Tag Archives: Stirling

cycling and integrated active travel with train journeys in Scotland

Vlog 001: Active Travel

In my first ever video blog, I do a bit of ‘active travel’, first cycling to work, then taking my bike on the train to Edinburgh for the afternoon. A look at integrated transport in Scotland.

It was interesting to chat with Stirling Cycle Hub and I was grateful that Suzanne came on video at a moment’s notice. They have been doing good work at Stirling Train Station for several years now. I hope to get back there soon to do more audio or video content.

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image copyright Andy Gerrie

Scottish cycling Podcast 8: Live Broadcasting and Crit UnderThe Castle

In this episode I gave my thoughts about live broadcasting at Crit under the Campus, a closed road circuit race held at Stirling Town Centre. I did live Twitter and Periscope broadcasts at the race and shared my tips about how best to use technology to live broadcast your event.

I hadn’t recorded for a while and wanted to get this out – just my monologue thoughts. I have one longer interview to come soon.

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Scottish Cycling Podcast 7 Crit On The Campus, Jenny Holl, Joe Nally

In this episode I was at Crit on the Campus, a closed road circuit race held at Stirling University. I spoke to two junior riders, both on the British Cycling Junior Academy. They were Jenny Holl and Joe Nally. I also spoke to Joe’s sponsor, coach and mentor Craig Hardie of Hardie Bikes after the race.

Listen on itunes , in your podcast app of choice, on soundcloud or using the player below.

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Scottish cycling Podcast 4: How to organise a big cycling event

In this show I talk to Norrie Petrie, chairman of Stirling Bike Club about organising a big event. The Crit under the Castle race has been held in Stirling in 2014 and 2015 and has incorporated the Scottish Cycling criterium championships. This event has enjoyed a full programme of racing with closed roads in a town centre and I wanted to ask Norrie about how this was achieved to help other clubs with ideas and practical advice about how to improve their own events.

Crit2 (56)

Listen on itunes
Listen on Soundcloud below

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Grass track cycling keeps you young

Grass track season starts in May, which reminded me of Hugh Johnstone, who took part in the retro exhibition race, a few days shy of his 80th birthday, at the Scottish circuit  championships held in Stirling last August.

Hugh Johnstone

His frame was built in the 1953 by George Elrick, a frame builder who was based in Lower Bridge Street in Stirling up until the 70s –  a steel single speed frame with extra tyre clearance and a higher bottom bracket. Continue reading

Central Scotland Wheelers Cowie Road Race, 1986

Actor Greg Drysdale edited this old footage for the Stirling Cycle Hub short film competition a few months ago and I recognised some of my local roads on it.

The Central Scotland Wheelers (now City of Stirling Wheelers and still running a time trial on the Cambusbarron course) ran a race on the Cowie loope.

The loop is still used for Falkirk BC’s Billy Warnock memorial, which is one of the first races I entered.

Central Scotland Wheelers Cowie Road Race 1986 from Greg Drysdale (Actor) on Vimeo.

The course is largely flat but includes one steep little brae before the town and another incline as you come into the centre of town. If those are not enough to split the field up, an attack through the narrow twisty back roads between Cowie and the Bellsdyke Road might get away. I like the finish in Cowie, but you could never have that now with all the road furniture and speed bumps. Today’s finish on the main road is always a bit sketchy for me, with the bunch fanning out and cars invariably coming in teh other direction.

“Yes, really, 1986. I filmed it using our new (at the time) Sony CCD V8 AF E Video Camera.” explains Greg.

“I think it’s interesting not only because it’s a nostalgic record of a bike race that happened nearly 30 years ago… but also reveals some vintage cars (and vintage people!) and may be of some interest to the people of Cowie to see their old town and how it’s changed .”

Greg’s cousin Raymond was in one race (he is wearing black and yellow and can be seen on the right at the finish line.)

Please post up a comment if you were involved in the race or recognise anyone in it.

Crit on the Campus 2014: Youth race reports

The following report may used by any news outlets provided Stirling Bike Club / Owen Philipson are credited.

Stirling Bike Club’s inaugural Crit on the Campus was held today (Sunday 23rd March) at the chilly but sunny setting of Stirling University. Organiser Andrew Wilson had negotiated a traffic-free closed circuit on Scotland’s most beautiful campus. The challenging circuit was to reward technically skilled riders with long speed bumps, a few small ramps and some swooping bends included.

