First Scottish cycling time trial comes to Lochaber as tribute
THE first Cycling Time Trial (CTT) event to come to Scotland will be held in South Lochaber next weekend in memory of a Fort William champion.
Tragically killed in a collision at Carrs Corner in 2008, Jason MacIntyre was a rising star in British cycling.
The 34-year-old was a triple British and Scottish champion time trial cyclist and heading for the Olympic Games before his sudden death.
Every year since his passing, the cycling community has pulled together to hold a memorial for him.
And this year Britain’s biggest time trails organisation, CTT, allowed the Scottish district to hold part of the fourth event, in a series of six across the UK, in memory of Jason.
Event organiser and friend of Jason Stephen Blom told the Lo
chaber Times: ‘This event is part of six series across the UK which will attract some of the finest ath- letes in the country. We had several cycling memorial events over the years for Jason, but because I am part of the Scottish CTT, I suggested we hold number four around the Glencoe area.
‘I want to get more high-profile racers to come to Lochaber, and CTT have never held a competition north of the border before.’
Almost 70 riders are set to take part in the event on May 14, with some travelling from as far away as the Channel Islands to take part.
Stephen said: ‘The riders will be of mixed ability, with various levels from club rider to elite level, and some of the best British triallists.
‘Riders will take off in one-minute intervals. They will start south of Ballachulish and then proceed towards Glencoe, before turning off and doing a lap of Kinlochleven.’
Cyclists will complete the 17.8-mile route before heading to Ballachulish Village Hall for a presentation of the fastest lady, local rider and vet. The Jason MacIntyre Trophy will be presented to the fastest overall rider.
‘The Jason MacIntyre trophy we have is beautiful, and his wife Caroline and their twin daughters will have a stall with some of his memorabilia in the hall after the event,’ said Stephen.
Taking part in the trial will be Scotland’s most promising talent John Archibald, the brother of Olympic and world champion Katie Archibald.
This year John has broken long-standing records over various distances including some held by Fort William retired rider Mark Atkinson. And guest of honour will be cycling legend Graeme Obree, also known for the Old Faithful bicycle he built which included parts from a washing machine.
Stephen, who recently gave up his cycling career after a kidney transplant, said: ‘I wanted to do something to give back to the sport and to Jason.
‘Next year will be Jason’s 10year anniversary. We are hoping to build on the event and get 200 people signed up for next year. We want this to be an ongoing event for years to come.
‘Not many people have the talent to go down south and compete and to get someone at that level from Fort William is just incredible. He was the very best of the best.’