Friday, March 02, 2012

RL's got a Facebook page so feel free to jump over and browse, comment and share there, too.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

RL on Facebook

Wow, 14 years ago yesterday. Though the entries here have slowed, I know the memories and inspiration so many of us are blessed with have not. Bill D. brought up Richard's just the other day in a SrCheck Spelling. Management meeting as he spoke of his ability to get things done. So true and (still) so ingrained. Anyway, time to pull this into a new arena with a much bigger population - Facebook. I suspect a lot more people will be inclined to stumble into this vs. the blog given the size, scope and network interface that comes with Facebook. In the meantime, the above is an ad we put together leading into the 1996 Olympics when we were all hyper-sensitive to the IOC's policing of those using their marks including the word "Olympics". Richard just laughed at us. "What are you guys so worried about?"

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Friday, June 05, 2009

The Biggest and the Best

Above is a leading picture from the May 2009 issue of MOUNTAIN BIKE which features a birds eye view of the pro mountain bike scene in '97. The story is about the heyday of the sport. For those that remember, GT's big rig (white, lower left) was at the epicenter. Richard always wanted to be the best and when he locked on to an idea it was only a matter of time. Vision, determination and will. Big, bold and bright - always.

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Friday, August 01, 2008

BMX & the Olympics

Many know that Richard was killed just a week before the opening ceremonies of the '96 Olympic Games. In fact, it is a tragic irony that his funeral was on the same day as the opening ceremonies. That was such a particularly huge Olympic year for cycling given the debut of mountain biking (and Juli) as a full-medal sport, and the oh-so-bike-standard changing debut of the GT Superbike (with Marty, Erv and co).

I suppose that is why every four years at this time his presence and imapct seems to be extra heightened.

Going into Beijing, it is hard not to smile.

BMX will debut as an Olympic sport and there is no doubt that Richard had a leading role in this. His investment in the 20" segment during the late 80's and 90's kept it not only afloat, but thriving. His commitment to athletes, teams and winning kept it relevant and at the forefront. His vision in freestyle and the other non-race disciplines kept all things 20" pushing into new territory.

Richard's fingerprints are all over 2008. Former World DH Champ and GT mountain bike pro, Mike King is USAC's BMX Programs Director and will go to the Games as the first-ever BMX coach. Gary Ellis, Jr - aka: "The Lumberjack" and GT BMX legend - is on the US Olympic Selection Committee as the voice and representative of BMX. And, Donny Robinson, who was a Powerlite factory rider beginning at 10yrs old, is one of the three men on the US team. And, of the remaining three US BMX Olympians - Kyle Bennett, Mike Day and Jill Kintner - two of them currently ride for GT.

It all points back to Richard. Seriously - you have to love it!

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Monday, May 28, 2007

June 2007 Decline Magazine

As we approach the 11th anniversary of Richard Long's passing, an interesting story just came out. If you have not seen it, the June 2007 issue of Decline Magazine has a nice 6-page piece called The History of GT Bicycles. As a mountain bike magazine, the story makes significant mention - including plenty of photos - of all the mountain bike athletes that help brand GT so clearly through the late 80's, 90's and beyond. However, it is not limited to just 26" fat tire events as it chronologically paints a relatively clear and accurate time line of the company's history in BMX, including the early days when Richard and Gary Turner first met, as well as some of the events that lead to its irreversible downfall after Richard was so suddenly killed. It's good reading. Kudos to H3 Publications and the Decline Magazine editorial staff for telling the story, as well as all those who provided insight and images (Bob Allen, Chris Hatounian, Gibey and the rest.)

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Sunday, May 28, 2006

10 years ago

It is hard to imagine that it has been almost a decade since the great Richard Long was killed on his motorcycle while driving up to the Big Bear NORBA National on July 12, 1996. Even now, 10 years later, there aren't too many days where I don't think about him in some capacity. Usually it comes in the form of a lesson or particular insight he offered or displayed that I might be applying to some present day work or relationship - afterall, Richard was a master at both.

More often than not, as I manage my own day-to-day business in cycling and all that is involved in pushing product, dealing with teams and athletes, forging into new business territory, etc., I find myself asking, "what would Richard do?"

There are so many Richard Long stories, moments and experiences, I am not sure where to begin. Hence, I thought this blog might act as a forum to pay tribute and perhaps share a tale or two about this amazing man.

The impact he made on so many lives - and on the cycling industry, community and sport as a whole - cannot be overstated. No matter what your job or interest is in this business, and whether you knew Richard personally or not, something in your 2-wheeled universe is different and better because Richard existed.

Click "Comments" on lower right to read or post your own comments on Richard.

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