Now: Sometimes the end of the race is only the beginning by Anna Meares
Anna Meares is one of the Australia’s greatest and most popular Olympians. She is the only Australian to have won individual medals at four consecutive Olympics. In 2004, she beat her sister Kerrie for a place in the Olympic team and became the first Australian female track cyclist to win gold.
In 2008, she broke her neck in a track accident but still claimed silver eight months later in Beijing. In London in 2012, she dominated her arch-rival Victoria Pendletonin the women’s sprint final.
Anna carried the Australian flag at the Rio opening ceremony in 2016, and won her sixth Olympic medal. And then what? Suddenly she faced new challenges, as a sportswoman whose career was over, and as an individual facing personal crises, including the death of her coach from motor neurone disease and the breakdown of her marriage. There was no playbook, no training regime … how to cope? This was a bigger mountain than any she had previously faced.
Anna Meares now, powering on in a new career, happy in her personal life and expecting her first child, and much wiser for all she has experienced, is an inspiring figure. Her twin stories, a winner on and off the track, make for one of the most important books ever written by an elite Olympic athlete.