Cameron Wurf - Olympian and Ironman Champion
Cameron Wurf - Olympian and Ironman Champion
Episode Name: 3. Cameron Wurf
On this episode of BE with Champions, renowned Olympian and host Greg Bennett welcomes another star athlete, Cameron Wurf, to the show. Born and raised in Australia, Cameron began his career as a rower. He started rowing for his high school, Hutchins School, at age 15, and describes his struggles to make it on the team due to his petite size and weight. The only time he got the opportunity to row for his team was when one of the other rowers didn’t show up.
However, his career quickly escalated in 2001, when he won the national Schoolboy Sculling title at the Australian Rowing Championships. Soon after, in 2003, he won the gold medal in the World Rowing U23 Championships. He then qualified for the Australian Olympic Rowing team in 2004 at the age of 21. Though he never expected to win a gold medal, simply qualifying had been his goal since he began his rowing career. He placed sixteenth in the race, and though he didn’t take the top prize, he represented his country well, and continued to represent Australia in later world championships.
After a heartbreaking wrist injury, which resulted in surgery, Cameron left the sport of rowing and took up professional cycling. In one of his first races, he recalls borrowing his grandfather’s bike, which broke near the end of the race. Cameron jumped off the bike, stole another, and finished the race. His opponent, triathlon gold medalist Tim Reed, ended up beating him, but Cameron says hasn’t beaten him since. Cameron went on to cycle for seven professional teams before making his transition to triathlons.
At age 32, Cameron settled down with his wife and resigned to take a desk job and enter the “real world.” However, fate intervened when cyclist Tim Kerrison encouraged him to become a professional triathlete. Cameron had been running triathlons for fun, but had never been a talented runner. He trained intensively in the running and swimming categories, and ran his first professional triathlon in 2016. As a triathlete, he felt his hunger for success reignite. He recently took fifth place at the World Ironman, and finished first at the 2019 Cannes International Triathlon. Cameron feels that he was always destined to be a triathlete, recalling the first time he watched a triathlon on TV on a Sunday afternoon in 1989.
After only three years as a professional triathlete, Cameron has broken numerous Ironman bike records, and continues to place higher and higher in the world championships. Very few athletes ever reach professional competition in two sports, and even fewer reach Cameron’s level in three sports. Cameron advises young athletes to do the work, keep it simple, and be there to win. As far as his career as a triathlete, Cameron says he’s not going anywhere, and he’s just getting started.
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