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Nic Long – USA, Bicycle Motocross – Grossmont College

Nic Long didn’t have a particularly great day at the USA Cycling Olympic Trials held in Chula Vista on June 16. He finished in the middle of an elite eight-rider pack and didn’t think his ticket to the Summer Games in London would be stamped. But his third place standing throughout the racing season was enough for the USA Cycling and the U.S. Olympic Committee to fill out the American roster by awarding the Grossmont College alum a discretionary spot on the team and give him that ride across the pond, as the Brits say.

Participants who had previously been named to USA Cycling's BMX men's long team, competed in two time trials, three motos, and a single, main event final in Chula Vista to determine a winner, who then earned an automatic nomination to the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team.

The announcement that Long made the team came Saturday (June 16) night at the BMX Hall of Fame banquet at the U.S. Olympic Training Center, just hours after Long was knocked out in the semifinals of the U.S. Trials held on a replica course of the London Games.

Long claimed his first World Cup win in 2010, upsetting Olympic gold medalist, Maris Strombergs. Long also scored the national title for men's elite BMX racing earlier the same year.

Long joined USA Cycling's BMX Development Program in 2008, got into the sport thanks to his father, who also rides, and the fact that - according to Long - his father hated the drama of kids’ team sports. So baseball was out for the youngster, who joined his dad at the track close to their Lakeside, Calif. home and became an Olympian.

Long told USA Cycling that he loves traveling the world, doing what he loves to do and seeing people who share the same enthusiasm. He’ll combine both loves this summer in merry, old England.

Read about more past and present Olympians...