Friday, May 27, 2022
HomeDiariesThe Girvan 2007 - Day 2, Stage 3

The Girvan 2007 – Day 2, Stage 3


Sunday on The Girvan 2007 started at 12.01am in the Roxy, Girvan’s answer to Stringfellows. We drank cocktails, there was Bobby Darrin on the sound system, and the talk with the Prada-clad lovelies was of moving to Saint Tropez for the Spring.The scent of Chanel filled the air.

Na – you know what it was really like; but we only had three beers, so there are no war stories.

Best Scot on GC is Gary Hand in 17th at 0.50; best of our guys is Phil Brown at 10.46 on the sheet, but that’s not right, he was in the main group on stage one and only dropped a handful of seconds in the criterium.

Stuart McGregor is 63nd at 17.27 and Owen Jeffries 69th at 21.10; it could be worse – Edge RT have gone completely. Paul broke a chain, Jason crashed, Steve Wright was DNF on stage one and Gary Robson called it a day in the criterium.

The Girvan 2007
Gary Robson calls it a day at the crit.

Scotland’s hopes of a Girvan win, 20 years after Andy Ferry have gone.

It was a deceptively hard day yesterday: 30% of the field doesn’t wing out the back for nothing. The criterium wasn’t as much of a Stalingrad as usual, maybe it was the thought of 108 miles today. The stage starts in Newton Stewart today so we have a 45 minute drive down from Girvan: never a good prospect with a tummy with an “Ayrshire Fry” inside it.

Newton Stewart, and a chat with Phil Griffiths. A blood transfusion truck appears; “Malcolm! Malcolm! It’s here! It’s arrived!” Big Phil never changes.

The Girvan 2007
Ross Muir making his way back to the bunch after puncturing.

A big early break went, Rapha missed it and had to work like madmen to get it back. The first climb is at Creetown and we’ve got a group of six up the road, including Malcolm and McCaulay but there are a dozen guys out of the back, ten dropped and two with punctures, a couple get back on the descent.

James Stewart (KFS) runs out of road on the gravel – it’s an Evel Knievel job but he’s OK. The break has 40 seconds at bonnie Gatehouse of Fleet.

On the climb out of Castle Douglas, no. 23, Matt Talbot (Rapha) stops for a comfort break, as he rides back up to the group we can’t help but notice he’s wearing trainers – bad day to forget your shoes.

On the Bengray climb, Newton moves up with other groups to make it 18 at the front. We’ve got Newton, McCauley, Sharman and Elliot up there, plus Wilkinson, who has been third and second on the last two stages.

It looks like it’s all over and we’re only just over half distance.

Dalry, 64 miles and it’s 2-50, 76 it’s 4-12 – yeah, it’s all over.

Checchi has dropped off the front group and slid right through the race to the comfort of the team car. Teammate, Talbot is happy too: he stops and swaps shoes with the Italian.

The Girvan 2007
Matt Talbot promises his DS that he’ll never, ever forget his shoes again, and please can he borrow now-retired team-mate Giancarlo’s?

There’s not much to say, the bunch ambles and the gap doesn’t grow that much indicating that the break isn’t driving either. The big loser is Dean Downing who is trapped in the pedestrian peloton; at least it’s sunny so he can improve his tan.

Dailly, inside 10 to go, the bunch is at club run pace now, surely they won’t sprint at the end of this? At 19 miles McCauley, Newton and Wilkinson go clear. The laughing group does sprint at the end, and then I have to go like hell to suss-out what happened at the front – we were out of Race Radio range behind the peloton.

Ian Wilkinson won the stage from McCauley and Newton. The three of them sprinted it out, Wilkinson lead it out slowly, jumped first and held-on.

Wilkinson has taken the jersey too; Phil Griffiths reckons that Newton blew it by working in the break with McCauley and Newton, he should have sat on – Phil would know.

There are 67 miles tomorrow, can Newton find those 3 seconds?

Back to the digs, batter out the copy, and then maybe there’ll be time to schmooze at the Roxy?

Ed Hood
Ed Hood
Ed's been involved in cycling for over 47 years. In that time he's been a successful time triallist, a team manager, and a sponsor of several teams and clubs. He's also a respected and successful coach and during the winter months can often be found working in the cabins at the Six Days for some of the world's top riders. Ed remains a massive fan of the sport and couples his extensive contacts with an inexhaustable enthusiasm for the minutiae and the history of our sport.

