Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Scottish MTB XC reports


The Clarion was well represented in the first race of the Scottish MTB XC series, David Mason sends in this report and Jonathan Buckley follows up with a report on his own ride.

David continues: Top results for Budding Clarion Kids in Scottish Cross Country Mountain Bike Race Series!

Stage 1 of the 2010 series at Kirroughtree ended with Jamie and Cameron Mason placing first in their respective categories !

The main race is approximately 9km of fast flowing singletrack, technical descents and lung bursting climbs. Over 80% of this years route was on singletrack with a mix of demanding natural trail and smooth swoopy bermed track.

Jamie (12) had just moved up from the Primary Schools Races to Juvenile Category which meant a full lap of the very testing "adult" course. Despite that he achieved a first in the "beginners" Category and walked off with a trophy and bag of goodies too.

Cameron (9) also had a successful day in the woods on the specially adapted skills course which was 90% singletrack with "rock features". He successfully held onto an early lead on the very tight technical course and also gained top podium position!

I managed a reasonable position (19th after a stewards enquiry and trip to marriage counselor) in the open category race (2 laps) after a "mechanical" on the first lap when my saddle disappeared into the seat tube, blame the mechanic!

Our other Clarionista, Jonathan Buckley, had even more trouble in the Masters (4 laps). With a good start leading to a high placing in 1st couple of laps, his chain then snapped on lap 3 bringing to an end to his dreams of glory.

Bring on Contin in April where we'll hopefully be flying the Clarion colours!

Jonathan continues:

The Conditions were perfect, sunny intervals and around 10 degrees meant the shorts had their first outing this year!

The course was approximately 6 miles per lap and my category (Masters) was 4 laps. Terrain was a mixture or short steep rooty climbs through the forest, quite technical and the second half was fast singletrack where passing would be difficult.

The race started well, I managed to get to the front and hold my position but a wrong turn just before the start/finish line meant I was passed by 2 riders. After 2 laps I was running 3rd and going quite well but the furious pace was beginning to take its toll on me and the bike.

Every time I got out of the saddle my chain would slip and selecting a gear was becoming difficult, two thirds round the penultimate lap, I had to get out of the saddle for a steep section and my chain snapped.

It must have been fatigue but I just couldn't repair the chain - eventually having to ask for help and thus disqualifying myself from the event, I had lost around 11 minutes and dropped back to 11th on completion of the lap and then retiring.

A disappointing result but I thoroughly enjoyed my day out and it gives me a good indication of where I am fitness-wise for the next race in April at Contin, Inverness.

A big thanks to the organisers for a great course and well run event.

Full results can be found at

Corrieri Classic 10TT results

1: Arthur Doyle (Dooleys Cycles) 20.14
13: Matthew Ball (West Lothian Clarion) 22.34
44: Sadiq Mir (West Lothian Clarion) 24.27

Many thanks to Tommy Glendenning and Denny Road Club for organising a great event.

As well as two riders racing another West Lothian member volunteered. After attending training in January, Tobias Bauer took on the commissaire role for the first time at the TT.

Many thanks Tobias.

Women's Lake APR road race report

Women's Club TT champ, Julie Dominguez, rode her first road race at the weekend. The Lake APR event was a handicapped race, where women were seeded into different groups depending on their ability. The groups were set off at intervals with the faster riders in the last group and the slower ones in the front.

This was the first women-only race, of recent years, in Scotland and organising club Glasgow Nightingale should be congratulated for putting on such a well run event, which also included a men's race

It appears the seeding was unbalanced with some very fast riders managing to creep into the first group because they hadn't informed the organisers of their previous racing results.

Julie's continues:

My legs still hurt from Sunday's baptism of fire, It was a mega fast start, downhill, tailwind, top triathletes and roadies dragging me down the road to the first turn.

That was that, never saw them again!

It turns out that the seeding of competitors was obscured due to riders not pointing out their past achievements. I was in the first chasing group... chasing world class triathletes and Scottish talent team riders who were in the group in front.

