SXC Round 4: Lochore Meadows

The Commonwealth Games have Rolled Out of Town and Morven Returns to Familiar Ground.

words: Morven Brown
photos: Alastair Ross

Rab Wardell keeps smiling despite the epic conditions

After a long summer break, the SXC returned to action on the 10th of August, taking the show to the Kingdom of Fife. The team at the Meedies Bike Club, coupled with the support of Fife Council had been hard at work for many months to develop a XC course at Lochore Meadows Country Park. The course was fast and flowing, and was highly praised by the racers. Starting off from the wide open field the riders flew out of the arena, much to the delight of the spectators. Climbing up through the dirt jump park, riders were tested on tight, steep corners before a final haul to the top of the hill, all the time dodging the resident herd of cattle.  After a short breather, it was time for the descent which was fast, rocky and rooty, with plenty of trees to keep the riders honest. Dropping back down to the lochside, cyclists were treated to copse after copse of tight, rooted and exhilaratingly fast trails.

Mud, glorious mud!

With the arrival of Hurricane Bertha imminent, the first racers of the day lined up on the start, with a wide range of ages and abilities all ready to set off for varying lengths of race. The first event of the day, as ever, goes to the Juvenile Boys, who sprint one flat-out lap of the course. Tim Shoreman (Deeside Thistle) continued his fine run of form to take the victory 25 seconds ahead of Perth City Cycles rider Craig Dobbins and Tam Munro-White (Ben Wyvis CC). Anna McGorum (Peebles CC) completed her lap in 24:07 to win the Juvenile Girls, with Emily Field (Stirling BC) and Megan Wilkinson (Peebles CC) completing the podium. In the Youth Boys competition, Conner Johnstone (Team Leslie Bikeshop) took his fourth win of the season, with visiting rider Calum Fernie (Nottingham Clarion CC) ahead of Perth City Cycles’ Douglas Carcherie. Johnstone also claimed the fastest lap of the morning’s competition with a time of 18:33.034. Anna Kay (Hetton Hawks) was first placed Youth Girl and Louisa Watt (Peebles CC) came home in second spot.

Anna Kay (Hetton Hawks) won the Youth Girl's category

The aptly named Jennifer Tough took victory in the Sport Women, with Anne Murray (Team Jewson) winning the Veteran Women ahead of Louise Allen (Mukyriderz). Anne was enjoying the course so much that she even undertook an additional fourth lap to continue her battle with Gillian Pratt (Team Leslie Bikeshop) who won the Elite Women’s race.

Epic conditions produced aggressive racing

Challenging each other from start to finish after riding clear of the pack, Mark Barnett (Team Leslie Bikeshop) and ever youthful Gregor Grant (Moray Firth CC) thrilled the crowds with a sprint finish, Grant coming out on top by 0.126 seconds! Brian Garriock (Perth City Cycles) was third. John Newton was another Leslie Bikeshop rider who has won every race this season, and again took the victory in the Super Veteran Men ahead of David McLean (Hetton Hawks) and Eddie Gronkowski (Mukyriderz).

Race faces to the fore...

Sue Hynd won the Taster Women’s event with a smile on her face, and Steve Field (Stirling BC) was the Men’s Taster victor.

Fast, flowing singletrack makes Lochore Meadows a great course

By the time the youngest riders of the day lined up on the start line of their specially designed, miniature version of the course, they were feeling the full force of the storm. With heavy rain, and lashing wind, these 50 young riders bravely battled on, for the most part, with smiles on their faces. In the Under 8’s race, where some riders totter along on pedal-less balance bikes, Gavin Gronkowski pipped Sandy MacKay to the finish, with Gregor Watt in third place. In the Girls, Heather Wilson finished over 30 seconds clear of Anna Birrell and Rhiannon Gourlay. The Under 10 Boys was a close fought battle, with Ruaridh Johnson finishing just ahead of David Cathcart and Jake Rennie. Emily Carrick Anderson was dominant in the girls, ahead of her teammates Christina McGorum and Holly Hobbs. Her brother, Coran Carrick Anderson again won the Under12 Boys race, ahead of Russell Brown, with Jamie MacKenzie working his way up from the back of the pack to finish third. Elena McGorum saw off her teammate Emily Wilkinson to win the Under 12 Girls event.

