The 3rd running of the Arthur Campbell Memorial Road Race, on Sat., resulted in a fantastic win for young Robbie Hassan and his Glasgow Wheelers team-mates. This year’s race, held over 4 & a bit laps of the tough A77 circuit from Newton Mearns, proved to be a real team effort for the Wheelers. As soon as the flag was dropped on the Stewarton Road, Alan Thomson (Glasgow Couriers) surged away from the peleton. Surprisingly, no-one gave chase, and within the first few minutes, Alan was 200 metres clear, before we saw any reaction from the bunch. However, by the time Alan had reached the top of the climb up Bannerbank, he had been joined by Robbie Hassan, Dave Smith, Rab Wardell (all Glasgow Wheelers), Rob Wilkins (Stirling Bike Club) & Rob Friel (Team Raleigh). This group formed the winning breakaway and working well together, established a gap which went out to approx. 1 minute 20 secs by half distance.
Click on any of the thumbnails for full size photos
Despite determined efforts by the chase group which had also broken clear of the peleton, they could make no impression on the leaders, due in part to the policing efforts of Jason Roberts & Grant Stevenson. Into the last lap, with the remainder of the peleton back together and the breakaway group of 6 still intact, the gap had risen to just under 3 mins. Once they turned onto the A77. the Wheelers trio then set about trying to drop their breakaway companions, but into the wind it became an impossible task and the pace soon dropped. By the time they reached the left hand turn onto the Stewarton Road, the gap to the main bunch had by then, been reduced to around 45 secs. Then the attacks resumed, with Rob Wilkins effort up the first drag, seeming particularly painful. However, with 3 Wheelers present, it still looked sewn-up, and so it proved, when Robbie launched the winning break about a mile from the finish. With both Dave & Rab sitting on, the steam had gone out of any chase and Robbie rode away to a clear win up the finishing climb, with Dave Smith 2nd and Rob Wilkins 3rd.
This was a particularly pleasing win for young Robbie and the Wheelers, not only winning Arthur’s memorial race and also marking the first time for many years that a Glasgow Wheeler had won their own annual promotion. It also helped to make up for Robbie’s disappointment in being denied entry into yesterdays British Championship as he had only been a 2nd cat when he’d entered.
The Arthur Campbell Memorial Trophy was presented to Robbie by Isla Bilsland (Arthur’s daughter and Billy’s wife).
with the remainder of the peleton back together.