Former British Cycling technical director Shane Sutton is one of the candidates for the top coaching job in the Australian national cycling team
Shane Sutton is on the shortlist of candidates to become Cycling Australia’s high performance director, in charge of the nation’s road and track squads heading into the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Sutton resigned from his position as British Cycling technical director in April after allegations surfaced of sexism and bullying.
Former British track sprinter Jess Varnish alleged that Sutton told her to ‘move on and get on with having a baby’ and made comments about her physical appearance. Sutton has denied all of the allegations.
Sutton is one of seven people being interviewed for the top Cycling Australia job, with interviews taking place this week, according to a report by the Guardian.
Sutton was born in New South Wales, Australia, and was a professional rider before becoming a coach. He joined British Cycling in 2002, and was also involved with coaching riders in British WorldTour squad, Team Sky.
The successful candidate for Cycling Australia’s high performance director role will be responsible for the performance of the country’s road and track teams in cycling and para-cycling. But, as CA states in its information about the job, “with 10 out of 18 Olympic medals available in the velodrome, CA resources are channelled to reflect the opportunities on the track”.
Australia’s standing as one of the leading cycling nations has waned in recent years, with the country only coming away from Rio with two medals: silver in the men’s team pursuit and Anna Meares’ bronze in the keirin. GB topped the medal table with 12, including six golds.
The role would be familiar territory for Sutton, who was instrumental in Great Britain’s cycling success at the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. He resigned from his post prior to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, with BC programmes director Andy Harrison over-seeing the GB cycling team.
An internal investigation by BC into the allegations of sexism and bullying found that Sutton had used “inappropriate and discriminatory language”.
In a statement issued in October, BC said: “Following an internal investigation, the British Cycling board has upheld an allegation made by Jess Varnish that former Technical Director Shane Sutton had used inappropriate and discriminatory language. The board wishes to put on record its sincere regret that this happened.”