What's up sport?
As spring kicks in, many of you may find yourselves invigorated with a little excess energy to throw into some serious sporting activity. Or you could just watch from the sidelines with a strong coffee. The Midgie rounds up the best of the bunch of Scottish sporting events
The hype surrounding these matches is at bursting point, as they enter into the final stages. And while Scotland may not be the hottest at rugby (in terms of skill or dashing good looks), you can’t deny that we still continue to throw ourselves into it with gusto. If you are going to back a team, then last year’s winners, Wales, are looking pretty hot (and they’re better in the looks department too!). As a visitor to our fair country, then you are really duty bound to come and cheer us on when we play Ireland on Saturday 14 Mar. If you can’t grasp the tactics, then just sit back and enjoy the display of mud and muscle.
Scotland V Ireland, Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Sat 14 Mar, 5pm, www.rbs6nations.com
TEN UNDER THE BEN
This is a proper endurance test; a ten hour mountain bike marathon with solo cyclists and various teams competing to see who can do the most laps within the time limit. It is so named because the course basks under the shadows of the North Face of the country’s highest mountain range, Ben Nevis. The scenery on the track is simply stunning. Now in its fifth year, Ten Under The Ben has turned into a bit of an all-round party; with entertainment and live music, not to mention the huge pre-race party. Apparently Lycra cycling shorts are not a pre-requisite, which should set some minds at ease.
Nevis Range and Lochaber Rural Complex, Fort William, Sat 30 May, www.nofussevents.co.uk
BUPA GREAT EDINBURGH RUN
If, like many travellers, you have fallen in love with Scotland, then you’re probably finding that there’s just never quite enough time to fit in visits to all the hotspots and highlights the country has to offer. But here at The Midgie we have a novel idea; if you started running around Scotland then you could see more things in less time, no? The Great North Run in Edinburgh is a good place to start and an opportunity to take in many beautiful parts of the capital city; with fleeting visits past Edinburgh Castle, The Royal Mile and Holyrood Palace to name but a few. What do you mean you’ve forgotten your running shoes?
10km run, Edinburgh, Sun 3 May, www.greatrun.org
BREWIN’ DOLPHIN SCOTTISH SERIES
Let’s deal with the initial wave of disappointment first; this series does not feature any real dolphins or dolphin racing of any form. The event involves a series of yacht races on Loch Fyne. The scenic setting and tranquil waters see it attract upwards of 200 sailors from all across Europe. And as the multi-coloured sails billow in the wind, it makes for a surprisingly genteel sport and one that is quite breathtaking to watch.
22–25 May, Tarbert village, Loch Fyne, www.clyde.org
Glasgow will be hosting this tennis cup tie between Great Britain and Ukraine, which is only the second time in thirty-eight years that a home tie has been held in bonnie Scotland. It’s apparently quite an honour; so get excited, OK? And after teasing us that he was just too good for the Davis Cup, wonder boy Andy Murray has announced that he will be taking part (recent injury allowing). I’m afraid The Midgie always prefers to cheer for the underdog, though.
Braehead Arena, Glasgow, Fri 6–Sun 8 Mar, www.daviscup.com
BEST SPORTS BARS
The Sportster’s Bar
This bar is quite literally sports mad. Even when there’s not a specific sporting event on the television, they still stream Sky Sports News. That’s dedication. Or obsession. 1a Market Street, Edinburgh (F4), 0131 226 9560.
The Golf Tavern
A quirky little tavern bar that is decorated with golfing memorabilia and rents out golf clubs for you to use on The Links putting field. But, ne’er fear, they show all sports on the big screen too. 30-31 Wrights Close, Edinburgh (D6), 0131 221 5221.
The Sport’s Cafe
The word ‘cafe’ makes it all sound a bit civilised, but essentially this is an old school sports bar; think beer, burgers and sport, sport, sport. 292 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow (E3), 0141 332 8000.
Waxy’s offers something a little bit special, three floors with winding connecting staircases and a warren of little rooms. You can even book your own private space, for those special matches. 44 West George Street, Glasgow (F3), 0141 354 5154.