By NICK FILLMORE*
Artist’s rendering of the stylized LED-light Olympic flame that will ’burn‘ outside the Canadian Olympic Committee offices at Olympic House in Montreal.
Dozens of athletes from Canada and thousands from developing countries have had a difficult time raising the money needed to train and take part in the Olympics Games in Brazil.
In Canada, more than two dozen world-class athletes were so hard up for support that they resorted to launching crowdfunding campaigns to supplement the money they receive from government and perhaps corporate sponsors. Continue reading
Qatar’s Marko Bagaric from Bulgaria, left, tries to score past France’s Ludovic Fabregas during the men’s preliminary handball match between France and Qatar at the 2016 Summer Olympics on Tuesday in Rio de Janeiro | Ben Curtis/AP
By TONY SEED
August 10, updated August 19, 2016
Of the some 11,000 athletes competing in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, an unknown number are competing for medal-hungry countries that are not their birth nation. At least 23 of Qatar’s 39 member team at Rio were born outside of Qatar and transplanted – recruited in many cases with the offer of financial inducements. The Canadian Olympic team also features a number of plastic or transfer athletes recruited through the “Own The Podium” program of private big capital for support and funding on the basis that they are “winners” and “America’s best who happen to have some kind of Canadian connection.” Such developments, all in the name of high ideals, should be of concern to Canadians.
ON MAY 24 more than one hundred locked-out Rio Tinto workers from Alma, Quebec, demonstrated in front of the Quebec City Convention Centre as part of the Off the Podium Campaign to demand that Rio Tinto be withdrawn from the sponsors of the upcoming London Olympics and not be allowed to produce the Olympic medals. The demonstration was held as the International Olympic Committee was meeting in Quebec City in preparation for the Olympics. Continue reading
Never mind the money, the greed, the lies, the censorship – the most offensive aspect of the Vancouver Winter Olympics is the profound lack of sportsmanship Canada is displaying to the whole world. BRIAN JONES*, The Telegram
(February 19, 2010) – In Olympia, Greece, you can walk onto the field where – long before the era of corporate sponsorships and high-tech cheating – races were held during the original, ancient Olympics. Continue reading
By KEVIN HELLIKER and GEOFFREY A. FOWLER, Wall Street Journal
(February 12, 2010) – Canada’s drive to win Olympic gold at home, a goal that eluded it in two prior Games, has a secret weapon this time.
It is a reclusive group of business leaders that provides a select group of Olympic hopefuls with special assistance, from the latest equipment to sports psychologists. B2ten it is called. Continue reading
Athletes and B2ten make a business case for Olympic glory
By KEN MACQUEEN, Maclean’s, June 25, 2009
IT WAS the spring of 2007, early days for the elite, little-known band of amateur athletes known as B2ten. Barry Heck, a Calgary merchant banker, wasn’t sure what to expect. He had, as requested, assembled a group of civic-minded Calgary business leaders to hear a pitch. The star at the breakfast meeting was Jennifer Heil of Spruce Grove, Alta., a gold medallist in mogul skiing at the Turin Olympics and, not insignificantly, a commerce student at McGill University. Also there was her coach and boyfriend, Dominick Gauthier, and J.D. Miller, a Montreal-based consultant in banking, mergers and acquisitions, and a friend and mentor to both. The three are the heart, soul and brains of B2ten, an organization they founded to shake up amateur sport funding by connecting Canadian business leaders with Olympic-level athletes – not as sponsors but as donors and mentors. The “B” stands for a business approach to investing in performance. That day they gathered on behalf of Helen Upperton, a Calgary bobsled pilot with huge promise. Heck recalls Upperton was nervous, and then she began to speak. Continue reading