A member of a local cyclocross group has said he’s desperate to bring events to Dundee in the future.
The winter sport, which is a niche type of cycling, is benefiting from a surge in interest in Scotland and a small group of cyclists in Dundee are excelling in it.
It’s best described as a cross between road and mountain biking, where riders race around a circuit with various challenges along the way.
Cyclists have to overcome obstacles such as sand pits, muddy sections, bogs and wooden vaults – often having to jump off, carry and run with their bikes. There is only a small amount of these events in Scotland, with none currently taking place in Dundee – something that Jim Foulis, of Dundee Wheelers, wants to change.
Jim, 55, of Kinrossie, said: “We want to try and organise an event to take place in Dundee to encourage more people to do it and because we have great parks here for it.
“It’s a real spectator sport. It’s fun to watch – lots of people falling into mud and getting into a state slipping about.”
Jim added that despite the fun aspect of the sport, it is serious and requires lots of kit and technical skill, such as getting the right tyre pressure and the rider distributing their weight on the bike to keep it upright.
He said: “The difference between this type of cycling and a regular road race is that you’re never on your own, which can happen if you fall behind the pack in a road race.
“Even if you have been lapped, there’s still people around you, so you feel like you’re all in it together.”
Cheryl Walker, 27, of Findowrie Street, took up the sport last February, having always been a keen road cyclist and previously competed in triathlons.
And with less than a year’s training under her belt, she finished this season’s league in seventh place out of more than 50 competitors, in the Scottish Cycling North Series.
She said: “There were times at the start when I thought I was way out of my depth.
“I had to learn how to unclip and dismount and mount my bike quickly without falling off, and how to handle my bike through sand pits, gravel, slippy grass and all sorts of other terrain which I wasn’t used to.
“I remember in one of my early races thinking, ‘Why am I doing this?’ It’s a lot of fun.”