London

London 2012: Athlete turns to eBay for a sponsor

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Media captionAthlete explains auction sponsorship attempt

An athlete from south-east London is seeking a sponsorship deal for the 2012 Olympics via online auction site eBay.

James Ellington, 26, from Lewisham will advertise on the site with a reserve of £30,000 for which he will wear a sponsor's branded kit at training in the run-up to next year's Games.

The sprinter lost out on sponsors through four years of injury problems.

He said he had managed to qualify for the Games despite no lottery support, kit deal, or any kind of endorsements.

'Hard graft'

He said: "I'm peaking when it really matters, finishing my best-ever season and smashing my own personal bests just before the 2012 Games.

"All I need now is a commercial sponsor to get onboard and I can commit myself full-time to getting into Team GB and hopefully win a medal for Great Britain at London 2012."

To train like his rivals, Ellington says he needs a £15,000 wage and a further £15,000 for expenses to cover travel and accommodation, dietary needs and kit.

The athlete - a 100m, 200m and relay sprinter - has run the fastest 200m by a British athlete this year at a non-altitude venue, 20.52 seconds.

His coach, John Powell, who runs Met-Track, a mentoring youth scheme which he has worked for, described him as achieving what he has through "simple hard graft, dedication, and determination".

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