Next year in France! Radio Shack joins Lance Armstrong's team


The fittest 37-year-old man in the world, Lance Armstrong, has announced that Radio Shack (RSH) will be the lead sponsor of his new LiveStrong professional cycling team. Armstrong and his team will race in next year's Tour de France, which he won seven times before retiring temporarily in 2005. The Tour ends Sunday; he is expected to finish third this year.

How does cycling-team sponsorship make sense for Radio Shack, when it proved a disaster in the past for the U.S. Postal Service? The only bike race that receives more than cursory coverage is the Tour de France, and it runs on Versus, Comcast's small blood-sports cable network. This year's real-time Tour coverage -- airing in the a.m. in the U.S., due to the time difference -- has drawn not quite half a million viewers. And that's up 77 percent over last summer's Tour, when Armstrong did not compete. Nielsen Media Research reports that 30 million viewers have tuned in for at least a moment during this year's race.