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Record prize money at 2012 U.S. Open as $25.5 million up for grabs

July 11, 2012 -- Updated 1840 GMT (0240 HKT)
Roger Federer claimed the largest prize pot in tennis history, walking away with $2.4 million after the 2007 US Open.
Roger Federer claimed the largest prize pot in tennis history, walking away with $2.4 million after the 2007 US Open.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • 2012 U.S. Open prize purse will be increased by more than $2m.
  • The total prize money at Flushing Meadows will top $25m
  • Bonus prize money could leave a potential grand total of $28.1m.
  • The prizes awarded will continue to be equal for both men and women.

(CNN) -- Prize money at this year's U.S. Open will be increased by over $2 million to a record $25.5 million, organizers announced Wednesday.

The increase will see a top prize of $1.9m for both the men's and women's champions, continuing the tradition of gender-equal prizes dating back 40 years.

The remaining majority of the payout will be distributed throughout the main draw, with 224 out of 256 singles players guaranteed an increase in prize money of at least 18%.

"We recognize the mounting financial pressures associated with competing on the global professional tennis circuits and especially for those who do not reach the second week of the U.S. Open.

"We believe the additional prize money, as well as how it will be strategically distributed, will help alleviate some of the pressure," said Jon Vegosen, U.S. Tennis Association (USTA) President and Chairman of the Board.

We recognize the mounting financial pressures associated with competing on the global professional tennis circuits
Jon Vegosen, USTA

These record-breaking figures will be supplemented by potential bonuses from the Emirates Airline U.S. Open Series Bonus Challenge.

The top three men's and top three women's finishers in the Emirates Airline U.S. Open Series will be awarded an additional bonus prize of up to $1m at the end of the grand slam, provided they earn points in at least two series events.

These bonuses have led to the two largest payouts in history, with Roger Federer taking $2.4m in 2007 and Kim Clijsters earning $2.2m in both 2005 and 2010.

This leaves the potential overall prize money on offer at $28.1 million.

The cash boost comes on the heels of the announcement that the U.S. Open will benefit from a $500m development of the Flushing Meadows area.

A new Louis Armstrong Stadium, a new grandstand on unused land at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and a double-deck viewing area for fans to watch players practice will all be constructed over the next 10 years.

However, there are still no plans to put a roof on the main Arthur Ashe Stadium court.

In other tennis news Wednesday, Lukas Rosol, who sent second seed Rafael Nadal crashing out of Wimbledon in one of the biggest upsets in the tournament's history, made an early exit from the ATP tournament in Stuttgart.

Czech Rosol was sent packing 7-6 7-6 by Bjorn Phau of Germany in their second round match.

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