Spirit of the sport and the competition
Bob and skeleton are synonymous with speed and exhilaration. During a typical 60-second bobsleigh run, speeds of more than 140 km/h are reached with the crews subjected to more than four times the force of gravity.Races are usually run on concrete based tracks with artificial ice surfaces; have a standard length of 1,500 metres and up to 14 curves, depending on the track.
The top competitions are the FIBT World Cup and the FIBT World Championships. Events are staged annually except during Olympic years and feature women’s bobsleigh, two man and four man bobsleigh and women’s and men’s skeleton.
Skeleton is the world’s first sliding sport and the only one where athletes take a face down position. It has an elite aura through its long identification with the world-famous St. Moritz Tobogganing Club (Cresta Run). Skeleton competition returned to the Olympic Winter Games in 2002 and participation has increased significantly as a result. Today, skeleton is practiced on a competitive level by some 30 countries from all continents.
For the 2012/13 season, Infront together with the federation added a new highlight – the FIBT Triple Trophy. The jackpot concept requires athletes to win three pre-defined races within their respective discipline and within the same season, in order to collect prize money totalling at 100,000 Euro. In addition to incentivising athletes, the FIBT Triple Trophy adds value to the World Cup season by offering another highlight for broadcasters, more suspense for fans as well as increased marketing potential.
Infront’s role includes the marketing of the key sponsorship packages for bobsleigh and skeleton’s top-tier sponsorship programme as well as the worldwide distribution of media rights for the men’s and women’s FIBT World Cup and World Championship events. Programming includes; live, delayed and highlights coverage on TV, radio, internet and mobile platforms – with specific segmented packages on offer.
Marketing and activation
Bobsleigh and skeleton have a growing appeal to commercial partners with many of them committed for the long-tem - boosting the stability of the platform for the future. Strong sponsorship components enhance both Olympic disciplines and greater sponsor exclusivity means there are a limited number of advertising partners, resulting in strong, clear brand visibility.
The partnership structure for the FIBT World Cup and World Championship includes; Title Sponsor, Main Sponsor and four LOC sponsors. The principle contractual rights for the Title and Main Sponsor package include; naming rights, advertising in camera view (20% of banners at the start, finish and along the track as well as logo on all skeleton starting bibs and stickers on both bob and skeleton helmets). Additionally – logo integration on all print materials, internet presence, on-site product placement within the winter village and fan tent as well as access to VIP and hospitality areas (including taxi bob rides on the world cup track) are offered.
For the 2011/12 season, Bauhaus (workshop, house and garden products retailer) and Viessmann (heating systems) acted as title sponsors of the FIBT World Championships and FIBT World Cup respectively. Crystall Lefortovo (beverages) was main sponsor for both competitions.
Bobsleigh and skeleton have grown from a “niche” sport in a small core of alpine nations to a truly international winter sport. Working closely with the Fédération Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing (FIBT) since 2003, Infront Sports & Media has embarked on a path of expansion that has resulted in impressive levels of international television coverage. Over the last six years, there has been an 84 percent increase in the cumulative audience (across all disciplines) and coverage has also grown impressively – up a huge 313 percent from 2004/2005.
In 2011/12, the FIBT World Cup competitionswere broadcast in 14 countries and reached a cumulative audience of 499 million watching a total of 857 broadcast hours. The World Championship’s gauged a cumulative audience of 81 million from a total of 182 hours of coverage across 12 countries.
Sponsors can take advantage of the exceptional global outreach that the IBSF marketing platform provides - offering international exposure and targeted messaging that engages and connects the brands involved with the fans.
2013 Bauhaus IBSF Bob & Skeleton World Championships
21 January - 3 February in St. Moritz, Switzerland
2012/13 Viessmann IBSF Bob & Skeleton World Cup
5 - 10 November - Lake Placid, USA
12 - 18 November - Park City, USA
19 - 25 November - Whistler, Canada
3 - 12 December - Winterberg, Germany
10 - 16 December - La Plagne, France
31 December - 6 January - Altenberg, Germany
7 - 13 January - Königsse, Germany
14 - 20 January - Igls, Austria
11 - 17 February - Sochi, Russia