Lewis shows the elite how to ride down a hill

Ruaridh Cunningham
Ruaridh Cunningham

THE second round of the Alpine Bikes winter series at Innerleithen saw three young local lads take wins in their respective categories.

After his victory in the last round, home rider Lewis Buchanan again showed his world class by taking the Junior section, but this time in style. His first run set the benchmark for the day by recording a sub three-minute time which was to stay unbeaten as the fastest of the day.

Stow’s Elite rider Ruaridh Cunningham borrowed a bike from I-Cycles and entered this weekend to take the Elite win and the second fastest time of the day, just 2.5 seconds behind Lewis. Ruaridh jets off to California next week to meet up with his new Maxxis/Rockymountain team to pick up his new bike and kit. He’ll also meet up with his new French team-mate and World Cup champion Sabrina Jonnier.

Last of the locals, but by no means least, was young George Gannicott from Ettrick who has just secured a deal with his older brother Arran to ride for Bikesoup/Gravity. On Saturday after the practice, both Arran and George were pleased at how the new bikes were feeling.

Come raceday, though, George was the one who really flew, winning the Youth class by almost seven seconds over second-placed I-Cycles rider Stuart Wilcox.

Arran has moved up to the Elites this year and put in two good solid runs to take eighth place.

It was good to see the sun out and a big local crowd supporting the race on Sunday, watching in awe at the speed these riders come down through the trees.

Other results from the weekend included the expert class, won by Joe Flanagan, Dave Duggan in second and Rob Young in third.

The Juvenile class was won by Frazer McCubbing by a huge 17 seconds over Nial Oxley, with Andrew Dorrit just two seconds back on Nial.

Lewis McLaughlin got his second win in the senior class over Gary Neale, and after a three- year break, Thomas Pollock returned to the podium with third place.

Uplift Scotland’s owner and rider David Tallontire took the Masters win over Jed Whitefield with third place on the podium going to Jamie Smith.

The veteran men’s win went to Nukeproofs rider Alastair MacLennan over Glentress Riders man Neil Wilson, with Rich Simpson getting third.

With only two elite women riders in the mix it was Bex Reilly who got the top spot on the podium over Fox rider Angela Coates.

There were six senior women racing and it was Emma McRobb who took the win over Sara-Jane Rennie, while Jenna Woodruff got the third step on the podium.

The final round of the series will be held on April 2 and 3 when Borders biking fans are being encouraged to go along and enjoy the racing.