Local riders take on Italian mountains and coastal routes

SGCK Ayshire Riders in the Dolomites, Italy
SGCK Ayshire Riders in the Dolomites, Italy

Ayrshire cyclists are making the most of the summer, attending events from Lake Como to Windermere.

Dave Clifford of Ayr Roads has returned from a 250 mile tour of the Dolomites, in Italy. He joined a group of Ayrshire cyclists from Walkers CC, Kilmaurs and Fullarton Wheelers, Irvine on a challenging route taking a total climb of 43,000ft in six days, finishing by Lake Como.

Back home, a team time trial replaced the Ayr Roads ten mile time trial on Thursday night.

The event was held over the coastal course from Doonfoot to Pennyglen before turning and taking the Maybole High Road to finish at the Burgh boundary, Doonside.

Fastest on the night was Brian Yates, with a time of 38mins 22secs.

In windier conditions on Saturday, Ayr Roads had two members in the District 25 Mile Time Trial promoted by Cycling Time Trials Scotland.

Alex McAllister finished in 59mins 28secs and Michael Curran 59mins 44secs, both well up in the field.

Winner and gold medallist was Douglas Watson of Icarus Racing in 53mins 17secs, with Catherine Logan and Jennifer Nicol of Fullarton Wheelers taking gold and bronze respectively.

The mid-week 70 mile run took club members through Straiton, and the five mile long climb of Shalloch on Minnoch, before the descent into the Minnoch Valley. From there it went by the Nick of the Balloch and the Brandy Well and Witches Brig to North Balloch.

The Stinchar Valley was followed to Barr and the climb of The Screws took riders by Penkiln, before they rejoined the Girvan Valley and home roads.

On Sunday, club members repeated part of the mid week run to Rowantree Toll and the Davie Bell Memorial. The purpose was to celebrate Vic Possee’s 77 th birthday. An advance party had got a good fire going before the arrival of the main group, and all enjoyed an old fashioned ‘drum-up’ with soup and tea

Vic Possee paid tribute to the late Peter Blane who along with Davie Bell loved the spot. Both are fondly remembered by readers of the Highwayman Cycling books, which covered Ayrshire and Galloway.

Club Captain Bobby McGhee was congratulated for arranging the outing, before riders turned back to the Nick of the Balloch climb and the coast road home.

Next weekend Ayr Roads will head for Lake Windermere. Last year’s Scottish coast to coast run was such a success that twenty club members signed up to this year’s event. They will set off from Ayr to their destination Bowness on Windermere, a distance of 145 miles. After an overnight stay they will head home on the Sunday. Calum Hume, organiser of the event, was delighted with the response, which looks as though it could become an annual event.