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Chris Crabtree celebrates victory on Semer Hill by a massive margin

PUBLISHED: 06:48 17 October 2018

Chris Crabtree at the East District Championship hill climb at Semer. Picture: Roger Rush

Chris Crabtree at the East District Championship hill climb at Semer. Picture: Roger Rush

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Chris Crabtree is East District Hill Climb champion, winning outright on Semer Hill, after having to settle for second last year to a visitor from Yorkshire - who probably had more local hills to train on.

The Under 16 Girls podium at the Welwyn Cyclo-Cross - Bethany Barnett (King’s Lynn CC, centre). Picture: Fergus MuirThe Under 16 Girls podium at the Welwyn Cyclo-Cross - Bethany Barnett (King’s Lynn CC, centre). Picture: Fergus Muir

This time it was an outright win in 40.1 seconds - six seconds faster than second-placed Ross Fawcett, a massive gap on the on the short climb out of the Brett valley.

Crabtree (Orwell Velo) won the classic Bec CC event in Surrey last week, but said: “It was awesome to take the win at Semer in front of home crowds, family and friends on Sunday.”

Top Norfolk finisher was Louis Julian (DAP CC, 49.9) while women’s winner was Becky Ridge (TPH, 58.8 seconds) ahead of Polly Mason (Pedal Revolution, 1:01.3).

The “Silly Suffolk” Audax ride took riders along a quiet roads route from Lowestoft to Bawdsey and Orford (100 mile version) and on to Thornham near Diss for the brave souls like John Swindells (Iceni Velo) tackling 200 kilometres.

The Under 14 Girls podium at the Welwyn Cyclo-Cross - Florence Barnett (King’s Lynn CC, centre). Picture: Fergus MuirThe Under 14 Girls podium at the Welwyn Cyclo-Cross - Florence Barnett (King’s Lynn CC, centre). Picture: Fergus Muir

Plenty of cake stops served as route controls – or in the case of CC Breckland vegan Mark Fairhead, toast-and-jam stops. It only rained towards the end.

It rained jolly nearly all day at the cyclo-cross at Welwyn, though the course held up remarkably well.

Bethany Barnett (King’s Lynn CC) was top Under 16 girl, going hard from the start, to get well clear of her rivals.

Sister Florence was first Under 14 girl, finishing 52 seconds ahead of second-placed Serafino Sella (Hub Velo). Callum Laborde (Iceni Velo, sixth) was top Norfolk U16 and still heads the Youth League.

Dickleburgh rider Kieran Jarvis vaults his way to fifth place at the Welwyn Cyclo-Cross. Picture: Fergus MuirDickleburgh rider Kieran Jarvis vaults his way to fifth place at the Welwyn Cyclo-Cross. Picture: Fergus Muir

In the final race of the day, for senior and junior competitors, there were five juniors in the top 10 – headed by Oliver Stockwell of Welwyn Wheelers.

James Madgwick was second with Lowestoft fireman Seb Herrod third.

In the Vets 40-49 race Paul Groombridge hardly allowed a graceful somersault to delay him at all, though clipping the top of a hurdle and landing in a heap a lap later, lost him one place. He was still fifth and top Norfolk finisher.

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