SDA DH Rd 2, Glencoe
Over the years Glencoe has had a hard time staying open due to bad winters, to you and I that’s not the same “bad winters”, to the Ski centre it means the lack of snow. It was 4 years ago that the SDA in their hunt for new venues approached the centre to see if it would be possible to build a track there. The centre was taken over in a management buy out in 2007 and things were looking good for a new Downhill venue, and the best bit was it had a chairlift. That year the first race was a disaster due to torrential rain during Saturday night meant the race had to be cancelled, but since then fingers crossed things have gone better.
The problems the centre was suffering from were still there in 2009 when a consortium of winter sports enthusiasts headed by Andy Meldrum stepped in to take over the site and to develop the mountain biking side of things. The plans are to develop more trails that are more user friendly for your average mountain biker and not just the very steep gnarly track that’s there.
This weekend the 2nd round of the SDA came to Glencoe; unfortunately the weather was not being very kind on the Saturday with all but the kitchen sink being thrown at them. Lots of riders opting for a few runs, not wanting to risk injury and some folk loving it. The track its self is pretty much the same track with a lot of work being done to shore up some berms, drainage and the wooden fences being a lot more stable to catch you before you fall down some crevice.
This year was to be the total opposite from last year when the sun shone on the Saturday and the rain fell all day Sunday. Sunday was good the sun shone all day bar a few little showers that didn’t really last that long. Most of the water on the hill is still down to snow melt higher up (ok so the rain on Saturday didn’t help) after a bumper ski season, but the new drainage measures in place did help a little.
Race kicked off on time with the juveniles who deserve a heap of credit for having the courage to race this track, surely if they can ride this track they could ride Dunkeld? Sam Herd’s first race run was good enough to take the win over Innes Graham with Frazer McCubbing in 3rd
Second down the hill are the youths, that’s the category age of up to 15 reason I’d mention that is just for the fast Elite riders that were there. Well Fraser McGlone won the youth race with a time of 2.50 which gave him the fastest time of the day beating I Cycles rider Stuart Wilcox into 2nd place with his teammate George Gannicott in 3rd.
With the usual podium contenders Mark Scott, Arran Gannicott and Lewis Buchanan all away in Maribor it was time for the other lads to get up there and it was Jordan Doig who took the first spot ion the podium with Ronan Taylor in 2nd Willem Herd grabbed good 3rd place
The old veterans gave a good show this weekend with hot favourite Alastair MacLennan having a bad day only getting 3rd place behind Neil Wilson. It was retro dressed Stevie Boyd who got the win here at Glencoe
Masters race saw All Terrain Cycles rider Christopher Whitfield take the win from UpLift Scotlands David “Tally” Tallontire and 3rd spot went to Jethro Whitfield.
The women’s race saw Sarah Newman take the win from Agnieszka Pomaranska who I must say rides a rather nice old Sinttesi with cherry red boxxers, Bex Reilly riding for Uplift Scotland took 3rd
The ever-growing senior category won by Joe Flanagan riding for All Terrain Cycles, 2nd place was Tom Skillicorn with Shaun Conway taking the 3 spot on the podium
Experts this weekend saw Dave Duggan win his first expert race (feel free to correct me if I’m wrong) so a big shout out to Dave, Ben Hall could only manage to get 2nd place here with Andy Phillips getting 3rd for All Terrain Cycles to round of a pretty good weekend for the team.
Elites this weekend saw a rather depleted entry due to the first World Cup in Maribor, it was a fairly close run thing between the 3 riders with Chris Hutchens taking the win with his first run that included a crash near the finish. Perth City Cycles Fergus Lamb took 2nd place with I-Cycles Pete Williams getting the 3rd podium step.