Insurance Firm to Lance: We Want Our $7.5M

Armstrong got the money for winning six straight titles
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 22, 2012 3:30 PM CDT
Lance Armstrong speaks to delegates at the World Cancer Congress in Montreal Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012.   (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes)

(Newser) – Not only has Lance Armstrong lost his Tour de France titles, but he may owe $7.5 million. The company that insured a bonus for his run of consecutive Tour victories now wants its money back, saying Armstrong's alleged use of performance-enhancing drugs annuls their contract, ESPN reports. "The bonus that was owed was based on the premise that Lance Armstrong was the winner of the Tour De France," said a lawyer at SCA Promotions. "He is no longer the official winner."

Behind all this is the intriguing world of sports bonuses, in which athletes are offered big bucks for meeting certain benchmarks—and companies like SCA insure those bonus offers. In this case, Tailwind Sports, which owned Armstrong's US Postal Service Team, offered him the bonus to keep him on the team. But SCA may never see a dime of it, because the contract with Armstrong states that "no party shall challenge, appeal or attempt to set aside the arbitration award." (The case against Armstrong is full of surprises, though—like the unusual way it all started.)

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