Tracey Menzies

Olympic gold medal-winning swimming coach, motivational speaker

Swimming coach Tracey Menzies is best known for coaching five-time Olympic champion Ian Thorpe to become Australia’s most successful Olympian, from late 2002 until his retirement in 2006.

When Tracey took over as coach of Australia’s number one swimmer, it was amid controversy. Not only did she replace Ian Thorpe’s long-time coach and mentor Doug Frost but she was a young woman in a traditionally male role and relatively unknown. She was the only female coach to be named on the team since 1972.

However, Tracey Menzies silenced her critics when she guided the Thorpedo to a silver and bronze medal and two golds at the 2004 Athens Games, and seven National Titles and numerous World Championship and Grand Prix wins. Ian Thorpe became the first man in history to win a medal in the 100m, 200m and 400m freestyle (F) events at a single Olympic Games!

Considered a role model among women Tracey was named NSW Woman of the Year as part of International Women’s Day in 2005.

In the pool, Tracey Menzies uses her knowledge and expertise to help talented young swimmers to achieve future national and international success. Out of the pool Tracey is in demand as a keynote speaker and workshop facilitator.

More about Tracey Menzies:

Tracey Menzies has known Ian Thorpe since he was five years old when he attended swimming training at Padstow. At the time, Tracey was also a member of Doug Frost’s swimming squad, where she specialised in the 200mF and 400mF events for six years. In 1991, Tracey retired from swimming and began full time coaching at Sutherland Leisure Centre. When Doug Frost was appointed head coach at Sutherland in 1996, Tracey continued ‘learn to swim’ and was appointed senior assistant to Doug for squad coaching.

In 2002 Ian unexpectedly chose Tracey as his new coach to take charge of the next phase of his swimming career. Tracey had to deal with the public expectation of coaching the national treasure and also the critical eye of the swimming fraternity but soon achieved wonderful results with Ian, confirming her status as one of leading sporting coaches in the world.

Other high-profile Australian swimmers to have achieved international success under her guidance include Ky Hurst, Craig Stevens, Patrick Murphy, Travis Nederpelt, Matt Welsh and Ashley Callus.

Tracey Menzies was named Swimming Australia’s Open Water Coach of the Year in 2008, NSWIS Coach of the Year in 2003, ASCTA NSW Coach of the Year 2003, 2004 and 2006, ASCTA NSW Age Group Coach of the Year 2000, 2003 and 2006, ASCTA Age Group Coach of the Year 2001 and ASCTA Rookie Coach of the Year in 2000.

In 2009, Tracey joined the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) Swimming program as AIS senior coach.

Tracey Menzies talks about:

  • Leadership
  • Coaching for Success
  • Self-Belief and how to achieve it
  • “You don’t demand respect, you earn it”
  • Developing an open communication environment.

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