Tax-free for Bolt

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We’ve seen Asafa Powell, Tyson Gay, and Brittney Reese all compete inside the UK with no questions asked.

But ever since the great Usain Bolt arrived on the scene from the 2008 Beijing Olympics we’ve hardly seen the Jamaican set foot into the country, but why?

Simply because of the tax law the Government brought into play, meaning athletes competing in the UK are liable for a 50% tax rate on their appearance fee as well as a proportion of their total worldwide earnings.

This put off athletes like Bolt, because with the money he would earn from a race, half of that would disappear and as a consequence it meant that crowds simply didn ‘t turn up to Grand Prix or event didn ‘t sell as fast.

But luckily, when the Olympics arrived in town nearly a year ago, big named athletes were exempt from paying any form of income for making or winning finals, hence why fans had to wait for Bolt to come back to Britain.

Recently it was announced that come the arrival of the Anniversary Games, which will celebrate one year of Super Saturday, all athletes that are due to compete will not have to feel the pinch from the government. Primarily this would be down to capturing big headline acts such as Jessica Ennis, Mo Farah, Jonnie Peacock and of course, Bolt.

What this means now for fans, is that they can sit and enjoy the event, knowing that they will see the biggest and best displays of track and field to date, with maybe one or two curveballs thrown in there to spice things up a bit.

For those who were unlucky to get Olympic tickets but did however get tickets for the Anniversary Games, will get a taste of what it was like to sit with a capacity crowd and atmosphere while world-class athletics goes one around them, after all the event sold out in minutes which is enough to go on.

In the future, if organisers and the government can arrange competitions that allow exemptions for big names in athletics, it could mean that events of huge magnitudes could be staged more frequently.