Last Sunday’s Pedal for Scotland has become the latest cycling event to be hit by sabotage. Large numbers of riders in the 50-mile ride from Glasgow to Edinburgh sustained punctures after nails and tacks were found littering the road between Limerigg and Avonbridge in Stirlingshire.
Herald Scotland reports that Alpine Bikes, the firm providing mechanical support, were inundated with people who had punctures.
Andy Butler, senior buyer at the firm, said that the tacks had been dangerously placed on a fairly narrow road, causing up to 50 punctures within a short space of time. Extra mechanics were sent in to help out and additional inner tubes provided, but Butler says it was still a challenge to cope with the volume of punctures.
"The tack incident caused a constant queue of around 30 people for more than four hours, even though each mechanic was finishing a repair every five minutes. Some very sporting riders even stopped to pick up tacks in an attempt to clear the road – whoever those people are, we are grateful."
One of the participants, Kenny Laird from Glasgow, said that the tacks didn’t just find their way into tyres.
"There was lots of people, one after the other, stopped at the side of the road with punctures. It was a mixture of carpet tacks and slate nails. I heard of someone who got one in their knee. They must have come off in among them.
"I was fortunate enough to avoid getting a puncture but I passed at least 30 small groups of people helping each other. My wife, who was also cycling, said she could hear the hiss of people's tyres going down around her."
Pedal for Scotland, which raises money to help combat child poverty, wasn’t the only charity bike ride affected at the weekend. The Marlow Red Kite bike ride was also targeted with around 50 riders sustaining punctures.