Australian triathlon legends Michellie Jones, Emma Snowsill and Peter Robertson – who won eight world championships between them - have been inducted into the International Triathlon Union (ITU) Hall of Fame, it was announced today.
In a celebrated day for Triathlon Australia, the decorated trio are among seven new inductees who will be officially honoured at a gala held as a part of the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final Chicago on Thursday, September 17.
Jones, Snowsill and Robertson will join original Australian inductees Emma Carney and Greg Welch, who were honoured in Edmonton last year – giving Australia the most of any country in the Hall of Fame.
Sydney Olympian Jones was regarded as one of the greatest all-round female triathletes in the history of the sport, winning silver when triathlon debuted at the Sydney 2000 Games; two ITU World Championships in 1992 and 1993; the 2006 Ironman World Championship and two World Cup Championships.
In a long and distinguished career, Jones formed part of a golden era for Australia’s female triathletes which saw the girls in green and gold win eight world crowns between 1992 and 2000.
Jones was also a regular podium finisher winning bronze in 1991 and 1997 (in a an Australian trifecta behind Emma Carney and Jackie Gallagher) silver to Australia’s Joanne King in 1998 and bronze to Nicole Hackett in 2000 and Emma Snowsill in 2003 – an amazing span of 13 years.
In typical low key Jones, who will act as a guide for Australia’s vision-impaired Paratriathlete Katie Kelly in Chicago this year, she wrote on twitter: ”Guess who made it in….” with a link to the ITU website site announcement.
Two-time Olympian Robertson won three ITU World Championships in 2001, 2003 and 2005; a record 17 World Cup victories and bronze to Brad Kahlefeldt n the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne.
Robertson and Snowsill shared special moments in Queenstown in 2003 and in Gamagori in 2005 when they both won world championships in great days for Australian triathlon.
It came two years after his inaugural ITU World title over fellow Aussie Chis Hill and Kiwi Craig Watson in Edmonton in 2001.
Robertson joined Great Britain’s Simon Lessing as the next three-time world champion in Gamagori which saw Australia’s Brad Kahlefeldt join him on he podium, taking the bronze.
Snowsill became the first Australian to win Olympic gold in 2008 in Beijing and was a three time ITU World Champion, 2003, 2005 and 2006, the 2006 Commonwealth Games gold medallist and 2000 ITU World Junior Champion.
It was an extraordinary day in Beijing for Australia with Snowsill taking rare Olympic gold and team mate Emma Moffatt the bronze.
There were three ITU World Championships in an amazing career – with gold alongside Robertson in 2003 and 2005 before going back-to-back in Lausanne in 2006.
Snowsill would round out her ITU podiums with a silver in 2007 to fellow 2015 inductee and the girl she would beat for Olympic gold in Beijing, Vanessa Fernandez from Portugal.
The three Australians join Fenandes and Olympic champions Hamish Carter (NZL) from 2004 and Simon Whitfield (Canada) from 2000 as the other 2015 inductees.
The ITU President and IOC Member Marisol Casado welcomed the class of 2015 into the ITU Hall of Fame.
“It is with great pleasure that I welcome these seven inductees into the ITU Hall of Fame,” said Ms Casado.
“Despite our short history of 26 years as an International Federation, ITU has been privileged to have witnessed incredible athletes accomplish amazing feats. They laid the foundation for the Federation we have grown into today.”
Jones, Snowsill and Robertson will attend the induction ceremony that will take place following the men’s Under23 and Junior and Age Group Sprint Distance World Championship races in Chicago on September 17.
ITU announces 2015 Hall of Fame Inductees
Michellie Jones (AUS) - 2000 Sydney Olympic Games Silver Medalist, 2 x ITU World Champion, 2006 Ironman World Champion, 2 x overall World Cup Champion
Vanessa Fernandes (POR) - 2007 ITU World Championship: 1st 2007, 2008 Beijing Olympic Games silver medallist, 2 x World Cup Champion, 2 x ITU Duathlon World Champion, holds record World Cup wins with 20
Emma Snowsill (AUS) - 3 x ITU World Champion, 2008 Beijing Olympic Champion, 2000 ITU World Junior Champion, 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games Champion
Hamish Carter (NZL) - 2004 Athens Olympic Champion, 1998 ITU World Cup Overall Champion (1998), 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games bronze medallist, 2 x ITU World Triathlon Championships silver medallist
Peter Robertson (AUS) - 3 x ITU Triathlon World Champion, 2 x Olympian, 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games bronze medallist, record World Cup wins with 17
Simon Whitfield (CAN) – 2000 Sydney Olympic Champion, 2008 Beijing Olympic Games silver medallists, 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games Champion, 1999 Winnipeg Pan American Games bronze medallist
Those nominated for the men’s and women’s categories were selected based on the criteria that each has a championship title in one or more ITU World Championships, Olympic Games, Paralympic Games, World Cup Series, and/or ITU World Rankings.