People often ask Sydney 2000 Olympic triathlete Miles Stewart: “Why have you taken on the role as the CEO of Triathlon Australia?”
“You had a successful business career and you also kept an eye on the sport you love and being on the board – you had the best of both worlds.
“Why did you want to eat, breathe and sleep the sport again?”
The answer says Stewart, is simple: “Passion!”
“Triathlon is in my blood and I guess when you get glued to something for so long it sticks and for me I’m stuck forever,” says Stewart.
“I wanted to come back into the sport I love and put back what the sport has given me and put my energy into getting as many Australians as possible onto the starting line.
“I still vividly remember my first starting line – it was in 1985 – and I was 14. It was Robina on the Gold Coast.
“My high school teacher was a triathlon race promoter at the time and he invited me down for the weekend.
“I was doing cross country at high school and I was doing some swimming and I was currently racing bikes so I put the three together and did my first race.
“I finished fourth overall…really enjoyed the experience and it kicked on from there.
Fifteen-years after his triathlon debut Stewart found himself on the Sydney 2000 Olympic starting line and the best male finisher, in sixth place.
He is the one name that has been connected to the sport on all levels and he is re-living his love affair with the sport through his daughter who completed her first triathlon at the age of six.
Stewart’s passion, his devotion to the personal best performance and increasing participation in the sport he loves are the key messages to be embraced in Triathlon Australia’s Strategic Plan.
It’s a plan for the people, a sport that exists to enrich the sporting landscape by issuing a unique challenge anyone can accept.
“Triathlon is the every person sport; you don’t have to be the best swimmer, the best bike rider, the best runner; or have any fancy equipment, just have the willingness to take up the challenge,” says Stewart.
"It's the inclusiveness our sport offers that is so special; not just catering for all ages and abilities at events but through our clubs where so many connect and develop as they choose.
“Everything in our strategic plan is built around the challenge of mutual progression across all three areas – passion, performance and participation; building and connecting the passion…. growing the participation at all levels and all formats and strengthening the performance of the elite athletes who are the pinnacle and inspiration for our sport.
“Our ambition for excellence through the high performance pathway is clear. To create a culture of uncompromising success for our elite athletes, supported by a world-class nationwide network of high-performance environments, facilities and pathway focused clubs.“Our passion, performance and participation will direct and discipline our decision-making and our efforts as custodians of triathlon in Australia. These three pillars represent the balance we require to maintain the unique essence that is triathlon. They are the triple bottom line of our strategy for 2016-2019.”
CEO, Triathlon Australia