Brent Emery is a business owner and cycling advocate in the Metro Milwaukee area, and was a cyclist for the United States at the Olympic at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, California. He would be given a silver medal in men's team pursuit (4,000 m).
Emery was born Brent Robert Emery on September 15, 1957 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He has raced bicycles since 1973, racing in 18 countries. He has won 7 elite USA National Championships: 2 in the USAC 1km event (1980 & 1981) and the USAC Points Race 1983. Four championships came in the ABR (American Bicycle Racing) National Championships in the Masters Division. In 1981, Brent set a world mark for the fastest average speed in races over 100 miles by winning the 10th stage of the Tour of Chile in 3h 33min 25 sec for the 174km (108 miles), a 30.2 mph average speed. This mark was the fastest the world had seen to that point for amateurs as well as professional cyclists. This mark stood for approx 15 years.
At 18 years old, he was a regional qualifier for the 1976 Olympic Trials in the Sprint event, though he did not participate in the final trials. He won the 1980 Olympic Trials in the 1km event, beating out Eric Heiden, who had just come off his record setting 7 gold medals in speed skating at the Winter Olympics. Because of the boycott of the Moscow Olympic Games by the US Team, no US athletes went to Moscow.
In 1984, he again made the US Olympic Team, this time winning a silver medal in Los Angeles Olympics in the Team Pursuit event. The US team in that event was plagued by crashes and mishaps. In a tribute to their sportsmanship and overcoming adversity, Sports Illustrated captioned their cycling coverage with "America shows its best in a loss". The 1984 Cycling Team was not without controversy. While discouraged, blood boosting was not illegal at the time (although it is banned today) as an article in Sports Illustrated reported.
Emery's most recent cycling achievements have come in the masters' division. He has won overall titles at the International Cycling Classic in 2009 & 2010 for the 35+ age group. He placed 6th in three events (750m TT, Points Race and Team Sprint) at the 2007 World Masters Cycling Track Championships in Sydney, Australia.
Emery co-owns Emery's Cycling, Triathlon, & Fitness Shops in Milwaukee, WI with his brother, Bennett Emery. Emery's stores were founded by his parents in 1963 and have been active in the Milwaukee cycling community ever since. Emery has gained recognition as one of the finest bicycle fitting specialists in the USA. By his count, he has crafted over 28,000 bicycle fits as of 2013. He co-owns the business with his brother Bennett Emery.
Another area of interest for Emery is the advancement of cycling equipment, much of which with he has been directly or indirectly involved. In 1981, he designed the first of what would be later called the funny bikes that propelled the USA to a record medal haul at the 1984 Olympics. That bike, built to Emery's specifications by John Stinsmen of Allentown, Pennsylvania was a big step in persuading the US Cycling Federation (now USA Cycling) to build the fastest bikes in the world. The project of building these bikes was for the competitive USA team for the upcoming 1984 Olympics. In 1982, Emery was the first rider from the USA to ride a disc wheel. The wheel was made for the USA team by aerodynamics expert Chester Kyle. In 1987, Brent heard of a new style of handlebar device to help cyclists get more aerodynamic, being developed by Scott Bicycles. He had entered the Race Across Wisconsin, a 224 mile time trial from Lacrosse, WI to Milwaukee, WI and believed this change in aerodynamics would be advantageous. As the Scott handlebars were not available to market yet, he designed his own version. They indeed offered a speed advantage. He demonstrated his version to the USA Cycling Coach and staff at the 1987 Pan American Games in Indianapolis, Indiana. That same year, he made a few sets of the now-called aero bars for local triathletes who were competing in the Ironman World Championships. Two years later (1989), Greg Lemond won the Tour De France with the then available Scott aero bars.
Brent has worked on concepts of bicycle fitting and equipment for many years. His family business first offered bicycle fitting services in 1977. His concepts, along with the work of other cycling industry professionals (Frank Day, Leonard Zinn, High Sierra Cycles etc.) on bicycle crank arm length as they relate to triathletes, especially short bicycle riders. This work has influenced some bicycle companies to put shorter cranks on production bicycles for short riders, most notably for triathlon.
Through his business, he has done much work for Variety: The Children's Charity, adapting bicycles for children with special need, both physical and cognitive. In 2011, Variety International presented Mr. Emery with a Presidential Award for Service at their World Conference, recognizing his work and dedication to the children they serve. Brent feels that working with special needs children is the most satisfying part of his professional work.
He is married to Julie Emery(Fluet). They fell in love at the 1984 Olympics. Julie and come to the Olympics to cheer on her brother, Steve Hegg, a team mate of Brent. Julie and Brent hit it off and they were married 1 year later. They have two children, JohnRobert and Ashley, and two grandchildren.