The Gaffer's Raging. His Boat's Got Two Up Front; RECORD SPORT GOES WHITE WALTER RAFTING Raft of New Ideas for Gers Boss

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), April 12, 2011 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

The Gaffer's Raging. His Boat's Got Two Up Front; RECORD SPORT GOES WHITE WALTER RAFTING Raft of New Ideas for Gers Boss


Byline: KEITH JACKSON

WHITE water rafting with Walter Smith. Sounds like one of Alan Partridge's programme ideas for the BBC.

Just after Monkey Tennis and Youth Hostelling with Chris Eubank.

But it happened all right. It happened yesterday morning, along a six-mile stretch of the Tay - in water so cold it can actually turn certain body parts inside out - with Record Sport, albeit not over enthusiastically, tagging along.

Mind you, enthusiasm was in short supply at breakfast time in Ballinluig as the Rangers boss and his backroom team - Ally McCoist, Ian Durrant and Kenny McDowall - rolled into this little pit stop of a town just off the A9 on the road to Pitlochry in the driving rain.

"What am I doing here?" was Smith's way of putting it as he fixed himself a cup of tea at the Nae Limits activity HQ where he had to report for a 9.30am start. This was not a senior moment from a bewildered 63-year-old.

Old Man River knew fine well why he was there. A few weeks from now, in his last act as Rangers boss, he will lead McCoist, Durrant and McDowall to Idaho on a five-day, 110-mile buttock clencher of a challenge - in the name of the club's charity foundation. That's more than 20 miles a day on some of the most dangerous swirls of water and skull-breaking rocks anywhere in the world. He's here then to learn the ropes. No matter how reluctantly.

We all are.

The pre-paddle briefing begins and John, our expert guide, goes to lengths to point out that, by comparison with what awaits this lot in the States, today's trip is a strictly 'L' plates affair. Rapids, we are told, are graded on a scale of 1-6 in terms of speed and their potential to do serious damage to humans. We'll be introduced to a few 1s before going up to a couple of 3s. John smiles, reassuring no one. Safety He then explains that the Rangers party will plough through no fewer than 47 sections of wild foaming river, all with a category of 5', when they bid to make it along the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. "Fall into a 5'," he says, "and you're unlikely to get back out."

It's only the start of this safety talk but already Durrant's mind is distracted and unlikely to return to the room any time soon. He interrupts our expert guide to ask: "Hold on, so you're saying if we fall out of the boat we're going to die?" "Probably!" "Well that's great," says Durrant, fixing an icy glare on the guy from the charity foundation who has signed them all up for this, the latest in a series of fund-raisers.

"How come we get this one? Martin Bain gets to walk up Kilimanjaro and we get drowning? I could have walked up Kilimanjaro in my flip flops and Speedos."

Durrant is not letting this one go.

"Well don't expect me to make that phone call at the end of the trip," he says to McCoist soon after as the pair clamber into their wet suits. "Hi Ethel, it's Ian. Bad news, the auld yin didn't make it."

McCoist, whose face is beginning to redden with laughter, says: "It doesn't matter, he's stepping down at the end of the season anyway!

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

The Gaffer's Raging. His Boat's Got Two Up Front; RECORD SPORT GOES WHITE WALTER RAFTING Raft of New Ideas for Gers Boss
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?