|www.grindtv.com, 2009: GT Bicycles is a large American manufacturer of road, mountain, and bmx bicycles. The company was founded in 1979 by Gary Turner, a welding engineer and Richard Long, a bike shop owner. The company merged with Schwinn in 1998, but the conglomerate went bankrupt in 2001, and was acquired by Pacific Cycle. Dorel Industries acquired Pacific Cycle in 2004. GT itself acquired Auburn Racing and Dyno Products from Bob Morales plus Robinson Racing from the late Chuck Robinson in the late 1980s.|
|early years||GARY TURNER.
Moto Cross racing is big. Between moto's parents allow the youngsters to race bicycles on the big dirt tracks. Dad's get involved and Bicycle Moto Cross was born. Gary Turner is one of the dads that goes to Moto Cross races and watches the kids racing including his own. He notices that the bikes are heavy, slow and fragile. Gary is a professional drag racer and has vast experience welding and building cro-mo "rails" or chassis, for drag racers. With the high grade aircraft cromoly tubing used for dragsters Gary starts to make frames for his son to race at the MX track. His son's bike gets noticed and Gary starts to supply the frames to other kids and building his reputation one frame at a time.
Richard Long owns and runs a bike shop in Orange County, California. He notices Gary Turner and his frames. He notices that they are selling and that people want to know how to get them. Richard calls Gary and asks him if he can stock and sell the frames. Gary agrees and the most famous partnership in BMX history starts.
PEDALS READY GT FRAME.
cycbmx.wordpress.com: 1976. Pedals Ready is a Pro Shop at the Western Sports-A-Rama BMX track. Gary Turner begins making them bikes selling them as Pedals Ready/GT Ames Replica
jmc/ace, bmxsociety.com, february 2009: Gary Turner was the guy behind the design of the Pedals Ready GT. Ronnie Ames replica was the short frame and Dennis Dain replica was the long frame. Most of the JMC team were riding these frames prior to the first JMC frames being produced. It would have been '76 to early '77 that you would have seen JMC riders on Pedals Ready frames....
cycbmx.wordpress.com: 1977. CYC begins selling them as Stormer Ames Limited Edition. *Note the catalog shows them still with GT downtube decals but a CYC head tube decal. Shown it was sold only as frameset. But CYC also sold kits so some bike shops may have gotten them complete with kits from CYC.
GT BICYCLES INC.
Things happen fast and soon Richard and Gary invested in a shop dedicated to making top quality Cro-moly BMX frames in Santa Ana. In 1979 they incorporated into GT Bicycles, Inc. GT standing for the initials of it's founder, Gary Turner. Richard sold his bike shop and began selling frames as fast as possible to bicycle distributors across the USA and into Europe. Business is huge and so is BMX. GT begins to sponsor BMX racers. Richard is the business and marketing genius and Gary is the engineer and craftsmen. Little did they know that in 20 years they would build together one of the most well known bicycle companies in the world.
Pedals Ready GT frame. Advertisement in the first issue of BMX Action, december 1976.
|1980||Ad in BMX Action february 1980.|
|1984||GT arrive en France officiellement.
Bicross magazine mars 1984: On trouvait déjà quelques pièces GT en France, arrivant par des chemins tortueux et à des prix élevés. Il fallait qu'une véritable entreprise d'importation se penche sur la question. C'est fait avec Mobycycle à Nantes.
GT frame standers.
Ad in BMX Action september 1984: This unique design from GT is trick. GT factory, they go onto the rear axle, clean and simple. They work great for climbing all over your bike.
Bob Morales and Eddie Fiola designed the first GT freestyle frame and named it the GT Performer.
Ad, BMX Action may 1984: Freestyle has just moved up to the level of professional. The Pro Performer is not a converted BMX bike. Deigned by professional freestylers, Eddie Fiola and Bob Morales, the Performer was engineered specifically for stylin' from its uniquely bent down tube to extra wide lower chain stays for climbing all over the bike. Lightweight and strong, the Performer is all new and all GT. The freestyle Performer frame and fork becomes the Pro Performer complete bike when GT puts it all together with components like their 4130 chromoly handlebars and laid-back seatpost, GT high pressure tires, Dia-Compe front and rear brakes, Tuf Neck stem and freestyle tuff Skyway wheels.
The GT Pro Performer, if it works for riders like Eddie, who constantly redefine the word radical, it just might improve your style.
