The Grand Tour: Fife and Beyond

Ramblings of an inveterate cyclist

Stage ten would decide the king of the mountains competition, the last prime point of the race would be decided over Carter Bar, sixty-four miles south of Edinburgh, on the Scottish English border. One point separated Procter and Greenfield, whichever of these two men could broach the summit within the first five leading cyclists, would be crowned King of the Mountains.

Thirty-three miles into the race proper in the little town of Galashiels the first successful breakaway come. Bob Maitland rapidly drew clear of the peloton taking Yeaman and Scales with him. Within ten miles, they had managed to open up a three point-five minute lead over the chasing pack, by twenty miles, they had doubled that to seven minutes. Carter bar did nothing to slow the trio, they were still gaining time over the peloton.

This was no longer about the stage win, the BSA team wanted the Maillot Jaune, either man Maitland or Scales could take it so close were they in calcification, only one point separating the two men. Yeaman made the summit first with a short sprint to take the prime point, whereupon the trio regrouped and went back to work consolidating their lead.

The peloton left Procter and Greenfield to fight it out for the fourth place over the mountain. It was Procter on the day that found that little extra and crossed the line giving him the two points and the title King of the Mountains 1952.

Despite the peloton’s efforts, they could not close the breakaway down, the finish when it came was breathtaking as each rider, in turn, tried to get his wheel in front of the other. Right to the line it went, Scales the victor on the day. This changed much in the classification as Bob Maitland now moved up into second place and Ken Russell, who only managed to finish five minutes behind in the main bunch dropped to third overall, still with Bellamy biting at his heels in fourth. Les Scales’s time was four hours thirty-two minutes and twenty-seven seconds.

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