Harbord and Banks share honours on the hills

In the Velo Club Baracchi end-of-season hill club events the winner of the hill climb was Pat Harbord, whose runner-up, Ali Banks, took first place in the freewheeling competition.

Hill climb winner Pat on his way up

Harbord was second in the freewheeling, so honours were shared equally between the two of them.

The freewheeling came first, when the club run stopped off at Jays Hill at Sotterley.  When the riders had all had their turn and settled to rest on the next incline Banks was a whole bike length ahead for a glorious win.

Freewheel trophy winner Ali Banks on his way down

As they set off again a bang like a rifle crack heralded the discovery of a massive hole in Mark Womack’s tyre and a burst inner tube. There was nothing to be done with the tyre, so he had to summon the cavalry to bring his spare bike and a give him a lift to the hill climb.

The other riders proceeded via Stoven and Rumburgh to Homersfield, where six, including Mark Womack, competed on Dove Hill.  Anyone who has turned north off the A143 at this point will know that there is an unusually steep little climb.

Nicki and Pat on the front of the club run

All of them took less than a minute to crest the brow.  The top times (in seconds) were Pat Harbord 45.29, Ali Banks 48.20, Paul Bedford 52.64, Chris Womack 53.73 and Mark Womack 55.13.

Nicki Hawkes, who rode to the event with the others, helped with the timing and one of the other riders was Brian Davies, a Godric CC rider, who will be joining VCB next year.

(These photos with others from the event are on VC Baracchi club run, freewheeling competition and hill climb – a set on Flickr   )

John Thompson rode the Stevenage CTC Emitremmus 101km Audax.  Its peculiar name is “summertime” spelt backwards, to signify summertime’s end.

The route included, he said, “some of the ‘best’ hills in Essex and Hertfordshire.”

Thompson added, “There is a particularly long climb after Saffron Walden to Great Chishill, albeit very gradual. I got round in about 5hrs 25mins”

  • The VC Baracchi annual meeting is on Monday November 14 at the Tramway Hotel
  • The annual presentation evening is Saturday November 19 at the Marquis of Lorne (sorry it says Friday in the local paper!).