Coffees and cakes went down a storm

The final events of the day were reserved for the hardiest souls, as the hurricane bore down on the arena, and spectators huddled in the Meedies tent, where the cakes and coffees were going down a storm! With the Elite Men taking on five laps of the now rather muddy and slippery course, the crowds were poised to see some exciting racing. Mark McGuire took a convincing victory in the Junior Men’s event, sitting with the Elite leaders for the best part of the race. Calum Magowan (Peebles CC) took silver with third place going to Jamie Mason (West Lothian Clarion). In the Sport Men, Michael Bossard toppled series leader Graeme Warren (Velo Club Moulin) to take the win at Lochore, with Stuart Dun (Edinburgh University CC) in third. It was a resounding victory for Scott Logan (TheBicycleWorks) who rode clear of the pack on the first lap. A tasty battle ensued for the remaining podium positions with Trek Concept Store Glasgow rider Derek Shanks taking 2nd place, ahead of a delighted Craig Webster (Mukyriderz). Team Leslie Bikeshop specialise in Veteran men, and Lochore was no exception. Gary McCrae came home over 1:38 ahead of his nearest rival, Greig Walker of Velo Club Moulin. McCrae’s teammate Damien Slorach was third.

Gary McCrae in his usual position at the front

Finally, in the Elite Men’s event, Rab Wardell (Orange Monkey Pro Team) was unstoppable, riding strongly throughout the race to finish almost five minutes clear of his nearest rival. Rab also took the honour of completing the fastest lap of the day’s racing, winning himself a brilliant Garmin device, courtesy of Thomsons Cycles, in the process. Second place went to Rob Friel (Glasgow Whls), with Dougie Shearer (Innerleithen I-cycles) rounding off the podium.

Elite Mens winner Rab Wardell ties up another win before heading to Stirling

It was an exciting day of racing in all categories, and with rave reviews, the course looks set to become a firm favourite in the calendar.

To the victor, the spoils...

The series culminates in the final round of the 2014 SXC Series and Scottish Championships at Dalbeattie Forest on the 14th of September.

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Scottish National 25 Mile TT Championships

words and photos: Mark McGhee

It’s a measure of the quality of Scottish time-trialling at the moment that the rider who came second in yesterday’s National 25 came home in a time of 52:25, a great time by anyone’s standards. But by doing so he only managed to cross the finish line 21 seconds ahead of the man who had started 2 minutes behind him. If you have to come second to anyone though then you couldn’t choose a better opponent than Iain Grant (

Iain Grant smoothly negotiates the first roundabout 

In a quality field that included most of the current standout time triallists in Scotland, Iain Grant stands head and shoulders above his competitors, and everyone knew he was the man to beat. Having scorched the 10 Mile National title a few weeks before, he was in relaxed but determined fashion as he took on yesterday’s event based on the popular Irvine course and organised by Ayr Roads CC.

Here’s how it played out.

Best of the Weather

On a day where intermittent showers had been forecast, the black rain clouds threatened at times but managed to skirt the race route for almost the entire time of the event. The early starters though definitely saw the best conditions with bright sunshine and a light southerly wind.

Thomas Deas (Moray Firth CC) was the first rider to head out

First rider to take to the course was Thomas Deas (Moray Firth CC) and he was to return in just under the hour in 59:39 followed 20 seconds later by the rider who had started three minutes after him and was to pick up second spot on the day, Sean Noon (Edinburgh RC). His time of 56:59 was looking good, but only for about a minute and a half as the last starter, Andy Brown (Glasgow Cycle Team) finished in a superb 56:03 to take the title. This was an excellent time and would go on to eclipse many of the senior riders later in the day.

Andy Brown (Glasgow Cycle Team) took the Junior title

First woman away was Scottish Cycling’s own RDO Fiona Walker (Walkers CC) and she was followed by Laura Nicolson (Moray Firth CC). Nicolson was to post the best time of the early starting women but it was the fifth woman away from the starter, Anna Turvey (Tyneside Vagabonds CC), who really showed everyone a clean set of cleats as she passed all four of the women who had started ahead of her to return in a time of 56:11. This put her into first place but with some fast women still to finish.

