Former World Record Holder Bobby Hurley Retires From Competition

Elite Australian swimmer Bobby Hurley has announced his retirement from competition at the age of 29. His stellar career includes 6 World Championships medals, including a 50m backstroke world title at the 2012 short course edition of the competition in Istanbul.

“Today I announce my retirement from professional swimming. It has been a honour to represent Australia for the past 12 years, over four World Championships, a Commonwealth Games, Pan Pacs and 40+ World Cup events, I achieved some incredible highs, but didn’t quite achieve it all,” wrote Hurley on his Instagram page this week.

Hurley’s early career ranged from racing his way to a short course world record in the men’s 50m backstroke back in 2008, to winning a bronze medal as part of the Australian men’s 4x200m relay at the 2009 FINA World Championships in Rome, to becoming short course World Champion in the 50m backstroke in 2012.

However, the past Australian national champion was plagued with injuries in the final years of his career. Worn-out cartilage and arthritic conditions afflicted both his elbows, which led Hurley to seek Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy, never able to truly get back to pre-injury form. He most recently finished 11th at the 2018 Australian Commonwealth Trials.

In addition to training under Mike Bottom as part of Club Wolverine Elite in Ann Arbor, Hurley also worked recently under Tim Lane at Warringah, the same man who holds Korean Olympian Park Tae Hwan in his stable.

Hurley engaged in a high-profile coaching job himself, in the role of ‘Performance Manager’ for South African Olympian Chad Le Clos last year. The Aussie, along with Andrea Di Nino, the head of the European-based ADN project, trained Le Clos in tandem, with Di Nino designing the training plan, with Hurley carrying them out on-deck with running the day-to-day workouts.

For 2018, however, Hurley will be moving into the role of Head Coach of Aqua Bliss Swimming, a club based in Normanhurst, New South Wales. As Head Coach, Hurley says he “intends to bring the same passion and enthusiasm I had as a swimmer, each and every day.”


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6 years ago

Bobby Hurley was a very good short course swimmer in backstroke whilst also a pretty good freestyler over LC in middle to long distance events. A pretty unusual combination. When he says he “didn’t quite achieve it all” he must be referring to not making an Olympics team. He always struck me as an intelligent guy. Good luck in your coaching career.

6 years ago

And he was a heckuva point guard for the Duke Blue Devils.

6 years ago

He looks like a young Kevin Spacey.

6 years ago

One of the strangest specialties in swimming, sprint backstroke and distance freestyle.

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Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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