Famous Australian Athletes

Find out more about the greatest Australian Athletes, including Jim Kelly, Peter Norman, Casey Stoner, Cathy Freeman and John Wayne Parr.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite Australian Athletes

 1 
Peter Norman
(Athletics competitor, Sprinter)

Peter Norman
4
Birthdate: June 15, 1942
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Melbourne
Died: October 3, 2006

Peter Norman was an Australian athlete who won a silver medal in the 200 meters event at the 1968 Summer Olympics. He is remembered for supporting fellow athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos by wearing the Olympic Project for Human Rights badge during their medal ceremony; he is the third athlete seen in the popular Olympics Black Power salute photograph.

 2 
Cathy Freeman
(Sprinter)

Cathy Freeman
7
Birthdate: February 16, 1973
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Slade Point, Australia

Cathy Freeman is a former sprinter known for her achievements in the 400 meters events. Her personal best of 48.63, set at the 1996 Olympics, makes her the eighth-fastest woman of all time. She gave Australia an Olympic gold at the 2000 Olympics. Also a humanitarian, Freeman is credited with founding the Cathy Freeman Foundation.

 3 
Michelle Jenneke
(Hurdler who won a silver medal for the 100 m hurdles at the 2010 Summer Youth Olympics)

Michelle Jenneke
4
Birthdate: June 23, 1993
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Kenthurst, Australia

Michelle Jenneke is an Australian track and field athlete and model. She won a silver medal for Australia at the 2010 Summer Youth Olympics. She received international recognition in 2012 when her pre-race warm-up dance became famous on the internet. As a model, Michelle Jenneke was featured in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue in 2013.

 4 
Sally Pearson
(Athletics competitor)

Sally Pearson
3
Birthdate: September 19, 1986
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sydney

Sally Pearson is an Australian former athlete. After winning a silver medal in the 100 m hurdles at the 2008 Summer Olympics, Pearson went on to win Olympic gold in the same event in 2012. A two-time world champion, Sally Pearson also won two gold medals in Commonwealth Games. In 2011, she was named Female Athlete of the Year.

 5 
Tia-Clair Toomey
(Weightlifter)

Tia-Clair Toomey
4
Birthdate: July 22, 1993
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nambour, Queensland, Australia

Tia-Clair Toomey is an Australian CrossFit Games athlete and weightlifter. As a weightlifter, she won a gold medal for Australia at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Toomey has also won five CrossFit Games Championship titles so far; she won these titles in five successive CrossFit Games starting from 2017.

 6 

Betty Cuthbert
3
Birthdate: April 20, 1938
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia
Died: August 6, 2017
Australian sprinter Betty Cuthbert, also known as the Golden Girl, had won three Olympic gold medals, with three of them from the 1956 Olympic Games. She started training at 8 and later became known for her signature style of running with her mouth open. She later suffered from multiple sclerosis.

 7 
Nova Peris
(Former Australian Women's Field Hockey Athlete and Senator of Australia (2013 - 2016))

Nova Peris
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Birthdate: February 25, 1971
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Darwin, Australia

Nova Peris is an Australian athlete and former politician. In 1996, she became the first Aboriginal Australian to earn a gold medal at the Olympics; she was part of the women's hockey team that won the gold medal. She switched sports to sprinting and participated in the 1998 Commonwealth Games, winning gold medals in the 200m and 4x100m relay events. 

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 8 
Brandon Starc
(High jumper)

Brandon Starc
1
Birthdate: November 24, 1993
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Baulkham Hills, Australia

Brandon Starc is an Australian high jumper. He won a silver medal at the inaugural 2010 Summer Youth Olympics in Singapore when he was just 16 years old. He was a finalist at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the 2016 Summer Olympics and won the gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. He is married to fellow athlete Laura Turner. 

