If you were on the cycling scene in Scotland in the early 80’s then you’ll be familiar with the name of Finlay Gentleman.
A precocious talent, winning the Tour de Trossachs whilst still in his teens then the Scottish Road Race Championship and a member of the Scottish team which won the British 100 kilometre Team Time Trial Championship.
A move to France to catch the eye of one of the professional teams and ‘do a Robert Millar’ was the next step.
VeloVeritas recently caught up with Gentleman – who lives south of the border, these days – to get the low down on what happened next.
Remind us of some of your Scottish and UK results please, Finlay.
“The year I turned senior I won the Tour des Trossachs – setting the record for the Dukes Pass climb – and the Scottish Hill Climb Championship.
“In my first full senior year I won the Scottish Road race Championship and was on Sandy Gilchrist’s Commonwealth Games squad – we were third the first year then won the British 100km TTT Championship.
“And I had a fourth place in the Merseyside Invitation TT behind Chris Boardman – I remember I was flying on the first lap but cracked on the second circuit.”
How old were you when you decided to go to France?
“I was 19, which with the benefit of hindsight was too young. It’s so long ago now that I can’t remember how I set it up – perhaps it was thro