Gullickson takes over US dirt programs
Marc “Gully” Gullickson is USA Cycling’s mountain bike and cyclo-cross new program manager, a position the former competitive mountain bike and cyclo-cross athlete brings years of experience, both domestic and international.
Gullickson represented the United States at five UCI mountain bike and five UCI cyclo-cross world championships throughout his career.
“I’m just very happy to be back working with the athletes and attending the big events,” he told BikeRadar Monday. “It seems like I have come back full circle to where I started my racing career, only now I’m on the other side.”
Regarding the impressive growth of ‘cross in the US, Gullickson said there are bound to be some growing pains.
“Let’s face it, it’s better to be worried about how to deal with the overwhelming participation at the National Championships than to worry about how to get people to sign up,” he said. “I think everyone wants the same thing in the US for ‘cross. We want to see growth without losing the true spirit of cross that drew us to it in the first place. I think we all want to see success on the International stage as well and that’s what I’m mostly responsible for.”
Could Gully, a former racer with several ‘cross world championship races under his belt, be a catalyst in getting the splinter sport in the Olympics, either summer or winter?
“‘Cross in the Winter Olympics?” he said. “I think that will be a hard sell and it has already been on the table and brushed off as far as I know. That being said, with the growth that we are seeing here in the US there might be a time down the road that the subject could gain some traction with the Olympic powers.”
More recently, Gullickson served as an assistant coach to Matt Cramer for the U.S. national team at the past three UCI mountain bike world championships and shared head coaching responsibilities for the U.S. contingent at the last three UCI cyclo-cross world championships – including the 2007 edition in which the American squad claimed an unprecedented three silver medals.
Before his retirement in 2002 from competitive cycling, Gullickson raced for 13 seasons on the domestic and international mountain bike and cyclo-cross circuits. He’s provided public relations for several companies and organizations, including Hutchinson Tires.
Currently a resident of New York State, Gullickson began his new role on January 14 and will relocate to USA Cycling’s headquarters at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs later this year.
© BikeRadar 2008