Amanda Dundas (Paisley Velo RT) rode with the senior women and took the Female Junior title

Along the way, Paisley Velo RT’s Amanda Dundas returned in 1:12:25 to take the Junior title and special mention to Emily Middleditch (Deeside Thistle CC) who came home in a time of 1:03:41 despite going off course at the first roundabout, an error that was to be repeated by several other riders throughout the day. It wasn’t a problem with signage which was more than up to the job but rather one of a roundabout with two exits almost all the way around to the right. Concentrating on the ride, especially just after the start, meant that some riders took the Paper-mill turnoff and while most noticed almost straight away, at least two headed off up the road only to return having been passed by riders starting behind them.

Toni McIntosh (Ayr Roads CC) and Sian Tovey ( took silver and bronze

Now it was the turn of the ceded women and Lynne Wardrop (Ayr Roads CC) came home in 1:01:59. Sian Tovey ( posted 1:01:02 and was followed in a minute and a half later by Toni McIntosh (Ayr Roads CC) in 1:00:29. This put McIntosh and Tovey into provisional 2nd and 3rd spots with only the last starting Lynsey Curran ( to finish. However this was the way the standings stayed as word reached us that Curran had been unlucky and punctured and her race was over.

Lynsey Curran ( punctured out on course

So the title went to Anna Turvey with Toni McIntosh and Sian Tovey picking up silver and bronze. Ayr Roads CC took the team prize.

Deserved winner Anna Turvey (Tyneside Vagabonds CC) took the title in 56:11

Changing Conditions

Now it was the turn of the men and the weather had begun to cloud over with the breeze picking up a little. First rider away was Euan Pope (Glasgow Road Club) who was also the first rider to get inside the hour with 58:07. Rider times then hovered between 58’s and 1:01’s for the next hour until Gary Robson (Gala CC) took it down to 55:53, followed in short order by Ronnie Todd (Louden RC) in 55:29 and Lauri Peil (Edinburgh RC) in 56:00.

Alan Holmes (Johnstone Wheelers CC) was the early pacesetter

For the next 30 minutes, times began to slowly fall but it wasn’t until Alan Holmes (Johnstone Wheelers CC) finished in 53:52 that the timing sheet began to light up. Holmes’s time was enough to keep him in first spot until Chris Smart (Paisley Velo RT) finished and was good enough for 8th position overall. The winner of the Jason MacIntyre Memorial 10 this year, Smart finished in 52:50 to take the bronze medal overall.

Bronze medallist Chris Smart (Paisley Velo RT)

Now we were into the favourites and as the 10th from last man Steven Lawley (Rigmar Racers) set off the first shower hit but it was gone almost before it began. The wind was gusting by now and was difficult on the outward leg and the final run to the line. As the defending champion took the first roundabout he was looking, as ever, smooth and quietly determined. Grant always looks rock solid in his position and this belies the fact that he’s moving at speed.

Sharp Showers

It was over to the finish line now to watch the last riders coming in and this is when the rain started. It didn’t last for long but was enough to dampen the roads. Humidity was high so as the shower eased into light drizzle the water began to evaporate almost as it was falling. The timekeepers were keeping dry under the overhanging bushes, as were the photographers and riders who had already finished but had come to cheer in their teammates.

Ben Peacock (Paisley Velo RT) and Silas Goldsworthy (Sandy Wallace Cycles)

Alan Thomson (Sandy Wallace Cycles) was next to finish after Smart and posted a time of 53:17 which was good enough for 6th spot overall. Then it was Ben Peacock (Paisley Velo RT) who crossed the line in 53:48. The jury is still out on whether his flourishing facial hair is proving to be more or less aerodynamic but he took 7th position overall.

