James Cracknell OBE
Athlete and adventurer, James Cracknell OBE is the winner of double Olympic Gold medals for rowing. James is as comfortable venturing across continents and seas as he is in front of an audience. A consummate professional, with a wealth of experience in teamwork. James's friendly professionalism and candid, motivational story make him an ideal choice to deliver a moving and inspiring keynote speech.
As one of Britain’s most successful athletes of all time, James Cracknell OBE has two Olympic Gold Medals and 6 World Championship titles. His epic rowing finals in Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004 have gone down in Olympic history, and have secured his spot as a British Sporting Hero.
Since retiring from professional rowing, James has filled a niche as an inspirational entrepreneur and businessman and has used his outstanding sporting achievements, intelligence and good sense of humour to become a consummate keynote speaker. Founder and director of his enormously successful company Threshold Sports, he has the ability to captivate and motivate any audience.
James’ success with Matthew Pinsent in the coxless pairs, encompassed victories in the 2001 World Championships; the 2002 World Championships in Seville, and the 2004 Olympics, where they switched back into the coxless fours and clinched Gold – and the nation’s hearts - once again.
In 2006 James rowed the Atlantic for charity. This was the first of many extreme expeditions including a 1,400-mile journey from the UK to Morocco in a week for Sport relief. In 2009, James took part in the Amundsen Omega 3 South Pole Race with Ben Fogle and Dr Ed Coats, and finished second.
In 2010 he started to film ‘The Unstoppable’ trilogy for the Discovery Channel. The title was chosen because a near fatal accident left him with a brain injury - but didn’t curb his belief in himself. Only two years later James fronted an expedition for the Discovery channel, ‘World’s Toughest Expeditions’ where he completed 4 of the toughest endurance challenges any human body can cope with.
James is a popular and entertaining corporate, motivational and after-dinner speaker, he has been an ambassador for Adidas and BMW and has also launched partnerships with Nutriblizter, Karrimor and 2016 saw him partner with Renault and American Express.
His more sedate activities include a ten-year post as a Daily Telegraph journalist; Olympic presenter for ITV News at Ten in Bejing, and presenter of Channel 4’s Red Bull Air Race and ITV 1’s British Superbikes. James was appointed Sustainability Ambassador by the London Organising Committee of the 2012 Olympic Games (LOCOG). Chosen for his ability to articulate the key areas to combating climate change to a wide audience, James was actively involved in advising on policy issues.
James has canoed the historical Devizes to Westminster race; cycled in The Tour de France's Etape; travelled in a rickshaw from Edinburgh to London with Ben Fogle for The Pride of Britain Awards and completed his second sub 3-hour marathon in New York.
Having raised funds for Children in Need during his adventures with Ben Fogle, James was asked by the BBC to set out on a journey in which he rowed The English Channel; cycled through France and Spain and finally swam The Strait of Gibraltar, accompanied by comedian David Walliams. It took him a mere ten days to cover just under 1500 miles and raise £340,000 for Sport Relief.
James has been involved with the Policy Exchange’s work on obesity, this led him to appear in The Secret Plan to Save Fat Britain: Channel 4 Dispatches.
Adventurous and entrepreneurial, James’ incredible achievements make him a brilliant after-dinner speaker who is able to share his entertaining and motivational stories.