CYCLING: Witham Wheeler Cocker contests National Hill Climb

Peter Cocker (left) catches his 30-second man.
Peter Cocker (left) catches his 30-second man.

Peter Cocker was one of 240 riders contesting the 2016 National Hill Climb Championships on Sunday.

Promoted by Matlock CC on Bank Road, an 800m climb starting right in the centre of Matlock, there was a big crowd generating a great atmosphere on the steep climb, which hit 20 per cent in places.

Riding for Witham Wheelers, his first claim time trial club, Peter finished a creditable 34th overall in a time of 2min 38sec, after catching his 30-second man Jake Backus not long after half way. Although down on his 2015 placing of 22nd, the standard this year seemed to be higher and Peter was only 20 seconds behind winner Adam Kenway (Metaltek Kuota) in 2:18 – an event of small margins.

The National Hill Climb always has ‘catchers’ at the finish and this year it seemed particularly brutal as many riders, Peter included, literally collapsed over the line, with paramedics in attendance if needed.

l Arrow Cycles promoted the latest Lincs Cyclo Cross League round at the Hubbard Hills venue at Louth.

Used for many years, the long climb on the grassy fields from the valley floor up to the top of the hill always makes for a tough event, although conditions were drier than usual.

In the under-12s, it was great to see the Kolbert family making the trip over the Wolds to ride this event. Unfortunately, Jessica East was forced to retire on the first lap.

Results: 17 Amy Kolbert (6th girl), 34 Isla Kolbert (12th girl), 49 Max Kolbert.

It was the biggest field so far for the veterans’ race with 90 riders, and Llewey Byrne was again the best of the club riders.

Results: 14 Llewey Byrne, 24 Paul Conneely 53.08, 31 Neil Sentance, 50 Sean East, 61 Graham McAndrew, 70 Dave Miller (5th Vet 60).

In the senior race, there was a good ride by Robert McAndrew for 14th overall and second junior, with regular winner George Thompson (Sleaford Wh) first again.

Scunthorpe RC promoted their round of the Lincs Cyclo Cross League at Common Plantation last Sunday in warm, dry conditions.

Despite the rain earlier in the week, the sandy course had dried well and made for interesting racing with a mix of singletrack, small climbs, run-ups and a sand pit to catch out the unwary.

In the under-12s, Jessica East rode another consistemt race for 11th overall and third girl.

The veterans’ race saw another big field of more than 80 riders which, after the usual cavalry charge at the start, managed to sort itself reasonably well before it hit the singletrack, although Dave Moulds got too close to a tree stump and hit the deck early on and Sean East lost time with a derailed chain after hitting another tree root.

Results: 14 Llewey Byrne 44:48, 25 Dave Moulds (4th Vet 50), 42 Simon Cocker (12th Vet 50), 44 Sean East 43.02, 70 Dave Miller 48.16 (3rd Vet 60).