WITH nine National 100 titles to his credit, 51-year-old Ian Cammish took a narrow victory in the National 12 hour to claim his first national title at the distance.

The half-day title has always eluded prolific Cammish, but with defending champion Kevin Dawson not riding the Bedfordshire rider seized his chance with both hands.

Cammish covered 284.54 miles around Great Chesterford in Essex, but after 12 hours of hard riding through wind and rain he won by less than one mile from Team Swift-Allsports rival Carl Ruebotham, whose distance of 283.89 was only 0.65 miles less.

The day began dry for most riders, but with Cammish having covered just 60 miles the heavens opened and torrential rain created large puddles on the course. Strong winds soon followed, but it would not stop the Planet X rider from ploughing on.

?I?ve done 292 miles in a 12-hour in 2001, but I think it was a better ride yesterday, all things considered,? he said.

?It?s my first national title since 1989, so I?m pretty pleased. Realistically it was my last chance at the age of 51, so I wasn?t going to let it go.?

More on the National 12 in this week?s Cycling Weekly.