Iain Macleod (Kelpie Racing) and Vicky Smith (Aerocoach) took on the demanding course laid on by Hawick Cycling Club for the 2021 Scottish Cycling National Olympic Time Trial, and came away victorious.
For Macleod, it was one step higher than last week at Forfar for the Team Championship as he came back to the timekeeper in 1:16:53, the only rider inside 77 minutes for the testing course out of Hawick and on to the English border.
Vicky Smith once again showed her quality by claiming yet another Olympic TT title, this time on a different course from previous years, coming home in 1:31:46.
A massive thanks must be extended to Hawick CC for organising and delivering the event, as well as to all the volunteers that helped as racing in Scotland still recovers from the hiatus caused by the pandemic.
The course was a tough leg breaker, leaving Hawick and heading towards the long drags up to Bonchester Bridge, and then on up to Carter Bar and almost across the border before making the left hand turn and the long run back down the fast, and often sweeping, curves to Jedburgh.
Left at Jedburgh and up the steep climb of the Dunion before the fast, twisty and technical descent back to the Denholm Road. Fast through Denholm and then the rock and rolling roads of the valley before the finish just outside Hawick.
In the women’s race it was between the host club’s Michelle Short, Berwick Wheelers’ Michelle Highfield and the defending champion Vicky Smith. Short was looking smooth and composed on the long drag towards Bonchester Bridge and on over the top. In comparison, Smith was turning a large gear and as soft often, it looks slow because of the pedal revs but looks can be deceiving as she shot past our camera position.
Through to the finish and Short posted a time of 1:34:27 which would win her the Silver medal but the Gold belonged to Smith in a time of 1:31:46, Highfield claiming Bronze with 1:58:18.
Feeling tired after racing the previous day, the Junior Men’s medal went to Daniel Kain (Spokes RT) in 1:33:28.
A host of riders came close to the 1:21:00 mark but the first rider to go below 80 minutes was Lewis Martin (Studio Velo) in a time of 1:18:27 and this would ultimately be good enough for 4th position.
John Alexander of University of Aberdeen was in contention until his wheel exploded on the bumpy downhill off the Dunion. Aberdeen Uni RCC were in with a good chance for the team prize until that happened.
However, his teammate Lee Rosie crossed the line a few minutes later in 1:17:58 and claimed the Silver medal. Finishing strongly was Joe Reilly, currently unattached, in a time of 1:18:04, good enough for Bronze on this occasion.
Iain Macleod was already home and the Gold medal was decided, a worthy champion!
“There was loads of people on the rise to Carter Bar, all taking photos, but for me it was just head down and go as hard as possible. It was a testing course but great to take the win for Kelpie Racing”
Words and Images: The Press Room