On 1 November 2020, the governance of competitive cycling in Australia changed. AusCycling is the name of the new entity. Today it was announced that Marne Fechner, currently CEO of Netball Australia, will become CEO of AusCycling.
“I’m really excited to accept the role of CEO of AusCycling,” says Marne Fechner in the official release from AusCycling, announcing her appointment. “The opportunities offered by the new structure are vast and I look forward to working on behalf of every cyclist – from the nervous first-timers to our Commonwealth and Olympic Games teams.”
Fechner comes with huge credentials in sports management after years as CEO of Netball Australia. During her tenure with that organisation, the former competitive netball player elevated the position of her chosen sport in the media, giving greater visibility but also better earning potential.
The Chair of AusCycling, Duncan Murray is excited about the prospect of a new CEO for the new cycling administration. “During her tenure at Netball Australia,” says Murray, “Marne more than doubled revenue, grew the professional league, and led substantial organisational redesign and cultural change.”
In 2020, all sports face challenging times and yet cycling is well positioned to take advantage of a considerable growth in interest that has come from the pandemic. People who may have previously regularly visited gyms, for example, turned to the bike during lockdowns.
Furthermore, concerns about public transport have seen a spike in cyclists commuting to work in recent months. Towns and cities are actively working on achieving better conditions for bike riding and it is obvious that cycling is enjoying a halcyon time.
Fechner recognises this and she notes that in the release issued by AusCycling earlier today.
“The explosion in bike sales during the COVID19 pandemic and the incredible potential of e-sports and virtual cycling means more Australians than ever before can enjoy the physical and mental health benefits of riding,” she says.
“Australian cycling has a proud tradition, but has also taken brave and future-facing steps to streamline its governance. I’m honoured to lead a team that will drive evolutionary change for this sport.”
– By Rob Arnold