Australian Olympic canoeist and surf life saving champion, Clint Robinson OAM, will join the sporting elite when he is inducted into the prestigious Sport Australia Hall of Fame this Thursday.
Impressively diverse, Robinson achieved the ultimate success in both his sports of choice – surf life saving and canoe/kayaking.
Robinson accumulated a treasure chest of titles across his career, led by an Olympic gold medal at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona.
The 41-year-old competed across five Olympic Games, adding a silver (2004) and bronze (1996) medal to his golden success in Spain, and three World Championships where he won gold (1994), two silver (1991, ’95) and one bronze (1994) medal.
An unmatched 36 national titles makes Robinson the most successful competitor in Australian surf life saving history.
Robinson will receive the highest national sporting honour that can be bestowed when he is officially inducted at The Sport Australia Hall of Fame Annual Induction and Awards Gala Dinner, proudly presented by Etihad Airways, this Thursday, 10 October at Crown Melbourne.
“I was quite surprised to be honest. You just compete in your sport for what you love and the things you have always aspired to try and achieve along the way,” Robinson said of his induction into The Sport Australia Hall of Fame.
“I have been able to enjoy competing internationally for over 25 years, and in a sport like mine which is an Olympic sport and very physically demanding on your body means that it has been a rough ride at times, so it’s great that people recognise what you have achieved.”
Robinson won his first and most memorable surf life saving national championship at the early age of fifteen in a Malibu board race in Perth.
“I always aspired to be the best in my country at something from an early age,” Robinson said.
“Winning my first national title was the first time I didn’t have my parents there with me, I was beside myself that day. It’s something I will never forget and stands above all others clearly.”
Robinson credits his training approach from an early age for his career success.
“We were trained hard and I thrived on the challenges that were offered to me,” Robinson said.
“Training was very holistic and I was always encouraged to be a very hard trainer.”
“My strength has been to nurture that huge amount of competitive spirit that I have always had,” Robinson said of his sport.
Robinson is still heavily involved in sport and has recently returned from Tahiti after competing in the Maraamu Surfski Race.
Chairman of The Sport Australia Hall of Fame selection committee Robert de Castella MBE recognised Robinson’s contribution across a number of sports.
“Clint not only has a great Olympic record in canoeing but also his diversity of success across the kayak and the surf life saving as well has really given him an element of diversity which is pretty spectacular.”
Surf Life Saving Australia President, Graham Ford said “Clint Robinson is a true reflection of not only lifesaving sport, but of the surf life saving spirit.”
“As a five-time Olympian and 36-time Australian surf life saving champion, Clint has reached the pinnacle of our sport and we are humbled by the great impact he has had on the movement.
“We are extremely proud to have Clint as part of our community and we offer him our congratulations on this fitting honour – a celebration of an extraordinary career,” Ford said.
Established in 1985, The Sport Australia Hall of Fame aims to preserve and celebrate the history of Australian Sport and excite the next generation of Australians to achieve their potential both in sport and in life.
With a vision and values built around the words of the first Inductee and Legend, Sir Donald Bradman AC, The Sport Australia Hall of Fame is determined to carry to all Australians everywhere the symbol of excellence, as represented by its 518 Members across all sports and genders.
For more information about The Sport Australia Hall of Fame, visit http://www.sahof.org.au.