Kaarle McCulloch London 2012

Kaarle McCulloch



Place of Birth




Junior Club

As a cyclist, St George

Senior Club

St George CC


Nicholas Flyger

Olympic History

London 2012

Tokyo 2020

High School

Endeavour Sports High School

Career Events

Cycling Track Womens Keirin

Cycling Track Womens Sprint

Team Sprint - Women


Kaarle's Story

Fast Facts

Sport: Cycling – Track
Event: Sprint
Olympic History: London 2012 (bronze), Tokyo 2020
Highlights: Winning bronze at the London 2012 Olympic Games
Coach: Nicholas Flyger
Year Born: 1988
State Born: New South Wales

About Kaarle

Growing up in Gymea, New South Wales Kaarle McCulloch was a promising middle-distance runner. She won the middle-distance championships in the 400 metres and 800 metres when she was 14,15 and 16.

Representing Australia at the Olympic Games was a dream for the youngster, but when she was 17 her motivation in track and field began to flail, so she turned to cycling to reinvigorate her Olympic dream.

Kaarle honed her cycling skills at the St George Cycling Club, where she was supported by her sporting family. Each of the McCulloch siblings pursued their own sporting dreams. Her younger sister Abbey is a former NSW Swifts captain and younger brother Jack also rode for St George Cycling Club.

In 2010, Kaarle and dual-Olympic champion Anna Meares broke the team sprint world record to win the world championships, a title they defended in 2011. The duo missed out on a third straight world champs crown in 2012 when they were defeated by Germany by just 0.05 seconds.

Kaarle and Anna also won silver at the London 2012 Olympic test event, but narrowly missed out on the gold medal race at the Olympics. Their qualifying time ranked them fourth (32.825 seconds), then their first-round ride ranked them third (32.806 seconds), and suddenly Kaarle and Anna were racing for bronze.

They easily accounted for the Ukraine to win the bronze medal in 32.727 seconds, still shy of their personal best time of 32.597 seconds.

In 2014, a chronic knee injury kept Kaarle on the sidelines for an extended period and her sporting future was in doubt.

After a difficult year of rehabilitation, she returned to training and found form, delivering a bronze medal-winning performance in the team sprint with Anna at the 2015 world champs and was selected as a reserve for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

At the 2018 Commonwealth Games Kaarle claimed dual gold in the team sprint and time trial as part of a four-medal haul on the Gold Coast, which included silver in the keirin and bronze in the sprint.

At the 2019 World Championships, Kaarle and Stephanie Morton teamed up to win sprint gold. Kaarle raced to silver in the keirin and bronze in the time trial.

In 2020 they gallantly won silver in the team sprint in what was a stirring result considering the pair had been sidelined for parts of 2019 due to injury, for Kaarle it was a back injury.

The sole women’s sprinter on the Australian Olympic Track Cycling Team at Tokyo 2020, Kaarle competed in both the individual sprint and keirin events.

Australia was unable to field a team sprint entry after Stephanie's sudden retirement during the COVID postponement, but Kaarle rode on to Tokyo - which was her Olympic farewell.

She had already competed in London in 2012 then went to Rio in 2016 as a reserve and showed remarkable resilience and dedication to make it to a second Games in Tokyo.

Kaarle qualified 14th fastest in the sprint with a time of 10.67 seconds, then had to fight her way through the repechage rounds after losing her round of 32 match up to New Zealander Elesse Andrews.

She won her subsequent three-rider repechage before bowing out in the next round against China’s Tianshi Zhong and Canadian Kelsey Mitchell.

Kaarle also finished ninth overall in the keirin. She placed third in her final keirin race which determined the 7th to 12th placings.

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