Clash of Champions

Bronwen Ewing Comes Out On Top

Bronwen Ewing of Rye & District Wheelers, the National 24 Hour Champion took on Rebecca Slack of The Altitude Centre, the National 100 Mile Champion in the famous Wigmore Hill Climb.

The two long distance women champions raced over the very shortest of time trials, a mad dash up the 1200 yard Hollingbourne Hill on 2 October in the 36th annual running of the event on what was probably the hottest day it has ever been held.

Ten ladies started among the field of 61 riders. The bright sunny morning attracted a large number of spectators many of them cycling out to the venue.

Kate Bosley of San Fairy Ann set the early pace among the ladies with a 5.15 this was the best time until her team mate Jennifer Stuart-Smith arrived at the timekeeper with 4.56. Clare Elms of Redmond CC knocked over 30 secs off Jennifer’s time but this was quickly beaten by last year’s winner Deborah Percival (34th. Nomads) in 4.14

Bronwen Takes on Hollingbourne Hill
Bronwen Takes on Hollingbourne Hill

Bronwen was next, she powered up the steep last section of the hill, still in the saddle. It was a spectacular finish, beating Deborah’s time by almost 10 seconds. A group of Rye Wheelers were gathered near the finish and waited with baited breath for the arrival of Rebecca Slack. Rated number one lady in the event she was off from the back of the field. Rebecca stormed up the last section of the course but those who had seen Bronwen finish knew that Rebecca would not better the time of the flying Rye girl. And so it was. Rebecca Slack was 20 seconds slower, just good enough for third place by 3/10sec.

Ladies Result

1. Bronwen Ewing Rye & District Wheelers 04:05.5

2. Deborah Percival 34th Nomads CC – GEM Hygiene 04:14.7

3. Rebecca Slack The Altitude Centre 04:25.6

4. Clare Elms Redmon CC 04:25.9

5. Jennifer Stuart-Smith San Fairy Ann CC 04:56.4

6. Louise Mason Medway Velo Club 05:00.0

7. Deborah Hope Medway Velo Club 05:03.7

8. Kate Bosley San Fairy Ann CC 05:15.5

9. Keeley Chalk Rye & District Wheelers 05:30.4

10. Sarah Bosley San Fairy Ann CC 07:24.4


With a prize list of over £400-00 plus a bonus valued at £250-00 if the winner finished inside 3 minutes many people expected to see a new record set in what appeared to be perfect conditions.

When Alan Thynne (Rye & District) off number 12 recorded 3m 31.7s it certainly looked as though the bonus prize would be taken by the later starters.

Alan’s time was unbeaten for 34 minutes until Joe Harris (Reading C.C.) took the lead, arriving in 3m 16.8s. It was left to the last 4 riders to try and win the top prize.

Will Manger (In Gear) got close with 3m 17.4s, eventually finishing in 3rd place.

The last 3 riders were all veterans and produced very good times with Steve Hopkins (Ashford Whls) 3m 31.4s for 5th position and Kevin Tye (DataAllstars) 4th with 3m 20.9s. This left the last starter Peter Tadros (In Gear) who won in 2009 the only rider capable of taking the top prize. Although he made a gallant effort it wasn’t quite good enough and he had to be content with the £50-00 prize for 1st place with a time of 3m 7.7s.

Alan Thynne was placed sixth. Steve Gooch, determined to beat Bronwen’s time, acually surpassed himself with a 3m.51.7 taking eleventh place and Barry Goodsell also improved on his last years effort with a fine 4m.03.6, doing Bronwen out of a team award by less than 2 seconds! Alan, Steve and Barry won the team event for Rye & District Wheelers.

With Mark Amon and Keeley Chalk also doing very creditable rides it turned out to be another great day for Rye cycling. Bronwen, Keeley and Alan will go on to Leeds for the National Hill Climb Championships.

“Rye’s Own” November 2011

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