Tag Archives: Graeme Obree

Scottish time trial records

This information comes from deep in the bowels of the Scottish Cycling website, a resource that it full of great tidbits that are hard to find (like it’s parent site, British Cycling).

At the original time of writing this post, the current Scottish Cycling Champions information was only up to date for 2009, although some of that info – that the National men’s road champion was Evan Oliphant, Kenta Gallagher was National Cyclocross champion, or that Dave Henderson was Cross Country series champion– I covered some of these championships on this blog with lots also on veloresults.

The time trial records are interesting though, because many of them have stood for a long time. At one stage Obree held the Scottish record for the three staple distances of British time trialling- the 10, 25 and 50 miles. And George Berwick still does hold the 24 hour record, a mark that has stood since 1967. I pondered this question in a previous post.

amended to include Jason MacIntyre’s 10 record.

10 Miles 1997 Jason MacIntyre Unattached 18:49
25 Miles 1994 G. Obree P.C.A. 48:43
30 Miles 2004 M. Atkinson Team Velo Ecosse/Montpeliers 1:02:47
50 Miles 1992 G Obree Greenock RC / Castle Levan Hotels 1:43:04
100 Miles 2006 M.Atkinson Equipe Velo Ecosse/Montpeliers 3:49:45
12 Hrs 2005 J. Wilson Sandy Wallace Cycles 279.97 miles
24 Hrs 1967 G. Berwick Glasgow RC 448.70 miles

Pic of the Day: Obree World Champ 1995

Obree World Pursuit Champion 1995

An amateur from Scotland who built his own frames, trained alone and became world champion in 1993 and 1995 and broke the hour record in 1993 (51.596km) and 1994 (52.713km).

If you want to hear about this and his hour-record achievements, you can book him for speaking through Cyclevox, although he also has his own website now and may be taking bookings through his manager Charlie Milarvie.

Obree in 2000

Continuing this weekend’s Obree theme, it’s time to bring out a few links that I have been sitting on. They are to stories on an archive BBC Sport website that I came across by accident after some tweets from SMaryka relating to old doping cases (Virenque, I think it was).

8 November 2000: Obree is considering a comeback, following Boardman’s world record of 49.441km for the hour, on the UCI’s new standard traditional-style bike.

15 November 2000: a date is set for a new hour record.

To those that know the Obree story, the subtext or the following quote cannot be ignored:

Speaking soon after the UCI announced the rule-change, Obree said: “I have nothing against what the UCI are doing.
“So long as they stick to their new rules I will support them.”

As many will be aware, the UCI attempted several times to thwart his success, banning his innovative bike positions, and decreeing at the 11th hour that bikes and equipment must be available commercially.

10 December 2000: due to a virus, Obrees record bid is off.

Obree tuck 1992

In a real Obree mood this weekend so here’s some more. Further to John Galloway’s comment on the last post, here’s a picture of Obree’s tuck position in use with upturned bars before he developed his custom ‘Old Faithful’ bike that won him the hour record.

The sharper eyed amongst you migh notice that this scan of the SCU handbook 1992 was blogged at My Shaved Legs– I’m pretty sure web addresses weren’t in common use back then!

The blogger recounts his arrival in Scotland from the USA and refers to this cover as one of those “Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore” moments.

Graeme Obree tuck position

Inspired by Graeme Obree’s tweets and the emergence of a long-overdue website, I’m in the mood to blog a few more things about him.

Up to now I hadn’t found a decent picture of his revolutionary tuck position. He used it when he won the world individual pursuit championship and broke the hour record in 1993. I saw the image on Phil Jones’ blog and wanted to add it to my own collection of Obree pictures.

I’d blogged Graham Watson’s pic of the Superman position, which he developed after the position below was banned by the UCI. He won the individual pursuit and broke the hour record a second time riding Superman style in 1995. That too was banned by the officious UCI.

Read all about it, and his other struggles, in The Flying Scotsman: The Graeme Obree Story.

It’s the spirit of innovation and invention that I love about this. That’s a particularly Scottish trait, because as many people know, we invented just about everything.

Graeme Obree gets interactive

Graeme Obree has a new website and has started tweeting.

He is writing again- a new book about training, and I believe has been writing on mental health too. I’m not sure if there are two separate books in the pipeline or if the mental side of an athlete’s training will be part of a single book.

You can book him for talks- he appeared recently in Glasgow and Phil Jones aka Roadphil has met him a few times this year. Looking forward to hearing more from him in the near future.

Tour de Trossachs

October kicks off with the Tour de Trossachs mountain time trial, run by the Glasgow Ivy CC and stalwart race organiser Jeannette Hazlett. It is a true classic in the Scottish, and in fact the British racing calendar. Amazingly it has run since 1943.

The former winners read like a who’s who of Scottish Cycling greatness: Ian Steel in the 50s, Billy Billsland in the 60s, Robert Millar in 1978 and the 80s, Graeme Obree breaking the record on a fixed gear in the 90s, and and Jason McIntyre winning in 2005, 2006 and 2007, and breaking Obree’s record.

Continue reading

Graeme Obree on Islay

Scottish Cycling legend Graeme Obree has been on Islay, taking part in the Ardbeg Gourmet Ride and an dinner at the Ardbeg Distillery.

The pic above is taken by twmp on flickr (aka Brian Palmer’s The Washing Machine Post) – click the image to see more from the day.

Brian had been joyfully tweeting this week about Graeme visiting, and you can read all about it on The Washing Machine Post, including the ride and the custom (of course) steel bike Graeme was riding.

Graeme Obree at Etape Caledonia

Graeme Obree was seen at last weekend’s Etape Caledonia by @macluskie, who grabbed this great shot of him in Fullarton Wheelers kit, surrounded by pleased-looking VC Glasgow South riders.

He chatted for a while to people about how good the event was and being at Lance Armstrong’s first Twitter ride in Paisley.

Obree told Tayside & Fife newspaper The Courier:

“It’s been a fantastic day and the whole town has turned out to make the atmosphere really special.

“It’s not like a real race because the cyclists can work together on the closed roads and provide each other with the support they need.”

Full article here, with additional photos from rider @b_cran

Audience with Graeme Obree Monday 24th May

Glasgow Wheelers are delighted to host a talk with Scottish time trial and track legend Graeme Obree next Monday (24th May 2010).”

It’s great to see Greame Obree out and about and being involved in cycling in general. He aborted an attempt on the hour record last year after succumbing to depression when he discovered his latest bike design and position didn’t work on the track.


image from Glasgow Wheelers website. click link below for more details.

Graeme, a former Wheeler himself in the early 90s, will be talking about a number of areas: his past competitive experiences; future plans and will be happy to answer any questions from the audience. Any of you who attended his talk last year at the Tramway Theatre in Pollokshields will recognise that he is an outstanding, engaging speaker able to hold a crowd in the palm of his hand without any sign of speech notes. He was aided last time by the prop of his latest bike, replete with a 60 tooth chainring (it may have been bigger actually). ”

Proceedings will kick off shortly after 7pm. Refreshments will be on offer afterwards. The Club would like to offer a warm welcome to the general public to attend in addition to Club members. Tickets available at the door for £5 – outstanding value to hear first hand the stories of an amazing man and amazing athlete – just don’t let him near your washing machine!!!

Details at www.glasgowwheelers.com