Who is your favorite athlete?
Raising an Olympian is no easy task. Apart from natural talent and dedication, athletes have to pay for coaches, housing, food, and other expenses. For athletes who compete in nonpaying events such as the Olympics, sponsorship is a form of survival.
Ever wonder what companies sponsored these hot shot athletes competing in Sochi? Take a look.
Snowboarding: Shaun White
The champion snowboarder nicknamed the “Flying Tomato’’ for his red hair has his own line of skateboards, bikes, scooters, protective gear, and other equipment called the Shaun White Supply Co. The line is sold at Toys ‘R’ Us and on Amazon.com.
White also has a clothing line that is sold at Target.
His other partners include camera-maker GoPro, Oakley, tire maker BF Goodrich, snowboard gear company Burton, Stride, which named a chewing gum product after him, and Ubisoft, which named a snowboarding video game for White.
He also partners with Vail Resorts Inc.
Figure skating: Gracie Gold
The US figure skater was born in Newton and lives in the Los Angeles area.
She lists her sponsors as Visa, Nike, Pandora, a jewelry maker, Proctor & Gamble, Smucker’s, CoverGirl, Toyota Sports Center, and United Airlines.
Gold, 18, is also supported by mattress maker Airweave and Edea, which makes skates.
Bobsled: Lolo Jones
Lolo Jones, a track and field and bobsled star, is sponsored by Asics. She appeared in Asics’s commercial “What’s Next.’’
Skiing: Ted Ligety
Ted Ligety, a gold medalist ski racer in the 2006 Turin Olympics, is sponsored by Fortune 500 companies including Coca-Cola, Proctor & Gamble, Kellogg’s, Putnam Investments, as well as prominent athletic equipment maker Head.
Putnam is also a sponsor of the US Ski Team and the US Snowboarding Team.
Skiing: Hannah Kearney
Hannah Kearney, a skiing star, is sponsored by beverage maker Bear Naked, Sprint, and Oakley.
She appeared on Outside Television showing how she utilized Sprint’s AMP to track her training when she is not in Utah.
Short track speed skating: J.R. Celski
J.R. Celski, a short track speed skater and two-time medalist in 2010 Winter Olympics, is sponsored by TD Ameritrade, Liberty Mutual, Braun, Proctor & Gamble, Nike, Wheaties, The Aim Companies, Folgers, Smucker’s Uncrustables, and Oakley.
He appeared in the TD Ameritrade commercial “#itaddsup.’’
Figure skating: Ashley Wagner
Ashley Wagner, a German-born figure skater who competes for the US, is sponsored by big names companies including CoverGirl, Nike, Proctor & Gamble, Hilton, and Pandora Jewelry.
She appeared in a Hilton Hotels Worldwide commercial “Weekend.’’
Speed skating: Shani Davis
Shani Davis, an Olympic champion speed skater, is sponsored by Under Armour and Maple, which outfits speedskaters.
Snowboarding: Jamie Anderson
Jamie Anderson, an American snowboarder, is sponsored by Monster Energy, clothier Billabong, Oakley, Web and graphic designer Widsix, and Sierra-at-Tahoe, a resort in California.
She appeared in a Sierra-at-Tahoe commercial.
Skiing: Bode Miller
Bode Miller, an alpine ski racer, is sponsored by eye-surgery provider Icon Lasik, ski area Soelden, outdoor clothier Kjus, and Head, a ski equipment manfacturer.
He appeared in a Head commercial “One For All.’’
Skiing: Julia Mancuso
Julia Mancuso is sponsored by Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty, camera maker GoPro, ski brand Head, Koss Stereophones, Nike, POC Sports, which makes helmets and goggles, Sprint, ski clothier Spyder, Squaw Valley, a ski area in California, US Ski Team, Visa, and Zico, a coconut water manufacturer.
Ski jumping: Sarah Hendrickson
Sarah Hendrickson, a ski jumper, is sponsored by Visa, Kellogg’s, Nike, Uvex, which makes protective gear like goggles, and nutritional supplements company USANA.
She appeared in a Visa commercial “Flying.’’
Biathlete: Tim Burke
Tim Burke, a US biathlete, is sponsored by TD Ameritrade, Synflex, which sells a supplement for people who suffer from arthritis, Whiteface Lake Placid, a ski area, Rossignol, which makes equipment for snow sports, and ski equipment maker One Way Sport.
Figure skating: Kim Yuna
Kim Yuna, a South Korean figure skater, is sponsored by Kookmin Bank, Nike, Korean Air, Samsung, and Hyundai Motor Company.
Snow boarding: Seth Wescott
Seth Wescott, an American snowboarder, is sponsored by Sugarloaf, a ski area in Maine, L.L. Bean, and Visa.
He appeared in a L.L. Bean commercial.
Skiing: Mikaela Shiffrin
Mikaela Shiffrin, an American skier, is sponsored by Proctor & Gamble, pasta maker Barilla, Pantene, Oakley, and snack maker Snap Infusion.
She appeared in a P&G commercial “Thank You, Mom.’’
Snowboarding: Elena Hight
Snowboarder Elena Hight is sponsored by GoPro, Smith Optics, which makes sunglasses, goggles, and helmets, Sprint, Toyota, outdoor clothing maker Volcom, Rockstar Energy, Northstar-at-Tahoe Resort, and Nixon Inc., which makes watches and other accessories.
Snowboarding: Kelly Clark
Snowboarder Kelly Clark is sponsored by snowboard-maker Burton, Sprint, ski helmet maker Giro, and iOn camera.
She appeared in an iOn commercial “Snowboarding.’’
Ice dancing: Meryl Davis & Charlie White
Meryl Davis and her ice skating partner Charlie White enjoy sponsorships from Proctor & Gamble and Kellogg’s.
Snowboarding: Hannah Teter
Snowboarder Hannah Teter is sponsored by snowboard maker Burton, wireless device maker Pantech Mobile, GoPro, a camera maker, and Sierra-at-Tahoe, a resort.
She appeared in a GoPro commercial “Hannah Teter Snowboard Superpipe.’’