Once there was only Crawfie, now the Nat rankings are lousy with Scots.Crawford Carrick Anderson has long been one of Britain's best downhillers and the voice of Scottish downhilling. Which is something of a drawback because, as most people know, Crawford cannot talk (although he can shout pretty effectively). Profoundly deaf, Crawfie relies of sign language, yelling, beaming smiles and a form of inner radiation to communicate. Great face to face, but it doesn't cut it on the phone.
The other Scottish riders liked to moan that they were being ignored.
"Go get some results, " we jeered.
"What's the point, if we win you say we're English," they jeered back.
"Of course we will, why not?"
And everything went ominously quiet.
Naturally there is a certain amount of jealousy involved. The stuff they have to ride they ought to be brilliant. Innerleithen, a mere 20 miles from the Capital? That's like having a top class downhill course at Heathrow.
It's all paying off now though. The current National Rankings (even though no one can really understand how they are calculated) shows Stu Thomson in 6th, Crawford 11, Chris Ball 13 and Paul Angus at 27.
Stu made the top ten of a World Cup this season and was fastest Brit, with a help of a gentle little downpour.
Whatever, it's on the record. More to the point these riders are looking good. Pretty fast, with good style and loads of aggression. Let's hope Scottish downhilling is on a roll, we need something to combat this sudden surge of aussies.
Pictures: Leaving Edinburgh Castle in search of a carryout of Tenants and deep friend Mars Bars. From left to right: Paul Angus, Stu Thomson, Chris Ball.