Arthur Doyle ( took fourth spot overall

As we’ve said before Arthur Doyle ( is a big guy and seems to fold himself around his bike but he finished smoothly, gasping for air, to post 52:52 and take 4th spot on the day. Next home was Silas Goldsworthy (Sandy Wallace Cycles) who appears to be liking riding his bike again after the recent disappointment of not gaining selection for the Commonwealth Games and he even ‘buzzed’ a couple of the roadside photographers…not that they were complaining as it gave them great photographs. He finished in a time of 53:10 to take 5th overall.

Peter Murdoch (Paisley Velo RT) gives it everything as he crosses the line to take silver

Now it was down to the last two men and as Peter Murdoch (Paisley Velo RT) approached the finish line he could be heard shouting at himself to release as much energy as he possibly could. He flashed past the line in 52:25 but it seemed that the photographers just had time to turn around as Grant was already on the bridge over the River Irvine and heading for the line. Leaving everything on the road he passed the timekeeper in 50:46 and was then seen to weave about on the road while he collected himself. This could have been because of the effort he’d expelled or because he was trying to stop his computer but we like to think it was the former.

Iain Grant ( powers across the line to make it three-in-a-row

These times gave Grant and Murdoch Gold and Silver on the day and, as ever, Iain Grant was a popular winner back in the Event Headquarters for prize giving.

The team prize went to with Thomas Gordon combining with Grant and Doyle.

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'Cross Diva to Road Race Novice; No Going Back Now

words: Morven Brown

photos: Mark McGhee

Morven Brown discovers there’s more to bike racing than mud and knobbly tyres: from Cyclingcross Diva to Road Racing novice, the learning curve has been huge but she’s discovered that she’s more than just suited to it: she loves it!

Morven and road bikes; the road ahead?

I’ll be honest with you – if you cut my arm off, my blood would run as mud, such is my love of mountain biking and knobbly tyres. My road bike is a means of transport, I view it in a similar way that others might view their car, or a train, or a bus. Put simply, it’s a method of getting from A to B, a fun one at that, but nothing more than a transport option. It’s not that I disagree with the concept of road racing, or riding on the roads for ‘fun’, it’s just not something that I’d ever been into.

I got my first road bike in 2005; I was on the Scottish Youth Talent programme and a requirement was training on the road and road bikes at training camps. So we picked up a reasonable road bike second hand from a chap at my dad’s work. I knew very little about road bikes at the time, with their drop bars, skinny tyres and funny geometry, and the resulting bike was too big, uncomfortable and lay neglected in the garage for years. It got me around to commute, but it was never ‘the choice’ of bike for a Sunday morning saunter. Buying the female-specific cyclocross bike in 2011 was something of a revelation. All of a sudden I had a bike which made road riding possible – with ‘cross knobbly tryes on, obviously! My road miles upped as I commuted to work, and occasionally went out with friends on a road ride. The mountain bike was still the first choice steed, and the thought of putting skinny tyres on the ‘cross bike sent me reeling!

Peigi Seriés (ERC) drives the bunch; one lap in the bag, seven to go

This year, however, that has all changed. I’ve been on a self-styled ‘Operation: Give Something Back.’ It’s essentially a cheesy way of saying that this year I am now coaching others instead of training myself, and I am organising events rather than competing in them. By happy conincidence, this year Scottish Cycling and Dales Cycles (my two vested interests) have launched the Scottish Women’s Road Race Series. Having been a racing cyclist for over a decade now and a female…well, all my life!.. I know as well as anyone the challenges faced by female cyclists to find events that you can feel equal in, or that you know you’ll get a reasonable entry field and a good chance of wheel to wheel racing. I’m not necessarily a fan of the ‘use it or lose it’ mantra, however, I do feel some responsibility to ensure that events are well attended. What’s more, when the challenge was put to me at work that I should do a road race, I wouldn’t want to be chicken now, would I?

Like ripping off a plaster, the night of the launch I entered the first round of the series in Glasgow; if I didn’t do it then I knew I never would. The month that followed was a crash-course in things not to do in a road race. I had never really ridden in a group previously, save for one chain-gang. To put it politely, I was absolutely terrified about that! I attended a women’s road race training day and picked up lots of tips, and asked a lot of daft questions! I quickly learnt that in a road race, you don’t really stop to change a puncture, there was this bizarre concept of a neutralised start, there would be cars and what-not on the road too, and, if you’re going to crash, it’s going to hurt!! I worked with friends who taught me how to go around corners on the drops – a totally alien feeling to me. And, in the biggest change of all, I even put the dreaded skinny roadie tyres on the bike.

