gOrk To Depart Redline. Destination?…Gilbert, AZ!

May 18, 2011 by  


Just got word that, tomorrow, Seattle Bike Supply will announce long-time Redline Marketing Director Craig “gOrk” Barrette will be leaving his post of nearly 12 years. “Where to?” you ask? Well, this is why it is such amazing news (even kicking the ABA/NBL merger off the “Top Story” slot).

gOrk will be reporting for duty at a place he has reported to before. Oh, sure, the lunch places may be different than in 1999, and there is more traffic gettin there…but gOrk will be rollin up to Sunrise Boulevard in picturesque Gilbert, AZ. Specifically 1645 Sunrise Bl.

You don’t need Mapquest to tell you where that is. Just look at your ABA Card or the new issue of “Pull” magazine. That’s right! gOrk is heading back to the ABA, this time as their “Chief Communications Office,” a newly-created position. You may remember that, prior to putting on the red, white and black for Redline, gOrk was editor of the BMXer…and before that he was editor of the massively-popular BMX Action Magazine, where he set the standard for hundreds of thousands of BMX racers on what “cool” was (that month…something cooler was always coming next issue).

This news is big enough on its own…but when coupled with yesterday’s news of the likely merger of the ABA and NBL into USA BMX, we can hardly contain our excitement for our friend. In an email to him today, I said “In my opinion, you could not be coming into a better place, with a better job, at a better time, in the history of the sport. The potential for making an impact, and taking your own career to the next level are truly endless.” I would not usually share something written in private correspondence, but it so perfectly sums up how I feel, that I figured it would be a perfect case for breaking my own rule.

At Redline, gOrk has been a tremendous supporter of what we do here at BMX News, Vintage, BMXNOW, and BMX Action Online, and I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank him for believing in us over the past few years, investing his marketing dollars with us, via advertising, and yes…knowing we love a good scoop to quicken the pulse (my heart is racing as I type this, hoping to get it posted before anyone else can).

Incidentally, this isn’t part of the big ABA/NBL news yesterday. gOrk’s move has been in the works “for months,” and was planned on being announced now, for a July start. We caught a whiff of it in Chula Vista last month, but nobody was talking with any specificity on the subject, which is why we did not report it then.

We asked him to tell us how it all came about, and give us some scoop on how he was feeling about things. here’s what he said:

“This has been in the works for a long time. Really, ever since BA took over as president of the ABA – and probably even some years before that, one of the first things he has said to me whenever we see each other was ‘You ready to come back yet?’ So at Rockford last year, when he asked me that question for about the hundredth time, I finally began thinking about possibilities and what it’d take to make it happen.

Then last November at the Grands we talked about it a little more serious, and they gave me a really good offer that was hard to refuse.

It’s not that I was unhappy at SBS/Redline – in fact, I always figured I would work here until I retire. And I will truly miss the entire SBS staff – just the same as I have missed my friends at the ABA over the past 11 years. SBS has been an incredible company to work for.

I’m just stoked to be going back to concentrating 100% of my effort on BMX racing, and doing whatever I can to increase the exposure for our sport and to help it grow even bigger. And with yesterday’s news and USA BMX becoming the new home for all of BMX racing in North America, the timing of this just couldn’t be any better.”

What more can we say? The guy is a hall of famer, sidehack national champion from the 1970s, as marketing savvy as it gets, and can still mix it up with the best of us slangin’ the Nikons on the infield. I expect we’ll be seeing much more of him out there, and that is a beautiful thing!

Congratulations, gOrk! We’ll miss you in Seattle, but can’t wait for you to get to Gilbert.

—Mike Carruth