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2008 Performance Pool Program

The highest priority of USATF and the attendees of several USATF-sponsored High Performance Planning meetings was the provision for direct financial support to athletes in need. The current average age for an Olympian is 27 years. This reality means that recently graduated athletes may have five years before reaching the pinnacle of their careers as elite athletes. Athletes need varying amounts of monetary support to stay in the sport during that period between their collegiate and Olympic experience. In addition to the monetary support offered to athletes, USATF recognizes that compensation must be provided to top coaches to give them incentive to remain in the sport and continue coaching elite athletes. Regulations complicate the coaching of elite athletes by current NCAA coaches, while coaches outside the collegiate system have a difficult time surviving on that vocation alone. A coaching stipend will help alleviate these issues and will motivate coaches to remain with their post-collegiate, competitive athletes.

In order to keep top athletes in the sport after graduation and to assist them with their everyday living expenses, USATF created a three-tier program of direct athlete support that includes the coaching stipend.

In order to qualify for this funding in 2008, an athlete must:

  1. Rank in the Top 1-10 in the World from 2007 or Top 5 in the World from 2006
  2. Compete in the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Track & Field
  3. Maintain good standing with USATF, the USOC, and USADA
  4. Be a member of USATF in good standing

The program provides funding to athletes based on the formula below:

  1. Athletes ranked 1-10 in the World in 2007, under the income cap of $40,000:
    1. Direct Athlete Support - $10,000
    2. Medical Expense Reimbursement - $1,500
    3. Coaching stipend paid directly to the coach - $2,000
    4. TOTAL: $13,500
  2. Athletes ranked 1-10 in the World in 2006, above the income cap of $40,000:
    1. Medical Expense Reimbursement - $1,500
    2. Coaching stipend paid directly to the coach - $2,000
    3. Fly coach to Olympic Games if athlete makes the team - $2,000
    4. TOTAL: $4,500
  3. Athletes ranked Top 5 in the World in 2006, under the income cap of $40,000:
    1. Direct Athlete Support - $7,000
    2. Medical Expense Reimbursement - $1,500
    3. Coaching stipend paid directly to the coach - $1,000
    4. TOTAL: $9,500

An athlete must identify his/her coach at the beginning of each year, and the stipend will be paid directly to the coach. In order to receive a stipend, coaches will be required to be members of USATF and adhere to its rules.

If you have any questions regarding the Performance Pool Program, please contact Sariyu "Beka" Suggs at 317-713-4689 or by e-mail at Sariyu.Suggs@usatf.org.

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