Audi: partner of sport
- Successful commitments in soccer, winter sports, golf and sailing
- Audi partners with International Olympic Committee (IOC), the German Olympic Sports Federation (DOSB) and the Paralympics Committee Germany (DBS)
- Regional partner in ice hockey, soccer and basketball
From the Soccer Champions League, the German Olympic team and the Kieler Woche to the world’s most popular tournament series for amateur golfers: through its various commitments Audi is a close partner and sponsor of national and international sports. In 2013, the company is featured in a wide range of attractive activities.
Vorsprung durch Technik – Audi breathes new life into this motto through its motorsport commitments year after year. Whether quattro, TFSI, TDI or hybrid vehicles: the brand’s successes on the world’s race tracks are always closely tied to the developments that successfully make their way into production cars as well. More than once Audi has gone down in history at the Le Mans 24 Hours – most recently in summer of 2012 when the first ever car with hybrid drive – the Audi R18 e-tron quattro – won what is arguably the most famous race in the world. In 2013, the brand with the four rings continues to move ahead at full throttle, focused in particular on the title defense in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), the commitment in the DTM and extended activities in U.S. racing.
In the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), Audi is competing as the title defender in 2013. Audi Sport Team Joest will be contesting the series with two updated Audi R18 e-tron quattro cars while a third R18 e-tron quattro will be fielded at the Le Mans 24 Hours and the WEC race at Spa. At Le Mans and in the WEC, Audi is thus exclusively relying on hybrid technology that was successfully launched in 2012.
Contrary to the WEC, a freeze on technology was imposed by the regulations in the DTM. Therefore, up to the season opener at the Hockenheimring on May 5, the DTM squad of Audi Sport is mainly concentrating on bringing the Audi A5 DTM’s full potential to bear. Since 2004, Audi has again been involved in the DTM under a manufacturer’s commitment – initially with the Audi A4 DTM and since the beginning of the 2012 season with the newly developed Audi A5 DTM.
With a one-two victory at the Daytona 24-hour race at the end of January and an intensified involvement in the GRAND-AM Series, Audi rang in its return to U.S. racing. In the United States, the brand with the four rings has been recording stronger growth than the U.S. market as a whole, particularly in the prestigious large premium car segment. The racing activities in the United States are intended to support this trend over the long run. Therefore, an entry of the Audi R18 e-tron quattro on March 16 in the 12-hour race at Sebring (Florida), which Audi has previously won ten times, is being planned as well.
But Audi is not neglecting the customer sport market in Europe and the rest of the world either. An evolution of the Audi R8 LMS ultra GT3 sports car that mainly differs from the current model in the area of the rear bodywork will start to be delivered to customers by quattro GmbH in February 2013. Customer teams supported by Audi Sport customer racing will be starting from the grids of the 24-hour races at the Nürburgring (Germany) and at Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium) in 2013. The increasingly diverse customer sport program of AUDI AG is complemented by continuing the Audi R8 LMS Cup in China that was successfully launched in 2012.
Audi in winter sports: far more than a financial sponsor
Its involvement in winter sports provides Audi with an important platform to present the brand’s sporting performance and dynamism to international audiences. For over 25 years, AUDI AG has been the principal sponsor of the German Skiing Federation (DSV) including all the national teams – not only as a financial supporter but also as a co-sponsor of a large number of joint events and campaigns.
The 2012/2013 season is now seeing the four rings as the title sponsor of the Audi FIS Ski World Cup in their eleventh year. In addition, after St. Moritz, Bormio, Val d’Isère and Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Audi in 2013 is part of the Alpine World Ski Championships in Schladming as the presenting sponsor for as much as the fifth time.
The DSV athletes experience the advantages of quattro drive whenever they safely travel to training sessions and World Cup events in Audi models. The alpine national teams from Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Finland, France, Italy, Liechtenstein, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States can rely on the power of the four rings off the slopes as well. The cars are made available to active athletes, officials and coaches. Furthermore, the sportsmen and sportswomen benefit from the technical know-how of AUDI AG as they regularly practice at the wind tunnel center in Ingolstadt to gain a crucial competitive advantage in their fiercely competitive sport.
At the beginning of the 2011/2012 winter season, Audi joined another alpine trend sport on the slopes. The automobile manufacturer from Ingolstadt has been giving its name to the Audi FIS Ski Cross World Cup, featured around the events, and has thus extended its presence in winter sport. With the athletes being pitted against each other in direct duels, ski cross is particularly popular with young audiences.
Audi as a partner of German Olympic and Paralympic athletes
When the German Olympic and Paralympic athletes were fighting for medals in Vancouver at the beginning of 2010 Audi accompanied them as a partner of the German Olympic Sports Confederation and National Sponsor of the Paralympic Committee Germany. At the Summer Games in London, the German delegations again competed under the symbol of the four rings.
The partnership was sealed in February 2010 and has meanwhile been extended until the end of 2016. In London, Audi equipped the shuttle service between the German House and the MS Deutschland cruise ship with a total of 60 vehicles, including several e-tron models. In addition, the brand with the four rings presented the TV coverage from England aired on ARD and ZDF and invited athletes and visitors to a dedicated Audi Lounge at the German House.
Five rings are running with four rings: Audi is the new vehicle supplier to the International Olympic Committee and equips the fleet of the organization in Lausanne plus international IOC events with Audi models. Furthermore, joint projects are in development, including the topic of corporate responsibility. The collaboration officially commenced on January 1, 2013 and has been contractually agreed for an initial term until the end of 2016.
