Armstrong’s ACC future unclear |

Armstrong’s ACC future unclear

Jeremy Evans

Cyclist Lance Armstrong is undoubtedly the biggest celebrity to be making his first appearance at this week’s American Century Championship, but there has been no indication yet that the seven-time Tour de France champion will have a lengthy relationship with the event.

Armstrong, who will participate in Thursday’s Celebrity Pro-Am at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course in Stateline, said he doesn’t have any concrete plans to develop an ongoing relationship with the ACC because of his involvement with the Discovery Channel Pro Cycling team.

“I would love to hang out and play and certainly work on my game,” Armstrong said about playing in the 17th annual tournament that starts on Friday. “The problem right now is, this year, I’m still part owner in the (Discovery Channel) team. The timing worked out in a way it was impossible to do both. It would just be a question that certainly if I didn’t have to go to the Tour, I would be staying in Tahoe for the remainder of the tournament.”

Armstrong won’t compete in the 54-hole tournament because he will fly to France this weekend to crown his successor at the Tour de France. Even though he won’t have to crown a successor in 2007, he will still be part-owner in the Discovery Channel team, which helped him win the world’s premier cycling race in 2005.

Led by the United States’ George Hincapie, the Discovery Channel team is experiencing success at this year’s race, though it likely won’t produce the winner. But as long as Armstrong remains invested in the team, he can’t commit to a consistent, ongoing role in the ACC.

“I don’t know the timing for 2007, but I do know the Tour is in July and Discovery will still be supporting the team next year,” said Armstrong, whose Lance Armstrong Foundation is one of two charity beneficiaries from this year’s ACC. “We’ll just have to get the dates right and then decide if I do or don’t go to the Tour.”

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