 9 
Ron Clarke
(Long-distance runner, Politician, Athletics competitor)

Ron Clarke
3
Birthdate: February 21, 1937
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Melbourne
Died: June 17, 2015

Ron Clarke was an Australian athlete, politician, and writer. One of the most recognized middle and long-distance runners of the 1960s, Clarke is best remembered for setting 17 world records. He also won the bronze medal in the 10,000 meters event at the 1964 Summer Olympics. In 2000, Ron Clarke was honored with the prestigious Australian Sports Medal.

 10 
Herb Elliott
(Athlete)

Herb Elliott
3
Birthdate: February 25, 1938
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Perth, Australia

Herb Elliott is a former Australian athlete considered the world's greatest middle-distance runner of his era. He won the gold medal in the 1500 meters at the 1960 Rome Olympics. He achieved 36 wins over this distance and never lost a mile race. Following his retirement from athletics, he built a successful career in business. 

 11 
Nicola McDermott
(High jumper)

Nicola McDermott
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Birthdate: December 28, 1996
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: North Gosford, Australia

 12 
Jana Pittman
(Athletics competitor and Bobsledder)

Jana Pittman
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Birthdate: November 9, 1982
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia

 13 
Rohan Browning
(Sprinter)

Rohan Browning
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Birthdate: December 31, 1997
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

 14 
Craig Alexander
(triathlete)

Craig Alexander
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Birthdate: June 22, 1973
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sydney

Craig Alexander is an Australian former triathlete who won the Ironman Triathlon World Championship titles in 2008, 2009, and 2011. He is also a two-time Ironman 70.3 World Championship title winner. Since 2014, Craig Alexander has been working as a triathlon coach.

 15 
Kelsey-Lee Barber
(Javelin thrower)

Kelsey-Lee Barber
1
Birthdate: September 20, 1991
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: East London, South Africa

Kelsey-Lee Barber is an Australian track and field athlete. She competes in the javelin throw and won the gold medal at the 2019 World Championships. She won bronze in the final at the 2020 Summer Olympics. She has set a personal best of 67.70 meters. Her training partner is para-athlete Jayden Sawyer. She is married to coach Mike Barber. 

 16 
John Landy
(Athlete, Politician)

John Landy
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Birthdate: April 12, 1930
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Australian middle-distance runner John Landy was not just an Olympian but also became the second person to clock a sub-4-minute mile barrier in the mile run. He later became the 26th governor of Victoria, penned books, and also worked with ICI Australia. He also inspired the mini-series The Four Minute Mile.

 17 
Jessica Hull
(Middle-distance runner)

Jessica Hull
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Birthdate: October 22, 1996
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Albion Park, Australia

A noted Australian distance runner and national record holder for the 1500m, Jessica Hull has been in the limelight since her time at the Oregon University, USA. In 2019, she turned pro and set a new personal best of 4:01.80 in the semi-final at the IAAF World Championships. She came  eleventh in the final at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
 

 18 
Peter Bol
(Middle-distance runner)

Peter Bol
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Birthdate: February 22, 1994
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Khartoum, Sudan

Peter Bol is an Australian track and field athlete who specializes in middle-distance running events. He represented Australia in the 800 meters event at the 2016 and 2020 Summer Olympics. In the 2020 Olympics, Bol finished fourth in the final. Interestingly, Peter Bol's semi-final performance of 1:44:11 was better than Emmanuel Korir's gold-medal winning performance of 1:45:06.

Marjorie Jackson-Nelson
2
Birthdate: September 13, 1931
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Coffs Harbour, Australia

Marjorie Jackson-Nelson is a former Australian athlete. She won two Olympic and seven Commonwealth Games Gold Medals. She was appointed the Governor of South Australia in 2001 and held this position until 2007. She was married to Olympic cyclist Peter Nelson who died in 1977. She has been inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.  

 20 
Raelene Boyle
(Athlete)

Raelene Boyle
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Birthdate: June 24, 1951
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Coburg, Victoria, Australia

Raelene Boyle is an Australian former athlete who won silver medal in 200m in 1968 Olympics and silver medal in 100m and 200m in 1972 Olympics. In 1985, she was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame. Raelene Boyle was named in Australia's Top 100 Sportswomen of All Time list in 2013.

