Thorpe risked losing sponsors if he came out

IAN Thorpe contemplated coming out as gay prior to the 2000 Sydney Olympics, but the swimming superstar decided against it because of the detrimental financial consequences suffered by a Canadian swimming star.

''I'm ashamed I didn't come out earlier because I didn't have the courage to do it,'' Thorpe told British interviewer Michael Parkinson on Sunday night. ''I wanted to make my nation proud of me. I didn't know if Australia wanted its champion to be gay. I am telling the world I am,'' he said.

Supplied

In mid-2000 the late Terry Gathercole, the head of Swimming Australia, organised for Thorpe to talk to the high-profile, openly gay solicitor John Marsden.

Marsden told Fairfax Media at the time that he had organised a conference call with Canadian swimmer Mark Tewksbury, who had come out six years after he won the gold medal and broke the world record for the 100-metre backstroke at the 1992 Olympics.

Tewksbury said on Sunday that he recalled speaking to Marsden but that Thorpe's identity was not disclosed. ''I always questioned his sexuality but his name was never revealed to me,'' Tewksbury said.

 

Read more at Sydney Morning Herald



Repeat offender racks up 15 years disqualified from driving

Premium Content Repeat offender racks up 15 years disqualified from driving

A MAN who has been disqualified from driving for 13 years has been sent to jail for...

COURT: 36 people facing Rockhampton Magistrates Court today

Premium Content COURT: 36 people facing Rockhampton Magistrates Court today

See the full list of people appearing in Rockhampton Magistrates Court today.

Two hospitalised after car and truck collide

Premium Content Two hospitalised after car and truck collide

One of the people involved sustained a facial injury.