Rolling through the snowy streets of Lake Placid, N.Y., on Goodyear Tiempo tires (official tire of the 1980 Winter Olympics) in his new Subaru (official car of the U.S. Olympic ski team), Joe Sportsfan pulls out his Canon camera (official 35-mm camera of the 1980 Winter Olympics), loads it with Kodak film (the official film of the Lake Placid Olympic Committee) and snaps a picture of American athletes in their warm-up suits from Levi Strauss (supplier to the U.S. Olympic Team.)
The athletes -- rested from their sleep on a Simmons mattress (official mattress of the 1980 Winter Olympics) -- start their day with Minute Maid orange juice, Welch's grape jelly, Kellogg cereals, Borden's milk or Dannon yogurt -- all donated to the Olympics by official suppliers who paid at least $50,000 for that title.
Should their Duofold underwear (official long johns of the 1980 Winter Olympics) fail to protect them from sniffles, the fans can give their cold to Contac (supplier to the U.S. Olympic Team) or replace lost liquids with a few cans of Schlitz (partner with the U.S. Olympic Team) or perhaps try a Kirin (official imported beer of the Winter Olympics).
At night, they can relive the day's highlights recorded on their Ampex tapes (the official Olympic cassettes), and watch television coverage on either an Advent large screen television or a Toshiba portable (the two official TVs of the 1980 Winter Olympics) after a dinner of Mueller's macaroni with Guido's spaghetti sauce.
Yes, there's even official Olympic pasta this year, to say nothing of an official Olympic banana (Chiquita), propane torch (Cleanweld), coffee urn (Bunn-O-Matic), vacuum cleaner (Electrolux), motor oil (Mobil), mineral water (Saratoga Springs) and chewing tobacco.
Even if the United States doesn't win a single gold medal, the Lake Placid Winter Olympics, Feb. 13-24, will set new world records for what Olympic executives call "corporate participation" in the year's biggest spectator sport.
For the privilege of hanging the Olympic symbols next to their names, corporations will pay upward of $20 million cash and donate half again that much in goods and services ranging from armored cars and computer terminals to mops, mattresses and medical supplies.
That total includes neither the $15 million that ABC Television will pay for rights to broadcast the Olympics, nor the $48 million more ABC will collect for commercials broadcast during the games.
World-wide, the Olympics is a multi-billion dollar business, counting the budgets of the International Olympic Committee in Switzerland, the 130 national Olympic committees and all the advertising, travel and training expenses associated with the games. The Soviets are said to be spending $2 billion to put on the 1980 summer Olympics in Moscow.
The Lake Placid Olympic Organizing Committee has a $150 million budget to produce the winter games; the United States Olympic Committee, based in Colorado Springs, has raised $26 million to field teams for the winter and summer sessions and last year's Pan American Games.
Nearly $90 million worth of facilities around Lake Placid have been built with government money, including $66.4 million from the Department of Commerce's Economic Development Authority and $20 million from the state of New York.
Except for $10 million from New York for state troopers, traffic control and the like, the operating funds for both the games and the teams are being raised from private sources.
To the chagrin of purists who accuse the Olympics of "selling out," an increasing amount of that money is coming from corporations that have decided to sponsor the Olympics in the same way they sponsor a soap opera or a professional football game.
The U.S. Olympic Committee has doubled its budget from $13 million to $26 million since the 1976 games and is counting on a 136 percent jump in sponsor funds -- from $3.8 million to $9 million -- said Art Kuman, director of corporate participation. That's in addition to nearly $2 million that Burger King is paying to run Olympic training camps in Colorado Springs and Squaw Valley, Utah. The fast food chain will raise much of that money by selling Olympic posters, mugs and other souvenirs in its restaurants.
At Lake Placid, Peter Spurney, the general manager, figures to take in $8 million from sponsoring corporations, plus $2 million more from manufacturers of memorabilia ranging from demitasse, spoons and crewel kits to posters, pennants and playing cards.
The Lake Placid Olympic Organizing Committee also will get $7 million worth of donated merchandise, including enough Simmons mattresses to bed 130 Olympic teams, a fleet of Ford cars, and all the Coke, Minute Maid and Saratoga Springs Water the participants can consume. The team likewise will take in huge amounts of merchandise -- including a wardrobe of on and off the field uniforms from Levi's -- not included in its cash budget.
But the increasing success of the Olympics in raising funds from "corporate participation," has also brought complaints about commercialization. The moral standards of Olympic athletes are tainted by association with beer and chewing tobacco, some say. There's been criticism, too, that the American Olympic supporters include such Japanese companies as Toyota, Canon, Kiron and Toshiba.
But the most serious problem may be the proliferation of Olympic merchandising tie-ins that has resulted from competition between the Lake Placid Organizing Committee for funds to put on the games and the U.S. Olympic Committee for funds to field the team.