Ron Wilkerson: GT was coming out with a freestyle frame and we were TOTALLY stoked because that was a BIG thing - another company besides Haro making a freestyle bike.
Bicross magazine: Ils jetent ainsi les bases d'une nouvelle géométrie qui sera reprise (copiée ?) par la plupart des constructeurs. A l'époque, les principales révolutions concernent le cintrage du tube inférieur au niveau du tube de direction et la plateforme rabaissée.
?: The bend at the top of the downtube was to enable full 180° x-up without crushing the front brake cable (this was before Potts Mod cable routing)
Ad from BMX Action may 1984.
Richard Long interview in Bicross Magazine #33 juin 1985.
GT World Tour with Eddie Fiola, (Bob Morales?) and David Breed.
Ad in BMX Action march 1985: GT is taking Freestyle to the world. The 1985 World Tour will take GT pros Eddie Fiola and Dave Breed to almost every recognized country on the globe. They'll be demonstrating their high flying, free style from the beach in Hawaii, to Japan, to down under inAustralia. From the deserts of Saudi Arabia to the mountains of France. From England to Germany, to Holland stylin' their way around the globe, making their way back home. Once in the USA, they'll perform across the country from the east coast to the west. Forget the Jacksons, This is a tour; the GT World Tour.
David Breed, june 2003: In 1985 the world tour was with Eddie Fiola and David Breed. Shawn our manager was with us also as we when to Tokyo, Hong Kong, Macau, Dubai, England, Ireland Scotland, Wales, Switzerland, East Germany, West Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Holland back to England then on to the Rockville show in Washington, DC. Eddie and I went to France 1 month before the World Tour to Valence France, we stayed in a little hotel in Romans France.
Peter Edge, december 2006: You have Bob Morales down as a ? for the 85 World Tour, he was definitely on the UK leg as my dad (John) was sales rep for GBGT (UK importers for GT run by Geoff Barraclough) Both Eddie and Bob visited our house whilst staying in Blackpool:o)
GT Epoch Headset.
Lightweight, high quality headset with the unique self-adjusting mechanism to ensure your steering is always precise.
Jeu de direction à ressort.
BMX Action Bike december 1985: Pegs.
1985 GT Frame Standers Eddie Fiola's invention redesigned. These rear platforms are quite simply the very best available.
GT Fork Standers Eddie Fiola new design fold-up fork standers. Chromed steel with extra wide platform. These are the ultimate in fork standers.
GT Tube Rides Serrated, lightweight alloy axle extenders.
GT Steel Tube Rides Extra large diameter axle extenders. Designed for more control and comfort, covered with grip tape to prevent slipping.
GT produit 70 000 bicross par an.
Potence cubique à expandeur percé
World Tour 1985
|1986||1986 GT World Tour.
Gary Turner a choisi cette année pour promotionner sa marque Martin Aparijo et Dennis Langlais. Le World Tour passe en France (Evry, Nantes, St Etienne, Givors, Six Fours) du 25 au 29 juin.
Automne 1986, GT rachète à Bob Morales les parts que celui-ci possède dans la marque Dyno.
GT, Dyno et Robinson font parties de GT Bicycles. Richard Long est Président Général, Gary Turner Vice Président.
GT Pro Freestyle Tour: deuxième coude sur le tube inférieur libérant ainsi une nouvelle plateforme, angle de chasse réduit, U-Brakes (Dia-Compe AD990).
As the late 80 's approached BMX racing tapered off and the BMX business got hard. In light of this Richard turned his focus onto the sport of Mountain Biking although he never forgot BMX and in fact turned up the heat on his competitors. In November of 1987 GT showed its first line of 5 mountain bikes at the young Interbike Show in Reno, Nevada.
|1988||GT Bicycles rassemble les marques GT, Dyno, Robinson et Auburn.
In 1988 GT moved from the 4 separate Container lane buildings into a specially built facility on 17800 Gothard street in Huntington Beach for the next 5 years.
