Looking back on the Boxing Day ‘10’
I rode in the Boxing day ‘10’ during the first year I was in the Club, this was before I had taken up racing, but at that time nearly all the Club members either rode or marshaled. There were also private trialists from other clubs. Stuart Peterson of the Mersey Roads Club was a frequent participant.
There was a general air of festivity. The bikes were decorated with holly and mistletoe and many riders wore fancy dress. There were numerous Father Christmases and one year a private trial rider dressed as a teddy bear.
It was an official race and in the sense that the riders wore numbers, there were marshals and the timekeeper recorded all the times, but hardly anybody took it seriously. However there were exceptions, in the late 1970s I can remember Graham Parker who was an outstanding Junior, returning a long twenty four and Ian Murray who was a competitor to his finger tips always produced a respectable time.
After the event everyone adjourned to the Wheatsheaf, most just stayed for one or two festive drinks then rode home, but some brought a change of clothes and stayed until closing time. I can recall that there was a really splendid atmosphere.
As the event took place in the middle of winter there were times when it was too dangerous to ride. One year the organiser, Ken Ross did not like the look of the surface of Intake Lane and changed it to a ‘7’ on the Rainford Bypass. I think that I did a twenty-two and I let all my friends know about it over the Christmas period. A few years ago Stuart Dale had to cancel it completely as vehicles were skidding on the ice on the Rainford Bypass.
It would be sad if this Club tradition died out, perhaps we should think more about what we could do between 12noon and 1pm and make plans for next year.