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Goodbye to Geordie Buchan - A Scottish Great

Falkirk’s Camelon Crematorium was packed at the weekend with race goers and riders of days gone by paying their last respects to George ‘Geordie’ Buchan one of Scotland’s greatest road racers in the sixties and seventies. He died peacefully at rhe age of 85.

Multiple Scottish champions Alan Duffus and John Kiddie were among those present at the humanist ceremony watching their friend and one time competitor arriving in a motorcycle and sidecar hearse. Not present was his close friend Jimmy Rae, both sponsored by Alan Smith from Alford, who passed away on the day of the funeral.

In just four years of competing at the Manx Grand Prix - then a great breeding ground for road racers - he scored  one win, three seconds and a third, racing against the likes of Selwyn Griffths and also saw success at other great circuits like the North West 200.


But while he ventured south to circuits like Cadwell Park and Silloth, it was on his home territory that he was almost unbeatable on Manx Nortons supplied by Alan Smith from Alford near to his home town of Tomatin. Indeed he was able to defeat  the great John Cooper in the 350cc race at Crimond although Coop got his own  back in the 500cc event.

On tracks from Charterhall to Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy to Gask near Perth he was almost unbeatable   and was an inspiration  to up and comers like Alan Duffus who had considerable success both at home and further afield. Duffus, now the owner of  a Yamaha motorcycle dealership in Kirkcaldy, said:”He was a great character and in his racing days had an eye for the girls and later for a ‘dram.’ He’ll be missed.”

Tributes to his relatively brief racing career were accompanied by mentions of his life outside racing as a woodcutter, an excavator driver and on fishing boats which led to his love of sailing. Ownership of a  concrete  bottomed ketch  which he, having acquired his Skippers ticket, took him and his passengers around  Europe, down the African coast and  eventually across the Atlantic.  Everything went well until the return journey when they ran out of juice and had to be refuelled by  a Royal Navy boat. Cold, wet and weary they also received a crate of whisky which Geordie, never averse to a ‘dram’, was more than appreciative to receive this additive to the fuel.

Geordie Buchan is survived by his wife Helen and sons  George and Ross.

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