Peloton cornering; new skills learned

In the weeks leading up to the race, I managed to get a few pre-rides out around the course. It was a five mile loop, of which we would be doing eight laps. In essence it was pretty flat, with a few short slants before and after the two roundabouts around which it circulated. The surface was good, there was one lumpy section I knew I had to avoid, and other than that it would be a case of hanging on and not sliding out on a roundabout.

Eventually race day rolled around and it was a good mixture of excitement and nerves. It had been over five months since my last race of any sort, so getting myself into race mode was quite challenging and I certainly over-packed my race bag to compensate! At the race HQ, almost 40 girls got themselves organised – some of the semi-pro girls on rollers and turbos; some, like me, going for a wee spin on the roads, and others just laughing with friends. Racing in Scotland truly is such a social occasion, there are no prima-donnas or egos. It’s a bunch of girls, meeting up with friends and having fun on their bikes, with a little bit of serious racing thrown in! As I got prepped to head down to the start my friend Sophie (who had dared me to do the race in the first place) gave me three bits of advice: “Don’t stop pedalling, don’t forget to use your drops and have fun!”

Close cornering with Anne Ewing (

After the six-mile ride down to the start line, we stood and listened to the rider briefing. I was now petrified!! The ride to the start had been lovely and leisurely, and my first experience of bunch riding at that! We all massed together by the start line, and headed off down the road during the neutralised start. Which went on and on and on… Rounding the first roundabout I turned to my friend beside me, “So when does the race start, is it after the first lap do you think?” “Em, Morven, it has started, this is the race!” So I had officially started my first ever road race! With a whoop I had a little wobble, and quickly learnt Road Riding 101: always, always pay attention to where you are going! I was enjoying myself, it wasn’t raining and I found myself about to stick with the bunch.

The attacks came quick and fast at the front with Rebecca Nixon of Deeside Thistle CC challenging on every slight climb. The pace rose and fell as riders pushed then eased back. I hadn’t been sure what to expect, but I stuck in the middle of the pack, trying to keep myself out of any trouble and doing my best to watch the front for the next surge in pace. I felt good, I could keep up with the big guns, and even had the energy to stick my tongue out at my friends in the timing tent as I passed! As we came around on our second lap, the ‘big’ names made a move from the back of the bunch, where they had been conserving energy, to take charge at the head of the race.

Sticking with the bunch as they make their first pass

Mid-way round the third lap it felt very quiet, too quiet. I snuck a quick peek over my shoulder and almost fell off my bike in fright – we had dropped almost half the pack, and I was now sat at the back of the bunch! A lack of experience led to a wee panic as I didn’t know what to do in that situation – did I push towards the middle of the pack, charge to the front, or just conserve energy and await the inevitable.

The race leaders rounding the turn at the northern end of the circuit

Swinging wide around the top roundabout, the elastic snapped, I missed the break at the front as the attack caught me unawares, and as a result I missed the second group, which contained the girls that before the race I had been hoping to stick with. Damn, damn, damn. I’d been told repeatedly that on the roads, you did not, under any circumstances, want to end up riding on your own. And here I was, on my own out the back of the bunch, with little clue of how to ride a road race. What’s more, just at that point the heavens opened.

Chasing hard before linking up in a useful trio

The rain was like heavy bullets, hammering down, causing spray and soaking riders to our skin. Given the conditions, it would not have been surprising to see riders pulling out or easing up – to their credit, almost all riders finished and even picked up the pace as the rain fell. Why was I considering road racing as something so special, so unique, so different? It was, afterall, racing. And racing is what I do. I put my head down and powered on, even if I couldn’t catch the girls in front of me, I was determined not to let the girls behind pass me. By my ropey calculations I had hoped at that point that I may be top-30, and I would definitely take that. I kept my pace up and whizzed through puddles, with drops falling from my pigtails. Looking up I saw a lone rider, Carole Dick (Stirling BC) dropped from the bunch, and knew if we worked together we would be stronger. Catching up, we started taking turns, picking up the pace some more. As we picked up triathlete Donna McHugh (Fusion Triathlon), we had a strong unit of three, and powered on through the laps, though never quite closing the gap to the second group on the road ahead of us.

