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  • Powell
    replied
    Originally posted by dl
    I think the bottom line is that you can make a "rule" that no appearance fees will be paid, but if a meet really wants Athlete X and he/she is not going to show up unless they get an appearance fee (or at least a guaranteed amount against prize/bonuses) then the meet is going to pay.
    If the rule was enforced by all meet promoters, it would work. Yes, I know that's very unlikely.

    Leave a comment:


  • EPelle
    replied
    dl, how does that work with a meet like Mt. Sace, for instance? I based my initial post above on the premise that certain (high profile) meets draw athletes to compete for the sake of competition with the absence of appearance fees. Some meets are not in want of athletes, per sé.

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  • dl
    replied
    I think the bottom line is that you can make a "rule" that no appearance fees will be paid, but if a meet really wants Athlete X and he/she is not going to show up unless they get an appearance fee (or at least a guaranteed amount against prize/bonuses) then the meet is going to pay.

    Leave a comment:


  • imaginative
    replied
    Originally posted by dl
    Originally posted by imaginative
    As a side-note, I am opposed specifically to appearance money:.
    I understand what you mean, and agree with you to an extent, but step back a bit and think what the track world would be like with only prize money. It would be a lot like the US road racing scene, which foolishly has abandoned appearance fees for the most part, and now is a series of boring races with Africans taking the first 20 spots.

    Nothing against the African road racers. They're fantastic athletes who are doing nothing wrong. But the race directors don't realize that they're producing a boring product. If they took a portion of the money that they put toward prize and put it toward attracting a few top Americans, perhaps a few Europeans, Australians, etc., producing an interesting mixed field with some home country athletes for fans to cheer for/relate to, they'd be much better off.

    Should the DN Galan meet not pay appearance fees to Kluft, Kallur (and Holm, Bergqvist, Olsson, when they were competing) to pack the stands and instead just have prize money on offer for whoever is willing to show up and compete?
    This is an interesting point (which I indeed overlooked). My original take was
    that appearance fees could be replaced by result targets, e.g. the 9.7x
    mentioned in my previous post. With such a system someone like Bolt would have
    incitaments to come---but would also have to actually deliver the results the
    audience would be hoping for.

    Local heros may indeed lose out with such a program, which in turn could have a
    negative effect on the spectator numbers. Possibly, some kind of exception may
    be needed; possibly, another mechanism can be used. However, if we look
    specifically at your road-racing example: Should someone unable to crack the
    top twenty really be paid to participate? (IMO: Top three, OK; top twenty, no.)

    Leave a comment:


  • gh
    replied
    I seem to remember a few decades back, when tennis became open, that a high-level decision was made not to pay any appearance money. Then a while down the road they discovered that promoters were indeed paying the Jimmy Connorses of the world fees to assure their attendance.

    Even with all his gazillions, I suspect Tiger is offered no end of bennies to show.

    But the issue here is what happens if (if this rumor is true) the cutting of appearance money becomes widespread, and athlete revenues are cut? I think what would happen is that the rich would get richer still (because the Bolts of the world will indeed always get paid) and the second-tier athletes will suffer. Not good for the spot overall.

    Leave a comment:


  • tandfman
    replied
    Originally posted by jamaicantrackfan
    Bolt must be exempt from this because Bolt is in such high demand on the circuit, he currently commands about $200,000 per race as per several news reports.

    Bolt is certainly not going to run in Europe for free.
    Would you, if you were he? Would anyone run for free if there are people ready to pay that kind of money? I doubt it.

    Leave a comment:


  • dl
    replied
    Originally posted by imaginative
    As a side-note, I am opposed specifically to appearance money:.
    I understand what you mean, and agree with you to an extent, but step back a bit and think what the track world would be like with only prize money. It would be a lot like the US road racing scene, which foolishly has abandoned appearance fees for the most part, and now is a series of boring races with Africans taking the first 20 spots.

    Nothing against the African road racers. They're fantastic athletes who are doing nothing wrong. But the race directors don't realize that they're producing a boring product. If they took a portion of the money that they put toward prize and put it toward attracting a few top Americans, perhaps a few Europeans, Australians, etc., producing an interesting mixed field with some home country athletes for fans to cheer for/relate to, they'd be much better off.

