Many readers won’t know Stan Kite, the unsung hero of British pro racing who sadly passed away this week.
Sid Barras, Keith Lambert, Chris Walker, Chris Lillywhite – these are the names that spring to mind when you’re reminiscing about the golden age of UK professional racing in the 1980s, but without the efforts of a certain Mr Kite, so much would not have been possible.
“He was the sort of person that cycling can’t do without,” recalls Lambert. “The job he did was immense. He was the man who held the pros together in unstable times and we shouldn’t forget it.”
I couldn’t agree more. Stan was the driving force behind the British Professional Cycle Racing Association, the man who got things done. Whenever there was a problem, Stan was always there to fix it. He organised just about every type of event and simultaneously managed to run the BPCRA.
His extraordinary list of tasks even extended to reporting for this magazine on many occasions, often uncredited. Stan didn’t do it for the glory, he just wanted what was best for bike racing.
When I was involved with the judging for the 50 original inductees for the British Cycling Hall of Fame a couple of years ago I insisted that Stan be included. This was a man who was a friend to this magazine and a tireless worker for the sport he loved.
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly