It was 1971 when I first joined a cycling club; Kirkcaldy & District CC with their red, yellow and black strip. One of the coolest guys in the club was Dave Gardiner, a signwriter to trade so whilst we rode somewhat mundane Mercians, Robertsons, Andy McNeils and Flying Scots his bike would be liveried up in proper red and white Faema trim, a la Merckx, right down to the little Duomo motif on the head tube.
Dave was a hill climber of note, winning the Scottish Championships in 1968.
And he drove a white Ford Zodiac – my dad had a Morris Traveller ‘woodie’ complete with healthy fungal growth on the inner timber framing – so Davie’s Zodiac was regarded by us youngsters with some awe.
I never really got to know him because he immigrated to Australia that year but due to the wonders of social media Dave and I have picked up our relationship after some 46 years.
He very kindly mailed me a selection of pictures from the 1960’s which we’d like to share with you…
Barry (Ned) Carnegie sees Dave safely round the turn in a ‘25’ on the old Perth-Dundee course.
‘Ned’ stalks FaceBook and is still getting out on the bike at an age he wouldn’t want us to divulge.
Barry would claim Dave’s Scottish hill climb title in 1969; Dave is in the colours here of Kennoway Road Club.
Dave’s first club was the Kirkcaldy Clarion in 1963 before helping to found the Kirkcaldy YMCA club in 1964, that lasted but one year and he was with Kennoway Road club with their cool Italianate red, white and green strip for the rest of the 1960’s before joining the Kirkcaldy and District club.
Dave leads a group on the Stow climb in the Comet Grand Prix.
To his left is the late Big John ‘Clanky’ Clark with the eventual winner of the race, Hector McKenzie on his wheel.
McKenzie was a little before my time but his legend precedes him – a ‘grey man’ he was not!
The winning Kennoway Road Club team in the Scottish Hill Climb Championship on Sheriffmuir.
Dave is on the left; in the middle is Andy Henderson who was a fast finisher and took medals in the Scottish Sprint Championships; on the right is Derek Gough a fast pedalling schoolboy and junior protégé who never realised his potential.
Dave tells us this is in winning action on Sheriffmuir in the 1968 Champi