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Powerade recruits paralympic athlete for new ads

Coca-Cola-owned sports drink brand Powerade today launches a campaign featuring British paralympic athlete Richard Whitehead to promote its improved drink formula ION4.

Powerade: Richard Whitehead fronts ION4 campaign

Powerade: Richard Whitehead fronts ION4 campaign

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The campaign, created by Mother, includes a 30-second TV ad that will run on Sky Sports 2 and 4 tonight during Uefa Champions League matches. It will be supported by print and online activity. Media buying has been handled by Vizeum.

The ad shows runner Whitehead putting Powerade ION4 to the test alongside swimmer David Davies and heptathlete Jessica Ennis on a special "sweat circuit".

Powerade ION4 is the official sports drink of Team GB and ParalympicsGB for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

It is the first time that a paralympic athlete has been used in a Powerade campaign, which Coca-Cola hopes will raise awareness about the Paralympic Games and change attitudes to disabled sport.

George Wheen, brand director, sports and energy, Coca-Cola North West Europe and Nordics, said: "The Paralympic Games is one of the biggest celebrations in world sport and we are very proud to be an official partner at London 2012.

"It's really important between now and then we do everything we can to raise awareness and excitement about the Paralympic Games, and signing Richard, a Paralympian, will help us to do just that."

In October, Coca-Cola used Jessica Ennis to promote its calorie-free version of the sports drink, Powerade Zero, in which Ennis took on three boxing enthusiasts in another Powerade sweat session. 

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