Grampian Cycling News 2006

Deeside Way Easier to Follow

Additional waymarkers have been placed at most junctions along the Deeside Way with a few extra for confidence also being placed on the route. The exception is near Crathes, where waymarker posts have been placed on order and should be installed early 2007.

Operation Nightlight - Moray Road Safety Initiative

The successful road safety initiative Operation Nightlight will run again in Moray this year from Wednesday 15 November till Friday 15 December, 2006.
This initiative is intended to encourage pedestrians and cyclists to take care in poor visibility and make themselves more visible. It launches with a display at The St Giles Centre, Elgin between 10 am and 3pm on Thursday 2 November, where staff from the Grampian Police Road Safety Unit will be available with practical advice on how to get about more safely as the dark nights come upon us.
Local cycle outlets Halfords, Elgin, Moray Cycles, Elgin, and W.M. Stuart & Son, Forres are participating in the initiative and will offer discounts on cycle lights from 15 November until 15 December inclusive.
During the operation, police officers, traffic and community wardens will be on the lookout for pedestrians and cyclists who are not adequately protected and will educate them accordingly.
Cyclists found to be travelling without due care and attention, without lights, or disobeying traffic signs and directions may be stopped and warned by Police Officers. Any cyclist who continues to ignore the law may face prosecution.
For further information regarding Operation Nightlight please contact Road Safety Officer Lucy Cramb on 01224 307126, or Sergeant Colin Taylor on 0845 6005700.

Forests Closed by Storms

Recent storms have caused extensive damage to many Forestry Commission Scotland woodlands in Aberdeenshire resulting in closures at Banchory Woods, all trails at Shooting Greens, the yellow, blue, red routes at Scolty and Fetteresso Forest. Foresters have been clearing public roads, car parks and popular trails for the public, but it is likely that it will be several weeks before the woods are open again.
Kirkhill, Scolty (route to summit only), Pitfichie and Gartly Moor are still open.

Hit and Run Driver Sought

Grampian Police appeal for witnesses after a young cyclist was injured crossing Aberdeen's Leslie Road near to the roundabout junction with Great Northern Road. The blue Subaru Imprezza with tinted windows, blue neon underside lighting and various stickers on its bodywork drove off without stopping down St Machar Drive towards Seaton. The cyclist was taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary for treatment. The incident happened on Monday 23rd at around 8.45pm.
If you can help then contact Grampian Police on 0845 600 5 700.

Cycling Safety Initiative in Peterhead

Buchan Community Safety Committee in conjunction with local Community Wardens and Grampian Police Road Safety Unit are promoting safe cycling at this week's (7th Oct) farmers market in Peterhead.
At a cycle safety stall road safety advisors will check bicycles to see that they are safe and in good condition for being on the road and there will be cycling leaflets for youngsters available.
Duncan's Cycles of Peterhead has also contributed to the day and cycle safety goods such as high visibility vests, cycle helmets, reflectors and cycle lights will be available to buy.

Wellington Bridge to Re-Open

The landmark Wellington Bridge which links the Aberdeen districts of Torry and Ferryhill across the Dee is to be reopened to cyclists and pedestrians.
The A-listed bridge opened in 1831, was closed to road traffic in 1984 and then to all traffic four years ago; though the suggested 4 phase plan should ensure its structural integrity for the next 100 years and allow it once again to be used for its original purpose.
Phase one involves replacing the three remaining saddle chains at the tower heads and is expected to be completed by next year.
Phase two of the repair scheme would see the bridge repainted and the timber deck renewed.
Phase three involves cleaning and repointing the masonry towers.
Phase four would see the bridge illuminated with architectural lighting.



Bronze Medal Heads to Grampian

Ian Humphreys, a member of Aberdeen based Deeside Thistle Cycling Club, overhauled the earlier advantage of Bart Nel of South Africa with one lap to go in the Mens Pursuit (50-54) at the recent World Masters Track Championship in Manchester to finish in a time of 2.27.980 minutes. This time was good enough to earn Ian a Bronze Medal.
The Championships are the official Championships for riders over 30 years of age and riders are grouped in 5 year age categories with each age competing over 4 individual disciplines (time trial, sprint, pursuit and points race) with the Men also competing in the Team Sprint. The week is packed with over 50 world Championship events in the 6 days of racing at the Velodrome in Manchester.
Find out more about Aberdeen's Deeside Thistle Cycling Club.

