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British Olympics Association Reach A Compromise With British Athletes To Avoid Legal Action

British athletes competing at this year Tokyo Olympics Game could have something to cheer after a compromise reach with BOA to increase opportunities to thank sponsors by a group of high profile British athletes led by sprinter Adam Gemili who has earlier launched a legal challenge against the BOA over it’s Rule 40 guideline.

According to the Times, under new arrangement; athletes will now be able to thank their personal sponsors three times during Tokyo Olympics 2020 instead of once. They can thank sponsors one per event for a maximum total of three. In a statement, the BOA confirmed it had “agreed to provide a greater level of commercial freedom to athletes whilst preserving the BOA’s unique funding model” and had relaxed it’s “in- market period”.

It said the new guildeline would be published which will have “increased multiple opportunities” for athletes to endorse their personal sponsors during the Game period in due course.

“As an athlete group we are pleased to have reached an agreement with the BOA that moves us into line with other Olympic federations and that provides every athlete an equal and fair chance to generate sponsorship revenue in the build up to and during the Games,” Gemili said.

“Most importantly I would like to thank my team-mates who have supported this movement both openly and behind the scenes, together we have made a real difference and demonstrated the strength of unity”, he added.

Countries including the United States and Australia are among those to have relaxed Rule 40 guidelines, which subject athletes to sponsorship restrictions.

The BOA has followed suit, but had only allowed athletes to issue one generic thank you message during the Games period under its old guidelines. Rule 40 was amended following a change to the Olympic Charter, forced upon the IOC following the decision in Germany.

It previously warned that “no competitor, team official or other team personnel who participates in the Olympic Games may allow his person, name, picture or sports performances to be used for advertising purposes during the Olympic Games”.

The rule now reads: “Competitors, team officials and other team personnel who participate in the Olympic Games may allow their person, name, picture or sports performances to be used for advertising purposes during the Olympic Games in accordance with the principles determined by the IOC Executive Board.”

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