Lance Armstrong's 106,000+ followers are kept up to the minute with his movements. Shame his time trial bike doesn't auto-tweet, it could pinpoint its current location: thieves have stolen it.
Armstong put this message on Twitter.com a few minutes ago:
"Our truck was broken into and someone stole my time trial bike! Wtf?!? APB out to the twitterati."
Moments later he added, "They also stole 3 others. Crazy!!"
These were road bikes belonging to Janez Brajkovic, Steve Morabito and Yaroslav Popovych.
SRAM marketing director Michael Zellman said Armstrong's bike had prototype SRAM time trial shifters, the 1090 R2C shifters.
SRAM's Twitter account said: "Uh oh, time to make the donuts: Heard Lance's bike might have been knicked this AM. Good thing we carry spares for Solvang. To Santa Rosa!"
In another Twitter posting, Astanta director Johan Bruyneel said: "Bad surprise this morning. Our truck got broken in and 4 bikes stolen."
Armstrong's Twitter followers are now 'retweeting' the message and soon almost everybody involved with the Tour of California will be on the lookout for Armstrong's machine. 'Stole', 'stolen' and '@lancearmstrong' are current, high-trending topics on the microblogging service.
Armstrong said of his Trek TT bike: "There is only one like it in the world, therefore hard to pawn off."
If the bike is tracked down quickly, Twitter will get the credit; another feather in the little bird's cap.
Armstrong sends messages to Twitter.com from his Blackberry. After yesterday's finish of the Tour of California prologue he posted an immediate message on Twitter: "Done with the prologue. Ouch, that hurt. Thanks to massive crowds here in Sac."
He's a big fan of the 140-character service. For Armstrong, it's a tool to show his transparency (and telling people about the disproportionate amount of anti-doping tests he's being subjected to). He told James Raia:
"Something like Twitter comes along or accessibility to video blogs, you say, F-it. I'm going to come back and you may not care, but I'm going to tell you what I had for breakfast and I'm going to take a picture of it. I'm going to tell you when I'm on a training ride. I'm going to tell you when I'm at my son's flag football game. I'm going to tell you when I just cracked a bottle of bad-ass red wine.
"You can take my biggest detractor in the press room and if they read that, then after awhile they'll realize, man, this is really him telling us what he's doing. And then they realize, ‘You know what? This guy is not secluded in a dark room with a team of mysterious doctors up to no good. This guy is a regular f-ing guy.'"