Full assortment of USA made 4130 BMX and freestyle frames, components and accessories. Complete BMX bikes sourced from Taiwan, range expands to over 10 models.
|1989||Frames underwent some minor refinements in design, but nothing too drastic.|
|1990||GT 1990 catalog with Joe Johnson at the 1989 Woodward KOV on the cover. (scanned)
Sean McKinney, Ride BMX UK april 1997: The period from 1989 to about 1994 who was 20 inch bikes? Kids growing up in that era who wanted to start riding BMX. If they thumbed through a magazine they saw Standard, S&M, Hoffman, but mostly GT. That's what they saw. Even though people bad-mouth GT, if it wasn't for them doing it in that time it would have been less - I mean they stuck it out when BMX wasn't a flourishing industry. I've got a great respect for them. Some people say GT is too big, too corporate, too garbage; those people are pretty close minded, they're not looking at the big picture. If it wasn't for them, you might not have seen these bikes around. They're the reason BMX stayed in. They were like the backbone for all these smaller companies. GT will be around for a long time.
|1991||1991 GT International Tour
Dave Voelker, Bill Neuman, Dave Mirra and Team manager Ron Haro started the tour from Huntington Beach, California on june 1st. This was the first leg of the tour and it lasted until august 2nd. It covered the west coast and the midwest. Rhino Ron and Voelker flew back to California from St. Louis, Missouri. Bill Neuman and Dave Mirra picked up new Team manager Rick Thorne at his house in Kansas City, Missouri.
|1993||Gary Ellis and Dave Voelker on the cover of the 1993 GT/Dyno catalog.|
|1994||Fueler frame is introduced, at the time it was one of the only dirt jump specifc frames in the market. The Fueler featured massive over size cro-mo tubes with plate cut drops and 1 1/8" headtube.
25 models in the combined GT / Dyno line.
|1995||Fueler is offered as a complete bike, Power series tubular cro-mo cranks introduced. GT and Dyno line grows to 27 models and over 20 framesets. Powerlite and Robinson lines are also introduced with a combined total of 16 models.
GT left the old building on Gothard and moved into a sprawling warehouse back in the original town of GT, Santa Ana, California. With twice the space for both warehousing and office GT kept growing and growing.
Todd Hoffman, GT marketing co-ordinator, Ride BMX UK august 1995: We have 50 percent of the market share here in the United States, that's obviously spread out over five: brands - GT, Dyno, Robinson, Auburn, and Powerlite.
In October of 1995 GT Bicycles Inc. went public on the NASDAQ stock exchange with the help of Bain Capital, a well known investment bank in Boston, Mass. Richard and Gary were turned in multi millionaires over night.
BMX and freestyle account for approximately 40 percent of the sales.
|1996||Dave Voelker and Gary Ellis on the cover of the 1996 GT/Dyno catalog.
Aluminum hits the track with the all new "Speed Series Team" . This is a huge step for the former Cro-mo driven BMX product line. GT applies lessons learned with Zaskar production into BMX technology. GT and Dyno both feature price point Taiwan frames to capitalize on the trend. There are now 50 models between GT/Dyno/ Powerlite and Robinson.
July 1996, on his way to a NORBA National race in Big Bear, California Richard Long was killed on his motorcycle. Even Richard's death could not at first slow the massive inertia that GT generated. Business kept growing and GT soon purchased distributors in the UK (This deal was actually consummated in the months prior to Richard's passing) , France and Japan in the months after Richard's death.
|1997||1997 GT/Dyno catalog.
GT moved to an even larger 300,000 square foot facility a few miles down the road in June of 1997. This latest location was a fully integrated manufacturing, assembly and warehousing facility. The stock price, after a dip following Richard's accident, soared as high as $22.00. However chinks in the armor started to show and the weak organizational fabric that was previously held together by Richard's sheer force of will was starting to rip apart. By the fall of 1997 a few corporate suitors had secretly come and gone. The focus of sr. mgmgnt was not on the company and the internal forces within were often at odds. Sales goals were missed, forecasts were wrong, product delivered late, massive recalls occurred. The numbers slipped and so did the stock. However the money kept flowing like water out of a broken dam and to all outward appearances GT was as healthy as ever.
|1998||6061-T6 Aluminum is introduced to freestyle by the groundbreaking GT Show flatland frame. With close input from legendary flatlander Ruben Castillo, Robert Kahler and Jeff Soucek designed a frame specifically for the discipline of flatland.
Rueben Castillo, Ride BMX US february 1998: It's basically a thought that came to my head when I started flatland to get a small lightweight bike. Smaller than any other flatland bike, I'm only 5'3" and a half. Most bike geometry's are made for someone around 5'10 or a 6 footer. I helped with Woody Itson and some of the people at GT. We came up with a bike that has an 18" top tube and a 13" rear end. It's something that has never be done before. We all put our heads together and came up with something that we are really happy about.