 21 
Steven Hooker
(Athlete)

Steven Hooker
2
Birthdate: July 16, 1982
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Kew

Steven Hooker is an Australian former athlete renowned for his skills as a pole vaulter. His personal best of 6.06m makes him the fourth-highest pole vaulter of all time. Hooker won gold medals at the 2008 Summer Olympics, 2009 World Championships, and 2010 World Indoor Championships. In 2017, he was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.

 22 

Shirley Strickland
2
Birthdate: July 18, 1925
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Guildford, Australia
Died: February 11, 2004

Shirley Strickland was an Australian athlete who won three Olympic gold medals in running sports. The daughter of an athlete, she developed an early love for running and also played hockey. As a young woman, she pursued a teaching career. She took up running seriously in the late 1940s and participated in several competitive events with great success. 

 23 
Tatiana Grigorieva
(Pole vaulter)

Tatiana Grigorieva
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Birthdate: October 8, 1975
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Tatiana Grigorieva is a retired Australian pole vaulter. Born in Russia, she migrated to Australia in 1997 and took up pole vaulting, becoming one of the world's best within a year. In a career spanning a decade, she won Olympic, Commonwealth, and World Championship medals. She retired in 2007. She has also appeared in many TV programs and commercials.  

 24 

John Steffensen
0
Birthdate: August 30, 1982
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Perth, Australia

One of Australia’s most well-known track and field athletes, John Steffensen has won more medals for his country than any other male sprinter. Apart from his two gold medals at the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games, he also has an Olympic silver and a World Championship bronze in his kitty.

 25 
Edwin Flack
(Tennis player, Athletics competitor)

Edwin Flack
1
Birthdate: November 5, 1873
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Islington, London, England
Died: January 10, 1935

Edwin Flack was an Australian tennis player and athlete. In 1896, Flack became Australia's first Olympian when he represented the nation in the first modern Olympic Games. He went on to win gold medals in the 800m and 1500m events, becoming the first Australian Olympic champion. In 1985, he was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.

 26 
Jared Tallent
(Racewalker)

Jared Tallent
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Birthdate: October 17, 1984
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ballarat, Australia

Jared Tallent is an Australian athlete who specializes in race walking. He won the gold medal in the men's 50 kilometers race walk event at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. A four-time Olympic medalist, Jared Tallent currently holds the Olympic record in the 50 kilometers race walk category. In 2012, he was named Australian Flame Athlete of The Year.

 27 

Ashley Moloney
0
Birthdate: March 13, 2000
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Ashley Moloney is an Australian track and field athlete who competes predominantly in the decathlon event. Moloney won the gold medal at the 2018 World Junior Championships in Tampere. In 2021, Ashley Moloney became the first Australian athlete to win an Olympic medal in the decathlon event when he secured the bronze medal for his country in Tokyo.

 28 
Genevieve Gregson
(Steeplechase runner)

Genevieve Gregson
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Birthdate: August 4, 1989
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Benowa, Australia

Genevieve Gregson is an Australian athlete who specializes in the 3000-meter steeplechase. She started running when she was nine years old and earned an athletics scholarship at the University of Florida. She represented Australia at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London and the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. She also competed in the 2018 Commonwealth Games. 

 29 
Chilla Porter
(Athlete)

Chilla Porter
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Birthdate: January 11, 1936
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Died: August 15, 2020

Chilla Porter was an Australian track and field athlete and political figure. He is best remembered for his silver medal-winning performance in the high jump event at the 1956 Summer Olympics. He also won silver medals at the 1958 and 1962 Commonwealth Games. After his athletics career, Porter served as general secretary of Liberal Western Australia from 1978 to 1987.