A few of us straggled along a long winding road. I tried to get a girl onto my wheel but as I pushed on, to catch the rider in front, she couldn't hold on. I then couldn't catch the girl in front of me, so I cycled on, on my own, what a mess!

I rode with my hands over the bars, in a time trial pose, trying to claw back as much ground as I could. I had a moment of elation when I spotted a yellow number in front, I easily caught up, then pushed on - they couldn't keep up with me either.

After a 15 mile time trial I decided to stop (to be honest, I was getting bored with riding on my own). After a while a girl I had passed earlier appeared, so I decided to jump back on the bike and we rode together towards the finish.

We had a good chat about the race, about life, about sore legs and kept each other going. Suddenly we heard riders in the men's event catching us up - at last, a race!

I joined in with the guys as they shouted to get on their wheels. It was windy now, the road took a sharp left and then woosh! - downhill. This was my chance to shine, I can descend quickly, so I scared a few as I over took them. They jumped onto my wheel and followed me down hill, what a rush!

It made the earlier 15m TT worth it just for this! We were only a few miles from the finish, another descent and then a short sharp rise to the finish. I was happy again!

If I hadn't had a 'tea break' with 6 miles to go I would have finished in the middle of the 'girlie' pack. Instead I made a great pal, Anne, and experienced proper racing with the guys at the finish.

The organisation was great, can't fault it and YES I will be racing again!

Monday, 22 March 2010

Sunday ride report

Allan was at the Cross in Linlithgow to lead the Sunday ride as usual, here is his report:

The Sunday gang is gaining in numbers and this week we had three new faces too. 9 riders set out, the regulars: Col, Eve, Neil, Dennis and I, plus newbies Andrew, Lindsay and John plus returning regular Steve.

We set off on the Blackness Road to Champney, then turned and followed the road to S. Queensferry via Old Elizabeth Yard. Then on to the Dalmeny Estate, Barnton, Gogar, Ratho, Newbridge, Winchburgh, Faucheldean, Ochiltree, Kingscaval Brae and back to Linlthgow.

The weather was great, although there was quite a tough headwind on way back. I think everyone had a good ride and the group stayed together pretty well. We rode about 40 miles at an average of 15mph.

I hope to see everyone again next week and maybe even more members will come out, now the weather is improving.

Col said "Good run today. I thought the new riders did really well, hope to see them again!"

Denis said "I really enjoyed the ride with a record 9 Sunday riders! But the head wind on the way back was a bit tough"

All the club run information can be found here:

Saturday ride reports

East Calder Ride 20th March

East Calder Crew
Neil Greer was on the East Calder ride on Saturday and sends in this report:

In addition to myself, 6 other riders out made it for the EC Social Ride with Debbie, Keir, Grant, Ken, Neil L. and Stephen (Henley) completing the group. Due to time constraints we elected to do the shorter Carnwath loop via Auchengray & Woolfords before taking the back road that links directly to the Lang Whang.

Conditions were just about perfect - sunny, dry and very little wind - and Keir and Neil L. (both in shorts!) were vying for the knobbly kness competion (it was declared a dead heat...).

There was a lot of feedback from last week's Rad in the group and the banter was good. At the Whang junction Neil L. and Ken (who is keen to get the miles in in preparation for the Sky team's attempt at the Etape du Tour) peeled off towards Carnwath to do a longer (61 miles) loop around the Pentlands (for which they managed a healthy 15 mph).

The rest of us took the loop back via the airfield to come into Kirknewton village where our stats showed 39 miles at 13.5 mph; all in all a cracking Spring ride.

Linlithgow crew
Andy sends in this report about the social ride:

Another great run and turnout today. Thirteen riders turned up at 9.00am on Saturday morning. We split into social and active groups, I went on the social group along with Donald, Neil, Dick, Ross, Melwyn and Lesley. The active group consisted of Craig, Jamie, Simon, Steve, Paul and Neil.

we rode the Lang Wang route, so we set of to Bridgend, Faucheldean, Winchburgh, East Calder, Kirknewton, LangWang, Harburn/West Calder and over through Blackburn and Bathgate. The weather was fantastic and certainly not what was forecast and hardly any wind too. Melwyn must have been putting in some secret training as there was no holding him back and he hung in well on the ride. Hope there will be many more rides like this one as we head towards the better weather.

