Snapped in Argyll Street Glasgow - I love the juxtaposition of arms.
This was one of those moments when I realised that I had turned into a photographer. I was walking along Argyll street, heading up to a work do at the Celtic Connections festival when I saw this. Now my camera was in my computer bag/rucksack - on my back - so within about 30 secs I had taken the bag off, pulled out the camera, switch it on, focused, realised that the light was so bad that in automatic mode it would use flash, switched to a manual setting and grabbed the shot.
And she never realised I had taken a photo.
Well, we have had just over a week to recover from the Tuffer Puffer, and my sleep patterns almost seem normal. Looking back in retrospect, the lads did incredibly well, coming fourth, and it seems that Magnus rode the third fastest lap - not bad for a 15 year old up against some of the best endurance cyclists around.
I like this shot - taken at the end of that first lap - as it captures a little of the horrors that the next 24 hours would bring......
27th December 2005 - looking west from the MTB track at Learnie on the Black Isle.
Very strange clouds and mist. We were all up helping build the Black Trail at Learnie that day, and Gary Williamson had taken his paraglider.
I took a great set of him flying, and this most unusual shot looking west.
Scottish Cycling's Neil Walker - the boys Performance Coach - was a solo rider - yes 24 hours on a bike - in the Strathpuffer. He led most of the later half, and eventually came third.
This was taken at 1:30 in the morning......
The whole event turned out as billed - the Tougher Puffer. Despite that the lads - racing as the Young Ones had an outstanding performance.
They came fourth - yes fourth.
For four 14 and 15 year old lads to come fourth in such an event is remarkable. In fact they were third for the first half of the race - and even managed to get as high as second - before a number of mechanical problems cost them a bit of time. After that their youth started to show.
The conditions were seriously bad - driving rain, hail, snow and gale forth winds. The rain caused the track to form the consistancy of fine sand paper, and brake pads only lasted 2-3 laps.
We started with eight bikes for four riders. Even after major middle of the night repairs, only three were left, and Magnus's packed up just as he started his final lap....
January 2006 - the middle of the night, -4 Celcius and Ewan gets ready to go out on a two hour stint, supported by his Dad Dave.
Yes that was the easy Strathpuffer, but this weekend is the Tougher Puffer.
Wet, windy, then snowy, then cold then very cold.
and no moon.
Magnus, Ewan, Mark and Kenta are riding the UK's toughest endurance MTB event this weekend. The first three, along with Hamish Creber rode the first Strathpuffer last year - and came an amazing 12th out of 114 teams.
Not bad for a bunch of 13 and 14 year olds.
Well Hamish has now graduated to the GB Olympic development squad, so his place is take by Kenta Gallagher from Inverness. They are 14 and 15 now, all in the Scotland Youth team, supported by the Braveheart Cycling Fund, and to be blunt are the best U 16 MTB's to be found in Scotland.
So they should do OK. In fact their coach has this down as a training weekend.
How I will manage after 36 hours on my feet? I'll let you know Monday.
Happy New Year
From four of the five Davidson's - Magnus was at his pals on the other side of the Black Isle.
Having a wee drink while waiting for the bells - which in our case sound from the East Kirk, and the Courthouse, on either side of our house. Willie Hogg and others can be seen ringing the bell in this photo
We had a fun night, and relatively sober, and the boys were pretty good as well. Out and about around the town, caught up with lots of friends, and received enough invites for today to ensure that it will be late before we are in our beds today as well.