Alford Bike Ride

Nearly 300 cyclists took part in this years Karen Teale Memorial Bike Run with the organisers hoping to raise £11,000. Proceeds from this year's event will be divided between the Marie Curie Cancer Care nursing service across the North-east, Alford junior golf section and the Tullynessle and Forbes Public Hall funds.
Riders had the choice of either the 27-mile course through Donside, taking in Kildrummy, Glenkindie and Towie, or an 11-mile circuit via Muir of Fowlis and Tough.
At Haughton Park, younger children had the chance to join in the fun with their own half-hour sponsored ride beside the River Don.

Vets National Champion

Graham McGarrity, a member of Aberdeen based C21 Mutisport-EBC-Specialized cycling club surrendered his Scottish Veterans' road race title to club mate Stuart McGregor at the Scottish Vet Road Race championships. Stuart broke away on the closing stages to come home five seconds clear of Graham, who pipped Davie Gibson of the Fife based GS Modena club for the runners up spot.
The race, promoted by the Aberdeen and District Cycling Association (ADCA), was headquartered in Alford and took in two circuits around Montgarrie, Keig, Auchleven, Kennethmont, Rhynie and Bridge of Alford.

Ladies National Champion

Ginny Pollard, a member of Aberdeen based Deeside Thistle Cycling Club, won the Scottish Women's National 100 mile Time Trial championship. Ginny covered the 100 miles in only 4 hours 48 minutes and 12 seconds. The event was promoted by the North of Scotland Cycling Association around Invergordon.

Cycling Promoted in Dyce

Dyce Transport Management Organisation - an organisation comprising a number of companies in the Dyce area with the aim of helping to address traffic congestion and other transport problems in Dyce - has unveiled a series of events to promote cycling as alternative method of commuting.
The events to be held during August include:
- Cycle Maintenance
- Confident Cycling
- Setting up a Bicycle Users Group
- The Cycle Friendly Employers Award

Kirkhill Bikers on the Telly

Kirkhill forest in Aberdeen hosted the mountain bike stage of the Visit Scotland Adventure Triathlon on the 8th July. The event consisted of a 1500m swim in Stonehaven harbour, two laps of a 10km mountain bike circuit at the FC's Kirkhill forest and a 10km run at Balmedie beach.
Kirkhill was the perfect location for this type of event being such an important wood for bikers, and the new "fun park" launched 18 months ago provided a perfect area for filming of the competitors. Kirkhill is also so close to Aberdeen, so the film-makers could get great pictures of the athletes with Aberdeen and the surrounding countryside in the background.
The event was filmed for an Adventure Tri TV series for Channel 5 to be broadcast in November.

Over a 100 in Moray Ride

Over a hundred cyclists took part in the annual Moray Great Bike Ride based in Elgin. This popular charity event, now in its seventh year, raises money for Grampian Society for the Blind. So far, it has raised in excess of £35,000.
Moray MP Angus Robertson started the event from Cooper Park on what turned out to be a perfect day for cycling.
The riders had a choice of routes - either 6 miles or 20 miles. The shorter route being more family friendly.

Grampian Rider on International Podium

Jack Richards, a member of Aberdeen based Deeside Thistle Cycle Club, raced as a guest rider for the Scotland XC team in Cappadochia, Turkey where he impressed everyone with a fine 3rd place - his first international podium position

Safer Cycling Promoted in Aberdeenshire

In an innovative and forwarding thinking move, Aberdeenshire Council has teamed up with Cycling Scotland to offer free cycle training to adults as part of Bike Week, which runs from June 17-25.
The free sessions will allow participants to brush up on their cycling skills, as well as their safety on the bike, and the events will cater for cyclists of all abilities.
The training sessions are due to take place on Saturday, June 24, at Mackie Academy, Slug Road, Stonehaven, and Gordon House, Blackhall Road, Inverurie.
There are to be two sessions; the first is 9.30am till 12.30pm and the other is at 1.30pm and running till 4.30pm.