Steve said "It was nice to meet up with the guys and ride in the active group, the weather was nice despite the forecast so took the summer bike out for a shake down with the new equipment. All good."

Jamie, who also rode in the active group said "I'd like to thank Craig "Tow-Truck" Marshall for getting me around the 'Whang, I felt ok till Kirknewton Airfield then fell apart like a cheap suit!".

All the club run information can be found here:

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Club Photo 2010

Clarion club photo Linlithgow Palace, Sunday 14th March 2010

La Marmotte 2010: A novice's diary

Club Treasurer Michelle Gregory (and winner of our women's open hill climb) has entered the Marmotte Sportive in France, follow her progress on

Ride the Scottish MTB XC series

This Sunday sees the start of the Scottish MTB XC series down in Dumfries at the 7 Stanes Kirroughtree trail centre. The series consists of 7 rounds accross the country and is open for male and female riders of all levels and this year even includes the World cup circuit at Ft. William for the Scottish championships in June.

Club member Jonathan Buckley will be entering... anyone else going to give it a go?

The dates and venues are as follows....

Round 1 - Kirroughtree 21st March
Round 2 - Contin 25th April
Round 3 - Aberfoyle 23rd May
Round 4 - Ft William Scottish Championships 13th June
Round 5 - Perth 8th August
Round 6 - Laggan Wolftrax 29th August
Round 7 - Drumlanrig Castle 19th September

Entries can be made on the day but also online at Jonathan plans to race all rounds if possible (This season is his comeback year!) but if anyone requires any further info or would like to see a friendly face at the race, please feel free to contact the club at secretary[AT]

The official series website is

RadTour: a fantastic day out on the bike

feed stop: yum
feed stop: cafe

The club held its second annual RadTour on Sunday 14th March. This time we were able to open entries up to non-members and almost 40 riders gathered in front of Linlithgow Palace. The weather was some of the mildest of the year and, although there was a brisk westerly, the excitement of taking part in a big season-opener after such a long, hard winter was evident.

The riders set off in pace groups on a route that stayed more in West Lothian than last year, the theme of the route being '7 Castles of West Lothian' but made some brief cross-border hops into neighbouring Falkirk, North Lanarkshire and Edinburgh for a full flavour of the local cycling experience.

One of the great highlights of the route was the feed stop at 37 miles, magnificently organised by Neil Greer. Julie Greer and Alison Dourley led the way in laying on a fantastic spread of soup, bacon rolls and home-bakes while son Callum marshalled, making sure that tired riders didn't overshoot on their rapid descent from the highest point of the route, on the Lang Whang. First to arrive were a group averaging almost 18mph, an impressive rate given the sustained climbing over Standburn, Polkemmet Moor and the Whang itself.

The following sections, towards Whitburn and Queensferry were navigationally quite tricky and time-consuming and the final climb of the day, a long drag up to Ochiltree into an ever strengthening wind took a lot of riders well past their maximum effort for the season so far, the swooping descent down Kingscavil and the finish line back at Linlithgow perhaps being a relief for some.

As in 2009, the Rad Tour seems to have generated a great early season buzz - Alan Massey said "I had a great day, many thanks to the organisers and all involved at the feed stop. My longest ride of the year so far (77 miles by the time I got home), and what a fantastic one too" while Bill Young reflected on "great company, great roads and what a great sight to see that the club has grown so much in stature but has still managed to keep the small club feel."

Hope you're all looking forward to 2011 already!

