1965 was the year – Winston Churchill was buried, The Sound of Music came out and me and Robert Downey Jr were born. I spent my first 30 years in Edinburgh before moving south to work in motorsport.
My first love was skiing, which I started when I was nine years old, and competed in slalom and giant slalom as a junior - reaching the dizzy heights of top 15 seeding in the UK (not many people skied back then really!). My best result was probably being in the runner’s up team in the British Schools Ski Championship twice – maybe some time in the late 70’s (oh dear, that is a long time ago!).
As the snow started to run out in Scotland and it got more expensive to ski competitively, I started road racing for the Edinburgh Road Club; racing in the Scottish Junior Championships road race series in 1981 and 1982 then moving into seniors where I was able to win a few road races, some regional titles (not exactly sure what for but I recently found six East of Scotland gold medals in my junk-trunk) and a Scottish Team Pursuit title in about 1983. I was invited to join the City of Edinburgh RC when I was about 20 years old – this club has now turned into the most successful track cycling club in the UK and has had the likes of Craig MacLean and Chris Hoy pass through it over the years. When I finally ran out of talent in cycling I stopped for 20 years and never rode a bike again until about six years ago…
After the skiing and cycling bit I went motor racing (I thought I might be able to buy my way to success!), racing for eight years in cars I prepared myself and wining occasional races at Scottish National level. The highlight that sticks out from that time was myself and another guy becoming the first road cars to lap Knockhill circuit in under a minute (probably quite easy to do now that cars have engines in them instead of horses). I then had two children and that stopped all of that type of nonsense! I still work in the motorsport industry and alongside my day job I’m Vice Chairman of the Motorsport Industry Association.
Most memorable cycling moment was probably winning my dad’s memorial road race in 1983 when I was 18 (he was a keen competitor in the 50’s) – there is even a listing on the internet for it as the trophy is still used, although when I competed it was not a mountain time trial but a hilly 60ish mile road race – slight internet error on that one I think.
My hopes for 2016 are for some respectable finishes in the Regional XC series (top 5 placings) and to start competing at National level XC in the Grand Veteran category, as well as surviving training rides with Marc!