By Erin Greene on 12/02/13 at 10:28 am
At the second ITU Science and Technology Conference, Eugene Kraus was named the recipient of the Michel Gignoux honour, which is awarded to an individual who has made significant contributions to the sport of triathlon.
When Eugene Kraus got his first taste of the multisport world more than a quarter century ago, disposable contact lenses had just been sold publicly for the first time, “The Simpsons” made its television debut and Google was far from existence.
Back then, triathlon was in its infant years with few streamlined rules to guide its growing global popularity. Kraus quickly became a part of the movement to add structure to triathlon as a technical official, which were then known as judges, race marshals or draft busters depending on the geography of the event.
After half a decade regulating races that still had limited rules, Kraus participated in ITU’s first ever technical education course in Manchester. The course, held 20 years ago, was taught by none other than ITU’s own Secretary General Loreen Barnett.
Fast forward seven years and he not only became one of triathlon’s first-ever Olympic technical officials at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, he was an integral part of preparing the sport for its Olympic debut. Kraus went on to officiate two more Games, which became a family affair in 2004 when his daughter joined him as a technical official in Athens.
As a technical delegate who has seen the sport grow up from one-lap draft legal courses sans bike racks into its current mature state, Kraus has remained loyal to one creed over the 26 years. Nothing is more important in a race than the triathletes, and we couldn’t agree more.
ITU would like to thank Eugene for his many years of dedication and hard work to our sport.
Previous Michel Gignoux recipients:
Al Fischer in 2004, for his contribution to the sport when ITU was funded to help to establish an office in Vancouver.
Gabor Markus Dr. in 2006, for his contribution to hosting one of the longest lasting ITU Triathlon World Cups.
Michael Machacka in 2009 for his dedication as a Technical Official.