Racing on the beach

Kirkcaldy beach looking east
Kirkcaldy beach looking east

THE return of motorbike racing to the beach at Kirkcaldy looks set to attract a bumper crowd to the town on Saturday.

Thousands regularly flocked to the Esplanade to watch the bikes in action on the sand until the popular races finally came to an end in 1972.

But now, 40 years on, Kirkcaldy and District Motor Club is reviving the races to mark its 90th anniversary, and hundreds of enthusiasts from around the country are preparing to descend on the town to witness a piece of history roar back into life.

Club president Hugh Ward said: “There are many people with connections to the club spread throughout the country and there’s been a lot of interest in this event.

“You never know for sure until the day itself, but if the weather’s fine we’ll hopefully get a big crowd.

“It’s something different and it should attract people to the town.”

The event is billed as ‘A Demonstration of Motorcycle Racing’ as the 36-40 riders taking part will be doing so by invitation only.

The races on the beach – featuring speedway, vintage and modern bikes – are due to start around 2.30 p.m., depending on the tide, and should last for around three hours, with riders taking part in up to four races each.

Before that, from 12.30 p.m., there will be plenty of action at the Esplanade’s basin car park at the west end.

Mini-moto riders from KartStart in Kirkcaldy and trial bikers from a club in Anstruther will demonstrate their skills, and there will be a range of motorcycle trade and club stands.

The bike used by Jock Taylor when he won the 1980 World Sidecar Championship – two years before he was tragically killed in a racing accident in Finland – will also be on display.

The event is being promoted and supported by Kirkcaldy4All, with manager Bill Harvey delighted to see the club making use of the beach and Esplanade.

Mr Harvey said: “There’s been tremendous interest in the event and we’re all set for a action-packed day which has something for all the family.

“This is a great way of utilising the town’s strongest asset and if there’s an appetite for it, we’d like to look at making it a regular event.

“A huge effort has gone into preparing for this and with a favourable weather forecast, we are looking forward to welcoming many visitors to Kirkcaldy.

“We hope they will make day of it by watching the races, enjoying the hospitality of our many pubs and bars, and visiting some of the 300 shops our town centre has to offer.”