John MacLean

Travels from: New South Wales

John motivates and inspires his audience with his incredible story

Categories: Motivational Speakers

Full Presenter Profile & Bio

John MacLean encountered and overcame serious and debilitating injuries to become an inspirational paralympian.  Whilst cycling near his home in 1988, John was struck by an eight tonne truck which caused several breaks in his pelvis and back , a fractured sternum, punctured lungs, a broken arm and ultimately left him a paraplegic.

Through sheer determination and strength MacLean decided that he would set himself the toughest goals, and achieve them no matter what.

In 1995, John became a household name by becoming the first wheelchair athlete to finish the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon, which is considered to be the world’s toughest multi-discipline sporting event. Although he fell outside of the able-bodied cut off time, that did not deter him.

John returned in 1996 to compete again but due to a flat tyre, he wasn’t able to complete the course in the able-bodied cut off time. Once more he returned, and this time he not only finished within cut-off time but beat a third of the field and became the first ever wheelchair category winner. In 2002, he became the first non-American to be inducted into the Hawaiian Ironman Triathlon Hall of Fame for his tremendous efforts and perseverance.

Continuing to break records and excel at sporting challenges, MacLean went on to become the first wheelchair athlete to swim the English Channel in 1998, complete the gruelling Molokai Ocean challenge in 2005, represent Australia at the 2000 Olympic and Paralympic games as well as sailing in the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.

In early 2007, John was invited to take part in the sport of rowing, where in September of that year, he and his rowing partner took out a silver medal at the Rowing World Championships. They followed this up by taking out gold at the International Regatta in Italy in 2008, before John went on to win silver at the Beijing Paralympics later that year.

John MacLean is able to motivate and inspire any audience with his triumphant story and sense of perseverance. He encourages audiences to challenge themselves and set and achieve extraordinary goals. 

John MacLean - Motivational Speakers

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