Monsal Hill Climb, 2019

It's hill climb season and one of the main attractions on the calendar is the Monsal Hill Climb at Monsal Head, Derbyshire.

First run in 1930, this has been a fixture in the diary of those who enjoy the pain-cave for an amazing 89 years! 

Malcolm Elliott holds the current record that has stood since 1981 ~ 1:14.2

Will it ever be broken? Not this year! 

All photos by Thom Barnett

Continue reading

The Mam Nick Hill Climb 2018

It appears the weather is consistently bleak for the Mam Nick climb, this year was no different. 40mph winds and drizzle made for a epic spectacle with the first rider off at 10.01am.

A swirling gale looked to occasionally help the riders on the lower slopes, before becoming a hazardous crosswind half-way up and a brick-wall headwind over the top. 

61 riders had signed up to tackle the climb including the current record-holder Paddy Clark and a debut for European Champs silver-medalist and cross-country running star Hatti Archer.  

On the day it was Andy Nichols (Team B38/Underpin) who took the win with a time of 06.46.4 for the Men Seniors and Hatti Archer taking the Women's overall with an impressive 08.10.7.

A special thank-you and congratulations to Nick Lattimer and The Rutland CC for organising such a great event. Surely the Nationals will one-day have to be held at this magnificent place?! 

Continue reading

Peak District Climbs - #6 Sir William Hill Road

The two roads I like riding most leaving Hathersage are Abney and this one, Sir William Road. A single lane back-wack that leads up and snakes around Leam farm. 

Once you've taken the B6001 out of Hathersage and dropped under the bridge you pass the David Mellor Museum and the football pitch to your left. You'll then pass the road to Abney on your right, the next road, the one before you reach Fallcliff Wood is the severe Sir William Hill Road and one that boasts ace views and interesting architecture.

It does have it's moments of intense unpleasant gradient where I had to use my 23 sprocket (42.23), especially the two semi-switchbacks. The first goes past the perishing roofs of the farm house which then levels out for 100 yards before it raises again, swinging left as the road forks. I suggest you go wide as the inside-line of the road is rather strenuous. 

The second part of the climb as you pass Leam settles into an easier gradient before rolling through Home wood and Sherriff wood. There are a few trees down up there and you'll notice an ever changing den on your left. It was ti-pi made of wood in summer, yesterday it was a full-bown plastic-covered shed made from broken bits of trees with a rope swing, perhaps made by the children who live in the farm. 

Once your through the over hanging trees, at the end of the road turn right - the last part of the the climb and another drag before your at the top. You'll be greeted with panoramic views, looking back down into Grindleford and over to Bretton Brook. From there you can start the fast decent to Eyam or the take the ridge road that leads to Hucklow or Bretton. 

Continue reading