NSW Rising Stars recognised with Commonwealth Games NSW Grants

15 May 2024

Photo Credit: NSW Triathlon

Two of NSW’s up and coming, rising stars in the sport have been recognised by the Commonwealth Games NSW division, receiving funding and support through their ‘Athlete Grant Program’.

Skye Bell (Illawarra Triathlon Club) and Jack Caldwell (Non-Club Member) were the recipients of the award, both athletes with bright and exciting futures, full of determination and desire to make it to the top echelons and represent Australia on the international stage.

Jack Caldwell, who lives in Eden in NSW’s South Coast has no access to a local triathlon club and therefore has the added barrier of living 600 km away from his coach, James Sweeney (Coach Sweeney Performance).

As a result, he plans to use this money fund the travel to access face-to-face sessions and hopes to race overseas soon using the grant to off-set some expenses and experience his first international race.

Inspired by Aussie superstar Mat Hauser, his next goal is to make his first Australian team to compete at the Junior World championships.

His long-term goal is to represent Australia at the Commonwealth Games and Olympics.

Despite some challenges with injuries this season, he’s hopeful to resolve these issues and continue to train hard and consistently.

When asked what he loves about Triathlon, it was hard to limit his enthusiasm.

“I love pushing myself to the limit and seeing what I can achieve when I do that. The triathlon community is welcoming and supportive and I’ve met many new friends since beginning in the sport. I look forward to race days to be around these people” Jack stated.

“To be nominated by NSW Triathlon and then recognised by Commonwealth Games NSW means a lot to me. I appreciate the acknowledgement of my ability and aspiration to represent and win in the green and gold”, Jack added.

My personal quote is ‘push yourself because no-one is going to do it for you!’.

Skye Bell, who hails from Wollongong and is a part of the local Illawarra Triathlon Club and a product of the flourishing and highly successful Illawarra Academy of Sport program, said funding will assist her participation in higher-level racing events next season allowing her to cover expenses for travel, accommodation, entry fees, and acquiring the necessary gear and equipment to compete at her best.

Like Jack, Skye hopes to grow as an athlete and advance in the pathway which will allow her to compete at the higher levels as she gets older.

British Triathlete Georgia Taylor-Brown is her sporting inspiration as she demonstrates amazing resilience and talent in triathlon combined with remarkable determination. Georgia’s humility and sportsmanship make her a stand-out role model for young athletes like Skye. 

Winter will see a big focus on swimming, an area she wants to turn from a weakness to a strength in the off season, ready to springboard and launch into the Billigence Series in 2024/2025.

Skye has triathlon in the family, and deep roots in the sport, coached by her father Ben Bell, arguably one of the best Age Group Athletes to ever race in the sport of triathlon.

Skye added ‘I’m passionate about triathlon because it’s been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. My family has deep roots in the sport, and I’ve been surrounded by it since childhood. This mixed with the fact that I just find training and racing enjoyable makes triathlon easy to be passionate about”.

We wish Skye and Jack all the best of luck, as we do all athletes in the NSW / ACT Pathway Program and can’t wait to see where their triathlon careers take them!



Related Posts