James Cunnama and Jodie Swallow will not renew their contracts with TeamTBB for 2014. The ultra-distance triathlon couple will also conclude their coaching relationships with Team TBB’s head coach Brett Sutton, who recently resigned from the team.
James Cunnama has been with TeamTBB since 2009, soon after he began his triathlon career. Over the past five years Cunnama has emerged as a world-class athlete under the close guidance of Brett Sutton. His recent fourth place at Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii, is testament to the development philosophy at the core of TeamTBB.
Jodie Swallow joined TeamTBB following a successful partnership with Brett Sutton in 2010. In 2013 her partnership with TeamTBB and Sutton produced one of the most successful results sheets of her illustrious career.
The move away from TeamTBB will allow Cunnama and Swallow to explore new sponsorship opportunities and partnerships as they continue to pursue their goals in triathlon. It will also make way for new development athletes in the TeamTBB roster. Both athletes credit TeamTBB and Sutton with their success as long-distance athletes.
TeamTBB manager Alex Bok expressed the team’s appreciation for Swallow and Cunnama: “Jodie’s and James’s departure from TeamTBB means the loss of two of the most articulate professional athletes of our team.
“James is simply the best pro male athlete the team has produced in its seven-year history. His fourth-place finish at the 2013 Ironman Word Championships in Kona made all of us very proud and was by far the best male result to date for the team. James has an amazing future ahead of him, and we at TeamTBB believe reaching the Kona podium is more a matter of when, than if…
“Jodie is one of few athletes who joined TeamTBB with an already distinguished career in the sport of triathlon – she was much less of a development athlete. Although it is fair to say that TeamTBB, and Brett Sutton in particular, helped Jodie progress from a very successful short course career, through the half Ironman distance (2010 IM 70.3 World Champion) into an Ironman Champion (2013 IM Sweden). Jodie has had a stellar career to date, is a consummate professional and continues to demonstrate her incredible potential and versatility as an athlete.â€
“I would like to thank Brett, Alex (Bok) and TeamTBB sponsors for including me in the successful formula that is TeamTBB,â€ said Swallow. “I love my Ironman career even more than I did my Olympic distance days. I feel rejuvenated and ready to attack the big titles in the years ahead. Brett nurtured my talent and taught me a lot about myself and long-distance triathlon. Brett is more than a chapter in my career, he is an essential character in the whole novel. TeamTBB continues to outlast any other professional triathlon team because it has stayed true to its cause and commitment to development. I can only give thanks. I am incredibly excited and motivated about the future, and I am already moving towards my goals.â€
Said Cunnama, “As I move in a new direction in my triathlon career, I look back on my time with TeamTBB and Brett Sutton with immense gratitude. I owe my career to the development philosophies and principles around which Alex Bok and Brett built TeamTBB. And, of course, to Brett’s coaching over the past five years. I am excited to invest all that I have learned as I strive to achieve my goals in triathlon. I would like thank Alex and Brett for all they have done for me and I wish TeamTBB every success in the future. I hope my leaving opens doors for other young athletes to compete on the world stage, as I have done.”
“TeamTBB management is proud to call James and Jodie shining examples of the team’s vision to provide hope and opportunity through sports.â€ Bok concluded. “We know James will inspire a new generation of athletes in his beloved South Africa. While Jodie will continue to stun the world of triathlon with her success in long-distance events. We wish both athletes the very best in their professional careers and as partners in life.â€