As the global economic downturn begins to impact on the world of sport , one French athlete has come up with an unusual way to try to secure a new sponsorship deal. Pole-vaulting champion Romain Mesnil, whose contract with the sports brand Nike was not renewed when it expired last year, has run naked with his pole through the streets of Paris and posted a video of his caper online. The musclebound year-old is seen loping through the streets with his pole as if preparing for a vault at tourist spots like Montmartre and the Pont des Arts across the river Seine.
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PARIS, France -- A French pole vaulting champion ran naked with his pole through the streets of Paris and posted the video on the Internet, hoping to draw attention to his quest for a new sponsorship deal. Romain Mesnil, who won a silver medal at the Athletics World Championships in Osaka, was sponsored by Nike but says his contract expired last year and was not renewed. It's the crisis," he wrote on his Web site.
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Romain Mesnil, 31, who won a silver medal at the Athletics World Championships in Osaka, used to be sponsored by U. Mesnil said he was offering sponsorship deals for companies and individuals on the internet auction site ebay. He told a news conference: "In my mind, it was an opportunity to do something funny. I am not ready to do anything to get a sponsor. We're doing this and we will see what happens. Many athletes have reported difficulties in securing corporate sponsorship as companies cut costs because of the global economic downturn. It's the crisis," Mensil said on his website. In his video, Mesnil runs with his pole as if preparing for a vault at tourist spots like Montmartre and the Pont des Arts across the River Seine, with his modesty spared only by the addition of a black square. The video has succeeded in drawing attention to Mesnil's plight, as it has now been broadcast on primetime state television news bulletins in both England and France.
We're all for new extreme sports but we think this French pole vaulter may have taken his sport a little too far by sprinting around the streets of Paris naked. The video shows Romain Mesnil, 31, running in tourist hotspots including Montmartre and the River Seine with his pole as if he's about to vault, with a black square masking his modesty. By Mirror.