Friday, 20 January 2012


James gets the expert treatment from new sponsors 'King of Shaves, with
CEO and Founder, Will King, giving a quick demonstration!
Trackspeed1 sprinter James Ellington's attempts at auctioning himself on E-Bay in a desperate bid to secure sponsorship failed - but at the last minute, shaving products conglomerate King of Shaves came to the rescue.

The bid of well over the reserve price on E-Bay was revealed to be someone from overseas who misunderstood the process, and they withdrew, leaving James back at square one.  But then came the sponsor who had for several years supported former Trackspeed1 sprinter and World Junior Championship 100m finalist Wade Bennett-Jackson.

James's story has been well documented in the media and has attracted world-wide interest.  Channel 4 News compiled the report which can be seen at Olympics hopeful Ellington's close shave after ebay bid 

Will King, CEO and founder of King of Shaves was delighted to support James, and was at the initial press launch of the deal at Crystal Palace track.  All sorts of corny photo's and remarks were bandered about, but the widest smile was from the athlete who can now properly concentrate on preparing for what will be a massive year in an already illustrious career.

Trackspeed1 coach John Powell watched the launch and spoke to Channel 4, along with a Reuters crew  a couple of days later:

"I am truly delighted for James, I really am," he said, "this deal has been a real life-shaver... sorry, saver!!  In all seriousness it takes the pressure right off an athlete's shoulders.  Always looking back at a depleting or near-empty bank balance, wondering where the money will come from to support travel, kit, equipment, you name it.  At least for this year, James has none of those worries to contend with.

"We are  exceptionally lucky in Trackspeed1 as we have a huge amount of good will from top therapists, Adidas who provide heavily discounted kit, and other sources who want to support us at home and abroad.  But bottom line if you want to compete with the best, you have to be fully supported."

Meanwhile back at the office, James opened up his active 2012 account in a slightly different way than usual, competing in the South of England AA indoor 400m at Lee Valley last Sunday (15th).  His 49.93s for the 2-lap sprint was an encouragement to his coach, although the semi-final saw him run out of steam on the final run-in.

"We aren't taking indoors particularly seriously this year, and most are only competing in January before getting back to a month or so of basics," he explained.  "Everything is early this year with Olympic Trials in June, so we have to make sure there is enough gas in the tank to sustain peaks at the right time this summer."

Further pictures from the press launch follow...

James partners CEO Will King for his photo-shoot and press interviews, with mother Andrea joining him for a chat with Channel 4.

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