Leith Hill – Kingston Wheelers CC


I ended up doing the last four hill climbs on a time trial bike, so it was nice to get a proper ‘good old fashioned’ 4 minute hill. I could put my time trial bike in the loft, and get my hill climb bike ready. I stripped it down my road bike as much as it would go. Yesterday I weighed it at about 5.8Kg, which is about 1Kg lighter than last year. Mostly thanks to some lightweight wheels and new saddle.

Leith Hill Climb as used by Kingston Wheelers CC

  • 1.4km
  • Avg Grade 8.0%
  • Elev Gain 113 m
  • Max gradient: 15%

The full Leith hill proper a little longer, but all the steep stuff is on the hill climb course. It reminded me of Dovers Hill a little. Perhaps slightly shorter and 1 or 2% shallower.


Preparation for Hill Climb

When I do a hill climb I’ve never done before, the most important thing is to know roughly how long it’s going to take. It’s a very different pacing for a 3 minute hill climb to a 4 minute hill climb. Rather than think about a 4 minute hill, in the previous week – I tried to trick my mind it would be a 3.15 hill. Hoping that if I thought of a short hill climb, I would ride it like one.

Just before the race started, I got a quick test run up the hill. It was a little steeper than I expected. The gradient is quite undulating from 3% to 15% – with an average gradient of 8%. There are a series of false flats and changes of gradient which make it a little harder to pace. I was changing gears fairly frequently. I guess you could do it on fixed, it would make a good interval session.

My start wasn’t great, but towards the end I got into a good rhythm. On one bend near the top, there was quite a substantial crowd; they certainly made a great noise, which was a real boost for the last sprint towards the line.

After race, I went and took some photos, (though left memory stick at home on that camera so don’t have any of hill). Anyway it was still a nice cycle in this part of Surrey. Lots of cyclists out and about!

It was a great event by Kingston Wheelers. They had a really good turn out in race, and it was nice to see a hill climb supported so well. There were quite a few hill climb first timers, so if you live in the area have a go next year. A Good atmosphere.

I was happy with a generous first prize and framed poster of event. Even sitting on the M25 for an hour due to a road closure, wasn’t so bad when you’ve just won a hill climb.


John Bornhoft Memorial Hill Climb

John Bornhoft Memorial hill climb 2012.

Provisional Results

1   Tejvan Pettinger Sri Chinmoy Cycling Team 3.33.80 (course record)
2   Allan Ridler S Pedal Heaven RT 3.54.40
3  Joe Harris S GS Henley 3.59.10
4   James Graham S GS GAZZETTA 3.59.50
5   Chris Morrison London Dynamo/Prologue 4.01:09
6   Connall Yates S In-Gear Quickvit TrainSharp RT 4.02.04
7   Tim Bayley S Arctic-SRAM Racing Team 4.07.00
8  Edward Francis V Kingston Wheelers 4.08.10
9   Phil Ember S Kingston Wheelers 4.10.06
10   Maurice Brennan S Redhill CC 4.11.40


1st Woman – Maryka Sennema 4.37.40 – Kingston Wheelers £30
2nd Woman – Emily Bagnall – 4.44.00 – Kingston Wheelers £15

photo of cowbell corner by http://www.flickr.com/photos/sarflondondunc/


100 greatest hills

3 Responses to Leith Hill – Kingston Wheelers CC

  1. Ed October 1, 2012 at 10:32 am #

    Guess that the UCI limits don’t apply when it comes to hill-climbs? Also, what is your training schedule like? Anyway, that’s a pretty devastating result. Good luck with the nationals!

  2. Hurumph September 30, 2012 at 11:45 pm #

    You get 30 seconds to yourself in the video! Very good – but 21 seconds faster than your nearest competitor AND a course record is very impressive

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