Learning to handle different kinds of obstacles in road-racing

Two laps to go and I was physically exhausted. Not having raced for months I had lost that top-end speed and was perhaps paying for sticking with the bunch for so long. I sucked down a gel and took a stiff dose of ‘Man-Up.’ It was time to dig in to the finish. Whirling around the bottom roundabout for the last time, my green-ness to road racing showed again. I had done some sprint training – I knew I could sprint for 200m... that was without 36 miles in my legs though! Leading my wee group of three up the climb from the roundabout, all the speed just fell out my legs. Swinging past me, the other two girls made their push to the finish, leaving me to drag myself across the line. I finished totally spent but thrilled. I could update that status in my head from ‘I have started a road race’ to ‘I have finished a road race.'

Race winner Dani Christmas (Speg-Project 51) leads the sprint for the line

As we laughed and spun our legs back up to the race HQ it was a great chance to catch up with the other girls who had been racing. I was astonished to hear how early some riders had been dropped, ones that I thought were pretty fit too; perhaps I hadn’t done too badly then. It was a great opportunity to congratulate the other girls on their exploits and discuss just how slippery those roundabouts got when it rained!

Another new and exciting concept of road racing for me is the post-race sandwiches and teas, which, people tell me, are essentially mandatory. I was thrilled to discover at this event that it was Pakora and Lorne Sausage baps – feed me and I’m a happy lassie! Settling down and checking out the results, I turned to Sophie in disbelief, “Did we do enough laps? Are you sure? We really did eight laps?” I had figured it would be a two-hour race, at the very least. I was finished in 1 hour 36 minutes, a little over 5 minutes behind the winners, having averaged a speed of 23mph for the race. And, even more astonishingly, I had finished in 20th place!

Elated to have completed my first road race!

In less than a month, I have gone from being a complete and utter novice on the road, having never even considered entering a road event, to performing reasonably well, if I do say so myself, in a National standard event. I was riding on an alloy cyclo-cross bike, using mountain bike shoes and pedals, with a 46 as my biggest front gear ring. I was about as unprepared as they come; however, at the end of the day, it’s racing. As long as you’re going forward, and you’re going as fast as you can, you’ll get to that finish line one way or another.

Now that I’ve entered the third round of the series, perhaps I had better kit myself out…

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Scottish National 10 Mile TT

Words and photos: Mark McGhee

Summer came early this year with some nice days in April but it was back to usual conditions for the Scottish National 10 Mile Time Trial Championships at Irvine. The times were fast though and the performances impressive.

The fastest 10 mile TT course in Scotland? The new Champion thinks so

As I headed towards Irvine for the start of the Scottish National 10 Mile Time Trial Champs I was keeping a wary eye on the lowering cloud base, in the hope that I might get one of those all-too-rare windows of opportunity. I just wanted a couple of hours, three at the most, but the tv weather forecaster hadn't been confident…and neither was I.

Jason Barnes (Glasgow Nightingale CC)

Coming through Dalry and Kilwinning the roads were wet but it wasn't actually raining. There was no sign of any blue in the sky though. Sure enough, just after pulling into the car-park at Eglinton Country Park, and heading over to the sign-on desk to get a copy of the start sheet, the big drops began to fall again…not too heavy at first but that kind of rain that you just know is going to continue. So, waterproofs on and cameras wrapped in rain gear, I headed off to the start where the timekeepers were just getting ready to send the first woman on her way.

