Mugdock normally brings the first proper mud of the Scottish Cyclocross series and the 2009 event promoted by Glasgow Mountain Bike Club certainly didn’t disappoint on that front.
The Youths were released onto the course at 11:00 to churn it up for the Seniors and by the time the massive field lined up on the start line at 12:00, the muddy section were in prime condition and the roots had been polished up nicely.
The race rolled out of the arena to take the start on a wide section of estate road. The front end of the race tore down the hill and passed by the ruins of Craigend Castle before climbing to the start of the singletrack section. A couple of crashes in the first few hundred metres took some of the regular front runners down and put them way back in the field with a lot of overtaking to do. At the front Paul Newnham (Edinburgh Road Club) and Craig Hardie (Hardie Bikes) attacked and opened a gap on the bunch. Newnham and Hardie duelled for several laps, catching the back end of the field in no time. As the rain began to fall Hardie put in a big effort and gained an immediate advantage over Newnham which was to last until the finishing line. A fine win for the man just back from a week in Lanzarote working on his tan, er, racing legs.
In the women’s race, Ruth Fraser-Moodie (Pedal Power) again dominated the rest of her opponents and took a decisive victory – her third in three races. Can anyone touch Ruth this year?
Charles Fletcher (Cairngorm CC) took the Junior race and will be looking to repeat on home turf next weekend.
Our ace reporter, Guy Willoughby, was again on hand to report on the action from a packed U12s race.
Forty one lined up for the start of the combined U12, U10 and U8 race - with the smallest riders given a 1/2 lap start. All of the 300m course had been previously ridden over by the Youth and Senior racers, so with continuing showers the track was either wet and very slippery, or in other parts wet and muddy. All the riders, from the youngest to the oldest, had worked out by the second lap that speed alone would have them on their sides in a slide, so had to pick their routes and use their skills to stay upright.
As in the senior races, the front runners also had their skills tested in overtaking lapped riders on quite a narrow track, with the result that the more experienced racers stretched the field. Under 12 rider Jamie Willoughby (Drumlanrig) got another excellent start, with Joe Nally (Carnegie Cyclones) tracking him in second for a lap and hoping for a repeat of Auchentoshen where he overtook Willoughby.
However Cameron Shackley (Glasgow Riderz) riding his best race of the season nipped past Nally, leaving Nally to battle it out in a lap by lap joust with Lewis Stewart (Glasgow Riderz). Leading U10 rider Cameron Mellis (Carnegie Cyclones)kept in touch with that pair and maintained 5th position.
Of the girls, both U12 riders Emma Borthwick (Edinburgh RC) and Erica Allen (Wallace Warriors) were badly hampered by fallers early on which meant the above five boys managed to get away from them on the opening laps. Borthwick and Allen matched each other for all 10 minutes plus a lap, but a slip by Borthwick on the penultimate lap allowed Allen to win the girls race by 3 seconds. The leading U10 girl was Ariana Willoughby (Drumlanrig), who rode a dogged race to achieve her best placing of the season.
On the line Willoughby took first, just 15 seconds ahead of Shackley, followed by Nally, Stewart (held up by traffic on the last lap) and then leading U10 Mellis in 5th overall. They were followed in almost a lap down by U12 girls Allen and Borthwick, with Ariana Willoughby heading the U10 girls. All 41 riders had a great chance to experience racing, and the many faces of pure determination bodes well for the future of Scottish cycling
Race results for all categories will be added to the Scottish Cyclocross website once available.
Trina Ritchie and others were on hand to capture the action from around the course – lots of great images are on Flickr in the Scottish Cyclocross Group]. Feel free to add your own photos to this group.
Rounds Four and Five – Glenmore Lodge
The series headed up north this weekend (report and results to follow soon) for the most northerly cyclocross races in Britain at Glenmore Lodge, near Aviemore with events being hosted by Velo Club Moulin. The races will be run within the grounds of Scotland’s National Outdoor Training Centre amongst the stunning scenery of the Cairngorms National Park. The courses will mix skinny singletrack, grassy switchbacks, fast tarmac, hurdles and a near vertical wall of a climb. Fast and furious racing should proceed!
Please note that timings are altered for this round:
Saturday 11:00 Youth 12:00 Vets, Women, Juniors 13:30 Seniors 15:00 Under 12's Sunday 10:00 Youth 11:00 Vets, Women, Juniors 12:30 Seniors 14:00 Under 12's
For all the latest news, happenings and info on the Scottish Cross Series, as well as links to our fantastic series sponsors, check the SCX website [http://www.scottishcyclocross.org.uk/] regularly.