Bowditch gets it right
Tuesday 16th October 2012, 2:29PM BST.
ANN BOWDITCH conquered a hill somewhat steeper than our own Le Val des Terres in winning the women’s section of the Rossendale Road Club Hill Climb in Burnley.
It is said that our main hill has a gradient of 10%, but at Rossendale the average gradient of the one kilometre climb was 14%, although one third into the climb riders were greeted with a tougher gradient of 20% until the slope reduced for the final third.
Bowditch first saw the hill the previous day and, in strong winds and torrential rain, rode up the climb a couple of times, sufficient to be able to prepare a race strategy and get an indication of the gearing required.
Explaining her strategy, she said: ‘In hill climbs you don’t want to make too many gear changes as that costs time and, in an event so short, you can’t afford to give any time away.
‘It’s also important to be in the right gear, so it’s a real balancing act.’