Canal Kerin Racing

SO, it’s probably been the worst or best winter – depending on whatever way you want to look at it – in Glasgow for more than 30-odd years, writes Brian Sweeny.
The place has been covered in snow and ice for at least a month. Probably what most people think Glasgow’s like all the time.
I mean, it’s proper Baltic and I lived in Iceland for years. James, my courier mate, is having a quiet day, so he calls me to see if I’m around to do some shots as it’s one of those perfect winters days – blue skies crisp air…Mega.
So, we decide to get some lunch and cycle up to Firhill – home to Partick Thistle FC and by the canal basin.
As we are sitting munching, I mention to James: “How’s about a wee shot at cycling on the canal? It’s the first time in 30 years its completely frozen over.”
He’s like: “…Nae fucking chance..”
That’s coming from a courier? And someone who jumped off the Kingston Bridge.
Next thing we see is a wee Ned on a mountain bike cycling up the middle of the canal, swigging from a bottle of Buckfast tonic wine as he passes us.
“Git yirsels oan here. Ave just bolted up fae the port…”
That’s around a mile towards the city centre. Two seconds later we are on it.
Now, I don’t reckon many folk would ride a fixie in the snow – never mind snow covered ice on a canal. It’s tough going but after a while, it’s skid central like we were 12 again…totally amazing.
A couple of pictures posted and within 15 minutes, there’s about another 20 of us – skating about like little kids. The local youth project turn up too on their mountain bikes.
The day being too short, it’s been decided, come Sunday, we will host the first-ever frozen canal Kerin – and so it was to be.
Mind that way you used to pray for snow, so that you didn’t have to go to school? That’s what it was like for two days and it worked out just fine this time for a change.
For a bunch of idiots, it all fitted smoothly into place. Entry fee included beers, ice BBQ and there were prizes from Brian at Rig Bike Shop, Joe from Gear.
We even had marshals courtesy of Movie and Big Ross, who pulled his own tooth out at the European courier championships in Dublin – there’s a video on the web somewhere.
Things really took a turn for the strange when we managed to get a local popstar to turn up dressed as a spaceman and give out the prizes – all viewed to much amusement by the local plod.
All that aside, I believe Tom Jenkins won (as usual) and Lord Pumpington came last on his BMX. After that? Well, it’s all a bit of a blur. I seem to remember me and Lord Pumpington being pulled over for cycling up a one way street with no lights, singing that Spongebob Squarepants song ‘The Best Day Ever’, then leaving our bikes in the pub…and that’s it. Watch the film made by my friend James Anderson and you will get the idea properly.
One day later, the weather got warmer. Some idiots saw our exploits on Facebook and decided to try and drive their dad’s car from Edinburgh to Glasgow on the canal. It didn’t end well.

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About james 65 Articles
Editor of Spin Cycle Magazine

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