Dave Duggan blasted onto the Scottish CX scene last year, and made quite an impression on the results with a couple of podium spots and third overall in the Raleigh SCX Series. The big man from the NE took some time out from crushing souls on his MTB to share how he got into CX.
Photo: David Queenan.
1. Can you introduce yourself and let our readers know a little bit about you?
My name is Dave Duggan, I’ve been racing downhill mountain bikes since around 2006. In recent years I also did some enduro racing, then last year, 2016 I had a go at XC mountain bike racing. Freeborn Bikes have kept me in wheels and bikes throughout most of this time.
2. How long have you been involved in cyclocross?
Not very long, I first stepped on a cyclocross bike the day before the 2016 SCX season kicked off, having just picked up the new bike.
3. What got you into the sport in the first place?
A few of the local roadie’s had mentioned to me “you should come and give it a go”, I had no idea how big and thriving a scene it was, and I only had a very rough idea of what to expect (after watching a few Svenness videos), but it appealed to me and I’m very glad I got involved. Such a great community of riders and organisers.
4. Can you remember the first CX race you went to, and how did it go?
I remember it clearly, Callendar Park 2016. It was a glorious sunny day and everyone was telling me “Don’t get used to this, it’s not normally this warm and dry”. I remember it being a tough race, but also remember getting my entry in for the rest of the season straight away after it – I was hooked instantly.
5. What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen at a cross race?
The speed that Harry Johnston rode away from me… Every time.
6. What’s the most embarrassing thing you have done at a race, on or off a bike?
The first thing that springs to mind wasn’t actually at a race, but last year I drove (a reasonable distance) to meet my pal Chris for a morning mountain bike ride. I arrived all kitted up and ready to go, only to open the back of the van and discover that I’d forgotten my bike… I recall many minutes of laughter from Christopher…
7. Do you have a favourite course, either to ride, or to spectate?
Every SCX venue and course was brand new to me in 2016, which made it really exciting for me, every weekend was a new adventure with another variation of terrain and course to try and get my head around. I did particularly enjoy the course at Mull - so twisty and undulating and of course a stunning setting.
8. Are there any riders you particularly admire?
Everyone that supports these events, rain, hail and shine, for sure. Harry’s dominant and consistent performance throughout the season was very impressive.
9. Any particular highlights from this season?
At Strathclyde Park, I punctured on the first lap, I picked up my mountain bike from the pits to carry on the race and it was certainly a highlight when I came round past the pits again to hear a young lad shout to me “yer bike’s fixed!”. Thanks to that lad…!
10. Finally, what are you looking forward to for next season?
It’s halfway through the mountain bike season, which I am enjoying, but it’ll be great to get stuck into the cross again come Autumn and I look forward to some more good ‘clean’ battles with the lads.