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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Cashing In On Marathon Swimming

The Daily Mail reported that Olympic 10km Marathon Swim gold medal favorite Keri-Anne Payne has generated income of £500,000 from her sponsors, Links of London, British Gas, Speedo, Max Factor and Oral-B.

With her bright smile, it is no wonder Oral-B is one of her sponsors. With British Gas' support of British Swimming, it makes sense that British Gas and Speedo have also jumped along her wake. And with her attractive charisma, Max Factor and Links of London are also supporting the personable ambassador of the sport.

She was signed up as the new face of Max Factor’s False lash effect gold mascara and will be one of the most-promoted personalities in the UK as the Olympic fever continues to build.

Up from her 2011 annual income of £300,000, Payne can earn plenty more in this Olympic year. If she wins the Olympic marathon swim as expected, her income could take off in the stratosphere. Her income will not be at the level of Olympic pool gold medalists like Michael Phelps, Kosuke Kitajima of Japan or Park Tae-hwan of Korea who pulled in millions of dollars in endorsements as a result of their Olympic successes, but she should generate a very good amount relatively speaking.

Among history's greatest open water swimmers, there have been more than a few swimmers who have earned a good living based on their exploits over the years. Swimmers like George Young received US$25,000 in 1927 for winning the Wrigley Ocean Marathon, the first swimmer across the Catalina Channel. Cliff Lumsdon won C$84,000 in 1955 at the Canadian National Exhibition swim and over C$150,000 over his career. But the probable top revenue-generator among the women was early 20th century open water swimmer and later movie star Annette Kellerman whose life was the subject of the movie Million Dollar Mermaid, a hint at what she earned over her long career.

While John Kinsella and Paul Asmuth earned some nice change on the professional marathon swimming circuit with their dozens and dozens of victories in the 1970s and 1980s, Olympic champion Larisa Ilchenko reportedly received an expensive apartment in central Moscow as a result of her dramatic victory at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

But while the top open water swimmers have enjoyed the fruits of their labors, it was really Abdul Latif Abou-Heif who undoubtedly set the standard. After his victories on the professional circuit, he was gifted some large well-placed plots of land in Egypt that have been reportedly valued at over US$70 million.

Payne may not get to Abdul Latif Abou-Heif's level, but there will be a lot riding on her success from a commercial perspective at the London Olympics.

Those years of sacrifice, hard work and early morning practices seem to be paying off.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source

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