The best TV bike ad ever

Nike's 'Magnet' TV ad debuted on Friday night in the US. It throws a spotlight on Lance Armstrong and features Mellow Johnny racing a flock of birds, a herd of buffalo, a freight train, a gang of Hell's Angels and a motley collection of fixed-wheel street racers. Oh, and a kid in a football helmet...
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The 90-second commercial is stunning and thanks to the glories of the internet it can be seen here:

A cable or DSL connection would be handy, but even if you're on dial-up, it's worth the wait. Play it again, and again, and again...

The ad was first seen during the NBA Western Conference finals - peak time viewing in the US - and is wall-to-wall inspiration, weaving in Lance Armstrong's cancer credentials and his prediliction for training in the sort of weather other pro racers prefer to sit out.

The ad - have we said how good it is yet? - was created by the Wieden & Kennedy agency of Portland, a long-time originator of Nike athlete ads.

Armstrong is an endorser's dream, he's tough, gritty and a winner. He also registers at the till: a 2003 poll for Advertising Age magazine found that 18 percent of respondents would be more likely to buy a product endorsed by Lance Armstrong, third only to Jordan (26 percent) and Tiger Woods (19 percent).

Is it a coincidence that all three have starred in hagiographical TV ads paid for by Nike?

Wanna see the ad again? Just do it.

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