Posted by: musselburghbmx | July 27, 2011

Progress 27 July 2011

Here we are folks, progress so far. We now have a decent siz start hill that looks plenty wide for an 8 man gate. Long, fast looking first, second and last straight with the makings of some challenging jumps.

Just a bit worried about the amount of dirt, dust and time left!… we’ll keep you all updated as the week goes on.

(Click on the image if you want to enlarge the photograph)



  1. looking good!

  2. I’m not so sure, Cru!!!

    I’m reletively local to Musselburgh and have been aware of the proposed new BMX track for a while but never having been a BMX racer refrained from commenting on here or any other website I’ve read news about the track on.
    Anyway, I recently heard that work had started on improving it so I took a wee detour while out on a road ride lastnight to stop by for a look at the track, Now, I’m not sure how far on the work is or if there’s still a lot to be tweaked, but if not, I just don’t really get it!
    In my mind, with the addition of the new longer start ramp the first straight should now be a little faster but it looks as if the layout for the first straight is staying pretty much the same. (hopefully you’ll say I’ve got it all wrong and it is actually getting a complete re-working too). I really hope the final layout is not going to be as it looks just now as in my experience, good BMX track design needs good varied rhythm sections and optional jumps that better riders can link together but beginners can safely roll (ie. step-up/down, double/tripple combos etc.) to remain fun/interesting/challenging longterm and encourage progression. Basically I just feel the first straight could have been designed a whole lot better.
    Out of interest, who designed the original track layout? did anyone else have input into the design? and are the current designs available to look at online? I’m guessing it’s probably too late to make any suggestions as to what might work better now?
    On a more positive note the rest of the track from the first berm onwards does look better than before. (the second double on the second straight looked to be bigger as did the first berm (but it seemed to still have the same short table setting it up?)

    • Hi Gary

      Thanks for contributing to the discussion and your comments are both valid and welcome.

      Regarding the current state of the track, it is very much a work in progress and will be for some time, even after the council have left. Hopefully my comments below will answer some of your queries:

      The track layout is NOT ideal. Unfortunately, we inherited this from the play track built by the council when the racecourse was re-developed. Due to our pestering of the council, they kindly offered to upgrade the track with the minimum of funds available when carrying out further civil works at the racecourse. We had 1 weeks notice as to when they would be starting the work and with the limited time and funds available this prevented us from starting from scratch. In an ideal world we would have started again!

      In order to get the most for the money available and get the fundamentals right our approach has always been to get a longer first straight (the council gave us more land) and build up the start hill and berms to get the flow right. The width of the track has also been increased to allow an 8 man start gate which is fundamental to competitive racing. Regarding the jumps, we have had a severe lack of material on site and this has prevented us from increasing the amount and size of the jumps. Trust me, we want big rhythm sections too!! With the big elements in place, adding additional jumps at a later stage is part of the plan and will be easier to do without worrying about start hills and berms. To give you an idea of the amounts of earth required to build the track, the start hill probably has about 200 tonnes of material in it – that is approximately 12 lorry loads!

      Regarding the first straight we are also not entirely with the jumps that have been built and they certainly don’t reflect the profiles that we gave the council. As I said, we are restricted by the amount of dirt available but myself and Ian will be on site tomorrow to try and sort out the jumps on the first straight with the guys on site. We believe that tomorrow is their last day with the digger so we might be restricted in what they can achieve in the time.

      There are no designs to look at on line but the council have had jump profiles based on the national track in Manchester. As you have noted, the jumps are not 100% and we do anticipate that we will have to carry out a lot of modifications and shaping of the lips to improve things.

      Hopefully you will appreciate some of the issues we have had to overcome to get to this point and an understanding of our short term plan. The longer term plan is to get the club formed and raise funds for a start gate, tarmac hill and berms, bigger better jumps (built and shaped by a professional track builder) and bring competitive racing back to Musselburgh.

      Finally, this might also be a good opportunity to ask for peoples help and to get involved. When we set up the club we will need a committee to keep things moving and would welcome anyone interested in helping out. If there are any haulage companies out there that could help with more dirt or any plant hire/machine operators willing to help the cause please get in touch. To be honest, anyone with a shovel, barrow and loads of enthusiasm we would love to hear from you.

      If anyone else has any comments or concerns, please post them up, thats what the blog is for. We want this to be the best track it can be and your feedback is more than welcome.



      • Hi Kevin,

        Is it possible to contact you via PM?



  3. I took a whirl past on my way to Porty on Sat and had a wonder around the track..I also bumped into Ian there and had a chat regarding the layout the build and the struggle it’s been to get this far. If there is anything I can do to help out with give me a shout, I’m keen to see/get this up and running as are a few other people that I know.

  4. Thanks very much for taking the time to explain everything Kevin.
    I’d be more than happy/willing to volunteer some free time towards the track/club development and would be happy to become a comittee member if req’d. (I reckon I’d be able to get a few extra bodies together for digging etc.too) just let me know any dates you plan on meeting for either.
    I really hope you manage to get something better done with the digger today (especially if it’s the last day the digger will be there).
    I read in an earlier post that the council may tarmac the start hill, that would be great! would it be possible to persuade them to tarmac the berms too? is any more material planned to be used for the surface for the rest of the track? (as you’ll agree, the earth being used for building just now is not ideal) and what about packing it down? will the council be doing this?
    I’l be away until the 15th now but hopefully we can meet up sometime soon after I’m back. (I’ll keep my eye out for any developments on this blog)

  5. Hi Ray, just PM me on here or drop me an email at:



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