May 29 - Aquatics and gymnastics are set for a big financial boost at Rio 2016 after the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) ruling Executive BOard today announced a new controversial system which will determine how much money each sport receives from the Games.
The previous groupings, in place since Atlanta 1996, saw four groups, with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) placed in the top group on its own.
But, following London 2012, the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations (ASOIF) asked the IOC Executive Board to use clear data analysis from the Games to create a new, fairer grouping system.
Following the research, IOC President Jacques Rogge announced here that there will now be five groups – A, B, C, D and E – with aquatics and gymnastics moved into the top tier group A alongside athletics.
It means athletics will receive less money at Rio 2016 than it did at London 2012, given that it will now have to share the top bracket with two other sports.
Group B consists of basketball, cycling football, tennis and volleyball.
Group C has archery, badminton, boxing, judo, rowing, shooting, table tennis and weightlifting.
Group D features canoeing, equestrian, fencing, handball, taekwondo, triathlon, sailing and wrestling.
Group E has modern pentathlon, as well as golf and rugby sevens – the two sports admitted to the Olympic programme for Rio 2016.
"The new grouping are part of a calculation of data from London 2012, after we were asked by ASOIF to undertake this task," Rogge said.
"It must be stressed that ASOIF will be in charge of distributing the money."
Rogge also confirmed at the press conference, as reported first on insidethegames yesterday, here that the 26 summer sports that appeared at London 2012 will share a windfall of over half-a-billion dollars – with $519.6 million (£345.2 million/€403.8 million) revealed as the final figure they will receive from the Games last summer.
It represents an increase of 75.5 per cent from Beijing 2008, where the sports shared $296 million (£184 million/€227 million).
From the $519.6 million (£345.2 million/€403.8 million) from London 2012, athletics took just under $50 million (£32 million/€38 million) due to its sole top tier status, which amounts to just under 10 per cent of the total share.
The total Games revenue amounts to around 35 to 40 per cent of the income for the vast major of sports.
The figure for Rio 2016 is likely to be similar to that of London 2012 due to the fact that the IOC negotiated the broadcast and sponsor rights for both Games at the same time.
The next significant change will be between Rio 2016 and 2020 Olympic Games.
"There certainly won't be a big jump from London to Rio," ASOIF executive director Andrew Ryan told insidethegames.
"It is also important to remember that at Rio, 28 sports will be sharing the money - unlike 26 at London - due to the addition of golf and rugby sevens.
"The groupings are also not an exact formula for how much money each sport receives but it clearly plays a very big role.
"We will now go and discuss this as ASOIF as we begin to work out exactly how we distribute the money from Rio."
Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]
May 2013: Half-a-billion dollars windfall for London 2012 sports
December 2012: Olympic summer sports set to receive over $450 million following London 2013