Bolt agrees to £500,000 tax-free deal to run two races in London

Bolt agrees to £500,000 tax-free deal to run two races in London

$75-m MAN

Saturday, March 30, 2013

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Bolt agrees to £500,000 tax-free deal to run two races at London Anniversary Games

JAMAICAN sprint king Usain Bolt has agreed to a £500,000 (just under J$75 million) tax-free deal to compete in two events at the London Anniversary Games at the Olympic Stadium in July, the Daily Mail Online reported yesterday.

According to the newspaper, Bolt, the Olympic triple gold medal champion signed a contract to compete on both days of the Diamond League grand prix meeting on July 26 and 27.

The Mail reported Bolt's agent Ricky Simms as saying that they have been having positive negotiations, but there are "still some things to finalise".

"Bolt will be one of a host of Olympic champions, including Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis, and Greg Rutherford who will be in action at the Stratford stadium before many of the stars of the London 2012 Paralympics take the stage on July 28 for a day of disability events," the Daily Mail report said.

"Details of the two events Bolt will be contesting are being kept secret until a formal announcement is made, though it is probable he will compete in one individual sprint race plus the 4x100m relay as he is unlikely to take part in both the 100m and 200m on consecutive days just a fortnight before the start of the World Championships in Moscow," the Daily Mail report added.

"Bolt had previously avoided competing in Britain because UK regulations meant he would be liable to pay tax on his multimillion-pound endorsement earnings, meaning that it would have cost him money to race here," the Daily Mail story said.

"His change of heart follows the decision of the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, revealed in February, to grant a "one-off" tax exemption for overseas athletes taking part in the London meet to make sure an all-star cast could be assembled for the anniversary celebrations," the Daily Mail reported.

Athletes will also pick up any prize money tax-free on top of their appearance fees.

According to the newspaper, the tax exemption is expected to lure other foreign stars, including Kenya's 800m Olympic champion David Rudisha, who set a world record on the London track, and Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake.

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