Cyclists have tyres burst in Glasgow-Edinburgh charity race
Hundreds of riders taking part in a charity race had their tyres burst in what is believed to be an attempt to sabotage Scotland’s biggest cycling event.
Police confirmed they are investigating incidents where bikes’ tyres were punctured during the Pedal Scotland event between Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Officers said they had launched an inquiry after metal tacks were found in the Whitecross area just after 1pm yesterday.
They said they had also been made aware of a similar incident in and around Linlithgow.
Some competitors said there were so many punctures, repair teams could not “keep up.”
Last week, competitors in a cycle race in the Scottish Borders claim they were attacked by farmers wilding sticks.
They were angry that road closures to accommodate the Tour O The Borders event prevented them getting between fields during the harvest.
Pedal Scotland now attracts 7,000 cyclists, who set off from Glasgow Green on routes that offer varying levels of difficulty.
On Sunday, they included transport minister Humza Yousaf, who waved off competitors from the starting line.
Pedal Scotland has been running for 19 years however the 2015 event was marred when 50 cyclists had their tyres burst by nails and tacks which had been spread over the carriageway.
On that occasion, the sabotage occurred between Limerigg and Avonbridge in Stirlingshire.
Cyclists took to social media to vent their anger at the weekend disruption.
Shona Mitchell posted a picture on Twitter, her front tyre studded by a tack.
She wrote:”Fun spoiled. Hundreds of us with flat tyres, thanks to sabotage with tacks.”
Gavin Yates replied:”Some people are really miserable sods. Hope you got Sarah to fix the puncture for you!”
One, called ‘Buttons and Robin’ wrote:”My ride was cut short due to a tack. Some riders had two or three in their tyres.
“Mechanics (heroes) couldn’t keep up. Was a damn shame not to ride those last 10 miles.”
Tony Hutchison added:”Heard that, too. Unbelievable, especially when there’s lots of kids taking part. Morons.”
A Police Scotland spokeswoman said:”Police Scotland is investigating following a report of metal tacks on the road in Whitecross during a Pedal for Scotland event.
“The matter was reported to police around 1.10pm on Sunday, September 10, on Station Road. A number of bikes were damaged, however no cyclists were injured. There were also reports of tacks being placed on the road in and around Linlithgow.
“Inquiries into the circumstances are ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to contact Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident number 2396 of September 10.”
A Cycling Scotland spokesperson said:“Nearly 8,000 people had a fantastic time cycling with Pedal for Scotland. Friends, families and colleagues were raising money for charities close to their hearts and there was enthusiastic support from spectators in most towns and villages along the route.
“We regret that the action of an idiotic individual or group of people has caused problems for event participants and risked serious injury to people. It has also slowed us down in opening the roads again. The operational team helped remove the tacks as soon as they were reported.
“We would ask anyone with information about who committed this crime to report it to Police Scotland.”