Whilst images of Lauren Steadman on the podium and Alex Yee taking gold for the mixed relay dominated the coverage from Tokyo 2020, there was a team behind the team who helped make those moments happen.
Coaches have played a key role in the development of the athletes who represented Team GB and ParalympicsGB in Tokyo, whether that was the first coach who introduced them to swim, bike, run; the coaches that guided them along the pathway; or the coaches who supported them in their qualification and racing in Japan.
Over the past year, British Triathlon have been proud to recognise the contribution made to Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games successes by coaches, both internal and external of the performance team, who worked directly with the medal-winning athletes.
The coaches being recognised for their contribution are:
Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
Ben Bright – Mixed Team Relay (Gold), Georgia Taylor-Brown (Silver), Alex Yee (Silver)
Coz Tantrum – Jonny Brownlee in the Mixed Team Relay (Gold)
Kevin Dawson – Jess Learmonth in the Mixed Team Relay (Gold)
Ian Mitchell – Mixed Team Relay (Gold), Georgia Taylor-Brown (Silver),
Mark Buckingham – Mixed Team Relay (Gold)
Adam Elliott – Mixed Team Relay (Gold), Alex Yee (Silver)
Russ Barber – Mixed Team Relay (Gold), Georgia Taylor-Brown (Silver)
Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games
Jonathon Riall – Lauren Steadman (PTS5 -Gold), George Peasgood (PTS5 – Silver), Claire Cashmore (PTS5 – Bronze)
Bex Milnes – George Peasgood (PTS5 – Silver), Claire Cashmore (PTS5 – Bronze)
Robin Brew– Lauren Steadman (PTS5 -Gold)
Matt Jefferson, Head of Performance People and Culture Development at British Triathlon, said: “As we look back over the past 12 to 18 months and the success we saw in Tokyo across both our Olympic and Paralympic groups, it is absolutely right that we take some time to reflect on the impact that coaches from across our network had on our athletes’ ability to perform on the world stage when it mattered most.
“The role of a coach, particularly in our sport, can so often go unseen. They’re rarely in view of the public and rarely able to accompany the athletes they work with to the start line of the biggest races of their lives, but the impact they’ve had and continue to have travels with them during their races, their time as an athlete and far beyond into their lives after sport.”
“Some of the coaches we’ve recognised here have played a part in the success of a single athlete, some in the journey of a few athletes and others in the contribution the athletes made to the gold medal winning mixed team relay performance.
“Each has an incredible story to tell, put in hours of unseen work and make huge sacrifices to support athletes to achieve success in our sport. We thank them for their outstanding contribution and count ourselves incredibly lucky to have them as key members of the British Triathlon Performance Team whether they’re employed by us, or not.”
Nominations for Triathlon England, Triathlon Scotland and Welsh Triathlon Awards, as well as for BBC Sports Personality of the Year Unsung Hero are now open, giving you the opportunity to nominate a coach, other individual or organisation who has supported you in your swim, bike, run journey.