A.I. shines light on athletes

A Trail native has been a driving force behind a company dedicated to helping athletes realize their dreams.

A Trail native has been a driving force behind a company dedicated to helping athletes realize their dreams.

Former AM Ford Trail Oriole Ashton Florko has made a commitment to the future of Canadian athletes across the country.

Florko, a 2008 draft pick of the Chicago Cubs, is co-owner of Athlete Illuminati (AI) a company that specializes in nutritional supplements, apparel, and training paradigms to help athletes from various disciplines compete at an elite level — but AI goes even further than that.

The company gives a percentage of all sales back to its athletes.  With every individual purchase, the consumer can designate that portion to a specific athlete or the entire AI community. Going above and beyond the industry standard, athletes receive direct financial support to help them reach their full potential.

Most recently AI had three of its sponsored athletes compete in the 2012 London Olympic Games.

Richard Weinberger won bronze in the 10-kilometre open water marathon swim while Liz Gleadle was the first Canadian woman to make the finals in Javelin and Kai Langerfield represented Canada in men’s rowing.

“The support AI has provided me with has been invaluable, and knowing they will be with me every step of the way makes me even more confident for my future in swimming,” explained Weinberger.

“They support many athletes just like me, and are leading the way in creating a strong athletic community all across Canada.”

As an accomplished athlete, Florko knows first hand the struggle that up-and-coming talents face when it comes to financing their dreams, so when the time came to found a company specifically for athletes, the owners knew it was also time to put their beliefs into action.

Florko and the other owners, along with Weinberger are making the trek to the 2012 Grand Forks International Baseball Tournament in an effort to expand their support to  the baseball community.

“As a former player at the GFI and having a first-hand understanding of the caliber of the tournament, I decided AI had to have a presence on the ground,” explained Florko, “There are so many athletes that could benefit from the type of support we provide, and we will be there looking for them.”

Go to www.athleteilluminati.com for more info.