Amy Gillett

Amy Elizabeth Gillett (née Safe; 9 January 1976 – 18 July 2005) was an Australian track cyclist and rower who represented Australia in both sports. She was killed when a driver crashed into the Australian squad of cyclists with whom she was training with in Germany.[1]

Amy Gillett
Personal information
Born9 January 1976
Adelaide, Australia
Died18 July 2005 (aged 29)
Zeulenroda, Germany


Gillett was born in Adelaide[2] and was educated at Annesley College.[3] She was a world champion junior rower winning a gold medal in the coxless pair in the Junior World Championships in 1993 and the women's single scull in 1994.[4] Safe came fifth in the single scull in the Nations Cup held in Paris the same year.[5]

At 20, she was a member of the Australian women's eight at the Atlanta Olympics.[2] She was coached by Simon Gillett during her rowing career and later married him in January 2004 moving to Mount Helen near Ballarat. After failing to make the Australian rowing team for the Sydney Olympics she quit the sport[2] but was identified as a cyclist with potential. She was an Australian Institute of Sport rowing and cycling scholarship holder.[6]

In 2002 Gillett was first in the Individual Pursuit Australian Titles, held in Victoria.[7] From 2002 to 2005, she was a member of the Australian Institute of Sport elite cycling squad and represented Australia in the 2002 and 2003 Cycling World Cups.[7] While she was not a member of the Australian cycling team for the 2004 Athens Olympics, her results during 2005 were steadily improving including a third place in the 2005 Road Time Trial Australian Open Titles.[7] She was rated as one of the top 100 women road cyclists at the time of her death and Australian cycling officials had identified her as a potential medallist in the 2006 Commonwealth Games in the time trial.[8] Gillett was also undertaking a Doctorate at the University of South Australia at the time of her death.[8]


Gillett died after a crash near Zeulenroda, Germany on 18 July 2005, when a young German driver lost control of her car and drove head first into six members of the Australian women's cycling squad, who were preparing for the Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen stage race.[8][9][10] Five of Gillett's Australian team mates suffered injuries, most very serious. Katie Brown, Lorian Graham, Kate Nichols, Alexis Rhodes and Louise Yaxley were taken immediately to hospital, with Rhodes and Yaxley suffering major trauma. Graham and Brown had incurred fractures and Nichols had torn tendons requiring surgery. The newly qualified driver was fined €1440 and disqualified from driving for eight months.[11]


Simon Gillett and the Australian Cycling Federation subsequently established the Amy Gillett Foundation. The Foundation's aims were to:

  • provide financial support for the rehabilitation of Amy's five injured team members;
  • fund and administer a scholarship program for young women cyclists to support their sporting and academic endeavours
  • support and promote projects aimed at road safety awareness amongst cyclists and motorists[12]

2018 saw a big change to the way the scholarship was awarded and operated, as Cycling Australia pulled direct support for the Australian development teams for which the scholarship recipient would have normally raced with.[13] Previously the scholarship recipient was selected by a panel from applications to the foundation, but in 2018 recipient was selected to race as a part of professional team Wiggle High5.[14][15] The Australian national development team itself had its own selection process prior to 2018.[16][17]

Recipients of the Amy Gillett Scholarship include:[18]

Rail trail

In January 2010 the Amy Gillett Bikeway was opened at Oakbank, South Australia.[19] The trail follows a section of the former Mount Pleasant railway line.


  1. ^ Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Amy Gillett Olympic Results". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 21 September 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "From Olympic rower to cycling world champion". The Age, Melbourne. 19 July 2005. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  3. ^ "Road safety program launched". Adelaide Advertiser. 14 August 2007. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  4. ^ "Australian Medallists". Rowing Australia. Archived from the original on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  5. ^ "1994 Nations Cup— Paris France". Guerin-Foster History of Australian Rowing. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  6. ^ AIS Athletes at the Olympics Archived 6 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ a b c "Amy Gillett". Cycling Australia. Archived from the original on 29 November 2012. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  8. ^ a b c "Aust team cyclist killed in Germany". ABC News. 19 July 2005. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  9. ^ "We're on the mend, say riders". The Age, Melbourne. 24 July 2005.
  10. ^ "Cycling ace killed while training". BBC Sport. 19 July 2005.
  11. ^ Kröner, Hedwig (7 February 2006). "AIS crash verdict: "German law was applied"".
  12. ^ "About AGF". Amy Gillett Foundation. Archived from the original on 2 May 2013. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  13. ^ Giuliani, Simone (19 April 2018). "Brown awarded Amy Gillett scholarship, Wiggle High5 provides development spot". Ella CyclingTips. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  14. ^ "GRACE BROWN ANNOUNCED AS 2018 AMY GILLETT CYCLING SCHOLAR". Amy Gillett Foundation. 19 April 2018. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  15. ^ de Neef, Matt (13 June 2018). "Lizzie Williams wins Amy Gillett Cycling Scholarship after 10-year hiatus". Ella CyclingTips. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  16. ^ Palmer, Tom (29 April 2015). "The extreme methods and measures at the Australian women's development team selection camp". Ella CyclingTips. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  17. ^ Duffy, Conor; Stewart-Moore, Tom (14 May 2015). "'Hunger Games' for elite cyclists where only the toughest make the cut". 7:30 Report. ABC. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  18. ^ "Scholarships". Amy Gillett Foundation. Retrieved 4 March 2016.
  19. ^ "Amy Gillett Rail Trail (Stage 1) Official Opening (SA)". Railtrails Australia. Retrieved 19 July 2012.

