Dreaming and dancing
Lack of sponsors
I thought that the following article sorcerer shared with at another thread "thought on this season so far" interesting. It's telling a story how the lack of sponsors may have hurt Nakano's career.
I thought that Kozuka, a young male skater who I thought had won junior world(?), had a sponsor, despite that he is far less famous than Nakano. On the other hand, Nakano hasn't won a big event like Japanese Nationals or Junior grand prix or junior world, which may be affecting her not having a sponsor.
But I thought that she is receiving public funds from JOC and/or JSF, isn't she, although this article doesn't mention that.
In any case, I feel that getting a job, a sponsor, or a public/private grant is not easy in any field, which is not necessarily entirely up to your qualification. You have to be lucky as well. It's not unusual for a musician to have no full-time job after brilliant accomplishments in competitions. It's also not unusual for a brightest student in PhD to get a low-paid job after all the educational accomplishments.
She is lucky enough to have a writer who promotes her like this. At the bottom of the article, he even encourages the reader to sponsor her and refer an email address to contact with, which I believe is a very rare kind of support that one can get from the media or any other sources.
I wish her good luck.
The Zamboni Rocks!!!
I think that there are so many Japanese skaters that they must all be fighting for sponsers and it must be a tough fight.
She must feel left out when her competitors are treated like princesses. I'm pretty sure she's receiving fund rom the federation that affords her to train and travel to international events. But unlike other Japanese skaters, she's left with no real income. Yes, she's an amatuer athlete, but figure skating is an expensive sport and hard to pursue without outside income. Lesley Hawker works as a part time waitress to pay for her skating career, and this is not rare among many elite skaters. Still, it's hard to believe she has no sponsorship or endorsement considering her impressive career.
L'art pour l'art
I find this, hmm, outrageous? She shall promote herself? Well, Mao never promoted herself, she was hyped since she was like 8 years old. I really admire Nakano for combining studies and skating (always admired Arakawa for it too), without faltering under the pressure (a fact that proves that Emily Hughes does not have to cut back her studies to become a better skater).
But perhaps Nakano is not that "fashionable", too good, not eccentric enough - and apparently she has short legs and a long torso (see COR-Ladies-Free-Thread). The JSF seems to be rather mean too, do they want more tiny baby-ballerinas, who in the end, turn out to have learnt a faulty technique and cannot stand the pressure?
By the way, is there such a thing as a nice national figure skating association anywhere on the world? Because the Russian one seems to be particularily nasty, the US-American somehow conservative and not really objective and now the Japanese?
Dreaming and dancing
Yeah, I agree that it's really an expensive sport. When I was skating as a kid, I recall that my parents was charged like $50.00 per 30 mins of coaching. This was many years ago so now it could be perhaps even more expensive? The coach also charged some more extra for the advice she gave at the competition. Then the rink, costumes, boots etc etc. An endless list. I recall people exchanged pretty expensive presents for birthdays as well because the majority of the kids tended to be from very wealthy families. Although I also learned piano and ballet as a kid, people in the piano school or ballet studio were not like that.
Originally Posted by Wrlmy
I wonder how much working as a waitress would help cover those expenses. I feel for Lesley Hawker.
I heard that Onda Yoshie also had difficulties with finances and was always concerned about the burdens on her family who supported her.
Among the Japanese team, I thought that Miki, Mao, Shizuka, and Fumie had a sponsor. Mai also seems to be sponsored along with Mao. But I don't know about the others.
Do Daisuke Takahashi and Nobunari Oda have a sponsor?
Last edited by Bennett; 11-28-2007 at 06:47 PM.
Dreaming and dancing
I think that Nakano is quite pretty in terms of her looks. She has big lovely eyes, charming smiles, and beautiful skin, and has sort of decently-raised atmosphere that older people may find likable. She seeems to be popular enough to have her name and face recognized.
Originally Posted by Medusa
A factor that may be contributing to is that she became successful at a relatively old age, like 20 or 21 yrs old. It's not that a 21-yrs-old is too old-looking to promote, but as a skater, age 22 years old may sound that she is towards the end of her ama career. I still don't think it hurts for a company to have a short-term contract though (e.g., one year contract) as long as she is "on".
yeah, I really do feel for Lesley Hawker. I really want her to make the world team this year.
I know Fumie is sponsored by a record lable. Shizuka did get a sponsor at the end but she too was struggling with finance. Her family wasn't rich, and her mom had to take on a few job to support her skating expenses. Shizuka herself was working at Subway sandwitch shop in Tokyo while in school. After winning the gold at Turin, she said she wanted to take care of her parents, who never bought anything for themselves and sacrificed everything for Shizuka.
Miki and Kozuka are both sponsored by Toyota.
Mao and Mai have several sponsors and they have done many commercials.
I wish Nakano could find a sponser.. the world wrapps would be a good sponsor for her.
I don't know that it is right to blame the Japanese Skating Federation, though. The JSF does not dictate to Toyota whom to hire as a spokesman for cars.
It's tricky. Mohammad Ali was one of the greatest and most popluar U.S. athletes of all time, but he never was able to get any corporate sponsorship except Roach Motels.
Michelle Kwan got a lot of lucrative deals. Sasha Cohen did OK. The third American girl? Who is the third American girl, anyway?
Dreaming and dancing
ITA. I don't think JSF is responsible for that, while it is responsible for fairly distributing the public funds to skaters. The sponsorship is offered, but can't be assigned. Unless a company finds any benefits in supporting Yukari, it will not happen. And this is little to do with the justice. It's a bit surprising though that no company has approached her despite her all public appearance due to the FS hype in Japan.
Originally Posted by Mathman
Last edited by Bennett; 11-28-2007 at 11:11 PM.