Sian Tovey ( took 5th spot in the Women's race

As a photographer taking pictures on an out-and-back course, especially when it involves separate on and off-ramps, and with 160 riders to cater for, the challenge is always to find new, interesting and varied ways of taking those shots…or else you just end up with 160 copies of the same photograph where only the rider is different. So I shot some at the start, first roundabout, first on-ramp, on further down where the carriageway splits, and on up to the first flyover. Most of the shots are on that first on-ramp because once the last man has gone it allows me to get across to the off-ramp on the other side to catch the riders once they've finished.

David Johnston (Gala CC)

I've shot there before (the season-opening Icebreaker TT) and it's a great place to see the relief on the riders' faces, knowing that the effort is over. Last time there was chatting, laughing and the beginnings of analyses of the ride. But yesterday was very different. It was indeed the race of truth, with nowhere to hide and the competitors that I saw had given their all. Most people will know the man that ran out the victor yesterday and you'll know that Iain Grant is the most approachable rider, always happy to say hello and have a chat, always ready with encouragement for other riders no matter what level they're at. He always makes a point of acknowledging me but as he passed me yesterday I don't think he was even aware I was there such was the effort that he'd given. The sweat was pouring from under his aero helmet and running off the end of his nose.

Craig McGowan (Pedal Power RT)

He wasn't the only one who had pushed to their limit: Arthur Doyle wiped saliva from around his mouth but still managed to give me a wave, Gordon Murdoch stopped halfway up the ramp to take a breather, the Berwick Wheelers duo of Christopher Isats and Harry Armstrong didn't look over and Alan Thomson could do no more than stick his tongue out at me. I respect all of these riders but my personal empathy was with Silas Goldsworthy. Most of you will know that Silas had a bad injury a short time ago and while he's largely recovered from that, he's lost valuable training in the meantime. All credit to him for turning out yesterday and although his time of 20:17 was good enough for 5th place on the day it wasn't the result he was looking for.

Silas Goldsworthy (Sandy Wallace Cycles) gave it everything and took 5th spot in a time most other riders can only wish for

Now, the Scottish cycling community may appear like a closed shop to those who aren't cyclists but that just isn't the case…and all of these riders, while being fiercely competitive, are also very friendly towards each other. Silas is his own hardest critic and he stopped just after he'd passed me to take a moment. A bit of time to think about all the hard work he's put in over the years and how the injury may have happened at the worst possible moment. The last man to finish was Ben Peacock and he sportingly stopped to console Silas. At that point I headed back to event HQ to find out how everyone had got on. Here's how it played out.

Scottish 10 Mile TT Champion Lucy Coldwell (Velosport - Pasta Montegrappa)

The first 75% of the field got the worst of the weather with the Women, Juniors and Youths setting off into light rain and drizzle. While riding in the rain can often feel faster, especially when there's no real wind, there are drawbacks and lots of bikes were sporting rear flashing lights as they disappeared into the dual carriageway spray long before they would normally have been out of sight.

Silver medallist Lynsey Curran (

In the Women's race the quickest of the early starters was Toni McIntosh (Ayr Roads CC) who returned to the timekeeper in 23:36 and this was good enough for 4th place on the day. The next rider to come close was Jennie McColl (Aberdeen Wheelers CC) in a time of 24:36 (8th on the day) but this was beaten a few minutes later by Anne Ewing (WV Breda) in 24:26. Less than two minutes later, one minute 59 seconds to be precise, Lynne Wardrop (Ayr Roads CC) came home in a time of 24:25. This gave Wardrop and Ewing 6th and 7th spot when all was said and done.

Anda-Jay Burgess (Rock and Road Cycles) took third spot

The next rider to set the time sheet alight was the eventual winner Lucy Coldwell riding in her Velosport - Pasta Montegrappa kit who came home in a super time of 22:30. A few minutes later she was joined on the stat sheets by Lynsey Curran ( who posted a time of 22:47 which was good enough for overall second. This just left her teammate Sian Tovey and the last woman off Anda-Jay Burgess of Rock and Road Cycles. Tovey returned in a time of 23:38 to eventually take 5th overall and Burgess managed 23:10 to finish third. Top times in trying conditions with the team prize going to

Top Youth rider Stuart Turvey (Sandy Wallace Cycles)

Next up, and from a relatively small field, were the Juniors and Youths. Gold in the Juniors event went to Angus Claxton (Moray Firth CC) in a very impressive 22:06 which made up for the long trip south. Best position in the Youths event went to Stuart Turvey (Sandy Wallace Cycles); just inside 24 minutes in a time of 23:59. Certainly names to watch for in the future.

