Late September saw the club’s final competitive race event of the year, The Ganny Bank Hill climb, the much revered climb up Mow Lane is certainly a difficult climb, 1.3 miles long with varied gradient changes making it difficult to establish any rhythm. Benefiting form mild and sunny conditions perhaps in part explaining the large turnout, saw Congleton cycling Clubs very own Ben Norbury take the honours, incredibly by 1 second.
The top 3 finishers were Ben Norbury in 5m 45.7s, Rob Howson (Leek CC) 5:46.9 and Andrew Doorbar (Unattached) 5:54.6. Best Veteran was Rob Dale in 6:33. Best Lady was Hannah Rhodes Patterson (Durham University CC) 6:47.2 from Sue Blake 8:52.3 and Lesley Norbury 10:57.3. Top Junior was Jake Niblett 6:48.4 and best juvenile Joe France 9:36.0 beating younger brother Tom 10:40.0.
Ben had qualified from competing in a variety of other Hill Climb events for the prestigious National Hill Climb event, which was held in late October at Jackson Bridge in West Yorkshire. His time of 5mins 20.7 seconds, was only just over a min down on the winner . This was a great result on a very tough climb which started up an 18-20% pitch, levelled off and it then was consistently 10 – 15% all the way to the top, averaging 11%.
2015 saw the introduction of weekly Saturday Social rides where previously they had been fortnightly, these alternating 30mile & 40mile rides have been very well supported all year, different lead riders taking cyclists along a variety of beautiful quiet scenic routes heading to high quality Cafe stops, inclusive fun and banter all part and parcel.
Club Members Rob Waghorn and Denise Hurst organised Audax events, these well designed rides, included differing terrain and distances. They were supported by many none club riders many of which commented they were high quality events.
The 5th of November saw the club’ AGM, the committee member officers each gave a report, which described another good year for the club, in which the membership growth slowed with 129 members reported (126 in 2014). These include 11 juniors and 31 ladies. The Club is in a good position with a broad range of activities, where there is something for all, from Social to Endurance events.
The club have been lobbying to bring a major cycle sport event to Congleton. Led by Pete Smith, an initial agreement with the town council to bring a Pearl Izumi Tour Series criterium to the town has morphed into a potential stage finish of the Tour of Britain. This week it has been announced that Cheshire East Council have approved a budget of £250,000 to bring a stage of the Tour of Britain, the countries biggest cycle race, to the county. We believe that Congleton is favoured to host a stage finish.
Upcoming events include a roller racing evening vs the Leek C.C. on Nov 19th in the Rugby Club starting at 19:30 hrs, and the club’s annual dinner and prize presentation on December 5th at Astbury Golf club. There are still tickets available for the latter.