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  1. #1
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    An old article about American skaters' earnings

    A lot of people have voiced curiosity over the years about skaters' earnings, and while it's evident that in this sport it's impossible to generalize as it varies so much, there was an article from the LA times that came out in late 2011 which did shed a bit of light on what some of the very elite American skaters were making (at least from their federations) during the skating boom in the late 90s vs now. It's a very interesting read, but I came out of it with a few questions

    http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2...re-skating-caa

    This is an excerpt from page 2 of the article:

    Although Bezic's remark about financial gain was ridiculous (why shouldn't a skater with Lysacek's career record profit from it?), the business has changed so much that it would be hard for the U.S. federation to pay Lysacek anything near what it did Michelle Kwan, Tara Lipinski, Sarah Hughes, Kimmie Meissner, Sasha Cohen, Timothy Goebel and Michael Weiss from 1997 through 2005.

    Each of the skaters in the previous paragraph (other than Lysacek) made in excess of $100,000 from appearance fees (the totals also include prize money funneled through USFS) during one of those years, as the federation reported in its tax filings under the category of the top five independent contractors making $100,000 or more in a year.

    Kwan, the most decorated U.S. figure skater in history, earned $6.3 million from 1997 through 2005 (best year: $899,000 on the 1998 tax filing).

    Cohen made from $315,000 to $473,000 from 2002 through 2005; Weiss pulled in $505,000 in 2003, Hughes $518,000 in 2002, Goebel $353,000 in 2002, Lipinski $433,000 in 1997.

    (FYI: Tax filings are for a fiscal year, so Lipinski's 1997 earnings, for instance, were from July 1, 1997 through June 30, 1998 -- the months following her U.S. and world titles and including her 1998 Olympic title).

    And the tax filing had to list only the five highest earners. There were others making six figures.

    For the big earners, the bulk of the money was appearance fees to guarantee they skated on ABC shows like Skate America and the pro-ams U.S. Figure Skating once ran. Those fees came out of the TV revenues, which reached $12 million annually in the final eight years of ABC's contract with USFS.

    In the two most recent USFS tax filings, through June 30, 2010, no skater is listed among independent contractors earning more than $50,000 a year (the IRS lowered the reporting level).
    The quote specifies that the yearly earnings listed above include not just appearance fees but also "prize money funneled through USFS".

    Is all prize money still funneled through USFS? Does that mean USFS takes a percentage?

    Also, do the yearly earnings listed above include:
    -Endorsement deals
    -Revenue from touring (Ice shows were very lucrative and commonplace in the late 90's as opposed to now).
    -Miscellaneous

    I know the article implies that this is only each skaters' earnings in relation to the USFS (as independent contractors), but since I've heard of some coaches getting a percentage of all of their skaters' earnings including touring, it made me wonder..
    Last edited by iarispiralllyof; 04-24-2013 at 05:43 PM.

  2. #2
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    That the way I took the amount is just what the usfsa, got for the skaters through the USFSAn not what the skater,received,individualy from stated sponsor,tour, appearance,
    Only what the skater received from promoting skate america, pro am sponsored by usfsa, nationals,. World ,gp event , final.
    I thought I remember someone stating they received 75,000 for each of the 6-8events.
    2 gp events, gp final worlds,nationals, 1-2pro am events.

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