 30 
Stewart McSweyn
(Long-distance runner)

Stewart McSweyn
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Birthdate: June 1, 1995
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Launceston, Australia

Australian long distance runner, Stewart McSweyn began representing his country while still in his teens. Eventually as a professional, he started participating in 1500 m, 3000 m, 5000 m and 10,000 m events, representing Australia at the 2017 World Championships, the 2018 Commonwealth Games and finally in the 2020 Olympics, where he managed to qualify for the Men's 1500m final.  

 31 
Jane Saville
(Race walker)

Jane Saville
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Birthdate: November 5, 1974
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia

Jane Saville is an Australian retired athlete best known for her bronze medal-winning performance in the women's 20 kilometers race walk event at the 2004 Summer Olympics. Saville has represented Australia at four Olympic Games. She also won three gold medals at 1998, 2002, and 2006 Commonwealth Games. She was the flag bearer for Australia at the 2006 Commonwealth Games.

 32 
Simon Dunn
(Bobsledder and Rugby player)

Simon Dunn
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Birthdate: July 27, 1987
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Goulburn, Australia

 33 
Steven Solomon
(Sprinter)

Steven Solomon
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Birthdate: May 16, 1993
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Vaucluse, Australia

Steven Solomon is an Australian Olympic sprinter who broke the 30-year-old national junior record in the 400 meters in 2011. He won a bronze medal at the 2012 IAAF World Junior Championships and is a five-time defending Australian 400 meters champion.  He was named New South Wales [NSW] Athletics Male Athlete of the Year in 2013. 

 34 
Noemie Fox
(Who has competed at the international level since 2013)

Noemie Fox
1
Birthdate: March 19, 1997
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Marseille, France

 35 
Patrick Tiernan
(Middle-distance runner, Long-distance runner)

Patrick Tiernan
0
Birthdate: September 11, 1994
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Longreach, Australia

Patrick Tiernan is an Australian track and field athlete who has won several road races in Australia. In 2011, he won the silver medal in the 3000 m long-distance running at the Oceania Youth Athletics Championships. Patrick Tiernan has also represented his country at the 2016 and 2020 Olympic Games.

 36 
Joseph Deng
(Middle-distance runner who broke the 800m Australian record with a time of 1:44.21 in July 2018, which had stood since the 1968 Mexico Olympics)

Joseph Deng
1
Birthdate: July 7, 1998
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Kakuma, Kenya

 37 
Glynis Nunn
(Athlete)

Glynis Nunn
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Birthdate: December 4, 1960
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Toowoomba, Australia

Glynis Nunn is a former Australian heptathlete. She is famous for becoming the first Olympic champion in the event.  She qualified for the Commonwealth Games in 1978 but couldn’t participate due to an injury. She later participated in the Commonwealth Games in 1982 and the Olympic Games in 1984, winning gold medals at both the events.

 38 

Debbie Flintoff-King
0
Birthdate: April 20, 1960
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Melbourne, Australia

Debbie Flintoff-King is an Australian former athlete who won the 400m hurdles at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul. She also won three gold medals and four silver medals at Commonwealth Games between 1982 and 1990. At the 1987 World Championships, Flintoff-King won the silver medal. She was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1987.

 39 
Eleanor Patterson
(High jumper)

Eleanor Patterson
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Birthdate: May 22, 1996
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Leongatha, Australia

Eleanor Patterson is an Australian track and field athlete. She competes in the high jump and has a personal best of 1.99 meters for the event. She was the gold medallist in women’s athletics at the 2013 World Youth Championships and the 2014 Commonwealth Games. She took a break in 2018 and returned to athletics in 2020 with renewed vigor. 

 40 
Jai Taurima
(Athlete)

Jai Taurima
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Birthdate: June 26, 1972
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Southport, Australia

Australian long jumper Jai Taurima is best known for his silver medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Known to fans as Jumping Jai, the Māori athlete has also been in the news for his reckless lifestyle and his chain-smoking habits. Post-retirement, he has joined the Australian Federal Police.