Related Articles

Martin Coll – Part 1: Remembering ‘The Girvan’ and the Peace Race

The Girvan Three Day; a Scottish Easter racing institution but now late lamented – sunshine, ice, snow and everything else in between but whatever the weather it was never a race for the faint-hearted. Some of the biggest names in British bike racing have won over that tough South West Scotland parcours. Let’s go back to 1986; aforementioned Paul Curran is after his third win in the event – but Scotland’s Martin Coll has other ideas... We recently caught up with Martin at his home in Arizona to ‘talk a little Girvan’ and - the Peace Race.

The Girvan 2007 – Day 3: Stage 4

Ailsa Craig is lost in the low cloud, visibility isn't much beyond the breakwater. The rain is a fine, freezing, stinging mist - it's a perfect day for the last stage at The Girvan 2007. We've just agreed that the guys from Bike&Run London, with their cool all-white kit and matching Looks, opened the curtains and began packing the car for the trip home immediately.

The First Tour Doon Hame

We're off to the first edition of the Tour Doon Hame. I grew up with 'The Girvan' - in fact, it took me a long time to stop myself from referring to it as the 'Grant's of Girvan.' Ronnie Boa won it way back when; Henk Lubberding won a stage, Sean Yates, Dave Lloyd, Tony Doyle, all famous names to associate with Girvan.

The Girvan – Straight From The Riders

Ah, the Girvan-and VeloVeritas are right there, with Evan Oliphant (Plowman Craven) and Gary Hand (Endura) keeping us abreast of what's going on in South West Scotland.

The Girvan 2007 – Day 1: Stages 1 & 2

There's a nip in the air at 07.30 en route the Girvan 2007 as I stand on Kirkcaldy promenade and await the arrival of Davie and the new Nissan. The big, old Peugeot has gone and he's got a new Micra now, complete with CD - Yuppie!

Paul Coats – Looking Forward to the Girvan, Again!

Girvan; who's ridden it most times? Squadra Via Manzini-Race Tool rider, Paul Coats must be in the running with 13, or is it 14 starts? Paul's not as young as he used to be at 39, so we'll forgive him the memory lapse. We caught up with him recently, to get his Girvan memories...

At Random

La Volta a Portugal 2012 – Stage Ten: Sintra-Lisboa

Stage Ten of la Volta a Portugal 2012 started with a ceremonial 37km where we pottered along behind the winners. I felt awful.

“The Autobiography” by Chris Hoy

As the first Briton to win 3 Olympic golds at the same Games since 1908, Scotland's Chris Hoy has become a beacon for British sporting achievement. This autobiography charts his life from 7-year-old BMX fanatic, supported by a devoted dad and local cycling club, through paralysing self-doubt and a major career overhaul, to the sport's holy grail.

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 12: Pau – Peyragudes, 214.5km. Bardet confirms and Aru goes Yellow!

It wasn’t until inside the last kilometre at Peyragudes that the drama really unfolded; Bardet confirms, as does Aru, Froome cracks a little, Quintana cracks A LOT and much as it pains me; ‘one season too many, Bert!’ And Bennett and Martin impress, especially the latter who’s carrying injuries from that horrible crash with Porte on Sunday.

Le Tour de France 2010 Presentation

"It's cycling Jim, but not as we know it!" The presentation of the Tour de France route is something we used to read about in the mags and not really think twice about. We'd see the route in the Comic and have a blether about it, but maybe not think too much about it until Tour time.

Evan Oliphant – a Bit of Everything

Ever-versatile Endura man, Evan Oliphant crammed just about every discipline into last weekend - criterium, Premier one day and a British grass track title. We had a word...

The Copenhagen Six Day 2005

The Copenhagen Six Day 2005; Danny Kaye is telling me over the public address that it's "Wonderful, wonderful Copenhagen". I'm not so sure: it's gone 1.00 am and we have 18 Lycra jerseys; 18 under-vests; six pairs of chamois-lined cycling shorts; six pairs of socks and six pairs of track mitts to hand wash, spin dry and hang up to dry in our 'cabin' in the bowels of the stadium. Welcome to the glamorous world of Six Day bicycle racing.