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Digital postcards from the road
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October 15, 2017

The Hill Climb season is brief but intense, the past five weeks have revolved around short week day training rides, each with multiple visits to the pain cave then a single excruciating race effort on the Sunday. Results have been satisfactory, I have performed pretty much the same as last year and the year before that. I made one Veteran’s podium and I am content that I have again stalled the aging process for another year. With the best bike stripped down for racing and with me ‘in theory’ in the best shape of the year it makes sense to spend the rest of the week trying to bag as many KOM’s as I can. I need to train hard, I need to make the efforts, the bike and body are prepared so if it stays dry and mild, now is the time to go hunting.


Each target is scrutinised the night before, I plan no more than three or four per ride, it’s the quality I am looking for not the quantity this time of year. Each route is no more than two hours long and each time I roll out of the city I have the...

October 5, 2017

Monsal Head, climb number 30 in my first book, is a hill I know all too well. In fact I could describe just about every lump, bump, ripple and kink along its diminutive, but challenging 500 meters. Home to maybe the most famous British hill climb race on the calendar, dating way back to 1930 it is one event the best all want to win. The course record, the infamous 1.14.2 has stood since 1981 and belongs to the great British sprinter Malcolm Elliot, and before that it belonged to the legendary Tom Simpson, yes, this event oozes history. The first time I rode it in anger was in 1991 (but as I’ve lost the results sheet so I’ve no idea how I faired), I didn’t return for a further 21 years, but having pinned a number on for the past six seasons, I can now consider myself a veteran of the event. If you were to build a hill climb course from scratch then what you would end up with would look pretty much exactly like Monsal Head. A challenging gradient, room to finish your warm up at the base,...

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Britain's Greatest

Cycling Climbs BOX SET

Comprising a total of 545 ascents from the tip of Cornwall all the way up to the highlands of Scotland, the eight region-specific volumes of Britain’s Greatest Cycling Climbs contain the most comprehensive documentation of Britain’s hills ever compiled for road cyclists.

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