SwimmingIan Thorpe’s Former Coach Tracey Menzies-Stegbauer Returns To Pool Deck With Swimming...

Ian Thorpe’s Former Coach Tracey Menzies-Stegbauer Returns To Pool Deck With Swimming Australia’s Coach Leadership team 

Tracey Menzies-Stegbauer, the woman who coached Ian Thorpe to Olympic and World Championship glory, will celebrate the 20th anniversary of those successes with her appointment as Technical Lead on Swimming Australia’s Coach Leadership team.

Swimming Australia made the announcement today that Menzies-Stegbauer would be joining Australian Dolphins Head Coach Rohan Taylor as well as coaches Leigh Nugent, Simon Cusack and Mel Tantrum,the group to lead, support and develop coaches and their athletes building towards the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

GLORY DAYS: Tracey Menzies with Michael Klim and Ian Thorpe at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Photo Courtesy: News Corp

Menzies-Stegbauer will have a focus on working closely with coaches of categorised athletes in the National Flippers (Youth) Squads across Victoria and Tasmania, providing direction and support to the Pathway Managers at Swimming Victoria and Swimming Tasmania.

It will be a welcome appointment for one of Australia’s most respected coaches – with a wealth of knowledge in coaching at the very highest level – who took over Thorpe’s career after he split from long time coach Doug Frost post the 2002 Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacs.

And not only did Menzies-Stegbauer coach Thorpe to successful 200 and 400m freestyle World Championship defences in Barcelona in 2003 but also navigated him through the dramatic circumstances that saw the 2000 Olympic star disqualified from the 400m freestyle heat and was subsequently disqualified at the 2004 Australian Olympic Trials

Before he sensationally won the event in Athens after long-time training partner and teammate Craig Stevens withdrew to allow the 2000 Olympic champion the chance to defend his title.

In typical Thorpe fashion, he captured the gold from teammate Grant Hackett in the final strokes, snatching victory in his last ever 400m freestyle by 0.26secs as well as a stirring win in the 200m freestyle – dubbed the “Race Of The Century.”

Two decades on and Menzies-Stegbauer still retains the passion and the desire to make a difference and said she was looking forward to starting the role with Swimming Australia with the goal to further develop high performance coaching and improve athletic performances in Victoria, Tasmania and around Australia.

“I am excited to work with coaches and their athletes and will use my skills, knowledge and experience to continue to mentor, coach and enable technical and collaborative performance environments for athletes and coaches in swimming,” said Menzies-Stegbauer.

“Technical excellence, planning, education, and athlete well-being are central to my coaching approach.”

Both Swimming Victoria and Swimming Tasmania have welcomed the appointment.

Swimming Victoria CEO Jason Hellwig said he was delighted to welcome Tracey to the Victorian swimming community and congratulated Swimming Australia on their investment and work to bring Tracey into such an important and exciting role.

“Tracey has a track record of success and will make a positive difference to Victorian Swimming.  We look forward to supporting her to develop Victoria’s very best swimmers and coaches,” Hellwig said.

Swimming Tasmania CEO Jamie McIntyre, concurred, saying: “We are very excited to have Tracey’s support for our coaches and athletes.

“Tracey’s understanding of high performance together with her education background make her a great fit for this role in Tasmania.”

While Swimming Australia’s General Manager Performance Pathways, Gary Barclay knows only too well what Menzies-Stegbauer brings to the table.

“Tracey brings a strong knowledge and experiences that will benefit swimming coaches working at the high performance and performance pathways within the sport across Victoria and Tasmania.  We welcome Tracey back to Swimming Australia.”

Another smart appointment by Swimming Australia as it looks to the future,  developing a new group of coaches and swimmers who will be charged with taking the Dolphins past Paris and onto Los Angeles in 2028 and a home Games in Brisbane in 2032.


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