 41 
Dane Bird-Smith
(Race walker)

Dane Bird-Smith
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Birthdate: July 15, 1992
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Kippa-Ring, Australia

Dane Bird-Smith is an Australian race-walking athlete who competes in the 20-kilometer race walk. He set a best of 1:19:28 hours for the distance in 2017. He competed at the 2016 Rio Olympics and won a bronze medal and emerged as the gold medallist at the Commonwealth Games in 2018. His father is David Smith, also an international race-walker. 

 42 
Ralph Doubell
(Middle-distance runner, Businessperson)

Ralph Doubell
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Birthdate: February 11, 1945
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Melbourne, Australia

In spite of his short international career, Australian athlete Ralph Doubell managed to bag an Olympic gold medal. His 1min 44.4sec world record at the 800m at the 1968 Mexico City Games, matched only with New Zealand’s Peter Snell and is still the fastest recorded by an Australian.

 43 
John Bromwich
(Athlete)

John Bromwich
2
Birthdate: November 14, 1918
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia
Died: October 21, 1999

John Bromwich was an Australian tennis player who twice won the Australian Championships singles title. Despite being a natural left-hander, he hit his serve with his right hand. He is considered one of the first great players to use a two-handed backhand. He was a brilliant doubles player and won 13 men's doubles titles and four mixed doubles titles. 

 44 
Jessica Gallagher
(Alpine skier, Athlete)

Jessica Gallagher
2
Birthdate: March 14, 1986
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Geelong, Australia

Jessica Gallagher is an Australian Paralympic alpine skier and track and field athlete. She became the first Australian woman to win a medal at the Winter Paralympics in 2010. She began to lose her sight as a teenager and was diagnosed with Best’s disease, a rare condition that causes blindness. As she is legally blind, she competes with a guide. 

 45 
Linden Hall
(Athlete)

Linden Hall
0
Birthdate: June 20, 1991
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Sunbury, Victoria, Australia

Linden Hall is an Australian athlete who specializes in middle-distance running events. Hall represented Australia at the 2016 and 2020 Summer Olympics. In the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Linden Hall qualified for the final of the 1500 m race, finishing sixth with a personal best time. She has also represented Australia in other international competitions, including the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

 46 
Kevan Gosper
(Athlete)

Kevan Gosper
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Birthdate: December 19, 1933
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Sydney, Australia

Kevan Gosper is an Australian former athlete. He mainly competed in the 400 meters. He competed in the 1956 Summer Olympics held in Melbourne and won the silver medal in the 4 × 400-meter relay race with his teammates Leon Gregory, Graham Gipson, and David Lean. He later became a vice president of the International Olympic Committee. 

 47 
Paul Narracott
(First Australian sportsperson (and only male) to have represented Australia at both a Summer and Winter Olympics)

Paul Narracott
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Birthdate: October 8, 1959
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Florey, Australia

 48 
Matthew Denny
(Discus throw, Hammer throw)

Matthew Denny
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Birthdate: June 2, 1996
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Toowoomba, Australia

Matthew Denny is an Australian track and field athlete who specializes in the discus throw. Denny represented Australia at the 2016 and 2020 Summer Olympics, setting his personal best of 67.02 meters in the discus throw at the latter event. Matthew Denny also competes in the hammer throw; she won a silver medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

 49 
Bill Roycroft
(Olympic Athlete)

Bill Roycroft
2
Birthdate: March 17, 1915
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Victoria, Australia
Died: May 29, 2011

Bill Roycroft was an Australian Olympic equestrian champion who won an Olympic gold medal in 1960. He learned to ride horses as a young boy and served in the army during World War II. He married a showjumper and trained his sons to ride horses as well. He then went on to participate in competitive events with his sons.  

 50 
Dani Stevens
(Discus thrower)

Dani Stevens
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Birthdate: May 26, 1988
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Fairfield, Australia

Dani Stevens is an Australian track and field athlete who specializes in discus throw. She won the gold medal at the 2009 World Athletics Championships in Berlin, becoming the youngest female world champion in the discus throw event. The current Oceanian and national record holder, Dani Stevens has also won gold medals at the 2014 and 2018 Commonwealth Games.