Comments from the participants:

"Just a quick note to say thanks to everyone involved in organising the event today. It was truly Rad! Was also a good chance to catch up with some folk I haven't seen for a while from the Linlithgow end of the operation." Malcolm

"It was a great day out, thanks Tobias, Kerstin and Graham for all your hard work in organising the Radtour. Thanks to Neil and family/friends for your wonderful hospitality. Great weather and beautiful scenery, although we seemed to spend the day looking for a tailwind which never materialised! Eve and I finished around 4pm with an average speed of 12.5mph." Debbie

"Great day today! Thanks to all who organised and gave up their Sunday. Also big thanks to Neil for a great spread and a very warm welcome. THANK YOU! Nice to see such a huge turn out and great to see everyone. Still didnt see any castles though!" Col

"What a fantastic day out on the bike and hats off to Tobias, Graham, Kirstin, Neil and Jules and all the helpers at the feed station :-) The food spread was absolutely amazing and a very welcome site at that stage in the run. Great company, great roads and what a great site to see that the club has grown so much in stature but has still managed to keep the small club feel. Brilliant effort from everyone." Bill

"Great organisation and what a spread of food! I loved the Paradise Cake (might need to get the recipe Neil!). I am a bit shot tonight after 50 miles on Saturday as well as the RadTour ... P.S. I saw two castles.." Mark

"Thanks to everyone - the organisation and the food was first class (guinness cake was superb!), it was a cracking day all round. I was shot at the end, but Alan got me home and I slept really well last night" Ewan

For more images click here

Feed stop: marshall
heading off after feed

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Clarion Open 10 mile Time Trial


Discipline: Time Trial
Classification: Regional C
Date: 16.05.2010
Closing date for entries: 08.05.2010
Cheques Payable To: West Lothian Clarion
Entries on the day: No
Location: Cambusbarron Hall, St Ninians Rd, Cambusbarron
Promoted By: West Lothian Clarion CC
Fee: £10

Race Organiser:
Mr Tobias Bauer
Grange Stables
West Lothian EH49 7RH
Tel: 01506 840036
Email: president[AT]

Change of course to 10/1, the Cambusbarron course near stirling. New HQ venue at Cambusbarron Hall.

Incorporates the National Clarion 10 mile TT championship

To download entry form click here (second weblink on page)
Where to stay in Linlithgow:
Where to stay in Stirling:

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Saturday run 13th March

Saturday's ride took place the day before the RadTour so the group decided to save their legs and ride at a brisk social pace instead of splitting into the normal slower and faster groups. Club Captain, Andy Weaving sends in this report about the run which left Linlithgow at 9.00am

Great run today, 10 riders were out, Bill, Donald, Steve, Mark, Craig, Sadiq, Gary (Pedal Power) and I, plus two new riders, Ian from Kirkliston, who rides with ERC and Paul.

We headed off on the Dalmeny route following a steady social run pace. Paul was very fit for his first club run, which was explained by his background in running. Ian also had a good time and enjoyed the cycle on the minor roads. They hope to be out again, the weather was fantastic so we made the most of it by skirting up round the Bathgate Alps before heading off home.

Craig said "I enjoyed the ride today, it was about 35 miles at a steady pace but my legs still felt it a bit. I am a long way from full fitness!"

All our club ride information here:

Monday, 15 March 2010

Social tonight in Mid Calder

We meet up on the 1st and 3rd Monday of every month. Come along and chat about the weekend's riding, swap dvds and books and plan your next big event.

First Monday of the month
8.30pm The Four Marys on Linlithgow Hight Street

Third Monday of the month
8.30pm the Black Bull, Mid Calder

See you there!

Friday, 12 March 2010

Ride the RadTour this Sunday

Click here for more details.

Stuff to collect

bathgate alpes t shirt

The second order of T-shirts have arrived, they only cost £8.30 this time!

If you want to order one email us at: secretary[AT]

'Fraid the design isn't new, if you want to get an original go here

I have a load of membership cards that need handing out, If you have not received your card and you joined before Friday 5th March come and collect it!

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Bargains Galore

At the end of February the club held a bike jumble in Linlithgow. There were seven or eight stalls, some selling better than others, Allan Black made a terrific profit with his low-key sales patter. A few local clubs popped in and had a bite to eat, with quite a few riders leaving with extra junk, sorry, components, in their back pockets.

