James is one of Britain's most successful athletes with two rowing Olympic Gold medals and six World Championships to his name. Both his Olympic finals were epic contests performed under enormous pressure with hard fought victories won by the smallest of margins.
Since retiring from International competition James has been far from idle and in 2005, he took on the mighty challenge of rowing across the Atlantic with TV presenter Ben Fogle all filmed for the BBC documentary Through Hell and High Water. Applying the same determination, competitiveness and stubborn streak that James showed during Olympic preparations, Ben Fogle and James Cracknell were the first boat to arrive in the Caribbean despite there only being one professional rower on board. In March 2008, James achieved another giant feat, this time on his own, when he successfully completed his Cross Continent Challenge in aid of Sport Relief. Over seven days he travelled to Africa from the UK under his own steam -rowing the channel, cycling through France and Spain and finally swimming the Strait of Gibraltar, accompanied by David Walliams and four pilot whales.
Not just content with extreme challenges James has also found a natural home in front of the camera. James currently presents ITV 4's coverage of the cycling Tour Series, visiting 10 cities across Britain over the course of the next month. He has hosted Ch4's coverage of the British Superbikes and filmed Rough Guides - Extreme for Channel 5. Previously in his role as ITV Sport's all-action reporter he has covered the Superbowl in the US, the Rugby 7s in Hong Kong and The Boat Race. He has travelled the globe hosting the massively popular Red Bull Air Races CH4 and last year he co presented the Red Bull Flugtag in Hyde Park. James currently writes for The Telegraph as one of their staff writers. He has covered a whole raft of subjects, from the fashion in Milan to the surfing in Hawaii via a motorbike trip across Russia.
In December 2008 James once again teamed up with Ben Fogle to take part in the Amundsen Omega3 South Pole Race. Together with a third team member, Ed Coats, they raced against 5 other teams, in a bid to reach the South Pole first. The trip was followed closely by the Daily Telegraph and BBC Breakfast and was filmed for a primetime BBC documentary series On Thin Ice, which is to air at the end of June this year. He has also co written a book with Ben Fogle being published later this year telling the story of the exciting and epic race in their own words Race To The Pole (Pan MacMillan).
James' love of competition has not diminished and he regularly takes part in marathons, triathlons and adventure races not to mention setting a record for paddling the Channel on a surfboard. He released two books in 2006; James Cracknell's No Gym Health Plan and The Crossing- Conquering the world's toughest rowing race (co-authored with Ben Fogle). Later this year James has another book Body Science being published, this is an educational children’s book which delves in to the science behind the human body (DK Publishing).
James is relaxed, bright and extremely charismatic speaker. With his natural style and sense of humour, audiences really warm to his unique laid back approach. He is also excellent as and awards host.
He is an ambassador for Red Bull and a 2012 symbol for Adidas.
James is married and has two young children.
teamwork, dedication, responsibility, drive, sacrifice, overcoming setbacks, maintaining excellence, responding to pressure.
James has 3 different topics that can make up his inspirational and motivational presentation…
Olympics - James talks about the lead up to both the Sydney and Athens Olympics and how they were far from the straightforward wins that had come to be so expected by the British public. He addresses the highs and lows of a tough training regime and the different characters that ultimately make a successful team. He offers an insight into his personal drive, having missed out on 2 Olympic games prior to Sydney and the sacrifices he made to stay at the top. As a key member of one of Britain's most successful teams, James has dealt with having the expectations of a nation on his shoulders and he offers a rare and amusing insight into how this pressure manifests itself in the boat
Atlantic Rowing Race - James took on the mighty challenge of the Atlantic Rowing Race in 2005. The amazing experiences that he went through with TV Presenter Ben Fogle whilst completing the 3000 mile race are a unique addition to his already exciting and inspirational presentation. Applying the same determination, competitiveness and stubborn streak that James showed during Olympic preparations, Ben and James were the first boat to arrive in the Caribbean despite there only being one professional rower on board. The dramatic and emotional tales of James and Ben's gruelling adventure are enough to drive anyone to take on new challenges and go the extra mile. The amazing powerful and emotional footage which made up the documentary - 'Through Hell and High Water' can also be part of this presentation.
Sport Relief Cross Contintent Challenge - In March 2008, James achieved another giant feat, this time on his own, when he successfully completed his Cross Continent Challenge in aid of Sport Relief. James talks of his amazing journey where over seven days he travelled to Africa from the UK under his own steam - rowing the channel, cycling through France and Spain and finally swimming the shark infested Strait of Gibraltar, accompanied by David Walliams and four pilot whales.
James is happy to work to a client's brief and will incorporate specific messages or even tailor his existing material to highlight certain business areas if preferred. However his standard presentation, that is naturally adapted with each individual audience in mind, is truly inspiring and he never fails to engage his audience.
"James was excellent last night. Relaxed, funny, poignant, steady and smooth. He achieved just the reactions from the audience that I was hoping for and it rounded off the day perfectly. He impressed many people with his gentlemanly behaviour and friendliness." -
Head of Marketing and Strategy, BT Defence
"Thanks for joining us last week and giving a fantastic talk to our HR Solutions leaders. There was nothing but positive feedback from the group. People found your story interesting and inspiring so it really hit the spot. Bringing along the medals was a nice touch too!"
"Very engaging, very entertaining, very motivating... a brief yet fabulous insight into the life of a double Olympic Gold Medal winner"; "A very engaging and inspiring individual"; "His talk was very relevant to understanding teamwork and self-development." - Morgan Stanley
“He (James) went down extremely well. I've had loads of comments on how good he was - and how appropriate his content was to us…. People also appreciated his honesty and his straightforwardness. Overall a delightful guy and I can't recommend him highly enough!” - Ernst & Young
“Please would you pass on a huge thank you to James for his time at our event yesterday. He went down a storm - his presentation was interesting and engaging and I had many comments afterwards from people saying how much they had enjoyed his session. So a big thank you once again.” - Accenture