Tour of Tweeddale

Alex Graham, Andy Dunbar, David McLenaghan, Phil Jackson, Scott Williamson

100 Miles

The price of being into any sport means getting up early, but as I loaded the car in order to head to Peebles for the Tour of Tweeddale a bat flew past and I thought perhaps it may have been a little too early.

After picking up Dav we made it down to the start in plenty of time and met up with the others and so were all able to start together. We were soon out of Peebles and into the rolling countryside at a good pace along the very quiet roads. A group of around 15 or 20 soon formed with ACC doing at least our fair share of working at the front.

It didn’t bode well for me when, as soon as we hit the first minor climb I was dropped. I soon found myself alone until I managed to get on the wheels of a passing group that brought me to the first feed stop where my club-mates were fortunately waiting.

The first real climb was on a section of single track road which involved avoiding the cars coming the other way and negotiating 4 or 5 cattle grids. These proved to be problematic for Dav as they caused him to puncture and he was held up for so long fixing it (as we later found out) that we had to press on without him.

Next was the section of road which had the 50 milers going in the opposite direction and there were a few cheery waves from them. Possibly part of their good mood was that they didn’t have to fight the head wind that was blowing up the glen. Of course I was dropped again but eventually was able to catch the wheel of a pair of riders and I managed to hold on until the bottom of the next climb.

The descent from that climb brought me in to Moffat, which looked like a nice town but I didn’t have time to sight see as there was still around 40 miles to go including a lengthy climb. The Devil’s Beef Tub is a gentle climb though it last around 7 miles. Other riders had the measure of it better than me and several seemed to shoot past. The descent of the Beef Tub involved avoiding a pair of stoats which were fighting by the side of the road and decided to run across my path just as I got to them.

Again I caught up with the others at the last feed stop (they must like cakes more than I do). Some pictures then we were off again to cover the last 17 miles to the finish back in Peebles where each finisher was presented with a bottle of ‘Tour of Tweed Ale’. Dav finished not long after with a valiant solo ride of 60 plus miles.

The Tour of Tweeddale is a very enjoyable and well organised event one which I look forward to doing again.


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