This year’s competition began with a tough power climb up Cow Drove Hill in King’s Somborne. Some mixed weather and a certain amount of persistent flooding on the main road that runs along the Somborne valley, probably limited any rider’s enthusiasm for making attempts at the segment.

With the competition now boasting three categories (open men’s, open women’s and senior men’s) it was intriguing to see who would venture out to make an early season statement of intent.

As a reminder, any rider who wishes to enter the men’s senior category, must remove themselves from the men’s open category (and vice-versa).

In the men’s open category competition, Matt Gilmour took first place by the narrowest of margins with a very quick time of 01:05. Last year’s clean-sweeping champion, Oscar Hoult, was in second place, just one second behind with a time of 01:06. Bobby Buenfeld rounded off the top three on 01:08.

In the women’s open category competition, Isla Hoult started the year with a blistering performance to take first place with clear water between her and the competition, with a time of 01:29. New competitor Judit D claimed second spot with a time of 01:44. Last year’s women’s champion Annie Dixey took third spot with a time of 02:11.

In the inaugural men’s senior category competition, Jim Cascarini won-out, with a fast time of 01:34. Close on Jim’s heels was David Martin, with a time of 01:37 and Martin Evans rounded off the podium in third place with a time of 01:42.

No less than 12 riders attempted the segment this month in the newly created men’s senior category, which bodes well for close competition over the course of the year ahead.

With this being the first month of the year, the current GC positions all match the aforementioned results.

Many congratulations to Isla and Matt who both win a free hot drink and slice of cake from South Downs Social café who have again graciously agreed to yet again support and sponsor our club’s annual segment of the month competition for the two open categories.

Also, congratulations to Jim, who wins a £10 voucher for use at Bike-X in Winchester, who have kindly agreed to sponsor the inaugural year of the men’s senior category of our club’s annual segment of the month competition.

February’s segment takes us to the East of Winchester, to the slopes of Beacon Hill, for a longer and less steep climb. Click the link here to take a look at February’s segment:

Results and position for January segment challenge and current GC ranking

Men’s Open Category

Women’s Open Category

Men’s Senior Category

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