Chris Russell, 26, who works as an account manager for Cisco at OgilvyOne London is not only the model account man, he’s also one of the UK’s leading sailors, and it’s been his lifelong ambition to stand on an Olympic podium with a gold medal around his neck.
To make the dream a reality, he has begun working towards London 2012. He is already in intensive training, splitting his time between work here at Cabot Square and the Olympic sailing centre in Weymouth.
“2012 seems a long way away but that time will soon go,” says Chris. ”But we’ve got every day mapped out between now and the opening ceremony, and to get two feet on the podium, there’s a long, hard road ahead. Whilst a gold medal is the end result, this is much more about the journey leading up to the Olympic Games. It’s about scaling new heights, pushing the boundaries of what has already been accomplished and achieving more. I’m fortunate that I enjoy training and love what I do”.
Chris has been on the international scene since he was 13, although he’s been sailing a lot longer.
“It was my dad who introduced me to sailing when I was five,” he says. “I’ve always enjoyed the challenges of sailing – in a boat you will never beat the sea, but it’s the competition I love.”
Chris says Ogilvy has been hugely supportive in terms of allowing him time off to train, and financial help.
He has also been successful in partnering with some well-known household brands. But, as with many athletes, he needs more support.
“You can’t buy an Olympic Gold medal, but you certainly do have to pay for it. We’re looking for partners at all levels to not only support our Olympic ambition but to become an integral part of the team.”
Chris’ boss, OgilvyOne London chief executive Annette King, adds: “Energy, tenacity, commitment, bravery and endeavour are among the qualities which have made this agency successful and it has therefore been a real pleasure for us to support Chris in every way we can. I’m looking forward to seeing him on that podium in three years’ time.”
For more updates on Chris’ progress, check out his occasional entries here on the OgilvyOne section Ogilvy Group UK website or follow him on Twitter: @chrismrussell.