Audi in soccer: partner of premier international clubs
‘Vorsprung durch Technik’ is a daily companion of players, coaches and officials of Europe’s premier soccer clubs. Audi and German record champion FC Bayern München have been ‘on the ball’ together since 2002. As a premium partner, Audi provides the club with 50 vehicles and is present at the stadium during all Bundesliga matches and other events. Audi and ‘Bayern’ have further extended their successful partnership off the playing field as well, as the premium manufacturer based in Ingolstadt is holding a total stake of 9.09 percent in FC Bayern München AG. The circle of Audi partner clubs also includes the teams from Mönchengladbach, Hamburg, Berlin, Nuremberg and Hoffenheim.
Audi has commitments with top-caliber teams on an international scale as well. Since 2003 the brand has been the vehicle partner of record Champions League winner Real Madrid. In return, the brand from Ingolstadt is featured at the legendary Estadio Santiago Bernabéu and enjoys advertising rights with the 32-time Spanish champion. The partnership with the international top-class club FC Barcelona has been in existence since 2006. All the players around super star Lionel Messi have been driving Audi models ever since, just like the current Champions League winner FC Chelsea, which has been a member of the Audi soccer family since 2012. In addition, via its importers, Audi supports AC Milan, Red Bull Salzburg, Grashoppers Zurich and Zenit St. Petersburg plus the Japanese national soccer team.
Another highlight among the soccer commitments of the four rings is the Audi Cup that was held in Munich for the first time in 2009 and for the second time in summer of 2011. The two-day event featured meetings between host Bayern München, AC Milan, SC Internacional de Porto Alegre and the subsequent winner, FC Barcelona, at the Allianz Arena. With a total turnout of 132,000 spectators, the tournament was sold out.
Audi in golf: complementary elegance
Audi has been successfully involved in golf for more than two decades. Technology, design and sporting performance are hallmarks of every Audi vehicle, which are reflected by the special fascination exuded by golf as well.
The commitment is centered on the Audi quattro Cup as the world’s most popular series for amateur golfers. At the invitation of regional Audi partners, qualifications as ‘foursomes with selected drive,’ in which around 80,000 players participate every year, are held between April and September. The winners qualify for the German finale and the country’s two best teams then meet with their international competitors. This year, the world finale will be played in Los Angeles (USA) from October 7 to 11.
35,200 visitors watched Anne-Lise Caudal’s way to victory at the UniCredit Ladies German Open in May 2012. Ever since the inaugural event of the most important German ladies’ golf tournament that is again being held this year at Gut Häusern near Munich, from May 30 to June 2, Audi has been the presenting sponsor and vehicle partner.
The long-standing partnership with the Süddeutsche Zeitung Business Golf Cup is another important element of Audi’s golf commitment. For nine years, the brand has been presenting this popular German tournament series, which not only defines itself as a sporting competition but also as a business platform to intensify existing business relations and to establish new contacts. Furthermore, Audi is again supporting the German Golf Association (DGV) in 2013 as its exclusive automobile partner and, at www.mygolf.de, presents the association’s internet offering.
Audi in sailing: Kieler Woche and Audi Sailing Team Germany
Sailing stands for precision, dynamism, aesthetics – and is thus a superb discipline for Audi, not only in Germany but also in international waters.
The Kieler Woche, which Audi in 2012 accompanied as a premium partner for the third time, is a perfect example. With numerous prominent guests in attendance, on- and offshore activities, the shuttle and trailer service plus the presentation of “Kieler Woche TV” as one of the week’s highlights the spectacle in North Germany was again dominated by the four rings. Audi’s assessment of its commitment at the world’s biggest sailing festival is extremely positive and the brand is already looking forward to this year’s event.
Aside from the grand spectacle, Audi has been dedicated to supporting young German sailors since 2010. Partnering with the German national sailing team, which appears under the name of Audi Sailing Team Germany, the automaker provides 50 vehicles to the athletes and is featured with its logo on team wear, sails and boat hulls. The long-term objective is to progressively develop the skills of the German talents for bigger challenges. The Olympic Games in London in summer of 2012 marked their first baptism of fire.
Six boats of the Bavaria B/one type recently started sailing under the Audi flag as well. The boats will be competing at various sailing events and as part of the Audi Club Offensive Sailing help to promote enthusiasm for this fantastic sport. For example, the entire Bavaria-B/one fleet will be used to hold races for partners and customers of AUDI AG during the Kieler Woche as part of the Audi sailing experience. In addition, a dedicated B/one World Cup sailing competition will take place in the international part of the Kieler Woche.
Audi as a regional partner: commitments in soccer, ice hockey and basketball
On the regional level, Audi is a reliable supporter of sports as well. For more than a decade, the brand has been partnering with the ice hockey club ERC Ingolstadt and is featured with the four rings at the home Saturn-Arena.
With the soccer players of FC Ingolstadt 04, who wear the four rings on their chests, Audi has had a long-standing partnership. The home games of the second-league club are held at the Audi Sportpark that was opened in 2010. As a partner of the Audi Schanzer Soccer School that organizes children’s and youth camps Audi has assumed responsibility for the next generation as well.
The support provided to the basketball department of FC Bayern München by the Audi Region South is the most recent commitment in the brand’s portfolio. Since the beginning of the Bundesliga season in October 2011, the league climbers have been holding their home matches at the Audi Dome. Together with the club Audi has redesigned and converted the Rudi-Sedlmayer-Hall built in 1972 into the new home of the professional and youth teams.
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