Biking Skills Day

The Forestry Commission are hosting a Biking Skills Day at Kirkhill Forest on Sunday 25th June. They'll have a biking skills area set up to practice your technique over a range of obstacles. Then they'll set you off on rides down their trail, guided by expert teaching staff. Sessions will run every 20 minutes, participants will be accepted on a first come first served basis. There will also be information on biking, equipment, bike maintenance and more.
Suitable for children aged 10 and over and adults. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Get Fit in Inverurie

The Garioch Sports Centre in Inverurie has set up a short course to help budding entrants get fit for what is probably Scotland's largest mass participation cycling event - The Great Inverurie Bike Ride. Over a period of 6 weeks the cycling class will gradually build stamina for those wanting to tackle the sponsored event. More details on the course available from The Garioch Sports Centre on 01467 626141.

£millions for cycling?

Nestrans (North East of Scotland Transport Partnership) are proposing to bid for £11 million, spread over a few years, to be used to improve cycle routes and bus lanes in Aberdeen city and shire.
Proposals include;
- a cycle link between Dyce and Bridge of Don,
- an estuary bridge between Banff and Macduff to promote cycling and walking,
- development of various cycle routes along key corridors into Aberdeen,
- and cycle links between Inverurie, Kintore and Blackburn.



School Gets 20 New Bikes

Kaimhill Primary School on the south-western edge of Aberdeen is to get 20 new bikes for cycling proficiency lessons. Children at the school will be able to enjoy learning how to ride safely thanks to the generosity of local Garthdee Liberal Democrat councillor Scott Cassie. Mr Cassie donated £2,200 from his ward budget to supply bikes and cycle helmets.

Deeside Way Complete

The last section of the Deeside Way between Drumoak and Crathes is now finished. This allows virtually traffic free cycling between Aberdeen and Banchory. The only difficult stretch is at the Crathes Estate quarry. This requires careful negotiation due to continuing quarry operations. Crathes, Drumoak & Durris Community Council have been instrumental in getting the way completed, and are monitoring the situation with regard to cyclist (and walker's) safety. Read more about the Deeside Way

New Inverurie Cycle Path

Aberdeenshire Council have completed a new shared cycle and pedestrian path, complete with street lighting, that links to the existing Burghmuir Drive path. The path runs along the front of the Garioch Sports Centre.

Weather Forces Cancellation

The traditional start to the road racing season in Grampian - The Dick Longdragon Memorial Road Race, promoted by Deeside Thistle - was cancelled due to snow and ice. Safety is always paramount, and with in excess of 40 riders signed up for the race, Saturday's early morning snow was enough to force the cancellation.

Moray Monster Trails Launch

April 8th has been announced as the launch date for 30km of single-track mountain bike routes, based round Fochabers. Moray Monster Trails, as the trail project is called, has been designed to work as three independent sites that can, because they link to each other, be joined up in any way you want. Forestry Commission Scotland and Moray Mountain Bike Club have been working together since 2001 to develop the trails.

Great Inverurie Bike Ride 2006

This year's Great Inverurie Bike Ride will be held on Sunday 2nd July. Last year over a thousand riders helped raise a staggering £39,608 for local charities

Kirkhill Forest Improvements

Development of a cross country bike trail could be started this summer. The original schedule for development would have had the trail complete by now, however this was delayed while Forestry Commission Scotland conducted a nationwide assessment of all biking centres to determine whether there is a need for so much development.
The conclusion? Full steam ahead at Kirkhill.

Dates set for 3rd Grampian Rally

The Rally, organised by the Grampian CTC, will again be held at Maryculter - about 7 miles from Aberdeen between 26th and 31st May 2006. There will be 20, 40, and 60 mile cycle rides on Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Route sheets will be provided and leaders will accompany the rides. Social events are planned for each evening and a ceilidh supper is planned for the Tuesday evening.