Crowd enjoy Bamber v Zagni hill clash
The only difficulty at the Gasp Up Gas Hill was holding back the crowds.
Spectators lined the length of the Norwich climb, sometimes spilling past the barriers, to see an exciting evening of racing culminating in a win by Dan Zagni (Ipswich BC).
In the Star's Final Zagni – who was second in the cycle speedway world championships 23 years ago – faced 16-year-old cyclo-cross champion Hugo Robinson, Tim Snook, another cycle speedway turned road racing man, and hill climb expert Will Bamber, from Denton, near Bungay.
Zagni hit the front straight away with Snook on his wheel. Bamber was trailing on the lower slope, but stormed past Robinson and Snook to claim the �60 second prize – Zagni won �100. Probably the loudest cheers were inspired by determined efforts of those who just made it to the top, like eight-year old Matthew Mantle (Mildenhall CC).
• Race-long breakaway companions Chris Guy (Iceni Velo) and Mark Howard (PCH UK Racing Team) were the undoubted stars of the VC Norwich road race near Wymondham, though Guy ended up with the winner's spoils – courtesy of sponsors Norwich Motor Group and Pedal Revolution – while Howard, dropped in the final mile and eventually 19th, had to be content with a tribute from Guy in his winner's speech. The pair broke clear within minutes of the start and rode a 2-Up, between 30 and 90 seconds off the front of the bunch until the final climb when Howard faded. Guy just hung on to take the win. Hot on his heels, the bunch charge was headed by Lee Rowe (Finchley RT), just ahead of Matthew Thurston (Iceni Velo), Hugo Robinson (XRT/Elmy Cycles) and Mark Westrup (VC Baracchi). The sprinting bunch encountered a car on the climb to the finish and several fell, but mercifully no one appeared to be injured.
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It was a good day for local winners with Elliott Lawrence (Fakenham Gas Centre) winning the eight-hour solo race, just two minutes up on mid-Norfolk man Matt Carter. and Richard Dunnett (Diss CC) taking the 10-hour. Among the pairs, father and son Paul and Shane Ashby (Fat Birds) won the six-hour, with dad putting in the fastest lap. Team CCN's Glenn Stanford and Shaun Aldous took the 10-hour and Salsa the mixed pairs.
• Showers occasionally cooled riders in the Garboldisham Grovels Audax rides, the longest of which was 200 kilometres and attracted 42 riders who rode to Burnham Deepdale in far north-west Norfolk and returned via Castle Acre.
• Norwich bike shop-sponsored Team Pedal Revolution won the team prize in the National 100 miles Championship with Nik Bowdler finishing in 3:37:41, Andy Bason in 3:39:11 and Mark Arnold in 3:55:46.
• Gasp Up Gas Hill: Stars – 1 Dan Zagni (Ipswich BC), 2 W Bamber (Cult Racing). Stars, Best of the Rest – 1 Mark Westrup (VC Baracchi), 2 C Bartlett (VC Norwich); Hopefuls – 1 Robert Chenery (Lowestoft), 2 A Steel (Diss CC). Hopefuls, Best of the Rest – 1 Bill Griffin (CyclesUK), 2 S Lomax (Norwich ABC). Ladies – 1 Alex McKibben (Iceni Velo), 2 B Ellis (Billericay). Juniors – 1 Hugo Robinson (XRT/Elmy), 2 J Hannan (Glendene CC). Future Stars – 1 Harrison Charlwood (Great Yarmouth CC) 2 M Baker (GYCC).
• VC Norwich Road Race, Wicklewood: 1 Chris Guy (Iceni Velo), 2 L Rowe (Finchley RT), 3 M Thurston (Iceni Velo), 4 H Robinson (XRT/Elmy) 5 M Westrup (VC Baracchi), 6 L Gentry (VC Baracchi), 7 G Moore (Stowmarket & District) 8 T Ormes (Velo Schils), 9 J Wylie (Velo Schils), 10 J Orrey (Essex Roads).