04 Oct, 2017

Gillian Rolton Awarded Key To The City

The City of Adelaide will award the highest honour it can bestow – the Key to the City - to one of Adelaide and Australia’s sporting legends, Gillian Rolton.

Council tonight recognised Ms Rolton for her outstanding Olympic equestrian career and her contribution to Adelaide as the Event Director of the Australian International Three Day Event.

Lord Mayor Martin Haese plans to present the Key to Ms Rolton at a private ceremony.

“Ms Rolton is a sporting hero and role model. Throughout her career, she has helped to put Adelaide, and Australia, on the world sporting map,” the Lord Mayor said.

“She has also been instrumental in building one of Australia’s premier equestrian events.”

A dual Olympic gold medal winner in 1992 (Barcelona) and 1996 and the first Australian female equestrian to win gold, Ms Rolton is perhaps best known for her Eventing performance at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
She continued riding to finish her course despite falling twice and breaking her collarbone and ribs, with her tenacity and perseverance helping to inspire her team to win gold.

During the past three decades, Ms Rolton has competed in numerous international equestrian competitions, trained many young riders in her capacity as a high-profile specialist coach, held key administrative roles within the sector and judged at national and international events including the 2012 London Olympics.

The Lord Mayor said that for the past 10 years, Ms Rolton had also been the Event Director of the highly successful Australian International Three Day Event in Adelaide, held annually in the Adelaide Park Lands.

“In 2016, it won the Australian Institute of Sport Event of the Year and is one of only six Olympic-standard events to be held across the world.

“The event attracts more than 25,000 spectators over the three days of competition, with approximately 57 per cent of ticketed attendees coming from interstate or overseas. It is also broadcast live to a worldwide audience of 15 million people,” the Lord Mayor said.

Ms Rolton has previously been awarded an Order of Australia medal, and was an inaugural inductee into the SA Sport Hall of Fame in 2010. Last year, she was elevated to “Legend” status in the Hall alongside Sir Donald Bradman, Barrie Robran, Bart Cummings and Victor Richardson.

Councillor Natasha Malani, who is also a Board Member of the Australian International Three Day Event, welcomed Council’s decision.

Cr Malani said the Key to the City was awarded to individuals and groups who had achieved excellence in their field of endeavour or had made a significant contribution to our city.

“Ms Rolton has fulfilled both of these criteria magnificently and she deserves to be honoured.”

For more information

Simon Latimer