Centenary Hill Climb (Sunday, April 7th 2024)
It was a warm, sunny, Spring day for the hill climb competition this year and numbers were triple that of last at 17.
This was my 16th year of organising and will be my last and so if the event is to continue, we will need somebody else to volunteer to take on the job for next year.
It was great to see a mixture of ages and sections competing as well as about another 10 others who came to support the event, not least the legend that is John Ennis. Including the marshals and refreshment servers, there was approximately 30 people there, which was a pleasure to see.
My hardy, experienced band of helpers were in place but we nearly had a major mishap when it was found that the stop watches had no batteries about 5 minutes from the start. Polhill, where the event is held, is not known for its plethora of shops selling such items and fortunately the able Mike Gerlin and Emma Coffin were able to make do with just their mobile phones and disaster was averted.
The previous day several of us had been to the hill to blow, sweep, cut back branches and shovel a suitable path for the riders. The hut owner at the top had received a “thank you” bottle of wine for letting us serve the home made cakes and tea, from under their awning cakes were made the stove checked and all was ready.
So to the event itself. Richard Bevis not only helped marshal but had encouraged his sons, James and David, and their friend Chloe Haffenden to ride. Youth certainly shone through with James taking first place, 50 seconds ahead of the next rider, Paul McQuillen, and Chloe taking 1st lady. David was well up the field in joint 5th, tying with our Secretary Martin Gill.
Paul was the winner of the Martin Davis cup, being the 1st West Kent CTC rider. Justin Quelch did a very good ride and was 3rd with last year’s winner, Simon Hattersley, 4th. We should not forget the determined ride of our oldest entrant, Peter Woods, who at 83 gained second place overall in the handicap.
The team prize is awarded to the section with its’ best 3 riders’ times combined and this went to the Sunday Shorts, with The Orpingtons second.
All in all a good time was had by all and my thanks go to all of the helpers, riders and supporters that made the day a success.
Peter Ashlee.
Name Age Section Time Place Handicap Time Place after handicap
James Bevis 28 Guest 2.02 1st 2.02 1st
Paul McQuillen 62 Sunday Shorts 2.52 2nd 2.41 4th
Justin Quelch 62 Bexleyheath 2.59 3rd 2.48 6th=
Simon Hattersley 68 Hardrider 3.01 4th 2.3 3rd
Martin Gill 76 Hardrider 3.02 5th= 2.44 5th
David Bevis 25 Guest 3.02 5th= 3.02 9th
Peter Ashlee 64 Sunday Shorts 3.03 7th 2.48 6th=
Andrew Wythes 67 Ton & Tun Wells 3.17 8th= 2.5 8th
Chloe Haffenden 26 Guest 3.17 8th= 3.17 12th
Jon Ennis 64 Medway 3.19 10th 3.04 10th
Andy Davis 64 Sunday Shorts 3.20 11th 3.05 11th
Mark Dow 60 Medway 3.34 12th 3.27 14th
Stephen Brown 67 Orpingtons 4.21 13th 3.54 15th
Rob Seal 72 Ton & Tun Wells 4.22 14th 3.18 13th
Peter Woods 83 Orpingtons 4.26 15th 2.24 2nd
Mark Nelson 67? Bexleyheath 4.29 16th 3.58 16th
Richard Bush 68 Orpingtons 5.02 17th 4.31 17th
1st Overall                    : James Bevis
1st West Kent Cyclist : Winner of the Martin Davis Cup : Paul McQuillen
1st Lady                         : Chloe Haffenden
1st Veteran (0ver 80) : Peter Woods
Team Prize (with best combined times of 3 section members )
1st Sunday Shorts : 9:15
2nd Orpingtons     :13:49