Cathy's Coach Criticises C-Grade Celebrity

Tamsyn tells coach to Nic off
By Jim Wilson
November 12, 2005

EIGHT-TIME national champion Tamsyn Lewis last night returned fire after being labelled a “nobody” and a “C-grade celebrity who runs” by Cathy Freeman’s former coach.

Nic Bideau, who coaches distance stars Craig Mottram and Benita Johnson, launched a scathing attack on Lewis and the direction of track and field in Australia in yesterday’s Herald Sun.

Bideau slammed Lewis’s poor results overseas, saying her performances paled compared to those of Mottram and Johnson.

“If they came from someone like Seb Coe or Daley Thompson or someone I respected, then Nic’s comments would have hurt me,” Lewis said.

"Aren’t we all about promoting the sport or is Nic just interested in personal attacks on other Australian athletes?

“To me, that doesn’t make much sense when we all should be one heading towards the Games.”

Lewis says Bideau is more interested in self-promotion and pushing up his own athletes in what she labelled a publicity stunt.

“I wouldn’t have thought this was the way to promote your athletes,” she said.

“Craig and Benita don’t need that sort of press as they are both world-class performers. I have acknowledged time and time again in my roles in the media (that) both have had outstanding years, and what Craig did at the world championships in winning bronze in the 5000m was awesome for our sport.”

It’s believed several key decision makers in the sport at the top level expressed their disappointment at Bideau’s criticism of Lewis.
The 27-year-old is one of the faces of the Games and is regarded as one of the most supportive players in Athletics Australia’s quest to attract young talent to the sport.

“I’m not going to get down over Nic’s comments and I’ll just keep on training and get myself as best prepared as I can for the Games,” Lewis said.

“We need to promote our sport and I’m extremely passionate about supporting kids who are aspiring athletes.”

And supporting grassroots track and field will continue today for Lewis as she races over the 100m and 400m at a meeting in Glenhuntly.

She hasn’t ruled out the 800m in Melbourne in March following her 400m campaign at the Games.

It was also revealed yesterday by Victorian Minister for State and Regional Development John Brumby that Lewis will contest the Women’s Gift at Stawell this Easter.

This year’s event carries a record $10,000 prizemoney, making it Australia’s richest footrace for women.

“This is a massive boost for Stawell and I can’t wait for next year to get to run in Australia’s richest women’s race,” Lewis said.

The Stawell Easter carnival will be held from April 15-17.

Herald Sun

What’s the story between the two then?

As far as I can remember …

Bideau was going out with Freeman (and coaching her at the same time)
This is all before Sydney.
He had an affair with Sonia O’Sullivan (who he is now father to both her children - though not husband) while still with her and this gutted Cathy - the manner in which it was done left her near suicidal.
He then attempted to sue Freeman for earnings post affair.
The court case was a long drawn out affair washing linen in public etc. Very messy.

I think this is the jist of it … maybe someone else might be better informed an better able to tie up the details/ends.

Its ok that tells us enough! God I can see why she would be upset!

OK, so Bideau romances Freeman and then dumps her for O’Sullivan. Then Bideau sues Freeman.

Does this have something to do with why Bideau criticises Lewis??? Am I missing something here??

I’ve got the same question as KitKat, but in any case that was way too much info for me -forget I ask… :o

Was Freeman not helping train Lewis?

How many years ago? Didn’t Lewis go to Seb Coe in UK at the end of 2000 or 2001? They were definitely together by Manchester 2002.
Or are you saying Freeman is coaching Lewis now? That would be interesting.

I thought I read that a few months ago in an article that she was getting advice from Freeman - not that Cathy was the coach though - just advising.