A new venue for the Scottish cyclocross this week with a trip to Balloch, on the banks of Loch Lomond - organised by those stalwarts of the Scottish scene, Glasgow United CC, and based in and around the Loch Lomond Shores visitor attraction.
The course was largely nu-skool, with a definite old skool flavour.
If you like Auchentoshan, then you'd have loved this one. An engaging mix of surfaces, with a wee bit of fast singletrack thrown in.
After last week's start at the back strategy paid off in exactly the way you'd expect, I opted for a position in mid-pack which seemed to work a wee bit better. As is pointed out in #SVENNESS 2.3 the sprint in a 'cross race is at the start and not the finish, so it was elbows out and off across the field.
One of the joys of SCX these days is that there's racing for everyone through the field - it might not be a battle for the podium, but there's always someone ahead to be chasing and someone behind to try to keep ahead of. My race legs are still a long way off (not sure I've ever had them to be honest), but relatively happy with 33rd (and third) - happier still to be racing cross again after a three season lay off...
Of the other VCMers out today, I only spotted Davie briefly as he came backwards through the bunch following a first lap puncture and then tub roll, after a brief go on the spare bike he again punctured and it was to be a DNF. In the Women's race, Teri Wishart finished in 6th whilst elsewhere in the Vets, Simon Muir came home in 12th. In the Senior race, Ian Dunlop had a strong result and hit the top ten for the first time.
Two races to look forward to this week, Hallocross on Thursday and KnoCXburn Loch on Sunday in the next round of the Ridley Scottish Cyclocross Series.
Photo by Joolze Dymond - check out the rest of her photos from today here - joolzedymond.com