External links

Alex Rhodes (cyclist)

Alexis ("Alex") Rhodes (born 1 December 1984) is an Australian professional racing cyclist.

On 18 July 2005, Rhodes suffered major trauma when a car drove into a training squad of Australian cyclists training near Zeulenroda, Germany, killing her teammate Amy Gillett.

Amy's Ride

Amy's Ride is a series of non competitive bicycle rides held in various states of Australia, by the Amy Gillett Foundation, in the memory of Amy Gillett who died in a road accident in Germany. Money raised is spent on efforts to reduce the incidence of motorist/cyclist road accidents.

The 2007 event around Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsula in Victoria, attracted 2700 riders and consisted of three options:

Road route around the Bellarine Peninsula

Bellarine Peninsula rail trail route

Circuits of the Geelong Botanic Gardens in Eastern Park, Geelong

Amy Gillett Bikeway

The Amy Gillett Bikeway or Amy Gillett Rail Trail is a shared path in the Adelaide Hills on part of the alignment of the former Mount Pleasant railway line. It is a 17 kilometres (11 mi) sealed path suitable for recreational cycling, walking and horse riding.

Stage 1 was opened in January 2010 by Patrick Conlon, then the South Australian Minister for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure. Stage 1 extended 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) between Oakbank and Woodside. Stage 2 extended it through Charleston and Stage 3 opened in May 2014 added 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) to Mount Torrens. Future work could extend it another 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) through Birdwood to Mount Pleasant. There are also several side loop trails available to interesting destinations off the main path.

Bicycle Federation of Australia

The Bicycle Federation of Australia (BFA) was the peak Australian body representing non-competitive cyclists, and directly represented over 20,000 cyclists who belonged to its affiliated groups in all states of Australia. Established in 1979 as a non-profit organisation, it advocated and lobbied Governments and the private sector for the several million Australians who ride bicycles for recreation, sport and transport. It discontinued its operations in February 2010..

Carlee Taylor

Carlee Taylor (born 15 February 1989) is an Australian racing cyclist. She took up cycling in 2007 after previously competing in triathlon.

Charleston, South Australia

Charleston is a small town in the Adelaide Hills of South Australia. It is situated on the Onkaparinga Valley Road between Woodside and Mount Torrens, on the main route from the Adelaide Hills to the Barossa Valley, and 3 km south-east of Lobethal. Charleston is very close to the source of the River Onkaparinga.

The town was laid out in 1857 by Charles Dunn (1796–1881), a brother of the prominent miller John Dunn, in a subdivision of section 5197, Hundred of Onkaparinga, and may have been originally named "Charlestown", but the current spelling has always been more common in newspaper reports

Most of the local businesses are on the Onkaparinga Valley Road, while the largest number of houses are on Newman Road. Charleston is served by a community postal agency called the Bookpost which is also a bookshop, internet cafe and General Store.

Next to The Bookpost is the Charleston Hotel which received national attention as one of the main props in a car advertisement, based on Slim Dusty's famous song "Answer to a Pub With No Beer".Charleston was served by the Mount Pleasant railway line from 1918 to 1953. It is also on the Onkaparinga Valley Road (route B34) and the Amy Gillett Bikeway on the former railway route.

Cycling in Australia

Cycling in Australia is a common form of transport, recreation and sport.

Many Australians enjoy cycling because it improves their health and reduces road congestion and air pollution. The government has encouraged more people to start, with several state advertising campaigns aimed at increasing safety for those who choose to ride. There is a common perception that riding is a dangerous activity. While it is safer to walk, cycling is a safer method of transport than driving. Cycling is less popular in Australia than in Europe, however cyclists make up one in forty road deaths and one in seven serious injuries.In 2012, for the thirteenth year running, bicycle sales in Australia have outpaced car sales.

Gillett (surname)

Gillett is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Aden Gillett (born 1958), British actor

Alan Gillett (disambiguation)

Amy Gillett (1976–2005), Australian track cyclist and rower

Burt Gillett (1891–1971), American director of animated films

Charlie Gillett (1942–2010), British radio presenter, musicologist and writer

Dave Gillett (born 1951), Scottish retired footballer

Emma Gillett (1852–1927), American lawyer and women's rights activist

Frederick H. Gillett (1851–1935), former US Speaker of the House, US Representative and US Senator from Massachusetts

George Gillett (disambiguation)

Sir Harold Gillett, 1st Baronet (1890–1976), Lord Mayor of London

James B. Gillett (1856–1937) Texas Ranger

James Gillett (1860–1937), Republican politician and 22nd Governor of California from 1907 to 1911

