AFTER scoring seven outright wins and one equal first with David Clarke in the month prior to the title race, James Dobbin (Arctic-Shorter Rochford RT) confirmed his form with victory in today?s CTT National Hill-Climb Championship at Sidmouth, Devon.
Appropriately, it was Clarke (Team Nippo-KFS) who was Dobbin’s nearest challenger on the mile-long Peak Hill course as five-times champion Jim Henderson (Southport CC) was edged off the podium by 2004 champion Jonathan Dayus, second man in the winning Arctic team.
In almost summer-like conditions for the Sid Valley CC event, the first seven riders today were inside the course record of 5-18.7 which Dobbin had set when he won the club?s open event last year.
Dobbin, who had got inside five minutes in a practice run on the Peak Hill course last Monday, put the issue beyond doubt today when he stormed up in 4-44.0 to leave David Clarke trailing by a massive 23.3-second margin.
In contrast, just two fifths of a second separated Clarke and Dayus, with Henderson a further three seconds back in fourth place.
Teenager Daniel Shand (West Pennine RC) confirmed his impressive form with fifth place ahead of Matt Clinton (Mike Vaughan Cycles), Richard Pettinger (Sri Chinmoy CT) and Bill Bell (Gemini BC).
Arctic-Shorter Rochford RT took the team title for a fourth consecutive year despite their expected contender Danny Axford seeing his hopes dashed when a bolt came loose from his chainring after just 50 yards. Stephen Nunn was the surprise third team medallist behind Dobbin and Dayus.
National Hill-Climb Championship (Peak Hill, Sidmouth, Devon, 1 mile).-
James Dobbin (Arctic-Shorter Rochford RT) 4-44.0 (course record)
David Clarke (Team Nippo-KFS) 5-07.3
Jonathan Dayus (Arctic-Shorter Rochford RT) 5-07.3
J. Henderson (Southport CC) 5-10.7
D. Shand (West Pennine RC) 5-12.3
M. Clinton (Mike Vaughan Cycles) 5-14.8
R. Pettinger (Sri Chinmoy CT) 5-18.2
B. Bell (Gemini BC) 5-19.8
I. Stott (Blackburn & Dist CTC) 5-24.2
M. Lovatt (Planet X) 5-27.4
Team.- Arctic-Shorter Rochford RT (James Dobbin. Jonathan Dayus, Stephen Nunn 6-05.5) 15-57.2. Juniors.- Luke Rowe (Glendene CC) 5-42.9. Women.- Anne Bowditch (Science in Sport.com) 6-41.9.