Thursday, January 20, 2022
HomeInterviewsKathy Gilchrist - the New Scottish Cycling President

Kathy Gilchrist – the New Scottish Cycling President

"I want the cubs to have a voice, listen to what they need. We want their voices to be heard in the SC boardroom."

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The name ‘Gilchrist’ is a famous one in Scottish Cycling with Mr. Sandy Gilchrist, star of road, track and time trial, as one of its most lauded sons.

And now there’s another Gilchrist making the headlines in Scottish Cycling, Sandy’s US born wife, Kathy was recently elected President of Scottish Cycling.

Best ‘have a word’, we thought.

Kathy Gilchrist
Kathy Gilchrist with previous Scottish Cycling CEO, Craig Burn. Photo©supplied

Congratulations on the appointment, let’s begin by asking where you originally hail from?

“I grew up in Rochester, up-state New York, but spent most of my professional life in Houston, Texas.”

How did you originally get into cycling?

“My dad raced and my grandfather was involved in cycling administration so I’m from ‘cycling stock’.

“I started touring with the local club then one day my dad said to me, ‘here, sign this.’

“Then he added; ‘Congratulations, you’ve just signed your third category race licence application!’”

Kathy Gilchrist
Kathy Gilchrist at the start of a criterium in her youth. Photo©supplied

You raced then?

“Yes, 99% on the road but I did some track racing, there wasn’t a velodrome near to us but I raced on flat tracks and old speedway ‘bowls.’

“I focussed on shorter events, mainly criteriums, races like   the Somerville Classic, Fitchburg, Milwaukee, the Tour of Florida…”

Kathy Gilchrist
Kathy Gilchrist edges a win. Photo©supplied

What brought you to Bonnie Scotland?

“Sandy!

“I grew up with the sport, family, club mates, friends, we all loved the sport and Sandy and I share that love.

“When I stopped racing I was away from the sport for three or four years, not involved at all.

“Then one day I was out for a drive in the country and saw a race taking place and realised how much I’d missed it.

“I got involved again and cut my teeth as a commissaire on the Tour of Texas.”

Kathy Gilchrist
Sandy and Kathy Gilchrist. Photo©supplied

And you’ve worked on three Olympics?

“Yes, and each one had unique experiences for me. At Atlanta I was in-field track manager, with my experience of running Houston Velodrome.

“I also helped with the media at the Time Trial in ’96.

“In London 2012 I was on the staff and my memory is that we prepared and trained so much – but then it has to be perfect on the day.

“I worked on the road and MTB events.

“And in Rio in 2016, it was the exact opposite; the tradesmen were still working on construction of the velodrome when we arrived but the local people were so dedicated, they really put their heart into making a success of it for their country and for the athletes.

“I worked on liaison at the track and on the MTB races.”

Why did you want to be president of the SCU?

“To give back and to make a difference.

“I’ve run teams and I’ve run a velodrome, I thought to myself; “what can I do to allow folks to enjoy or sport?

“Not just riders who want to go to the Olympics but folks who just want to go out and ride their bikes.”