Trinidad and Tobagoan athletes competing at the 2015 Pan American Games, which just kicked off this past weekend in Toronto, will have extra incentive to land themselves atop the podium in their respective events.
The Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC), has announced that monetary medal bonuses will be awarded to athletes winning a medal of any color during the Pan Am Games. TTOC Vice President, Dr. Ian Hypolite, says that the extra financial enticement is a bold initiative and is meant to let the athletes know that their individual and team efforts are appreciated. This payout is part of the country’s #10Golds24 program, which aims at adding eight more Olympic gold medals by the 2024 Summer Games.
George Bovell, Dylan Carter and Christian Marsden are the three national swimmers slated to compete in Toronto, therefore, just the individual event incentives would apply in the aquatic realm. Of the three, Bovell is most likely to earn a medal at Pan Ams and reap the monetary benefit. He is racing the 50m freestyle event, a contest in which he claimed bronze at the 2007 edition of the games.
The payment structure is as follows:
$3,000 for Gold
$2,000 for Silver
$1,000 for Bronze
$9,000 for Gold
$6,000 for Silver
$3,000 for Bronze
“There are a lot of expectations surrounding our athletes but I think the public needs to understand that athletic success is not a given and that support is always vital. The incentives are one thing but what the TTOC is really calling upon is for corporate Trinidad and Tobago to support our athletes,” Hypolite explained. “Motivation is a complex thing. Many athletes are already intrinsically motivated however some extrinsic motivation in the form of a reward can always be like the icing on the cake so to speak,” Hypolite continued.
As such, Trinidad and Tobago stresses that this payout program would not be possible without its sponsors, which include, bpTT, Guardian Group, Scotiabank, adidas, Lisa Communications and NLCB.