SCOTTISH Cycling is aiming to build on the incredible recent success of the sport in the UK by appointing Gary Coltman as its new head of performance.
With Sir Chris Hoy having led the way for Scottish and UK cyclists for the past decade, Coltman is stepping up from a key role in his support team.
Coltman was performance manager of British Cycling’s Olympic Talent Programme and will now be responsible for helping Scots win medals in major competitions. He will also be expected to create world class talent development systems here in Scotland.
Coltman said: “I am thrilled to be joining Scottish Cycling at such an exciting time in the development of the sport in Scotland. Cycling is currently going through a period of extraordinary growth in this country and I believe we have the opportunity to harness that popularity and convert it into success for Scotland on the world stage.
“The opening of the national velodrome in Manchester back in 1994 signalled the start of an unprecedented run of success for British cyclists. It has played a major role in the careers of people like Sir Bradley Wiggins and Scotland’s very own Sir Chris Hoy.
“With Scotland now boasting its own world-class indoor velodrome, not to mention some of the best mountain biking facilities in Europe, I’m excited about the prospects for developing the next generation of Scottish cycling talent.”
Coltman’s own cycling career highlights include a Commonwealth Games medal in the Team Pursuit at the 1986 Games in Edinburgh and being British national champion 11 times in road, track and mountain biking.
He has worked for British Cycling for the past ten years after originally studying at Loughborough College. He holds several coaching qualifications.
Scottish Cycling chief executive Craig Burn said: “This is a tremendous appointment for Scottish Cycling.
“Gary has played a leading role in helping to establish British Cycling as one of the most successful sporting organisations in the world.
“He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience, both from his time as a professional rider and team manager, and laterally in his role as the Olympic talent programme manager for British Cycling. Gary has a deep understanding of coaching and performance at all levels and I believe he will offer valuable direction and leadership to our staff and riders, both in the lead up to the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, and also in helping to identify and develop Scotland’s future cycling stars in the years to come.”
Scottish Cycling is now based at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome in Glasgow, where the cycling events at next year’s Commonwealth Games will be held.
The national governing body covers all six cycling disciplines – BMX, Mountain Bike, Cyclo-Cross, Road, Track and Cycle Speedway.
Its role ranges from simply encouraging people to ride their bikes for the first time to helping Scots compete on the international stage.
Scottish Cycling also works in partnership with British Cycling to help nurture home-grown talent to compete at a world and Olympic level as part of the successful GB cycling team.
The organisation has seen a 109 per cent growth in membership since 2009 and a 34 per cent increase in racing licencing holders in the same period.