The 2007 Ingliston Criterium Series sponsored by Cycling Scotland kicked off last Thursday, the 12th April, at the Royal Highland Showground just west of Edinburgh. Now in its 9th season and this year expanded to 6 events, the series is expected to attract many of Scotland's top elite, women and junior riders.
Compared to the wide open 210 metre pastures of Grenoble, at 166 metres, the Gent track does look tiny; the bankings aren't really steep enough and you can't ride the top 400 mm of the track, because the crash barriers overlap the boards by that much.
One of the nice things about going to the Tour of Britain start in Holyrood Park was catching up with old friends and making some new ones, like Madison-Genesis DS and former Grand Tour stalwart – 16 ridden - and Giro stage winner, Joan Horrach. Joan is an amigo of team manager/DS, former British Elite road and ‘cross champion and Paris-Roubaix podium finisher, Roger Hammond; and when the Englishman needs extra help – like at the Tour of Britain – he gives Joan a ring and the Mallorquín jumps on a plane in his native Illes Balears and heads for sunny England.