"We're all going after the same dollar," admits the Olympic Committee's Kuman. For the 1984 summer Olympics, the team hopes to run a joint fund-raising effort with the games' organizers in Los Angeles, he added.
"It's competitive in a sense, but it's cooperative competition," commented Spurney. "Some people respond to the challenge of putting on an event. Some relate better to trying to win a gold medal. We each have something different to sell."
What the Lake Placid Organizing Committee has to sell is the right to be called the official anything of the 1980 Winter Olympics and to use the Lake Placid symbol, the Olympic playing fields and the racoon mascot of the games.
The U.S. Olympic Committee controls the five-ring Olympic emblem and the wreath symbolic of the U.S. Olympic Team. The Olympic Committee doesn't have any official products, Kuman stressed; its corporate backers are identified as "suppliers to the U.S. Olympic Team" or "partners with the U.S. Olympic Team."
In either case, the basic deal is the same -- businesses must donate at least $50,000 cash to get the imprimatur of either committee. The donations are tax deductible. More cash or merchandise entitles the corporate participants to additional tie-ins with the Olympics.
The Olympian business deals include Burger King's $2 million financing of training camps for the teams, a major donation from McDonalds, the half-million cash contribution from Toyota -- the automobile supplier for the team -- and the lavish donations of cash, cola (and Tropicana Orange Juice) from The Coca Cola Co., historically the biggest supporter of the sport.
Spurney, a former Chevy Chase resident who handled the business end of the Spokane world's fair and the Bicentennial Freedom Train before being recruited by the village of Lake Placid as the $100,000-a-year head of the Winter Olympics, gets much of the credit for balancing the games' budget with corporate money.
"The tremendous prestige associated with the Olympics," is responsible for the millions in revenues from business sponsors, he says. "There is a marketing advantage to firms who can say they suppplied the Olympics."
Many of those suppliers and sponsors are also buying large blocks of tickets for the games, and using the seats to impress their clients and reward their employes.
"The reputation of the Olympics is very pure," Spurney insists, dismissing fears that the games are being exploited commercially. "You're not going to see our sponsors' names splashed all over the place everytime the TV cameras pan past the speed skaters."
Spurney's decision to let the United States Tobacco Co. use former Dallas Cowboys running back Walt Garrison to tout Skoal, Copenhagen and Happy Days chewing tobacco, with the aid of the Winter Olympics, has produced the only serious split in commercialization policies between the two Olympic committees. "I like Walt Garrison, but we'd never do that," said the team's Kuman.
Neither team counts a liquor or wine label among its sponsors, but both have deals with the Joseph E. Schlitz Brewing Co.
"Beer has a long history of association with sports in America," says Spurney, and Kuman claims some runners now advocate drinking beer for its carbohydrate content.
While Schlitz -- like Coke, Simmons and many smaller sponsors -- aids both the Olympic Team and the Lake Placid Games, there are rival manufacturers involved in some product lines.
Ford has contributed cars and cash to the Lake Placid committee and is "the offical car of the 1980 Winter Olympics." Toyota, however, cut a deal with Kuman and became a "Supplier to the United States Olympic Team." (Toyota USA, the American distributer, made the contribution, not the Japanese manufacture, Kuman assures Yankee chauvinists.)
Subaru became the "Official Car of the U.S. Olympic Ski Team" by giving money to that sport, one of the few teams well enough organized to raise money on its own. And General Motors is sponsoring the Olympics on ABC, so its cars will be seen on the network telecasts.
Both committees stress that they are not endorsing the products made by coorporations that donate to them. "We don't endorse anything," says Kuman. "They endorse us," adds Spurney.
The Lake Placid Committee had top skiers check out K-2 skies last winter before accepting donations of enough skis to outfit the workers needed to put on the ski events.
To get uniforms for the hundreds of timers, judges and other officials at Lake Placid, Spurney wound up signing on a Japanese manufacture, ASICS, after Levi Strauss declined to duplicate its offer to the Olympic Team and no other U.S. manufacture could be found.
Both Kuman and Spurney insist the commercial contribution programs of the Olympics should not be restricted, but admit that there could be better ways to raise money.
"We should not be constrained by the money we can raise from putting on the best games possible." said Spurney. "We need the suppliers and we need the sponsers. It's a way of life in the United States."
Kuman said the Olympic Team would accept government support -- which pays the bills of most foreign competitors -- only if it were available without strings.
"We certainly don't want Washington running the teams," he said. "We all know how that would go."
One possible alternative to increasing commercial sponsorship of the Olympics is a federal income tax checkoff, like the voluntary donation for presidential campaigns now permitted. That idea has kicked around Congress for years, but has gotten nowhere because of fears it would create a precedent for the United Way or other charitable causes.