BP Joins Forces with Olympian Dara Torres

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BP Joins Forces with Olympian Dara Torres

LA PALMA, Calif. -- BP Products North America enlisted five-time Olympian Dara Torres to help raise awareness of BP gasoline with Invigorate, which BP said "cleans and protects and helps your car run younger for longer."

As part of the company’s largest-ever product launch, BP approached Torres to be the newest face of "Team Invigorate,” to inspire others to live “younger for longer" in support of the product's promise.

"I’m very excited to be working with BP this year," Torres said in a statement. "I’m proud to support a brand that stands for quality products and promotes their product in a unique way by inspiring their consumers to live a ‘younger for longer’ lifestyle. This is the attitude I’ve used throughout my life and swimming career."

Defying the odds at age 41, Torres won three silver medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. As one of the most accomplished swimmers in history, Torres "will bring BP gasoline with Invigorate into the national spotlight by telling her story alongside fellow Team Invigorate athletes: surfer Ryan Helm, marathoner Linda Quirk and mountain climber Wendy Booker," BP said in a statement.

"We’re thrilled to have Dara Torres join the team as the national face of BP gasoline with Invigorate," Linda Bartman, the oil company's marketing communications manager, said in a statement. "As a world-renowned athlete, Dara’s inspiring ‘younger for longer’ story will help consumers make a relatable connection to the brand, bringing the lifestyle campaign and benefits of the product to life for a whole new audience."

To educate consumers on the benefits of BP gasoline with Invigorate, BP compares human health and wellness to vehicle health and wellness.

"We are seeing consumers holding on to their vehicles for a longer period of time," explained Kevin Phelan, senior vice president of fuels marketing and cards for BP. "There is a need to educate consumers on how to drive more efficiently, which means tips on tire pressure, maintenance schedules, fluid levels and knowing that the type of fuel you use does make a difference in how your vehicle will perform. Similar to your body, eating right, or in the case of a car, putting quality fuel in the tank of a new or old car, does pay off in the long run. Dara will help us educate consumers on the benefits of BP gasoline with Invigorate in a very relatable way."

Torres and fellow Team Invigorate athletes will communicate the BP message through a variety of media, including print, TV, radio and digital. The complete rollout of BP gasoline with Invigorate will also consist of new and refreshed site treatment along with a marketing plan, according to the company.

BP introduced BP gasoline with Invigorate across all three grades -- regular, mid-Grade and Amoco Ultimate -- to consumers in 2008. Since the launch, BP’s marketing campaign has delivered more than 1 billion media impressions. BP will complete the launch of the product by July 2009.

In other BP news, the oil company is widening its search for a new chairman, after its preferred candidate, Rio Tinto Chairman Paul Skinner, withdrew from the process. The company is considering executives based in the United Kingdom and Europe as candidates to replace Peter Sutherland, who is retiring this year, according to a report in The Times of London.

BP wants someone with a strong knowledge of the oil and gas sector as well as plenty of international experience. But drawing up a short-list has become more challenging recently as many potential candidates have been tarnished by the market upheaval, the newspaper reported.

BP, which never acknowledged Skinner was the frontrunner for the job, declined comment to The Times, except to say the search for a replacement was continuing. It is considered increasingly unlikely a replacement will be announced in time for the group's annual meeting in April. Sutherland has agreed to stay on until later this year.