Australian rider Bradley McGee will become a directeur sportif for the CSC-Saxo Bank squad when he retires from racing at the end of the 2008 season.
McGee has a long and very successful cycling career behind him, both on the road and track. Among his achievements he can count five Olympic medals – more than any other Australian cyclist – which includes gold for his participation in the Australian Team Pursuit squad in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
McGee’s first professional win on the road came in the prologue of the Tour of Normandy, France, in 1999. In 2002 he won a stage of the Tour de France, and a year later he won the Tour prologue and wore the leader’s yellow jersey for three days. He has also worn the leader’s jersey in both the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a Espana.
“You know I haven’t really had much of a chance to think about retiring because I’m straight into this next role,” explained McGee. “The opportunity came up and I had a choice to remain a bike rider or turn director for Riis Cycling and the Saxo Bank boys.
“I weighed everything up and realised that opportunities like this don’t come around very often, once in a lifetime possibly, and jumped on it and it feels great, feels good, feels right,” he said.
“It’s quite obvious the way the team is run it is better to hire from within because you have to understand the fundamental values of the team to really appreciate it and make it work and I’m looking forward to that in the future because just the one year I’ve spent with this team has been an amazing experience and something you want to hold onto.”
“I’m not shocked I’m turning ‘directeur sportif’ but I have said out loud many times that never, ever would I turn ‘DS’,” laughed McGee.
“I have had some experience many years ago (2002) on the Herald Sun Tour directing Baden Cooke into the overall victory which left me as fatigued mentally and physically as I’ve ever been in my life so it’s good that I’ve got that experience because I know what I’m getting into.”