Audi opens alpine Olympic season in Sölden
- Audi is giving its name to Audi FIS Ski World Cup for eighth year
- New corporate design makes its debut in competition skiing
- Audi Media Talk with eight national teams
Ingolstadt – The kickoff of the Audi FIS Ski World Cup in Sölden on October 24 and 25 marks the start to an action-packed season for the athletes, culminating in the Olympic Games in Vancouver in March 2010. In Sölden, fans and spectators will experience the Four Rings with new visuals: For the first time, Audi will present itself sporting the brand’s new corporate design.
Sölden is the venue where the ski season has kicked off for as many as twelve years. Nevertheless, the season opener this year is highly special: After all, in addition to almost 30 World Cup races, the calendars of the alpine athletes in March also include the Olympic Games in Vancouver. “I’m always particularly edgy before Sölden. It’s a difficult race, the first of the season,” says the reigning overall World Cup winner Lindsey Vonn from the United States. Together with athletes from France, Finland, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy and Sweden, Vonn was a guest at the traditional Audi Media Talk at which the World Cup’s name-giver opened the weekend in Sölden. In addition to the 2009 back-to-back overall World Cup winner, the guests at the event also witnessed a highly motivated Maria Riesch. “Of course I’m all fired up for winter and, most of all, the Olympics. The slopes at Whistler Mountain suit me well and, naturally, I want to compete for medals,” says the slalom world champion and Super G World Cup winner.
“But there’s never a guarantee that things will go well. That’s why I try to avoid putting myself under pressure and to take things as they come.” The challenge at the first showing in Sölden is a major one: The women’s and men’s giant slalom runs are both held on the awe-inspiring Rettenbach glacier which puts the athletes to a tough test with its maximum gradient exceeding 60 percent. For the fans, the steep slope provides an advantage that has always made Sölden a crowd-puller: Almost the entire slope can be viewed from the area around the finish.
One of the highlights of the ski weekend that starts tomorrow morning with the women’s races is located at an elevation of 3,048 meters: In Sölden, Audi will display the start house featuring the brand’s new corporate design for the first time. The finish run-out area, the back wall of the podium, and other advertising areas have been re-designed as well. Audi thus also presents the evolution of the Four Rings in competition skiing. The new Audi logo is even more progressive and modern than before and makes the core of the brand the central message: Vorsprung durch Technik.
2009 marks the eighth year in which the brand with the Four Rings acts as title sponsor and name-giver of the Audi FIS Ski World Cup. Audi has extended the commitment up to and including the 2011/2012 season. Besides the German DSV, the alpine national teams of Sweden, Finland, France, Liechtenstein, Italy, Austria, the United States, Bulgaria, the Netherlands and Switzerland are partners of the premium manufacturer from Ingolstadt.
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Photos and information can be obtained at www.audi-mediaservices.com/en AUDI AG sold a total of 1,003,469 cars in 2008 and thus achieved its 13th consecutive record year. The Company posted new record figures with revenue of €34.2 billion and profit before tax of €3.2 billion. Audi produces vehicles in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm (Germany), Györ (Hungary), Changchun (China) and Brussels (Belgium). Aurangabad in India saw the start of CKD production of the Audi A6 at the end of 2007 and of the Audi A4 in early October 2008. The Company is active in more than 100 markets worldwide. AUDI AG’s wholly owned subsidiaries include Automobili Lamborghini Holding S.p.A. in Sant’Agata Bolognese (Italy) and quattro GmbH in Neckarsulm. Audi currently employs around 58,000 people worldwide, including 46,500 in Germany. The brand with the four rings invests around €2 billion each year in order to sustain the company’s technological lead embodied in its “Vorsprung durch Technik” slogan. Audi plans to significantly increase the number of models in its portfolio by 2015 to 42. The AUDI brand celebrates its 100th birthday in 2009. The company was founded by August Horch in Zwickau on July 16, 1909; he named it AUDI after the Latin translation of his surname (“hark!”).
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