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  • G Wood

Monsal Mash up

Updated: Oct 12, 2019

As mentioned in my last post and 2019 season round up my last race of the season was the 89th Edition of the Monsal Hill Climb - http://www.monsalhillclimb.com.


Organised by Marc Etches of Sheffrec CC its a superb race with a fantastic atmosphere on the hill and what it lacks in distance it more that makes up for lung bursting effort and pain with riders having to be caught and lifted off their bikes (if they don't fall off).


Last year was my first attempt and my first hill climb managing a 1min 42sec so a year older and stronger I was looking to do better.


The day before the race I called in to Giant Sheffield and Andy had the idea of lending me one of the Cycling Sheffield Giant TCR Advanced ex team bikes, lighter than my Propel and the perfect climbing bike for a hill that is 600m long and averages 9.7% with a maximum gradient of 19.8%.


The weather forecast was not looking good in the run up to the race but on the day the rain held off and while the wind was blowing the sun even came out a couple of times.


There were 3 of us turning out from Team JRC plus a bunch of other friends riding which made for a great day.

The race also marked Russell Downing's last professional ride; the biggest cheer of the day and shouts of encouragement were reserved for him as he smashed his way up the hill.



I gave it everything I had and managed to knock nearly 15 seconds off last years time coming in at 1 min 27.7secs which I was more that happy with. I was second junior to Kieran Smith in first, last years winner, who put in an excellent 1 min 25.2 in tougher conditions than last year. Overall I was 16th.


Photo by Jelignite Photography

Next year marks the 90th running and I will definitely be back to see if I can improve again but now its time to turn my attention to winter track league for the first time and learn a new set of skills.


Next year marks the 90th running and I will definitely be back to see if I can improve again but now its time to turn my attention to winter track league for the first time and learn a new set of skills.


Thanks to Andy and the team at Giant Sheffield and Dave Coulson the DS of Cycling Sheffield http://www.cyclingsheffield.com for lending me the Giant TCR team bike which performed fantastically and for the advice which made a big contribution to my result. I didn't want to give the bike back!


Thanks to Huw Spacey and Craig Stevenson at Vitfor for my coaching and support without whom I wouldn't have made the progression I've made in this year. I'm now looking forward to a good winter's training ready for the 2020 season.




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