Cyclists put brakes on Scottish Formula 1 Grand Prix racing through the West End

By Shirley Knott at

The roar of Formula 1 cars racing through Scottish streets has been a dream for years.

But moves to bring the multi-million pound sporting carnival to Glasgow – and the city’s West End – have hit a snag.

Formula 1 and West End

Unlikely: who would have thought F1 cars could soon be racing through the city’s streets? Photo: Royters

A cycling charity has told city chiefs and race organisers that the plans clash with a family pedalling event.

It means the only date available to host the lucrative sporting spectacle this August is now in doubt.

John Wyndup is a spokesman for the West End branch of Cycles 4 Roads And Paths (C4RAP).


He told Glasgow West End Today: “Sorry, but it’s not happening on that date.

“We need to keep Byres Road clear of traffic for our members.

“We are expecting upwards of 100 people in costume to cycle through the West End ringing their bells.

“The roads are busy enough as they are without Formula 1 cars flying past our ears.”

Formula 1 and Byres Road

Killjoys: cyclists similar to this bloke in a totally different country seem like they just want to spoil the fun for everyone else. Photo: Nasa

John said: “I don’t know what people were thinking of even giving this the time of day.

“It’s like somebody’s idea of a sick joke – in fact, what day is it?”

If the plans do go ahead, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel would be roaring through the city’s streets this summer.

A date has yet to be confirmed, but insiders say August 11 is looking the most likely.

Using Monaco as inspiration, the idea is to use the city’s streets as an exciting up-close racetrack.

Formula 1 and Byres Road

Similar: Glasgow on a really hot day with a bit of imagination could look something like Monaco, say insiders. Photo: Pure Fantasy Pics Inc

Wild estimates say £50 million could be generated – a lot of that from the sale of drink and over-priced street food to race fans.

It had been hoped that the race would start in George Square and head out west.

It could head along St Vincent St; Argyle St; Dumbarton Road and on to Byres Road.

It is likely the F1 cars would return east along Great Western Road, Charing Cross and along Sauchiehall Street.

One of the issues for race organisers, however, might be the tight right-hand bend into Byres Road at Partick Cross.

One solution might be to take out one or two buildings either side of the junction*.

Formula 1 and West End

Squeeze: some buildings may have to come down to make room for the F1 cars. Photo: Giggle Street View

However, the intransigence of cyclists looks set to jeopardise the whole thing.

A spokesman for Forumla 1 Racing Inc confirmed organisers faced an “uphill struggle” to overcome “some local obstacles”.

“We would love to see our fast cars racing through Glasgow this summer.

“We very much hope that all sides can work out arrangements.

“But we also understand the bicycle lobby is very powerful in Glasgow.

“Let’s see who wins this.”

* Yeh, right – as if that’s going to happen.