Posted: 17 October, 2016
Legend Anna Meares Announces Retirement
Olympic legend Anna Meares has announced her retirement.
The 35-time national champion has turned down the huge lure of competing at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, revealing for the first time the sheer extent of injuries to her body.
Every day for four months leading up to the Rio Games, her torso was completely strapped - her body was literally strapped together.
It was a truly heroic effort from our flagbearer, who made an incredible recovery from an horrific accident in 2008.
Just seven months out from the Beijing Olympics, Meares crashed hard at the LA World Cup circuit, breaking her neck amidst other serious injuries.
Astonishingly, she was back on the bike just 10 days later - and with intensive rehabilitation, she went on to win silver at Beijing.
Four years later marked the defining win of her career - a 2012 gold in London against a vocal British crowd and nemesis Victoria Pendleton.
With a bronze in Rio, Meares became the only individual Australia Olympian to win four consecutive medals.
ANNA MEARES' MEDAL HAUL
- OLYMPIC GAMES
2 gold (2004, 2012)
1 silver (2008)
3 bronze (2004, 2012, 2016)
- WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
- COMMONWEALTH GAMES
- NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
Meares says she's looking forward to her retirement, and to moving into roles in charity, ambassadorships, and public speaking.
She's already been tapped as the face of the Motor Accident Commission's new cycling road safety campaign.
But most of all, she's looking forward to what she deserves the most - a break.