MELBOURNE, Victoria (25 August, 2019) – With one year until the Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 opening ceremony, Bridgestone Australia has announced wheelchair tennis gold medallist, Heath Davidson, as the newest addition to Team Bridgestone Australia. Davidson is the first Paralympian to join Team Bridgestone Australia since the world’s largest tyre and rubber company, Bridgestone, became a Worldwide Paralympic Partner.
In the lead up to Tokyo 2020, being held in Bridgestone Corporation’s home city, Davidson will be involved in community initiatives to encourage and inspire the next generation of para-athletes to ‘Chase Your Dream’.
“When I first got the call to join Team Bridgestone Australia, I was really honoured. To have the support of the world’s biggest tyre company is amazing, and after chatting through the ‘Chase Your Dream’ concept I got really excited,” Heath Davidson said.
Davidson won gold alongside his wheelchair tennis doubles partner Dylan Alcott at the Paralympic Games Rio 2016 after making a return to the sport from a 10-year hiatus. His motivation behind joining Team Bridgestone Australia is to help pave the way for other athletes preparing to take on the next challenge in their sporting career.
“It’s a significant jump from the junior to senior ranks, and there’s not always a clear, defined path with the right level of support. Alongside Bridgestone, I hope to encourage and inspire the next generation to chase their dreams, and reinforce that it is possible to go to that next level, even with an unconventional approach,” Davidson added. “Growing up, my dream wasn’t to win a gold medal, but since returning to tennis and seeing what is possible, it’s definitely the dream for Tokyo 2020. Representing Australia at Rio 2016 inspired me, and I hope to instil the same passion in future athletes.”
Bridgestone Australia’s Olympic and Paralympic Tokyo 2020 activity is aligned with the company’s global Corporate Social Responsibility initiative, known as ‘Our Way to Serve’, which is built on three priority areas: people, mobility and the environment.
“We’re delighted to welcome Heath Davidson to Team Bridgestone Australia. The story of his return to tennis is directly in line with our vision to encourage local athletes to chase their dreams,” said Bridgestone Australia & New Zealand Managing Director, Stephen Roche. “Heath is passionate about giving back to the community and supporting those coming through the ranks, and we’re thrilled that we can share his passion and together make a meaningful contribution.”
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About Bridgestone’s “Our Way to Serve” initiative:
“Our Way to Serve” aims to inspire Bridgestone teammates to continue doing great work, by continuing to do good for the world. “Our Way to Serve” organizes Bridgestone’s CSR efforts under three Priority Areas: Mobility; People; and Environment. “Our Way to Serve” reflects the company’s longstanding philosophy of “Serving Society with Superior Quality” and a recognition that the best companies not only perform for their stakeholders, but also contribute to a better world.
From our beginnings in the 1930s, our founder, Shojiro Ishibashi, believed that a business that contributes to society would do well by doing good. Today, this is more important than ever, with mounting social and environmental challenges threatening the planet and the quality of life of all people living on it. Now, as a global leader, the Bridgestone Group is committed to serving society by improving access to smart, safe transportation, building healthy, resilient communities, and minimizing our environmental impact. Looking forward, we remain committed to driving innovation around mobility, people, and the environment – so that we can continue to serve society with superior quality for generations to come.
About Bridgestone Australia Ltd.:
Bridgestone Australia is a major supplier to the Australasian automotive industry, providing an extensive range of quality tyres, carefully developed to suit local conditions. The company is supported by an employee network of more than 1,500 people across Australia and New Zealand. Bridgestone Australia also manufactures, wholesales and retails quality truck retread products through Bandag Pty Limited, the world's leading retread brand. Bandag products complement the Bridgestone tyre range and provide a reliable solution for truck fleet customers.
About Bridgestone Corporation’s Worldwide Olympic and Paralympic Partnerships:
Bridgestone Corporation, headquartered in Tokyo, is the world’s largest tyre and rubber company and operates with a mission of “Serving Society with Superior Quality.” Bridgestone proudly became a Worldwide Olympic Partner in 2014 and a Worldwide Paralympic Partner in 2018. The company has global rights to the Olympic Movement and Paralympic Movement through to 2024, a period that includes the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020, Beijing 2022 and Paris 2024. Bridgestone is dedicated to delivering products, services and solutions that improve the way people move, live, work and play, and its commitment to the Olympic Movement and Paralympic Movement continues a long history of sport and innovation. Bridgestone activities related to its Worldwide Olympic and Paralympic Partnerships are guided by a global “Chase Your Dream” message, which intends to inspire people to overcome obstacles and persevere in pursuit of their goals. As a worldwide partner, Bridgestone has marketing rights that include its full range of tyres, tyre services and selected automotive vehicle services, self-propelled bicycles, seismic isolation bearings, and a variety of building and industrial products.
About Team Bridgestone and Team Bridgestone Australia:
Athletes are the driving force of the Olympic Games and represent the heart of the Olympic Movement. They are also Bridgestone customers who put in countless hours on the road, day in and day out, traveling to and from training and competition, no matter the distance or weather conditions. In the lead up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020, Bridgestone is proudly supporting athletes who embody the company’s “Chase Your Dream” message and will serve as the face of Bridgestone activities as Team Bridgestone.
Team Bridgestone Australia will represent Bridgestone through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) driven projects leading up to and during Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020. Sydney 2000 Gold Medallist and Australian Olympic icon Cathy Freeman, NBA star and three-time Boomer representative Joe Ingles, rising star in the brand new Olympic sport of surfing, 2017 World Surfing League Rookie of the Year Connor O’Leary, and defending wheelchair tennis Paralympic gold medallist, Heath Davidson, have been named members of Team Bridgestone Australia.