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RE: World Relays USA Team Announced: US 4x800 W Looking Great. Simpson, Symmonds, Centro, Cain NOT Running
There are a host of Nike athletes running. Jenny Simpson isn't a Nike athlete and she's not running. Nick Symmonds is a Brooks athlete and he's not running. None of Alberto's athletes - Nike are running.
USATF needs to exert more influence to get athletes to run. For the stars it may not matter. At the very least USATF should not be paying athletes to run the Oxy High Performance meet (in year's past, USATF paid for travel for top athletes to that meet that is why so many run it) at the expense of the World Relays.
Everything that is wrong with our sport's appeal I believe is illustrated by athletes running Oxy instead of World Relays. USATF should realize this and not financially encourage it.
Tennis players can't go do exhibitions at the expense of major events. They lose ranking points. Golfers have to play so many events. In track and field, everyone is a free agent and can do what they want. I'm all for athletes rights but their needs to be more central control for the sport to flourish.
At the end of their careers, do you think most athletes would say "yeah running that 'b' level time trial at Oxy" was a better decision than running World Relays? I don't think they will. I think it's a very short sighted decision.
Fans need to express their displeasure with athletes for skipping it.
USATF could also implement policies like you turn down a relay spot for a world event like this without an injury, you get no funding from USATF for anything else for the rest of the year. You can get prize money but any other travel or whatnot, you don't get. At least have that policy in place for major World events which this is trying to be.
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