The Professional Triathletes Organisation has announced that it has selected Erin Baker as the Athletica Emeritus Honouree for the 2022 Collins Cup.
The Collins Cup is a Ryder Cup style triathlon event at which teams from the US, Europe and International regions do battle to see who rules the world of triathlon. The Collins Cup is the flagship event for the Professional Triathletes Organisation.
The PTO has determined that each year The Collins Cup race will honour an individual who has distinguished themselves in the sport of triathlon by recognising them as the Athletica Emeritus Honouree. For the inaugural Collins Cup last year Dave Scott, as the progenitor of professionalising our sport, was the honouree. This year the PTO is pleased to recognise Erin Baker as the Athletica Emeritus Honouree.
Paula Findlay, PTO Board Member, commented: “While we are deeply indebted to all the tremendous triathletes whose blood and sweat over many decades has paved the way for the PTO and The Collins Cup to become a reality, Erin’s contributions to our sport go beyond her unparalleled performances on the racecourse.
“Erin was a pioneer in advancing gender equality in triathlon, insisting on equal prize money for men and women and boycotting races to her own personal detriment when faced with discrimination. The PTO has been built on the bedrock Erin established and is carrying on her legacy of equality in prize money and going even further by establishing an unprecedented paid maternity leave policy that allows women PTO Professionals to become mothers without jeopardising their careers. It is an honour for me, as a female member of the PTO Board and a PTO Professional who has greatly benefited from Erin’s lifetime of effort, to pay tribute to Erin.”
It is nearly impossible to list all of Erin’s triathlon accomplishments. She won 104 of the 121 races she entered, including nine World Championships over all distances.
Mark Allen, six-time IRONMAN® World Champion, commented on Erin’s racing: “All it took was one look at what Erin Baker could do to silence anyone who felt the level of performance in the women’s field was lower than the men’s”. Triathlete Magazine put it simply, “We stopped trying to figure Erin out. We just accept her as the best female triathlete that ever lived.”
Erin said: “It is truly an honour to be named by the PTO as the Athletica Emeritus Honouree for this year’s Collins Cup. I am thrilled to see the men and women PTO Professionals come together. It has been 40 years in the making and I am very pleased to see today’s generation of professionals have their own organisation and a voice in the sport.”