Zappi CC hill climb at Watlington

The Zappi CC hill climb on Watlington hill November 2nd 2013.

The Monty Python sketch goes ‘Another wafer thin mint, Sir?

In my case, it was another hill climb I just couldn’t resist. I’ve been out on my bike a couple of times this week and had a very strange felling of aimlessness. What do you do in the week after the nationals?

But, I popped into BikeZone in Oxford and had a chat with Steve Avery. He mentioned Zappi CC were having their club hill climb on Saturday and invited me along. Steve Avery is a very good tricylist and he explained one of the advantages of using a tricycle in a hill climb is that you can come to a complete stop and have a breather half way up. That sounded like a good kind of hill climb to end the season on, so I went along to Watlington hill and signed up for last race of the season.

I was having a good time at the top of the hill taking photos of the riders and listening to the encouragement from the spectators at the top. Flavio Zappi was on top form, telling people who didn’t seem to be sprinting 100% to the end of the line they could go back down and have another go.

I nearly missed my start time, arriving only 5 seconds before I was due. It’s nice doing a hill climb without so much pressure. I didn’t even have time to take off my two water bottles and a saddle bag, big enough to go touring with. After two months of lactic acid overdose and sick inducing efforts, I couldn’t quite motivate myself to go eyeballs out. For a hill climb, I took it relatively steady. It was only at the top where I saw the spectators, that I tried to show off and sprint for the line. It was a great friendly event and after the last rider crossed the line, the riders went back down the hill to enjoy some chips at a local pub before the prize ceremony.

Results to come hopefully. But, I think the winner was Matt Steven Zappi CC, 2nd was Chris Baines of Buxton CC, and 3rd was Tejvan Pettinger.



Flavio himself roaring on a rider


A big effort. Why do we do hill climbs again?


A tandem is not easiest way to ride a hill climb


Chris Baines probably had most stylish bike a beautiful Bob Jackson


A good gurning effort


A Zappi rider giving it everything.


Steve Avery was taking the numbers at the finish.



riding along


near the top


100 meters to go



The youngest competitor makes light work of the hill.


Nearly there.


Is that a smile? you’ll have to go down and do it again!



Riding the jersey. The bike has 1 or 2 kilos more than last week.


Science in sport


a good turn out for a club hill climb.


encouragement at the top.



Matt, Flavio and Tejvan


Hill climbers relaxing in the pub.

Thanks to Clare and Steve for organising. And good luck to the Zappis for next season. Just remember how much fun hill climbs can be! Beeline local bike shop had some goody bags, but I missed out on prize this time 🙂


See also Flickr set

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