Ferguson is G in the
Event organisers Franco Porco
and a David Lines put on an incredibly challenging and exciting
course, which crammed just about every conceivable obstacle in the
way of the record breaking 388 rider field. The course held up well
to heavy overnight rain and after a few pre race tweaks, the
Park filled with up an enthusiastic and vocal crowd from all over
In the Senior event,
World Cup Mountain biker Grant Ferguson (Superior-Brentjens) was the
man that everyone wanted to finish second to. Ferguson grabbed the
race by the scruff of the neck from the get go, and proceeded to slam
the opposition into the greasy, slippery parcour with a solid and
intelligent ride. The fluidity of Ferguson was truly something to
behold, and an example of how far Scottish Cyclocross has grown in
stature over the last few years.
Behind all this display
of cross genius came a hunting pack that had Iain Paton (Ben Wyvies
Cycles) and a fast starting Simon Kirkness (Tri-Centre), dishing out
the pain to the rest of the 90 strong field.
Paton faltered and this
allowed Kirkness to steadily pull away from his rivals, in a mature
and controlled effort to snatch second place by mid race.
But with one lap to go
Paton recovered his zeal to take second spot on the podium from a
delighted Kirkness, with solid riding from single speed devotee Colin
May (Velo Club Edinburgh), and a returning from running Neil Walker
(Walkers Cycles) who opened his season points tally with fifth
The Veteran 40 class
also had a very strong field despite the no show of John McCafferty
(Leslie Bikes/BB) who is still recovering from illness. His team mate
Gary McCrae made up for all of this, and was able to race to the win
in front of team owner Andy Hain, despite having raced to second in
the “Hairy Coo” Mountain Bike event the day before, Gary and his
legs did all the talking.
Always lurking and
taking a race to the Leslie Bikes riders this year, Glasgow United
filled the rest of the podium with James Melville and Stevie Jackson.
Of note was the ride of
course organiser Franco Porco put in, who despite setting up the
course from 7am, he still placed fourth.
The Veteran 50/
Women/Junior race was again the domain of Harry Johnston (Team
Thomson’s Cycles), Jamie Mason (West Lothian Clarion) and Connor
Nally (Hardie Bikes) .
The young wrecking crew
safely managed to keep a truly inspiring ride by first Veteran 50
rider Brendan Roe, as well as his daughter Eileen!
With respect to the
Women’s class, a record breaking thirty racers took to the line,
which is an all time participation record for a Cyclocross race in
Scotland. Eileen Roe (Ronde-Bicycle Outfitters) the current Scottish CX Champion, put in an impressive performance in her first cyclo-cross of the season and took the win by over 30 seconds. Despite finishing second, VC Moulin race ace Maddy
Robinson did her series effort no harm at all by seeing off a very
impressive ride from first time crosser Kerry MacPhee (Rock and Road),
who had initially led proceedings until an untimely encounter with a
In the Kids and Youth
events, a fantastic turnout took on the course in the morning, with
the victory spoils in the Under Eight Class going to a fiery ride
from Gavin Gronkowski who got a wriggle on right from the start,
first of the girls came in the shape of Daisy Taylor, who also
managed third overall. The best thing about the first kids races is
they just give it their all on all manner and shape of bikes, a
heartening sight to see for the onlooker.
In the Under 12 class,
Jamie Johnston (Thomsons Cycles) simply owned it and put on a very
mature display for the full race, this lad already has a skill set
developing and was very impressive in lapped traffic, as well as
taking on the challenge of the slippery knoll at the far end of the
Callendar Park course. Niamh Docherty again posted a top ride amongst
the boys with a fine win for herself placing ninth overall.
Wrapping up the full
race schedule were the Youth events and a great top step from Joe
Nally (Hardie Bikes), and a spirited ride from Emma Borthwick
(Tri-Centre) who is more than capable of mixing it with the strongest
Youth males in Scotland.
After all the mud had
stopped flying, the organisers were quick to acknowledge the support
of Ridley, Lazer Helmets and Madison in supporting the event. There
is also a lot of credit due to Garry Nichol and his team at Falkirk
Community Trust who liaised with a great team of ground staff to help
put on for now a Scottish Series race, but possibly with an eye on
bringing a National Trophy race to Scotland one day. Now would that
not be a tantalising thought?.