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Lamp leaving visitors bureau to help direct USA Cycling

By Paul Huggins 340-2395

Why climb the corporate ladder when you can pedal up it faster?

That's what Stuart Lamp appears to have done this week by accepting a new job with USA Cycling.

A year ago, he was still in college. Nine months ago, he was starting his first job as special events coordinator with the Decatur-Morgan County Convention and Visitors Bureau. In two weeks, he'll be the eastern regional director of mountain biking for the governing body of cycling in America.

Lamp said he didn't apply for the job but USA Cycling approached him. He took the job, he said, because it's a great opportunity to work in a field he loves and USA Cycling made him a financial offer he couldn't refuse. The job also allows him to remain in Decatur and work from his home, he said.

Lamp is a professional cycler who was an alternate on the 2004 U.S. Olympic cycling team. He used his cycling contacts to bring a professional bike race to Decatur on May 6 that will feature hundreds of the best cyclers in the world, including some participants in the Tour de France.

Though he will no longer work for the visitors bureau, Lamp said he will continue to organize the May race and work to keep it coming back to Decatur.

His new job will be expanding and promoting more mountain biking races east of the Mississippi River. He will be in a position to bring mountain bike events to North Alabama, and he said Alabama has plenty of room for more races. He mentioned Bankhead Forest as the closest place to Decatur that could serve as a race site.

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