Based on the A490, the only main road used in the 2022 Series, Solihull CC’s Fellows set a great target of 3min24secs – two seconds behind the 3:22 Vickers set in 2020.
Steven Prince took the maximum points on offer to county riders and moved up into the overall silver medal position, narrowing the gap to Series leader Tomos Hales to 28 points with a personal best 3:48.
Not only that but Prince is homing in on the top of the Veterans’ standings thanks to five straight wins in that category and now sits just two points behind Chris Riley.
Prince, who finished a second ahead of Mule CC’s James Davies, was delighted with his efforts.
“I was really pleased with how it went, it’s another tough climb and tricky to pace, and the drag to the finish can be a killer if you’ve gone to hard early on,” he said. “I’m chuffed with another personal best.”
This was Davies’ first entry into the Series and he was satisfied with nearly causing an upset at first attempt with his 3:49, which took third spot overall in a strong showing for the over-40 riders. Particularly as he took the honours for Mule by beating younger team mate Jed Friskney who finished in four minutes exactly. Davies had ridden over from Oswestry which provided a good warm up. He stated: “It’s a great climb and the volunteers made it a fantastic event.”
Another Mule member, Liz Breeze, took the Women’s win in 8:53 to move up to second in the standings.
The round seven action at Homer Bank saw Hales claim his third win in the Series.
The half-mile climb is one of the shortest in the competition, requiring an explosive effort right from the off, and Hales stopped the watch on two minutes 4.44 seconds.
Hales was satisfied with his efforts, stating: “One of my favourite climbs of the series, short and sharp. I paced it well and happy to get close to the two-minute benchmark on a wet evening – thanks for the SCCA for hosting such a great event.”
Prince claimed the runner-up spot in 2:06.57 and the Veterans’ win in the process.
Mid Shropshire Wheelers’ Junior Alex Hart finished third on the evening in a fine 2:09.97. Hart has a huge advantage of 44 points in the Junior Series but will miss several events in this best six from 12 Series due to cyclo-cross commitments.