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US$ millionaire Bolt shocked at his financial worth

Published:Wednesday | January 20, 2016 | 1:33 PMShane Fairman, Sport Writer
Bolt: “ ... I never knew that I would make so much money.” Bolt made a total of just over J$2.5 billion or the equivalent of US$21 million last year, and was among the top 100 biggest sport earners globally.

As a boy who reportedly ran bare-footed for William Knibb Memorial High School at the annual ISSA/Boys and Girls Athletic Championships inside the National Stadium, sprint star Usain Bolt, now the face of global athletics, says he did not foresee achieving so much glitter and fame from the sport.

Bolt made a total of just over J$2.5 billion or the equivalent of US$21 million last year, and was among the top 100 biggest sport earners globally.

Despite dropping 27 places from 45 in 2014 to 73, alongside Barcelona ace-forward Luis Suarez on the Forbes Magazine list of the world’s highest paid athletes in 2015, Bolt says he remains happy with his earnings.

“I never knew that. I am as shocked as you. I never knew that I would make so much money,” he told The Gleaner following his sixth RJR Foundation Sportsman of the year award.

“It’s always great to win a Jamaican award and to win it so many times. For me it’s an honour to be looked at by your peers and as Jamaicans as being the best and I give thanks for that always,” he said.

Bolt, the reigning Olympic and World Championship sprint triple champion, picked up most of his earnings through ontrack appearances and endorsement deals.

Other outstanding black athletes included retired boxer Floyd Mayweather, who earned US$300 million to top sports 2015 rich list.

Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James raked in $64.8 million, Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant $54.1 million and golfer Tiger Woods $50.6 million.

LA Lakers guard Kobe Bryant made $49.5 million, while tennis star Serena Williams took in $26.4 million to place 47th.