saturday before the men’s race on the closing day Sunday, with local star and Giro d’Italia winner Jai Hindley racing the clock to recover from COVID-19 to take his place in the race.