Vale Jackie Fairweather
4 November 2014
1967 - 2014
TRIATHLON/ ATHLETICS: Jackie Fairweather (née Gallagher) represented Australia at the highest level in Triathlon and then Athletics. In 1996, she won the World Championship Triathlon title in Cleveland over the ‘Olympic distance’. That year she also won the World Duathlon crown to become the first person to win both titles in the same year.
A leader in Australian triathlon ranks, Jackie also won silver medals at the 1995, 1997 and 1999 World Championships.
But when Triathlon finally made its Olympic debut at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000, Jackie narrowly missed selection to the Australian Team.
The Canberra athlete then converted her skills to Marathon running. At her first attempt at the distance, the remarkable athlete placed 11th in the Boston Marathon in 2002. Three months later she collected the bronze medal in the women’s race at the Commonwealth Games in Manchester as part of an all-Australian podium (alongside Kerryn McCann and Krishna Stanton).
Two years later, she married Sydney 2000 Olympic gold medallist in Archery, Simon Fairweather.
Throughout her competitive career, Jackie was coached by both swimming mastermind Denis Cotterell and pioneering sports scientist and athletics coach Dick Telford. With such inspiration, it is little surprise she later turned her hand to coaching and sports administration.
With a Masters degree in Exercise Physiology, Jackie was known for her analytical approach to the sport and ability to think outside the box. She helped establish the Junior and Under 23 format globally in Triathlon, and also became the inaugural coach of the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) Triathlon program (2001-2005).
Since 2005 Jackie has worked with the Australian Sports Commission, most recently as a Performance Manager at the Australian Institute of Sport.
Jackie was recently nominated to the 2014 ITU Hall of Fame.
The Australian Olympic Committee mourns the passing of Jackie and our thoughts are with her friends, family and the triathlon and athletics communities.