Debbie contributed to the cake stall and bought a few items as well, she said "It was good to see a lot of club members together, also to meet some partners and families. I bought an old Edinburgh Road Club top which I will either doctor or wear as a base layer, also a couple of bottle cages at 50p each. I'll make more of the chocolate squares for the RadTour, as everyone will be needing an energy boost."

A Longflap sadlebag caused quite a stir when it was spotted. A group of middle aged men, with a wistful look in their eyes, gathered to boast about what they had managed to squeeze into their saddle bags when they had more hair, less money and bigger shoes.

Many thanks to all the volunteers but especially Tobias for organising it. Hope to hold another in the autumn.

Clarion Bike Jumble 1

Clarion Bike Jumble 2
Clarion Bike Jumble 2

Monday, 8 March 2010


The Rad Tour details have been updated and the route slightly altered to avoid the more congested roads and make use of safer, more scenic lanes. you can see the new route here:

See the updated details here:

Sunday run report: 7th March

Allan writes this week's report:

Five starters from the Cross on Sunday morning: Craig, Lorne, Lesley, Shaun and I headed out as planned towards Stirling then looped round via Fishcross and Forestmill. Following on we rode to Clackmannan where we picked up Route 76 which we rode back to Grangemouth.

We were a pretty tight group, cycling well as a unit... except on the climbs! Lorne couldn't resist powering off in front showing his climbing skills, he was definatley a head on points for the Polka Dot jersey.

After Grangemouth we headed for Boness but turned up Nether Kinneil for the last climb of the day. The hill started as per usual with Lorne powering on ahead with the rest of us scrambling to catch his wheel. I think Lorne misjudged the steepness and length of the climb because I started gaining on him and sure enough, I not only caught him but passed him to take the Polka Dot jersey on the last climb of the day... I am now the official Sunday KING OF THE MOUNTAINS!

Today's run was 50 miles average speed 15mph.

Club run details here:

Report on East Calder Social Ride Sat 6th March

Neil Greer sends in this report about the East Calder Social ride: Six riders turned out for this ride. Rob Hemesley, Dave Dourley, Grant Craven, Stephen Henley (all fellow Clarionistas) plus Steven Fleming (who is thinking of joining the Clarion too..) and myself did the planned Avondridge route, giving all riders the opportunity to test out their hill climbing legs. The group stayed together well, banter was good and the weather felt kind!

With the 4 climbs behind us, the mandatory re-fuelling took place in Linlthgow at the Cafe Neuk, before we set off along the TT route to Kirkliston. Inspired by a warming sun and bird-song we quickly settled into a chain-gang for this 5 mile section and plaudits are deserved for the 2 Steves, neither of whom had ridden in this formation before, but coped admirably as the pace quickened. As we approached Newbridge/Ratho Dave and Grant went their respective ways and the remaining quartet weaved their way back through Cliftonhall to East Calder. c 40 miles at 13.5mph - most enjoyable.

Club run details here:

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Great day out on a bike

The Saturday run from Linlithgow was a great ride, 19 riders were split into two groups, here are the photos from the Social group to prove it, report follows:

6 March club run 5
Off the back
Clarion climbers
6 March club run 2

The group was made up of 13 riders and rode the Slammanan circuit, with two new riders joining in: Owen from Boness and Ross from Edinburgh. As you can see, it was a spectacular day, bright sunshine and ice free roads cutting through snow covered fields.

The Social group rode a steady 35 miles at an average of 14.6mph. Many on the ride have commented about how good it was:

David said "Thanks to everyone this morning for a very enjoyable run out on roads I have not been on before. I have not been out with a group for about 6 months and forgot how enjoyable it can be. "

Craig said "Cracking run with social group today - perfect weather conditions making for a really enjoyable morning"

Ewan sends in this report about the Active ride:

I chose the active ride on Saturday along with Jez, Graham, Simon, Gary and Mike. Mike as planned had to peel off about half way round to get back home in the time available. That left the five for the rest of the trip.

Simon and Graham did more than their fair share at the front and I did more than my fair share at the back. I was blowing from the off, but managed to hang on (just) for the full ride. I'm sure the guys were being nice to me and I'm sure they took their feet off the gas now and again for me - which was much appreciated.

