CYCLING: Grantham endurance biker Howett rides Worlds in Australia

Andrew Howett
Andrew Howett
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Endurance mountain bike racer Andrew Howett competed in the 24-hour World Championships in Australia last month.

The race was held on the tough Mount Stromlo course, near Canberra, where Andrew made his World Championship debut back in 2010, and featured a field of 300 competitors representing 17 countries.

A minute’s silence was held before the beginning of the race when it was announced that Kane Vandenberg, who had crashed on the course the previous day, had died in hospital overnight.

Seeded number 23, Andrew had a steady start but moved up through the field as the race progressed. By dawn he was up to 16th place but then a mechanical problem necessitated a change to the spare bike.

The pace intensified in the last few hours but he was able still able to make up a couple more places.

The race was dominated by Australian and Canadian riders with local favourite Jason English retaining his title. Andrew finished the race in 13th place and was first of the British riders in the men’s race.

Andrew said he was pleased with how the race had panned out: “The course and the weather both suited me perfectly. It was a hard race but I really enjoyed it. I will get that top-10 place next year.”

He and the other British riders will have the home advantage next year when the race takes place at Fort William in the Scottish Highlands.

Andrew thanked his sponsors Mt Zoom and Bikefood, and also Nigel Dawson and especially Carole Armstrong for all their help.

The full story of the race can be read at www.andrewhowett.blogspot.com