Alastair McGibbon (Ayr Roads CC)

Now it was the turn of the men and it was at this point that the weather, which had eased off a bit, decided to take a turn for the worse. Albert McLellan (Glasgow Couriers) headed out in determined fashion (the marshal next to me said "I take it that's the end of the Youth event then") but he was quickly followed by Alastair McGibbon (Ayr Roads CC) who was looking more determined than I've seen him. He would catch McLellan, the former 12 Hour and Hill Climb champ before the turn but an impressive performance from the veteran rider nonetheless.

Jocky Johnstone (Icarus Racing)

First rider to come home in under 22 minutes was the 5th man off, Sean Gray ( who posted 21:49. He wasn't alone in that from the first 50 riders there were 14 who made it in under 22. By this time the weather was beginning to ease once again and by the time that another 25 riders had passed me the roads were virtually dry. Traffic had increased a bit but on a course like this that's more often a benefit than a hindrance.

Billy McFarlane (

With just over half the field still to ride we had our first sub 21 ride and once again it came from Dooleys Race Team with Nick Tryon coming home in 20:20. This held top spot for almost an hour and a quarter and was good enough to see Tryon as part of the winning team.

Nick Tryon (

Eventually it came down, as it always does, to the men who have consistently proved themselves against the clock and the first rider to better Tryon's time was Chris Smart (Paisley Velo RT) the recent winner of the Jason MacIntyre Memorial TT who finished in 20:16. Alan Thomson (Sandy Wallace Cycles) came close in 20:41 as did the Berwick Wheelers duo of Christopher Isats and Harry Armstrong who recorded 21:04 and 20:59 respectively.

Winner of the recent Jason MacIntyre Memorial TT, Chris Smart (Paisley Velo RT) who was 4th 

It was all down to the last four riders and as they headed out onto the first section of dual carriageway they were all looking super-fit. Arthur Doyle ( is a big guy but he still manages to adopt a very aero position on his Cervelo and wearing an all black Assos skin suit he really looked like he meant business. Next up was Iain Grant ( who always has a very focussed look but a seemingly stress-free pedalling style. Then Silas Goldsworthy (Sandy Wallace Cycles) who outwardly looked as if he'd completed recovered from his recent injury. Last man up was defending champion Ben Peacock (Paisley Velo RT) who looked almost relaxed as he fired down towards the main carriageway.

Silver medallist Arthur Doyle (

Not having a clock on the riders I headed round to the off-ramp and picked them up as they finished. Arthur Doyle looked like a rider that had given pretty much everything. It was difficult to call between him and Iain Grant and Grant passed me in what felt like two minutes later but I then had to wait a little longer before I saw Goldsworthy and as he stopped at the side of the road it was definately not another two minutes before Peacock rolled up beside him.

Defending Champion Ben Peacock (Paisley Velo RT) who clocked 19:59 to finish third

By the time I'd reached the event HQ and gotten rid of the wet-weather gear, the times had been just about confirmed; Iain Grant had retaken the title in a time of 19:40 followed by Arthur Doyle in 19:55 with Ben Peacock at 19:59. Chris Smart took fourth spot in 20:16 and Silas Goldsworthy finished fifth in 20:17. Dooleys Cycles took the Men's Team prize (Grant, Doyle and Tryon) to add to that of the Women's so all-in-all an excellent day for the club from Paisley.

Men's Podium Winners (l to r): Ben Peacock (3rd), Arthur Doyle (2nd) and Champion Iain Grant

Once again, another excellent event organised on what the new champion believes to be the fastest 10 course in Scotland. The team at Glasgow Couriers put on a top event and the inclusion of a coffee tent at the start courtesy of Cafe2U was a nice idea.

Scottish 10 Mile TT Champion Iain Grant (
Full gallery of photographs will be available on our Facebook page where we'll also post the complete standings.

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