Profile: Illawarra Academy of Sport triathlete Ruby Sawtell

Wheel deal: Illawarra Academy of Sport triathlete Ruby Sawtell. Picture: Adam McLean

Wheel deal: Illawarra Academy of Sport triathlete Ruby Sawtell. Picture: Adam McLean

Name: Ruby Sawtell

Sport: Triathlon

Club/Association: Illawarra Triathlon Club

How would you describe yourself in one sentence?

A 15-year-old girl who is not completely outgoing but is willing to try new things.

When did you start playing your sport and how did you get started?

I started triathlons at the age of 9 after watching my eldest sister complete her first one at the all schools triathlon in Penrith. I did my first triathlon at an elite energy event, I completed the Miniman.

Why did you apply for an IAS scholarship?

I am a returning athlete and I really enjoyed the scholarship last year. I enjoyed learning new things and most importantly meeting an amazing group of friends who will be with me again this year.

Who’s your favourite professional athlete and why?

My favourite professional athlete is Bethany Hamilton because of her resilience, love and devotion to her sport. Also because of the way she overcome challenges, a person I aspire to be.

What is your greatest achievement in your sport so far?

Improving my placing from 13th to seventh in CCC at the all schools triathlon event and my skill development over the past year.

If you weren’t playing this sport what would you be doing and why?

I would be focusing on my cross country running because it’s my base sport that I have been doing for the longest.

What is your favourite Subject at School? PDHPE

What are your plans after school?

I am not quite sure yet. I would like to go to university.

If you could live anywhere in the world it would be? Spain because I love the culture.

What do you do in your free time?

Spend quality time with family and friends.


The Academy currently provides athlete development programs across eleven sports disciplines including Basketball, Cycling, Golf, Hockey, Netball, Rugby 7’s, Surfing, Tenpin Bowling and Triathlon as well as non-sport specific LoneStar Program and Athletes with a Disability Program.

These programs provide not only on-field technical skill acquisition and physical development, including musculoskeletal screenings and individualised movement competency programming, but focus also on the personal and professional maturity of the athlete through an education curriculum. They provide the athletes with the information and resources to assist the athletes with their short-term needs, while also providing the grounding and understanding for what they will need in the future for their pursuit of excellence.

Athletes receive Professional Development Education Modules in Nutrition, Performance Psychology, Drugs in Sport, Injury Prevention/Management and Media Skills and Personal Development Educational Modules in Time Management, Goal Setting, Public Speaking and Career/Academic Support (In-2-Uni).