Just nine days after being taken to hospital in an air ambulance after a collision with a car, Adam Kenway (Metaltek-Kuota) won the men’s National Hill-Climb Championships, with Lou Bates (Velochils Interbike) taking the women’s title.
Kenway set the fastest time of 2:18.2 on the Bank Road course in the centre of Matlock, more than two seconds faster than his nearest challenger, Isaac Mundy (Oxford University CC) who was a surprise podium finisher. James Lowden (Team ASL360) finished third, 2.6 seconds adrift of Kenway.
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It was Kenway’s tenth hill-climb success this autumn, having also taken victory on Monsal Head. His only previous podium place in the Nationals was when he came third in 2014.
Bates, who also won on Monsal, was the only female to go beneath three minutes, posting a course record time of 2:57.1. Becky Lewis (Wrexham RC) and Joanne Clay (TORQ Performance) took second and third respectively, with times of 3:01.5 and 3:01.8.
Although Kenway prior to his hospitalistion was regarded as joint-favourite alongside Joe Clark (EnvelopeMaster), his win due to the circumstances was just one of many shocks in the men’s results.
Clark missed out on a podium place, finishing fifth behind Kieran Wynne-Cattanach (Rhos-on-Sea CC), a rider who was a darkhorse for a top-five, but never expected to better such company.
Defending champion Richard Bussell (Aerocoach) was seventh; little-known Leon Wright (Team PB Performance) a place ahead of him in sixth. 2014 national champion Dan Evans (Cannondale-UK) was 11th and Lee Baldwin (Champion System UK) 16th.
There were also some surprises in the women’s race: champion for the last three years Maryka Sennema (Paceline) could only finish seventh in what was her last National Hill-Climb Championships.
Joscelin Lowden (Lewes Wanderers CC) and Fiona Burnie (Bishop Auckland CC), riders who had impressed in numerous events since September, were fourth and fifth, respectively.
- Adam Kenway (Metaltek Kuota) 2:18.2
- Isaac Mundy (Oxford University CC) 2:20.2
- James Lowden (Team ASL360) 2:20.8
- Kieran Wynne-Cattanach (Rhos-on-Sea CC) 2:23.6
- Joe Clark (EnvelopeMaster) 2:23.9
- Leon Wright (Team PB Performance) 2:24.4
- Richard Bussell (AeroCoach) 2:25.7
- James Hayward (Woolwich CC) 2:26.8
- Will Bourne (Handsling RT) 2:27.6
- Shaun Dolby (Birdwell Wheelers) 2:28.2
- Lou Bates (Veloschils Interbike) 2:57.1
- Becky Lewis (Wrexham RC) 3:01.5
- Joanne Clay (TORQ Performance) 3:01.8
- Joscelin Lowden (Lewis Wanderers CC) 3:01.9
- Fiona Burnie (Bishop Auckland CC) 3:07.1
- Lynn Hamel (Team Lusso 72 Design.com) 3:09.8
- Maryka Sennema (Paceline) 3:10.9
- Alice Lethbridge (Starley Racing) 3:11.5
- Rebecca Goodson (Sheffrec CC) 3:15.4
- Jessica Roberts (Team Elite) 3:20.8