Jessica Ennis rejects 'cash for dash' campaign over London 2012 Olympic pay
Jessica Ennis will be happy to chase gold rather than lucre when she begins her quest for the Olympic heptathlon title tomorrow.
The Sheffield athlete made it clear yesterday that she did not support the "cash for dash" Twitter campaign being mounted by leading US athletes – most prominently 400m runner Sanya Richards-Ross – with a view to securing payment for athletes at the Olympics and to outlawing Rule 40 of the International Olympic Committee, which restricts what competitors are able to promote during the period of the Games.
"People can get wrapped up in the money side of things," Ennis said, speaking at the British athletics team's pre-competition press conference.
"As athletes, we just want to go out there to perform as best we can.
"It's all about the medal and that's our reward. Any extra thing is a bonus. But it's not about that. I think it would take away from how special it is to actually make the team and win a medal."
Dai Greene, the 400m hurdles world champion and British team captain, also voiced his opposition to the campaign. "As athletes growing up, we never took part in our sports for financial gain," the former Swansea City youth team footballer said. "I certainly would have stuck at football if that were the case.
"I don't think that any of us think for one second that we deserve the right to be paid to be here. We have all worked our socks off just because we want to be here. The gold medal is our payment, and to get the kit.
"To be part of Team GB is something special. I think that's more than enough payment for us all, to be honest."
Long jumper Greg Rutherford agreed. "The risk that you have if you start bringing in payments is that you're going to breed a nation of athletes who think about just making it to the team and that's it," he said.
Charles van Commenee, head coach of the British team, said: "I don't think true Olympians are driven by money. They compete here and represent themselves, the nation, their family, their club, their sport. That's what drives Olympians.
"In my previous job in Holland there was a lot of discussion about bonuses.
"We don't have that in Britain. I feel more comfortable with that. This is more the purity of the sport."
Wow - what a weekend for British Motorcycle racing!
by Luke Wilkins
22 May 2013 05:00 AM
The dust is barely settling on the Premier League season and the bookies are looking to persuade us ...
by Gareth Purnell
22 May 2013 02:01 AM
The guard has changed at Old Trafford for the first time in 26 years. Meanwhile, down the road, the ...
by The Sports Lawyer
21 May 2013 10:01 PM
Gaël Clichy: Roberto Mancini must take share of blame for dismissal
Sergio Garcia apologises for 'fried chicken' remark aimed towards Tiger Woods
Exclusive: Championship clubs set to push for safe-standing trials
Phil Neville in frame for role at Stoke City
Andy Carroll stalls on £15m move to West Ham in hope Newcastle step in
- 1 Terror at Woolwich barracks: Attacker tried to behead and disembowel British soldier
- 2 Gay couple beaten in park urge MPs to moderate language on gay marriage
- 3 After woman sells virginity for $780,000, here are the results of our prostitution survey
- 4 China agrees to impose carbon targets by 2016
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.