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Drake takes over as British Cycling chief

British Cycling announced Saturday that chief executive Peter King will step down at the end of the year and be replaced by the current deputy chief executive Ian Drake.

The news was revealed at British Cycling's annual National Council meeting on 15 November, where President Brian Cookson announced the board's appointment of Ian Drake as chief executive from January 1, 2009. King will continue to work with British Cycling as an executive director.

Cookson thanked King for his 12 years of service. "It is no exaggeration to say that he has been pivotal in transforming British Cycling from near-bankruptcy to a world-leading governing body with a reputation for consistently delivering on its objectives," he said.

Ian Drake has worked with British Cycling since 1996, when he worked as a consultant on the development of young people's programs in schools and clubs.

Drake's later work led to the creation of British Cycling's renowned talent identification and development programs.

In 2000, Ian was appointed as national talent coordinator and implemented the Talent Team programme. This has nurtured the likes of Beijing medallists Ed Clancy and Steven Burke along with riders such as Lizzie Armitstead, David Daniell and Anna Blythe who are now emerging as athletes with the potential to win medals at London 2012.

"I am both delighted and proud to step up into the role of chief executive of British Cycling and lead the organisation into its next phase of expansion and growth through to and beyond London 2012," Drake said. "Peter has made a unique contribution to British Sport in his tenure as CEO of British Cycling, which is a hard act to follow, and I'm looking forward to continue to work with him in his new role."

King said that he was pleased the board took his recommendation to appoint Clarke. "He has been my deputy for more than a year, during which time he has demonstrated that he is the right man to lead British Cycling in delivering the next four year plan which he has himself masterminded.

"When I wrote my survival plan for British Cycling in 1997 I started with my own personal mission statement. This was to be able to hand over, to the right person and at the right time, the best run governing body in British sport. In my assessment we are now the best run governing body in British sport, the time is right to hand over the helm and I am able to do so now to the right person."

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