On a morning which delivered everything from flat calm with balmy sunshine – complete with midges – to a stiff breeze with stinging rain it was Pro Vision Cycle Clothing’s John Archibald once again delivering the result over 17.8 ‘sporting’ miles around lovely Loch Leven in the Jason Macintyre Memorial Time Trial which was also round four of the CTC ‘Knights Composites Classic TT Series.’
John Archibald’s 38.40 (27.621 mph) saw him more than a mile per hour quicker than second placed Jack Rebours’ (Caeserean CC) 40.31 (26.359 mph) and third placed Chris Smart’s 41.01 (26.038 mph).
Billed as the ‘Tour of Glencoe’ that was a slight misnomer albeit the race did skirt Glencoe village and pass through Invercoe it was more of a ‘Loch Leven Loop’ but whatever the name the backdrop was stunning – Scotland at it’s best.
The start was south of the Ballachullish bridge with the first couple of miles flat and fast past the war memorial – even here the young men were dragged off to fight – and the famous but now redundant slate quarry, it closed in 1955 but at it’s peak was producing 26 million slates per year.
The nature of the course changes at Invercoe where left and eastwards on to the Kinlochleven road, still wide and fast but beginning to wander left and right and drag.
Between Invercoe and the ‘aluminium town’ of Kinlochleven it’s a giant roller coaster with two long heartbreaker drags and two fast descents.
The weather was capricious on the first climb – jacket off, T-shirt then promptly back on as the breeze turned cold and the rain stung.
‘Warming the tar’ off number one was Alex Dent (Nevis Cycles Racing Team) with Emma Parkinson (Velo Club Vitesse) off number seven the first lady on the road.
The backdrop was stunning, across the loch to the other side of the Glen but the light wasn’t the best for photography, one minute bright sunshine then dark as the clouds rolled in.
Sonya Drummond (Dundee Thistle) wasn’t dark though – far from it with all those stripes.