Name: Laura Bennett
Sport:
Triathlon
Birthday: 4/25/1975
Height: 5’9”
Current Residence:
Boulder, Colo.
College: 
Southern Methodist University ’97, Finance

Olympic Experience:

  • 2012 Olympic Games, 17th
  • 2008 Olympic Games, 4th

Career Highlights
2012 U.S. Olympic Team Member
2011 USAT Elite National Champion
2010 USAT Olympic/ITU Triathlete of the Year
2010 USAT Elite National Champion
2008 U.S. Olympic Team Member
2008 USAT Olympic/ITU Triathlete of the Year
2007 USAT Olympic/ITU Triathlete of the Year
2006 USAT Olympic/ITU Triathlete of the Year
2004 Olympic Team Alternate
2003 USAT Elite National Champion
2003 USOC Triathlete of the Year

Elite Triathlon Career
2012:
Member of the USA Triathlon National Team and a 2012 U.S. Olympian • Took seventh at the Sept. 2 Hy-Vee Triathlon • Finished as the No. 3 American and 30th overall in the 2012 ITU World Triathlon Series rankings • Placed second at the Aug. 26 Chicago Triathlon • Finished 17th at the 2012 London Olympic Games on Aug. 4 in her second Olympic appearance • Won the Boulder Peak Triathlon on July 8 • Placed first at the June 2 Dallas ITU Pan American Cup • Winner of the May 20 Kansas City Triathlon, a 5i50 event • Qualified for her second consecutive U.S. Olympic Team with a third-place finish at the ITU World Triathlon San Diego on May 11 • Finished on the podium for the first time in a WTS event in San Diego after riding among a pack of eight leaders throughout the bike and following with a strong run to claim her spot on the London start line • Opened her season with a seventh-place showing at the Mooloolaba ITU World Cup on March 24.

2011: Won her third career and second straight USA Triathlon Elite National Championship title in 2011 • Finished eighth in the 2011 ITU World Championship Series to rank as the No. 2 American • Earned a season-best fifth-place showing at the 2011 WCS Grand Final in Beijing • Finished fifth at the 2011 Hy-Vee Triathlon Elite Cup • Placed sixth in Kitzbühel for a seventh consecutive top-10 finish on the WCS circuit • Placed eighth in Madrid • Finished sixth at the opener of the 2011 ITU World Championship Series in Sydney • Led the Sydney race for much of the run

2010: Named the 2010 USA Triathlon Olympic/ITU Athlete of the Year • Captured her second career USA Triathlon elite national title in 2010 in Tuscaloosa, Ala. • The national championship was her first since 2003 • Finished the 2010 ITU World Championship Series as the No. 1-ranked American and 10th overall • Placed eighth at the 2010 Grand Final in Budapest for her fourth straight top-10 finish • Also topped the 2010 ITU Best Swimmer Rankings • Recorded top-10 finishes in the ITU World Championship Series stops in Kitzbuhel (eighth), Hamburg (seventh) and London (fifth) • Finished sixth and was the top American finisher at the 2010 Hy-Vee Triathlon on June 13 • Placed 14th at the 2010 ITU World Championship Series opener in Sydney  • Placed third at the Los Angeles Triathlon and the Toyota U.S. Open Triathlon in Rockwall, Texas, in 2010 

2009 and earlier: Ranked No. 43 overall (No. 4 American) in the 2009 ITU World Championship Series rankings • Top WCS finish in 2009 was 12th in Washington, D.C. • Narrowly missed a medal with a fourth-place finish at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games • Also took fourth at the 2008 Mooloolaba and Hy-Vee ITU World Cup events and the USAT Elite National Championships in Portland, Ore. • Finished 2008 at No. 28 in the final ITU World Cup rankings and was the No. 3 American • Qualified for 2008 Olympic Team with third place overall finish at 2007 ITU Beijing World Cup • Four-time medalist at ITU World Championships (2003-2005, 2007) • Won prestigious title at Hy-Vee Triathlon ITU Des Moines World Cup in 2007 • Qualified for 2007 Pan Am Games but gave her spot to teammate Sara McLarty • Attended the 2004 Olympic Games as the team alternate • Finished third at the 2004 world championships, which was a U.S. Olympic qualifying race, but didn’t get the slot because U.S. teammate Sheila Taormina won the world championship • Qualified for the 2004 world championship team as the second-ranked U.S. female triathlete • Was the top U.S. finisher, second overall, at the 2003 triathlon world championship • Won her first U.S. elite national title at the Treasure Island Triathlon in 2003 • Qualified for the 2003 world championship team by being ranked third in the world by the cutoff date • Finished 13th overall at the 2003 Bay to Breakers 12k running race in San Francisco • Placed fifth overall in the 2001 Kia Formula 1 Triathlon Series in Australia • Was second runner-up for 2000 Olympic team after finishing fourth at the U.S. Olympic Trials • Was part of the halftime celebration at a 1999 football game of alma mater, SMU versus Hawaii • During the winter months of 1999, trained with two-time world champion Michellie Jones at her home in Australia and raced in the St. George Formula One Series.

Amateur Triathlon Career: Participated in the IronKids Bread Triathlon Series • In 1997, after graduating from college, was the second U.S. amateur at the World Championship in Perth, Australia • In 1994, was voted the USA Triathlon and Triathlete Magazine Junior of the Year • In 1993, was a member of the USA Triathlon Junior National Team • Was second in the junior division at the Age Group National Championship at Leon's QEM Triathlon in Hammond, Ind • Finished 22nd at the Junior World Championship in Manchester, England 

Athletic Background: Was an eight-time All-American and member of the 1997 NCAA champion 400 medley relay while swimming at SMU • Was the co-captain of the team her senior season (1996-97) • While swimming for the Mustangs, was on the team with six 1996 Olympians from six countries, including 1997 NCAA Swimmer of the Year Martina Moravcova (Slovakia) • While at Cardinal Newman High School in West Palm Beach, Fla., earned All-America honors in 1993 in swimming • Was also the 1991 (So.) and 1992 (Jr.) Florida high school track champion in the mile and 2-mile • Team won the 1990 (So.) and 1992 (Jr.) high school cross country championship • Began swimming competitively in sixth grade (age 12) • While growing up, enjoyed playing football with older brother

Personal
Laura Marie (Reback) Bennett • Born April 25, 1975, in North Palm Beach, Fla. • Parents, Paul and Sharon, reside in North Palm Beach • Was introduced to the sport by her family • Paul is a top age group triathlete while Sharon has participated in a handful of half-marathons • Older brothers, David and John, also compete in triathlon • Laura married top Australian triathlete Greg Bennett in November 2004 • Husband, Greg, finished fourth in the 2004 Olympic Games triathlon • Laura earned a B.A. in finance from Southern Methodist University in 1997 • Was a member of the SMU 3.0 Club from 1994-97 and a member of the Southwest Conference Commissioner's Honor Roll from 1994-96 • Favorite food is stone crabs, but will eat almost anything • Spends winters training and competing in Australia.