gold medalists

Michael Johnson, a legendary American track athlete, has established a profitable new sports league. With a top prize of $100,000 (£78,683), Grand Slam Track hopes to attract the best runners in the world.

A prize pool of $12.6 million (£9.9 million) will be distributed across four events under the new format, which will begin in April 2025. 

Every year, Grand Slam Track will hold four events, two of which will take place in the US. A total number of 48 athletes will have contracts with the league, and each athlete will compete in two events.

Johnson said: “We’re revolutionizing the track landscape.” 

On athletes and financial matters 

The 400-metre hurdles world and Olympic champion from the United States, Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone, will be the first athlete to join the league. She admitted: “I firmly believe that this is the step forward that the track needs to take it to another level.” 

More so, a topic of discussion in recent months has been sports finances, after World sports announced in April that it will award prize money to Olympic athletes. The governing body revealed earlier this month that a new worldwide championship will begin in 2026 and award $150,000 (£118,000) to the winners.

Prize money for the World Athletics Championship is expected to total $10 million (£7.87 million). At present, the Diamond League provides a prize of $30,000 (£23,610) to athletes who win an event during each of its 15 meetings.

Johnson said: “They deserve to be compensated… The structure of the sport in the past has not compensated those athletes to take that risk to go and compete against the best athletes in the sport.”

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Source: BBC

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