CRAIG HARDIE - THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES
For a decade the name of Craig Hardie, Dalgety Bay was a name that appeared with repetitive frequency among the grass track Highland Games cycling results.
From the mid-noughties up until 2015 Craig won races over all distances from 800 metres up to 8000 metres. Despite his success it was never a one man show, he was only one of a stellar bunch of bikers from that era, Evan Oliphant was still in his prime and the likes of Tim Allan, Darren Howitt Allan Clark and Neil Withington to name a few were also among the backmarkers, Charles Fletcher added to the mix and the competition in the latter stages of Craig's grass track tenure.
His racing took him all over the country chalking up wins at 18 different Highland Games from home ground at Inverkeithing to Inveraray in the West and Invercharron and Halkirk in the far North. In all, the Hardinator crossed the finish line first on no fewer than 148 occasions, 18 of those victories were in Scottish championships over seven different distances..
Twice he was crowned the SHGA Cyclist of the Year in 2005 and 2010. Following a successful 2005 Craig took the next two years out before returning in 2008.
He tended to have the same itinery of Games he competed at each year, this was due to other racing commitments and it would usually be the Games at Ceres before he started his campaign.
2015 would be his final season and it turned out to be one of his best winning five of the Scottish titles. He went out on a winning note on the very last day of the 2015 campaign at Invercharron where he won the 3200 metres.
His dynamic style of riding thrilled the crowds as he sped around the grass tracks of the games circuit reeling in his rivals. In the future, the name of Craig Hardie will I'm sure always be recalled when the great grass track riders from the past are being debated.
Thanks for the memories Craig and when you pass through the gates of those big Games in the sky you will i'm certain find a grass track somewhere.
DEIL TAK THE HINDMOST – SHANE FENTON
Published: 2021-02-03 22:43:03