January 07, 2009 | Lake Placid, NY USA

Abrasives Becomes Primary Sponsor of USA Luge

Longstanding Partnership Expanded

(USA Luge News Release, January 2) USA Luge announces that Norton (part of Saint-Gobain Abrasives) will become the primary sponsor of the U.S. National Luge Team and the entire organization.

Norton, already the Official Abrasive Products Supplier, will assume primary sponsorship immediately and retain the title through 2011.

"Our recent decision to expand our sponsorship with USA Luge and become the primary sponsor was based on our past years experience as a secondary sponsor and the level of enthusiasm and interaction this relationship has generated within our own employee base as well as with our customers," said Mark Rayfield, Saint-Gobain's Vice President and General Manager, Abrasives North America. "More specifically, the products we make and the knowledge we have internally on surface preparation is integral to the success of the team, allowing them to shed tenths in a sport determined by thousandths. As we work together in the year leading to the Olympics, we are excited to build this association with prominent logo placement and R&D support with the goal to help the USA Luge team bring home the gold."

The new agreement will give Norton, who has been supplying USA Luge with abrasive products since the 1980s, primary logo placement on the Senior and Junior National Team sleds, clothing, hats and vehicles. In addition, the Norton logo will be the only USA Luge sponsor logo to appear on the team helmets.

The abrasive products used by the team for polishing the racing steels for improved performance and paint preparation and polishing of the sled body for improved appearance include abrasive belts, discs and rolls from Norton's high performance products portfolio of Norton SG® Blaze, Multi-Air™, Black Ice®, and Norax®.

Saint-Gobain Abrasives is a division of Compagnie de Saint-Gobain, a global manufacturer and distributor of flat glass, building products, glass containers and high-performance materials. Founded in 1665, Saint-Gobain is headquartered in Paris, France, and has over 1,000 subsidiaries in more than 50 countries. The company had worldwide sales of $59 billion in 2007 and employs approximately 207,000 people globally. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain employs about 24,000 people and has approximately 160 manufacturing locations and 150 distribution outlets.


Bill Seiberlich
Communications Manager, Saint-Gobain Corporation