I really enjoyed the cycle and had a good chance to speak (well listen as I couldn't actually speak) to everyone. It was a really sociable bunch for a group of such talented cyclists. I'll definitely go for the active cycle again in the near future, but next time I'm definitely not going on the winter bike!

A grand day out and the views of the snow up beyond Slammanan were a nice distraction

Thursday, 4 March 2010

West Lothian Clarion Rad Tour 2010

The club's season opener, our spring reliability trial or Rad Tour, will be on Sunday 14th March.

Have you ever noticed how many castles you pass on the County's best back roads? Well, starting from Linlithgow, the RadTour will join the dots, passing seven of them.

After undertaking a reccie the route has been amended:

• You can register in advance ( but you will need to confirm your entry on the day and pay your entry fee.
• Registration is open from 8:45 to 9:15 in the Vennel car park, which is just behind Linlithgow Cross, which itself is fairly obvious on the town's high street
• Entry is £3 and is open to non-members
• Entrants must be over 15. Entrants aged over 15 and under 18 must be accompanied by a supervising adult and must wear a cycling helmet. All other riders are strongly advised by WLC to wear a cycling helmet.
• A public toilet is open nearby from 9:15 – ask for directions. There is also a 24/7 ‘Superloo’ at the the Water Yett.
• If you can bring home-bakes for the feed-stop to the start of the ride, that would be great. The logistics of the event would make it very hard to return tupperware boxes etc so paper bags or similar might be better.

• Riders will be grouped according to their expected average pace. There are 3 pace categories so you need to decide which one you want to join:

• 12mph: expected time 6hrs 00 mins (includes 45 mins for breaks). Start time: 9:30am. Target finish time: 3:30pm
• 15mph: expected time 5hrs 00 mins (includes 45 mins for breaks). Start time: 9:35am. Target finish time: 2:35pm
• 18mph: expected time 4hrs 15 mins (includes 45 mins for breaks). Start time: 9:40am. Target finish time: 1:55pm

• Groups/categories will be set off together, though they may be broken into subgroups if necessary for the management of the event.

• This is not a race. The aim of the event is to complete the route at a steady pace and as close to the chosen target time as possible; times will not be published. However, you should not take risks to 'make a time'.
• It is not expected that the groups that set off will stay together and there are certainly no 'group leaders'. Ride your own event & team up with whoever happens to be going at your pace....

• The route is fairly long (over 100km) and tackles some high and exposed roads. You take responsibility for assessing your own fitness to take part and that of your bike, and you should aim to be self-reliant.
• You must obey road traffic law and the Highway Code throughout the event.
• You must read the risk assessment prepared for the event
• The route sheet highlights only a small number of exceptional hazards. You obviously need to pay attention to all general hazards, instructions on road signage and markings. Pay particular attention to road surfaces; the hard winter has had a damaging effect on a lot of these.
• Show consideration for others on the route especially on the two off-road sections where pedestrians are likely to be encountered– Almondell and Hopetoun.
• If the conditions on the day are judged unacceptably hazardous (notably further heavy ice or snow) the event may be canceled. Full refunds would be given.

• The route is not marked but a route sheet is provided. You might want to study this along with a map before the event. Think about how to keep your sheet dry and intact!

• The feed stop is a little past half-way, coming down Leyden Road off the Lang Whang and is being hosted by club member Neil Greer – many thanks to him and his family!
• The location is highlighted by the route sheet but will probably be marked at the roadside on the day as well
• Neil's house is in a quiet residential area set back from the main road. Please take care to arrive and leave quietly and avoid disturbing Neil's neighbours.
• Small donations to club funds can be made for the catering provided, on a purely voluntary basis.