    Should the DN Galan meet not pay appearance fees to Kluft, Kallur (and Holm, Bergqvist, Olsson, when they were competing) to pack the stands and instead just have prize money on offer for whoever is willing to show up and compete?

    Leave a comment:


  • doug091463
    replied
    i dont think the elimination of prize money will make any difference.
    the people who get the appearance money are basically the people that dont need it, people lie usain bolt, k. bekele, geb etc. these very few stars make lots of money from sponsors, endorsements etc. an an athlete lets say a sprinter hoping to but has yet to get under 10 for the 100, or 20 seconds for the 200 i dont think would get much if any appearance money anyway.

    Leave a comment:


  • jamaicantrackfan
    replied
    Bolt must be exempt from this because Bolt is in such high demand on the circuit, he currently commands about $200,000 per race as per several news reports.

    Bolt is certainly not going to run in Europe for free.

    Leave a comment:


  • doug091463
    replied
    i dont think the elimination of prize money will make any difference.
    the people who get the appearance money are basically the people that dont need it, people lie usain bolt, k. bekele, geb etc. these very few stars make lots of money from sponsors, endorsements etc. an an athlete lets say a sprinter hoping to but has yet to get under 10 for the 100, ot 20 for the 200 i dont think would get much if any appearance money anyway.

    Leave a comment:


  • kuha
    replied
    Originally posted by imaginative
    As a side-note, I am opposed specifically to appearance money
    But our current system--at least the regular, GP circuit--depends on this. Appearance money allows a meet director to guarantee that top names X, Y, and Z will be there--encouraging a healthy sale of tickets, potential media interest, etc.

    A system that allows top athletes to decide two days before a meet whether to compete or not, or which allows them to cancel the day of the meet without any financial penalty, would be fantastic for them in the(very) short run--but a killer for meet directors amd the paying crowd.

    Leave a comment:


  • bad hammy
    replied
    Even today, at least here in the US, if you are not at the top tier in a money-making event you aren't making much of a living. It is like they live an extended life as a poor college kid. Very sad compared to what happens to athletes their age in money-making sports.

    Leave a comment:


  • ExCoastRanger
    replied
    Just finished reading "A Cold Clear Day," a biography on U.S. marathon great Buddy Edelen. One of the fine things about the book is how it portrays the lifestyles of elites in the 1960s.
    Edelen lived in a one-room flat in London, worked full-time as a school teacher (he usually ran to work and ran home as part of his training), raced an average of 42 times per year including club cross country meets, road races and international marathons, and maybe once or twice earned as much as $500 in prize money.
    For one event in another country, which he won, the prize was a piece of furniture he had to defer to the second-place finisher because Buddy couldn't transport it home (where it probably wouldn't have fit in his flat anyway).
    His hometown folks in Minnesota took up a collection so Buddy could afford to return to the U.S. for the '64 Trials.
    And Buddy never ran Boston during his peak years because he couldn't afford the trip, and Jock Semple claimed he didn't have the money to bring him over.

    Leave a comment:


  • kuha
    replied
    Yes, I have a pretty good sense of what the late '60s and '70s was like--and it was just fine then. BUT, the sport has shriveled in everyone's awareness since then, crowded out by a host of other things. The withdrawal of our current professional financial support structure would mean you'd have a smaller pool of athletes--training and competing just for the fun of it--with fewer meets, next to no media attention, fewer clubs, etc. I'm not saying that's "all bad"--just that I honestly believe the clock would be rolled back further than to ca. 1970.

    Leave a comment:


  • gh
    replied
    Originally posted by kuha
    Without the financial structure that we're familiar with--which, granted, is highly elitist, favoring the extremely good far above the merely promising--the sport could revert to some simulacrum of a much earlier era--the 1920s/30s, perhaps?
    Don't need to go that far back. Nice story on my college teammate, Rick Riley (HS recordholder in the 2M between Lindgren and Pre) on the front page yesterday. This included:

    <<....Riley reflected on his career during a time when there was little cash to be earned and performance-enhancing drugs were unheard of.

    "There was some under-the-table money, but not hundreds of thousands of dollars," he said. "You lived in a two-bedroom apartment, existed on food stamps and travel money from races. Your dream was to make the Olympics and maybe a medal, not a living. I learned early that running was not a payday, but for my own personal satisfaction."...>>

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