Late bloomer breaks through
DAVID McIntosh never displayed an interest in cycling until long after he left Ballina as a teenager.
However the London-based lawyer achieved a major milestone when he took out the Etape Caledonia cycle race in Scotland at the weekend.
More than 4000 riders took part in the 130km race staged in the challenging terrain of the Scottish highlands.
McIntosh attended primary school in Ballina before finishing high school at The Southport School on the Gold Coast.
He played rugby union there and was in the same team as rugby league and rugby union international Mat Rogers.
"David excelled in quite a few sports," his father Barry said.
"He was always an athlete and was into surf club and a few other things.
"Cycling is very popular in Europe and it's something he got stuck into once he got there."
David McIntosh completed a law degree in Sydney before he moved to London, where he has spent the past six years.
David recorded the fastest time of the day in the Etape Caledonia race after finishing fourth a year earlier.
The 36-year-old was 10 minutes adrift of the race record of 3hr 27m 38s set by professional cyclist Evan Oliphant in 2011.
McIntosh isn't a professional cyclist and was competing in the event for the fifth time.
"It was good to be the first over the line," he told Scottish newspaper The Courier.
"I was hanging on at the end, even though I was pretty tired and I kept looking behind me to see if anyone else was coming.
"The wind made it so much harder for people to come back though."
McIntosh will race at the event again next year and will look to add more races to his calendar this season.
"He finished 132 out of 8000 in the Tour de France last year," Barry McIntosh said.
"I've seen him race in Ireland at an event that had 2000 starters and he won that.
"He plans to compete in the Tour de France this year and improve on his result."
David has also received an award from the British Racing Team while he continues working as a lawyer.
"It's exciting to see what he's done and he is over the moon with his latest performance," Barry McIntosh said.
"He thought he would do well but it was a tough one to win."