• You should aim to be self-sufficient. You should certainly be carrying enough food, some money and have the tools to repair punctures and minor breakages.
• The route passes close to several train stations that would allow (via Haymarket) a return to the starting point. There are also lots of shops and cafes on or near to the route.
• If all else fails call Graham Foster. Graham will have a car available and can arrange recovery, though this should be seen as a last resort.
• If you 'bail' but do not need recovery please let Tobias Bauer know at the start/finish

• Congratulations! Register with Tobias back at the Vennel car park and that's you done.
• The 'finish line' will close at 4:15pm

What is a Reliability Trial?
A Reliability trail is a non competitive event, effectively a formal club run, open to all comers and can provide an excellent introduction to cycling. No Reliability Ride shall be promoted which requires the participants to maintain an average riding speed of more than 18 m.p.h. 'Average riding speed' means the average speed when actually riding.

Beauty and the bike

Beauty and the Bike is a film/book/project about encouraging young women to ride bikes.

Hello there David

David Mason
Originally uploaded by westlothianclarion

David Mason is the latest rider to join the club and says "I've been cycling quite a few years now. Mainly MTB but I manage to fit in a few road tours a year with friends/family and have had some great tours of West and Highlands. Nothing overly strenuous but enough to get the heart pumping and to warrant the ridiculous level of evening carbo loading in the pub!"

"Thankfully my wife Clare and boys Jamie and Cameron are keen cyclists too. Clare's participating in the Etape Caledonia this year but says she's more of a recreational cyclist."

"My sons have been racing MTB SXC primary races for a couple of years and I finally took the plunge last year and raced the Aviemore circuit at Badaguish. I managed to go over the bars on the 2nd lap but finished in a reasonable time. I later discovered that I'd broken my hand."

"I enjoyed that so much I then went onto do a couple of cyclocross races which were great fun. Now all set up and looking forward to a year of great races ahead. I enjoyed being involved with Matt and others in setting up the Kids Club so really pleased to join West Lothian Clarion and race in the team colours."

"I may even be tempted to get a cyclocross/road bike and move away from the Dark Side!"

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Last Sunday's club run

Four hardy riders set off from the Cross in Linlithgow on Sunday. The group comprising of Dave, Allan and new members Eve and Shaun headed out through Winchburgh, Kirkliston, Dalmeny, Dalmeny Station, Queensfery, Tottley Wells, back to Winchburgh and then straight through Threemiletown to Linlithgow.

Allan said "It snowed for most of the ride but we had a bit of a tailwind on the way back to Linlithgow which made it a bit more enjoyable. We passed a large group of riders at Threemiletown, maybe from the falkirk club."

"The ride was about 26 miles long, at average speed 14mph. It was pretty cold and my hands were numb by the time I got home. We also had to cycle through a pretty big flood on the back road from Queensferry to Whinchburgh, it was deep enough for our feet to get wet. If anyone had fallen off we would have had to call the coast guard."

"Despite the weather it was good to get out on the bike, the plan was to drop in at the bike jumble for a coffee but because we were so wet and cold we went home for a hot shower first. Later on, I did make it to the jumble, the cakes and coffee was great, and I bought three cycling videos for a £1 each. Now I need a video!"

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Club Away Day: 17th April

David McTurk is proposing that club members have a wee day away over his side of the country on 17th April. He has planned out two possible routes, both approx 75 miles starting and finishing from Larbert.

Riders wanting a longer route could add 14 miles on by starting in Linlithgow and anyone wishing to shorten the route could bail out in Dunblane taking the mileage down to about 65 miles.

David says "Both routes run along some cracking countryside and I'm sure most of the club members will not have cycled some of these roads before. "

"I thought that at least two groups could start with the possibility of three if we got 20 or so people. The first route would take us through Dunblane, Braco before hanging a left taking some very quiet roads into Balloch and then home via Crieff. The second route would head over Dunning Glen and into Crieff."

Date: 17th April

Balloch Crieff Route

Dunning Glen Route

If enough people want to stop for lunch David says "If everyone is happy to stop for lunch I will arrange this with a local hotel/cafe when numbers are known. Ideally I would like to have the numbers a week before the run so I can make the correct booking."

The size of the group is growing, go to the member's forum to register your interest.

From the Clarion archives

Click image to play: Hounslow Clarion get on their trikes for a good cause in the 1960s. A whimsical period news story from Pathe. (Thanks Ian)