Triathlon Ireland has made a key appointment to its High Performance programme, welcoming Gordon Crawford on board as Performance Director.
Gordon was selected following an extensive international recruitment process in the Spring and will lead an ambitious transformation of Triathlon Ireland’s High Performance set-up that seeks to establish a World Class talent pathway and squad of senior elite athletes.
Gordon will begin his work with Triathlon Ireland later this month and as he concludes a number of very successful years as Swiss Triathlon National Elite and U23 Coach.
During his time there, he was involved with a string of successes for Swiss triathletes and led a process of cultural and operational change in his role as Director of the National Training Centre for Triathlon.
Gordon Crawford said he sees a number of similarities between where Switzerland was when he started with their federation back in 2018, and Triathlon Ireland’s High Performance programme in 2022:
“It’s the challenge of trying to connect, bringing people together, developing a team ethos, developing some stabilised structures for camps, for the identification of talent and the supporting of coaches.”
And he explained how both the Paris and 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games will be key focuses for him as he transforms Triathlon Ireland’s High Performance set up.
“The challenge for Paris will be, can we support the carded athletes that have an opportunity to qualify? What can we do to add value to that and support the process. In the meantime and tandem, the more important part of that will be to start the process for the next full cycle, and that will be leading into Los Angeles and looking at the younger age groups and talent.”
He added that integrating expertise from across Triathlon Ireland will be a key element in this process:
“I look forward to being part of the Triathlon Ireland Team that links Development with Performance to benefit all of our triathlon community in Ireland.”
Gordon was Ireland’s triathlon team manager designate in the lead up to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games and has also served as Board Director with the portfolio for Performance with Triathlon Scotland. He has also held multiple performance roles in professional sports, including with the Scottish National Rugby Team.
Darren Coombes, CEO of Triathlon Ireland says his appointment is a very significant step for Triathlon Ireland and reflects the ambition we have for our Performance Programme and our athletes.
“Gordon has led on a significant transformation project in Switzerland, culminating in a very positive Olympic Games for that Federation in Tokyo. His performance expertise, coach development knowledge and credibility as a leader who has delivered results across multiple performance systems is exciting, and I am confident he has all the attributes to lead our performance programme towards Paris and longer term towards Los Angeles 2028.”
Mr Coombes added,”We look forward to welcoming Gordon to the team, where he will work closely with National Head Coach Michael Black, our performance athletes and the other members of the performance team to deliver success for Ireland internationally over the coming years.”