In the summer of 1998, Questor, the money behind Schwinn Cycling & Fitness bought GT Bicycles Inc. for 175 million dollars. Schwinn and GT merged to form a global company with two powerful brand franchise and well-established market leadership positions in several bicycle and fitness segments.
1998 GT Show.
James Needham flatlanding with his GT Show on the cover of Ride BMX UK august 1998. Photo by Paul Roberts.
|2001||In spring of 2001 it was obvious that Questor and the banks had decided to get out. Spending was frozen, payments to vendors and subcontractors were stopped. The writing was on the wall. Questor through their holding company, Schwinn-GT inc, declared bankruptcy on 6/27/01. The once mighty duo of bicycle companies was sold to Pacific Cycle through bankruptcy court on 9/11/01 for 86 million dollars. This represented an almost 175 million dollar loss to Questor and a much larger blow to the bicycle community.
Pacific won the battle over Huffy buying the Schwinn/GT corporation. Pacific also owns Mongoose. Pacific makes the quality bikes found in K-Mart and other such stores. Exact plans for the future have not been made but Pacific will possibly put the Schwinn brand in the mass market circuit.
|2002||Le team est réduit à Jamie Bestwick en free et Christophe Lévèque en race.|
|2003||Pacific propose une gamme GT pour 2003 avec un pro modèle haut de gamme pour Jamie Bestwick.|
|Martin Aparijo BMX Plus! april 1985: GT announced that it has signed BMX Plus! test rider Martin Aparijo to the GT freestyle team. - 1989|
Jamie Bestwick july 1998 -
Jason Brown may 1997 - ....
Brian Blyther .... - .... then 1997 - ....
Graig Campbell 1990 - january 1991
Jason Davies 1997 - ....
Reuel Erickson summer 1996 - february 1998
Eddie Fiola 1983, Eddie Fiola finished his contract with Kuwahara and signed with GT Bicycles. - august 1987
Ken Hale july 1998 -
Tom Haugen mai 1998 "Kip Williamson was working for GT at the time. He saw me ride and saw potential. He told GT to hire me and when I got home from the Virginia X-Trials contest, I was on GT"
Woody Itson spring 1993, Woody is now in charge of GT/DYNO's freestyle division.
Joe Johnson winter 1988.89 - 1990
Kevin Jones spring 1989 - end of 1989 J'ai refusé de faire un Tour pour eux, notre contrat n'était pas signé, j'avais posé certaines conditions et ils ont laissé traîner (...) j'ai compris que c'était fini.
Alexandre Jumelin (xmas 1999 - .... )
Eben Krackau july 1998 -
Stéphane Libersac (xmas 1999 - .... )
McGoo, Harold McGruther team manager/announcer/... 1987 - ....
Trevor Meyer february 28th, 1994 - december 2000
Pat Miller 1994
Jay Miron .... - november 1992 when he refused to wear his GT Jersey.
Bob Morales 1983, Bob finished his contract with Kuwahara and signed with GT Bicycles.
Rob Nolli 1994 - ....
John Parker spring 1993 - december 1997
Mike Parenti 1998, GT picked up new jumper named Mike Parenti from San Diego on a recommendation from Dave Voelker - ....
Gary Pollack ex CW 1988 - ....
Rob Sigaty summer 1996 - ....
Josh White 1985 - 1989
Matt Wilhelm april 2001, Matt is now on GT.
Ron Wilkerson .... - 1984 Haro rachete le contrat de Ron chez GT pour un bon paquet de dollars.
|www.fatbmx.com, october 2001: All people at Schwinn/GT got fired after Pacific Cycles bought the company. Only a few employees got re-hired for 90 days to help Pacific with the transition. Riders were told that there would not be any paychecks coming till the end of the year so people like Robert de Wilde, Thomas Allier, Danny Nelson, Dave Voelker, Tom Haugen, Rob Nolli, Ruben Castillo, Kevin Gutierrez, Jamie Bestwick, Matt Pohlkamp and his brother (Duncan Gore), Jay Egglestone, Dave Osato, Brian Wizmerski, Brendan Meadows and Travis Turresson are shopping. Good luck to them finding a new ride.|