CHEP, the provider of pallet and container pooling solutions, has announced the sponsorship of Olympic 400m athletic hopeful Andrew Steele.
Andrew, 26 years old, was born in Didsbury, Manchester and trains at the Trafford Athletics Club, less than two miles from CHEP's UK headquarters in Trafford Park. He has represented England and Great Britain in most major competitions since 2005, most notably the 2008 Beijing Olympics where he qualified for the semi-final of the individual 400m event, registering a personal best time of 44.94 seconds. He also narrowly missed out on a medal in the 4x400m relay, coming fourth with a time that would have won a medal at any previous Olympic Games.
CHEP Managing Director, UK & Ireland, Howard Wigham, said: "2012 is set to become a memorable year of sport in this country, and I'm genuinely very excited about this sponsorship with less than 200 days to go now until the Olympics begin. Andrew is a fantastic talent, and a real contender for the London Olympics. CHEP UK is headquartered in Manchester, so it's great for us to be backing such local talent in his quest for Olympic success. Andrew's passion for health and nutrition also fits well with our own focus on the safety and well being of all our employees."
CHEP's sponsorship of Andrew will ensure he is able to continue his regime of training twice a day, six days a week, as well as fund physiotherapy and other related expenses. The sponsorship will also fund Andrew's winter training camp at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra, which Andrew will be attending from February to March in preparation for the European athletics season.
The sponsorship will see Andrew become a brand ambassador for CHEP in the UK, hosting a series of lifestyle and health education sessions for CHEP's UK-based employees. He will also maintain a blog, reporting regularly on his training progress in the lead up to the Olympics.
Mr Steele said, "A home Olympics is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and CHEP will be giving me the very best chance of success at London 2012. I'm really looking forward to making the sponsorship a mutually beneficial relationship for us both, and hopefully rewarding the faith shown in me by the company with glory at the London games!"
Mr Wigham concluded, "As a business, we help our customers to store, protect and move their products through the supply chain in a cost effective, safe and environmentally sound way. On this occasion, I like to think that we've been able to move Andrew's career forward, and to help him realise a lifetime's ambition. I wish him the very best of luck."
Andrew is managed by Mission Sports Management which represents the commercial and professional interests of some of the UK's leading sportsmen and women. Away from the track, Andrew is a multi-talented individual, an accomplished public speaker and able to speak a number of different languages, including Spanish. Like his brother Matthew, who is a professional music producer and pianist, Andrew is a keen musician and has even recorded a number 1 hit in Botswana!