Pamela Connellan

Money & Banking

Sneaky twist in Olympic medallists' $20k bonus

Sneaky twist in Olympic medallists' $20k bonus

Australian athletes who won a medal at the Olympics or Paralympics in Tokyo this year are about to receive a major monetary bonus – but there is one catch.

Australian athletes who finished on the podium at the Olympics in Tokyo will not receive the bonus of $20,000 if they retire after the Games.

The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) gives a $20,000 cash bonus to Olympic gold medallists, while silver medallists and bronze medallists take home $15,000 and $10,000 respectively.

The AOC has confirmed it will not give money to any athletes who are retiring after the Games – all for one exception. If the athlete is a Paralympian and they retire after the Games, they will still receive the bonus.

Medal Incentive Funding from AOC

The Medal Incentive Funding (MIF) is entirely funded by the AOC and is independent of the federal government.

Set up as an annual athlete incentive scheme, an AOC statement says: ‘MIF aims to incentivise athletes to continue training, with the goal of representing Australia at the next Olympic Games, summer and winter,’

The AOC statement explains the MIF is not available to athletes who stop competing at an elite level.

‘Athletes must maintain appropriate training regimes with the intention of gaining national selection in the following year in order to receive the payment,’ the statement explains.

This rule does not apply to Australia’s Paralympians

However, this rule will not apply to Australia’s Paralympians.

Sports Minister Richard Colbeck said: “Every Australian Paralympian who received a medal for their performance at the Tokyo Games will receive a bonus payment.”

“This includes any athlete who is planning to retire,” he added.

Only last week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Australia’s Paralympic medallists will for the first time receive equivalent bonus payments to their Olympic counterparts.

Speaking before the House of Representatives, the Prime Minister said the move recognised the “national significance” of the Paralympic team.

Prior to Mr Morrison’s announcement, the Paralympic athletes did not receive any monetary bonuses for winning medals.

This year’s Paralympics featured more than 4500 athletes representing 163 different countries.

Australia finished seventh on the Tokyo Paralympic Games medal tally with 21 gold, 29 silver and 30 gold medals.

Image: Getty Images

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