The Only Way Is Up! Champion climbing

From being a novice 12 months ago to a champion 3 times over and a race organiser to boot, Amy Cuthbertson has certainly had an admirable first racing season.

After becoming joint winner of the Women’s category in the 2018 corsaRosa League with Ailish Graham of albaRosa CC, Amy changed her efforts toward the hill climb season alongside our other hill climb aficionado Andrew Bolton, setting his sights on riding the nationals for a third consecutive year.

Both rode our club’s open event Saturday 6th October, Andrew not only competing but organising of course – chapeau Andrew! – and Amy gaining her 2nd championship of 2018 by winning the club Women’s hill climb award. But there was more to come.

Phil Hurt of Yorkshire Road Club oversees the Yorkshire Hill Climbs Points Competition each year which comprises of 10 events – 11 climbs as our event has 2 stages – with a rider’s best six scores to count and open to all riders, not just those from Yorkshire club’s, Amy and Andrew both entering counting events in pursuit of those points.

Curiously, the first counting event is held in June, the YCF hill climb on Cragg Vale, Amy not riding that but Andrew and Claire & Greg Jessop taking part. At 4.812 miles, it’s the longest continuous climb in England.

The next counting event, the 3RT Scammonden Dam Hill Climb due to be held 16th September had to be postponed until November so the next two events were the Halifax Imperial Wheelers hill climb 22nd September and the Bridlington CC hill 30th September. Sadly, although Andrew had entered them – Amy hadn’t  – a continuing injury meant he couldn’t ride. So, on to the week after our 2 stager with two events on Saturday 13th October.

In the morning was the 45th running of the Granville Sydney Memorial Hill Climb promoted by Huddersfield Star Wheelers. Granville Sydney was a 6 time winner of the National Hill Climb Championship (1963, ‘65, ‘69, ‘70, ‘72 & ‘73) riding for the Huddersfield club.

On the Jackson Bridge V9912 course at Cumberworth covering 1,540 yards, Amy recorded 8:08.1 and Andrew 8:10.2. Overall winner was Andrew Feather of BCR Racing in 4:20.8. Fastest woman in 5:49.5 was ASSOS Equipe UKs Jessica Evans.

Full results and report courtesy of CTT and Snowdon Sports.

In the afternoon Holme Valley Wheelers held their event on the 1.34 mile V997 Rake Head Road course near Holme village. Andrew was fastest this time with 4:03.5, Amy recording 4:07.4. Andrew Feather and Jessica Evans were once again fastest overall and woman in 1:55.0 and 2:39.0 respectively.

Full results and report courtesy of CTT and Snowdon Sports.

A week later on 21st October and Scotchman Lane in Morley was the venue for the Drighlington BC event on the 1km V9917. Amy was 3rd woman in 4:37.2. Andrew’s time was 4:53.5. Kieran Savage (Team B38/Underpin Racing) was fastest overall in 2:42.5 and Sarah Lewthwaite (Team Sportslab) fastest woman in 4:17.0.

Photograph courtesy of Michael Cuthbertson.

Full results and report courtesy of CTT and Snowdon Sports.

Next day, Sunday 21st October, saw two events again on the same day, the first promoted by Huddersfield Road Club in the morning on the 1,320 yard V999 on Ripponden Bank, Cragg Vale used again in the afternoon, Yorkshire Road Club (YRC) taking the reins this time.

Only one Otley CC representative in each race that day, Andrew starting proceedings in the morning with a time of 6:40.5. Team B38/Underpin took another overall win, this time via Jude Taylor in 3:21.9, with Hannah Riechart of albaRosa fastest woman in 4:52.3.

Full results courtesy of CTT.

Both Amy and Andrew were on the start sheet for the YRC event but unfortunately Andrew couldn’t compete in the afternoon so it was down to Amy to fly the Otley colours, finishing in 24:22.6 and moving to 1st woman in the Yorkshire Hill Climbs Points Championship with just one round to go, the postponed 3RT Scammonden Dam event.

The YRC event was won in 15:22.1 by Kieran Savage, now riding for Cycling Sheffield/Giant, with fastest woman again Hannah Riechart in 21:05.3.

Full results courtesy of CTT.

4th November was the new date for the 3RT hill climb and with her main rival not riding Amy was assure of being first woman in the Championship. Of course, Amy could have said ‘enough’ but chose to go out on a high, literally!

Four Otley riders competed in the event on a closed course using the Scammonden Reservoir access road. Fastest was Oliver Shaw in 2:00.0, followed by John Armitstead in 2:31.4, Michael Cuthbertson in 2:56.5 and Amy in 2:58.2.

Full results and report courtesy of CTT and Snowdon Sports.

Indeed, Amy wasn’t overtaken in the points standing so became 2018 Women’s Yorkshire Hill Climbs Points Champion with 551 points. Congratulations Amy! Final Standings courtesy of Phil Hurt and YRC.

Andrew’s illness, now thankfully diagnosed and on the way to being cured, unfortunately ruled him out of riding the last few hill climbs of the season, including the Nationals (he was fortunately able to contact the organiser in time for a reserve rider to take his place) but he still finished in 7th place in the Yorkshire Hill Climbs Points Championship. Well done Andrew!

Amy will be riding for Hopey Bicycle Repairs in both open TTs and road & circuit races in 2019 and the club wishes her well.


9th November 2018



Thank you and goodbye!