At Paris Olympics, That Gold Is Also Worth Cash

Top finishers will receive $50K from World Athletics
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 10, 2024 9:54 AM CDT
At This Olympics, Gold Will Also Mean Cash
Lamont Marcell Jacobs, of Italy poses with his gold medal following the men's 100-meters final at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Monday, Aug. 2, 2021, in Tokyo.   (AP Photo/Francisco Seco, File)

This year's Olympians are fighting for more than a medal. They'll each vie for a chunk of a $2.4 million prize pot offered for the first time by governing body World Athletics. Gold medalists in each of the 48 athletic events will take home $50,000, with the prize for relay gold split between the winning participants, the BBC reports. World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said the introduction of prize money marks a "pivotal moment" for athletics and is intended to ensure "some of the revenues generated by our athletes at the Olympic Games are directly returned to those who make the Games the global spectacle that it is."

Coe said he didn't seek permission from the International Olympic Committee, which has argued competing in the Olympics is prize enough. "But I am hoping they would welcome it," Coe said, per the Guardian. "If I thought athletes were only competing for a financial pot, I might take a different view." But "the world has changed, and it is really important that where possible we give money to athletes." He added, "As we grow as a sport I want to increase that pot." World Athletics has already vowed that at the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles, every medalist—gold, silver, or bronze—will receive $50,000, according to the BBC. (More Olympics stories.)

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