Jarred Gillett (born 1986), Australian football (soccer) referee

George N. Gillett, Jr. (born 1938), American businessman, owner of various sports teams

Mark Gillett, British software engineer and executive

Mary Gillett (born 1958), Australian former politician

Matt Gillett (born 1988), Australian Rugby League player

Sir Michael Cavenagh Gillett (1907–1971), British ambassador

Michael Gillett (born 1973), Australian former professional rugby league footballer

Nicholas Gillett (disambiguation)

Sir Robin Gillett (1925–2009), British merchant navy captain, Lord Mayor of London

Sarah Gillett (born 1956), British ambassador

Simon Gillett (born 1985), English footballer

Violet Gillett (1898–1996), Canadian painter and educator

Grace Brown (cyclist)

Grace Brown (born 7 July 1992) is an Australian road racing cyclist, who currently rides for UCI Women's Team Mitchelton–Scott.

Hundred of Talunga

The Hundred of Talunga is a cadastral hundred of the County of Adelaide, South Australia, spanning the Torrens Valley in the Adelaide Hills. It was proclaimed by Governor Frederick Robe in 1846 and named for an indigenous term thought to mean 'waterhole'.

The main towns within the hundred are Cudlee Creek, Kenton Valley, Gumeracha, Mount Torrens, Birdwood, Forreston and Mount Pleasant

Lisa Mathison

Lisa Mathison (born 31 January 1985) is a professional cyclist from Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, specialising in cross-country mountain bike racing. She started competitive cycling at the age of 13 in 1998 and came to national and international attention in 2002 when she won the U19 cross-country World Championships in Austria. In 2003, she successfully defended her Under 19 world champion title in Switzerland. Her achievements in mountain biking won her a Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) scholarship under the tutelage of legendary Swiss ex-pro, Chantal Daucourt, at the coaching facility in Aigle, Switzerland.

Major awards already bestowed on Mathison include 2004 Australian Female MTB Cyclist of the Year; 2003 Sport Industry Australia Young Female Athlete of the Year; Australian Female Junior MTB of the Year for 2002 and 2003; and Queensland Cyclist of the Year for 2003.

In an interview in 2002 she said Cadel Evans, was a role model: "I've been following his progress and looking up to him since my early days. He's definitely a bit of an inspiration!" On whether she would make the transition to road racing she elaborated "I don't know if I could swap over like Cadel Evans has done, but it's something to think about."

In the 2004 Summer Olympics cross-country cycling event, Mathison finished a respectable 10th place. While still concentrating on cross-country mountain bicycle racing, Mathison is also a member of the Australian Institute of Sport Women’s Road Cycling team in 2005. The team included Amy Gillett, who was killed by a car while on a training ride in Germany.

Lizzie Williams

Lizzie Williams (born 15 August 1983) is an Australian former racing cyclist, who rode professionally between 2014 and 2018 for the Specialized Securitor, Orica–AIS, Hagens Berman–Supermint andTibco–Silicon Valley Bank teams.

Lucy Kennedy (cyclist)

Lucy Kennedy (born 11 July 1988) is an Australian cyclist, who currently rides for UCI Women's Team Mitchelton–Scott.A former triathlete, track and cross country runner, Kennedy was the recipient of the 2017 Amy Gillett Scholarship to do a European tour of races with the High5 Australian Development Team. She has degrees in Civil Engineering, and Commerce, working as a traffic modeller. Kennedy joined UCI Women's Team Mitchelton–Scott for the 2018 season.

Mount Pleasant railway line

The Mount Pleasant railway line is an abandoned South Australian line. It was opened between Balhannah and Mount Pleasant in September 1918 and ran until March 1963 as a freight and passenger service. Part of its trackbed is now the Amy Gillett Bikeway rail trail near to Adelaide.

Mount Torrens, South Australia

Mount Torrens is a town in the eastern Adelaide Hills region of South Australia, 46 kilometres east-north-east of the state capital, Adelaide and 8 km east of Lobethal. It is located in the Adelaide Hills Council and the Mid Murray Council local government areas. At the 2006 census, Mount Torrens had a population of 337.

Stephen Hodge (cyclist)

Stephen Hodge (born 18 July 1961) is an Australian former cyclist. He was a professional between 1987 and 1996.

Toll Group

Toll Group, part of Japan Post Holdings, is a transportation and logistics company with operations in road, rail, sea, air and warehousing. It has three principal businesses, Global Forwarding, Global Logistics and Global Express Services, with some 1200 sites in about 50 countries, mostly in Asia and the Pacific.

Violet Gillett

Violet Gillett (1898 – 1996) was a Canadian painter and educator known for her encouragement of the arts in the New Brunswick province.

Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling

Wiggle High5 Pro Cycling (UCI team code: WHT) is a British professional cycling team based in Belgium, which competes in elite road bicycle racing and track cycling events, such as the UCI Women's Road World Cup. The team was the idea of the manager and rider Rochelle Gilmore, and was formed with backing from the Bradley Wiggins Foundation and British Cycling. The two main sponsors of the team are Wiggle and High5.

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