Youth D/E
The action-packed day kicked off at 8:30 with under-10 and under-8 boys and girls competing together in the Youth D/E category for 15 minutes +1 lap. Owen Moran of North Argyll CC beat 18 other boys to win the Youth D category by 4 seconds followed by Archie Ellen of Edinburgh RC in 2nd and Robin Purves of Stirling BC closely behind in 3rd.

The Glasgow Riderz dominated the 7 girls in the Youth D category, with Imani Pereira-Jones, Skye Donnelly and Kasha Butz taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd places.

Jacob Moore win the Youth E boys with the riders in the same age category grouping themselves together – Jake Speed of Tay Titans only 2 seconds behind him and Andrew Brewer of Glasgow Riderz a few seconds further back in 3rd.

Lastly, of the three Youth E girls competing in the race, Isla McCutcheon of Johnstone Jets beat Kristin Peil of Edinburgh RC and Katie Sandilands, Ross-shire CC.

Youth C
Next up was the Youth C category for riders under 12. At the front of the race, the win came down to a sprint for the line, with Hamish McLaren of Johnstone Jets just pipping Callum Reid of Stirling BC in a photo finish. Aaron King was 2 seconds back in 3rd.

Crit on the Campus 2014

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Scottish Climbs: Logie Kirk, Stirling

This climb, local to me, is a short steep narrow road that takes you from the church at the bottom to the Ochil Hills. The church sits in the Forth Valley, in the lea of the Abbey Craig hill, site of the Wallace Monument. Otherwise, the base of this climb is surrounded by the flat farmland of the Forth Valley, with the Ochils range rearing up along the ‘hillfoots’ villages of Menstrie, Alva and Tillicoutry.

The Logie church that sits at the bottom is in the shadow of the Witches Craig, a set of cliffs that were said to be the site of pagan rituals.

Logie Church  Stirling

Starting from the car park, the first section, past the cemetery, seems easy in comparison to the rest, but in fact the bumpy, gravelly road makes it hard to get a decent head of steam up.


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Kyle Petrie – bursting with enthusiasm

Kyle Petrie, a 16 year old 1st year junior this season gives me his thoughts on cycling. One thing that depresses and delights me in equal measure is how fast the young’uns come up and overtake the middle aged triers like me. It’s enjoyable to be in and around their success and enthusiasm for the sport, keeps you young I say.

Out on the club run this weekend, Kyle a mechanical with his freehub, which wasn’t engaging, meaning he had to ride fixed for a while. Then he spotted a crack in his frame, which luckily turned out to be just a defect in the paint/lacquer. But it made me think- if I struggle with the price of bikes and kit at times, what must it like for a kid in school?

So in the background to this interview is a bit of a pitch for sponsorship– if any generous benefactors out there like the cut of young Kyle’s jib, get in touch. He is a great kid to have around our club but we also look forward to the day he moves up a level and takes the next step towards his cycling dreams.

How long have you been cycling?
I’ve been cycling for almost a year and a half now and I’ve been racing since April last year when I was a youth doing crits left right and centre which I loved and really took a firm grasp on to my passion for cycling. From there things have just gone completely turbo rocket paced and I’m loving every minute of it!
I can confirm this- Kyle was ripping my legs off on last week’s chaingang

Kyle in a 2-up TT with vet Graeme Hay, image by Stuart Easton
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Return of the Flying Scotsman

Most of you should have heard of Graeme Obree’s upcoming attempt on the World human-powered vehicle land-speed record. If you haven’t, watch this video. And if you have, also watch this video, because Graeme is brilliant.

[edit 2015: Humans Invent seems to have vanished but the video is still available on youtube.]

It’s like time trialling but without the UCI regulations on bike dimensions. Without restrictions, the type of bike that you tend towards is a recumbent with full aerodynamic faring, an ideal outlet for Obree’s design innovation and creativity. Speeds of up to 80mph can be reached and if conditions are right he hopes to hit 100mph.

If you’ve got time for a more in-depth listen, check out this audio from Jack Thurston of The Bike Show, during Graeme’s visit to Look Mum No Hands cafe in London. Graeme goes into detail about the land speed record as well as topics like motivation, training, nutrition and more.

And you can see Graeme speak in person at Stirling University this Wednesday, 28th March at the Pathfoot Building. It’s free, followed by a screening of Chasing Legends at the Macrobert cinema.