Tag Archives: time trials

Packing tape aero helmet

I did a post on David Millar’s aero helmet that he sported on the Champs Elysees in this year’s tour. Here is my own, somewhat lower tech prototype.

Part inspired by the delightfully eccentric Fun Run Robbie’s packing tape disc wheel, and part by another friend who mentioned naively turning up to the Tour of the Meldons without a scrap of aero kit on him. There, guys had taped up the holes in their helmets – “Not such a daft idea after all?” I thought.

Packing tape aero helmet @funrunrobbie
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Carlos Riise, SVTTA 50

Carlos Riise, who if you don’t know comes from Shetland and is a TT specialist, finished the SVTTA 50 mile TT in 2:04:10 on Sunday.

The course takes in some of the ‘Kippen flats’ or Cambusbarron 10 course, before turning left up to Blairdrummond and left again along rolling roads towards Thornhill.

20110320_6006 Carlos in ’10’ action earlier this year

2:04:10 is a pretty good time but quite a bit slower than you might expect for Mr Riise, who is very handy indeed in a TT. However it is put firmly in perspective with the knowledge that he rode the whole 50 without a saddle or seatpost, having forgotten to pack it for the flight down to Stirling.
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Scottish 10m TT championships

I had meant to preview this event but didn’t get time. Please give me the benefit of the doubt for the next paragraph…

What I was going to say was ‘who can top reigning champion Arthur Doyle?’. After seeing him clean up in the early season TTs with some blistering times, he then turned his attention to some road races, being active in the Sam Robinson and the Scottish Road Race champs. He would have been my tip for the win, but then that was a bit like saying Barcelona were favourites for the European Cup last night.

Arthur Doyle in action earlier this year
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David Millar Delhi 2010 TT gold

Cracking image of David Millar in Scotland colours, riding to time trial gold at Delhi 2010. He may be something of an adopted Scot but he certainly flies the flag for us and seems proud do do so. How many other top pros do you see turning out for the Commonwealth Games?

The image is © – Phil Walter/Getty Images AsiaPac. This shouldn’t be reproduced without proper licensing but I try to skirt around it by doing a screenshot of the site and linking back so you can click through to view the full size for yourself.

The original was found on Zimbio– there are several more of him there, both on the podium and out on the course., 128 David Millar images on Zimbio last time I checked. That should be more than enough for any professional media outlet or publisher looking for quality shots of him.

There hasn’t been much news about Millar so far this season- last year he was prominent on GC in Paris-Nice for several days, but this year he has pulled out ill. I read that he was targeting certain classics, particularly the Tour of Flanders, after last year’s strong showing.

Jason McIntyre and Graeme Obree 2007

Jason McIntyre in 2007 riding an 18:49 to win a midweek 10 on the West Ferry course. I mistakenly thought this was the Scottish Championships, but David Martin aka threepockets advised me on twitter that the champs were on the A77 that year. He won that too, and beat a record held by Graeme Obree.


For some reason I feel a bit of a fraud posting pics and info about Jason- his untimely death was relatively recent and he is sorely missed by many in Scottish Cycling. It still feels a bit close to the bone and I don’t want to be jumping on the bandwagon. As I’m new to the sport, I never watched him race but I still enjoy learning more about such a class rider.


Graeme Obree in the colours of his local club, Fullarton Wheelers, riding a typically massive gear.

thanks to Ian Johnston on flickr for permission to use the pictures. Click on the images to see his other photography.

Exclusive: TdF 2017 Edinburgh prologue course!

I’m ignoring my own advice about counting your chickens with regards to a Scottish Grand Depart for the Tour de France. I much prefer to assume they have already hatched and proceed directly to speculating on a prologue route.

Dave Hamill kindly commented with an excellent suggestion that takes as many attractions and historic monuments as it’s possible to do in 5 miles.

Dave’s route starts in the Grassmarket, surrounded by historic buildings and closes, where the Nocturne Series has hosted an elite crit for the past three years. Surrounded by pubs and hotels, this is an ideal starting point for media and hospitality, although conditions might be a bit tight.

Cam Meyer Nocturne 2010

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Obree’s 2009 hour record bike

I have had the photo below, (by Andy McAndlish, originally published in an article on bikeradar) on my desktop for a while and the moment had been lost to blog it. Sometimes you have to be quick, which is why I try to stay away from race news and results.

But I have started listening to old episodes of the Velocast again (still available on podomatic), and in episode 10 they discussed this bike, albeit with aero bars.

(Photo: Andy McAndlish)

There’s another great shot of Obree riding the bike if you click through to bikeradar, showing his outstanding aptitude for innovating to find an extremely aerodynamic position. He used his trademark custom parts to get an aerodynamic position, but within the “new” UCI rules, which aim to keep bikes within the style of Eddy Merckx’s 1972 record.

Velocasters Scott and John covered Obree’s attempt on the hour record, which at 43 years old would have been a great challenge, but alas the machine did not work on the velodrome bankings as expected, which hit Graeme hard. He was advised to abadnon the hour attempt.

The bike remains though (and I wonder where it is now). It has a Selle Italia Flite saddle with a purple fluffy cover reminiscent of some sort of muppet. The Reynolds 653 steel frame catches the eye, with it’s 1-and-1/8 inch tubing that is very thin-looking by today’s standards. Added to this are aluminium time trial handlebars that were hand-whittled by Obree for for three months! And some custom pedals, again hand-whittled! The sort of obsessive attention to detail that made Graeme such an amazing time trialler.

More shots of the bike

Bikeradar interview with more great pics

The real Scottish 10 mile record!

Steven McGinty pointed out, on my Scottish Time Trial records post, that Scottish Cycling’s published information is out of date. Now I am sure they are a busy organisation but it’s a bit disappointing that the 10 record, which I mistakenly posted as Graeme Obree’s, in a time of 19:29 in 1997, is in fact held by the late great Jason McIntyre. Thanks to Steven for pointing this out, but I had a hunch the information wasn’t the freshest, and thought a blog post might unearth some more info.

Above is Jason in the 2006 Tour de Trossachs, which he won in National 25 mile TT champion’s jersey. Picture: Jamie Forbes / Glasgow Ivy CC

Jason MacIntyre beat Graeme Obree’s 10 mile record in 2007 recording 18:49 on the West Ferry course, on the A8 at Langbank, in a Glasgow Wheelers open event. This ride was covered on Jason’s personal website, which has been kept online for posterity.

July the 11th was the day i was fortunate enough to break Graeme Obrees Scottish 10mls TT record. West Ferry, Glasgow was the course and with luck the weather changed for the good as i was about to ride. An average of 31.7 mph was what i needed to get on the record. By the time i reached the turn i was just of the pace, but with a following wind the home stretch brought speeds of up to 42 mph. This was enough to get up to and then over the record average, finishing with an average of just over 32 mph & a time of 18:47. A big thank you to all my friends, family & sponsors without whom this would not have been possible.

– update 19/10: Scottish Cycling let me know that they are in the process of checking and updating their ‘records records’ and these will be shown more prominently on the website at some point. Good work!