News

Crow continues women's dominance with international award

8 November 2013

ROWING: The great run of sporting success of Australia’s women continues with rower Kim Crow named female athlete of the year by the International Rowing Federation (FISA).

The award was announced in Tallinn, Estonia and follows her historic win in the single sculls world championships in South Korea in August this year.

“It is a real surprise and great honour. So many of my heroes have won this award in the past, it feels a little bit surreal to be considered amongst that company. There was a really strong field of nominations this year, including some good friends, all of whom would have been worthy recipients” Crow said.

Australia’s success continued at the FISA awards with our Paralympic mixed double scull, Kathryn Ross and Gavin Bellis named the Paralympic rowing crew of the year. They too won gold at the 2013 World Championships in Korea.

Crow’s world title win follows her success at the 2012 London Olympics where she won bronze in the single sculls and a silver medal in the double scull with Brooke Pratley.

Figures released by the Australian Sports Commission Chairman (ASC), John Wylie, show our women are dominating world championship events. Jessica Fox,slalom canoeist, Caroline Buchanan, BMX cycling, Carmen Marton, taekwondo, Miranda Carfrae, triathlon and Cate Campbell, swimming, along with Crow, are among our 2013 world champions.

“There is some really great momentum amongst a bunch of female Aussie athletes this year. It actually feels like a little team within the broader Aussie team, we love each other's company and follow each other closely. I have really enjoyed hearing the stories of Jess, Cate, Caroline and also Carmen Marton and Mirinda Carfrae. Some really inspirational stories and inspiring young women”.

Crow, Chair of the AOC Athletes Commission, supports Wylie’s call for more corporate support for our female athletes.

“John Wylie is a very smart operator and I feel he is right on the money. There are some really great stories out there from female athletes that I believe a broader section of the Australian community would love to hear about. Female sport is no longer boring and sub-standard, but it will take some risk takers within the media to invest in women's sport so it can enjoy the same "water-cooler" conversation popularity of mainstream male sports. A good example is free to air TV in NZ broadcasting netball. Netball is now NZ's number 2 sport behind rugby and enjoys a huge following “Crow said.

“There are also some really strong female role models out there who could be snapped up by corporate Australia with real synergy to values like integrity, team work and perseverance. With so many "bad news" stories out there about overpaid sportsmen, high achieving sportswomen could offer a refreshing contrast and reflect a progressive corporate identity”.

Wylie described our female athletes as “under-appreciated”.

“I feel very much appreciated by the people close to me, but many people outside my immediate network are very surprised to hear that sponsorship or corporate partnerships are almost non-existent. I am lucky to have some great support in Australian brand 2XU and a company called Who-Rae run by a generous family friend, but certainly nothing on the scale to give up my day job! The most important thing for me is not the money and definitely not the fame- it is continuing to enjoy my sport, and sharing the joy of sport with the next generation”.

Mike Tancred
AOC