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Rowing Australia announces Ian Wright as Men’s Head Coach

Rowing Australia today announced Ian Wright as their new Men’s Head Coach. This follows the recent appointments Bernard Savage and Jaime Fernandez as Performance Director and Deputy Performance Director, respectively.

Wright will join Rowing Australia on 24th October 2016 and be based in Canberra, the location of the Men’s National Training Centre. Providing National technical leadership of the men’s rowing program he will oversee the men’s Senior and Assistant coaches and drive the ongoing development of Australia’s elite male rowers based at the Centre. Wright will work with the Performance Director Bernard Savage, to make the Men’s coaching appointments as soon as possible.

New Zealand-born Wright was the Head Coach of the Swiss Rowing Federation at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, a role he has held since 2014, and has had great success, culminating this year when the country won gold at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, in the Lightweight Men’s Four; the gold medal was Switzerland’s first Olympic rowing gold since 1996. The Swiss Lightweight Men’s Four also won the 2015 World Rowing Championships.

Prior to his role with Swiss Rowing, Wright worked for Rowing New Zealand as the NZ Men’s Eight Coach and as Head Coach of the Waikato Regional Performance Centre (RPC). During his five years at Waikato RPC, he had a significant role in developing athletes stepping up to represent New Zealand. Wright has overseen many successful crews including back to back gold medals in the Men’s U23 Eight at the World Rowing Championships in 2013 and 2014.

Rowing Australia Chief Executive Officer Michael Scott said: “We are thrilled to have someone of Ian’s calibre to lead our men’s coaching team and newly established male centre. He brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge which will no doubt be reflected in our new look national program.”

Wright, himself an Olympic bronze medallist, Commonwealth silver and bronze medallist amongst other international achievements, has also held a previous prominent and successful rowing role in Australia, as Head Coach and Director at Melbourne University Boat Club from 2005-2009. Wright brings over 20 years of National and International coaching experience to the role.

Upon the announcement of his appointment, Mr Wright said: “I am looking forward to starting my role with Rowing Australia and working with the entire staff and athlete group to progress the Culture, Technique and Training components of the Australian men’s rowing program. I am excited by the opportunities that lie ahead and hope to play an important role with the sport of rowing in Australia over the coming years.”

Rowing Australia launched CampaignNumberOne prior to the Rio Olympic Games, putting the sport ahead of the game from a planning perspective leading into Tokyo.  The new High Performance Plan includes the centralisation of its High Performance programs as well as the development of a bespoke state based pathways program that develop a pipeline of talent into the High Performance Centres.