Winners announced for timed hill climb at Etape Cymru

The winners of the timed hill climb at the Wiggle Etape Cymru sportive, held earlier this month, have been announced.

Thousands of riders took part in the grueling 88-mile closed road event in North Wales on Sunday September 8, which included the demanding Horseshoe Pass.

Christopher Rathbone was the fastest man up the brutal slopes of the pass, clocking a time of 16:43. Heike Godwin was the fastest woman, setting a bench mark for female competitors of 19:37. Richard Spencer tackled the climb on a Brompton folding bike, and posted an impressive 22:27.

The 2013 Etape Cymru attracted thousands of riders to North Wales for an88-mile closed road sportive. pic: ©Matthew Alexander (Human Race)

An estimated £500,000 was generated for the area, which includes views of the Clwydian Range. Organisers say nearly 70 per cent of the participants travelled more than two hours to take part in the event, and expect 97 per cent to ride again in the area.

Nick Rusling, CEO of the event’s organisers, Human Race, said: “With the additional support of the Welsh Assembly, we have been able to make the 2013 Etape Cymru the most successful yet and hope to be able to continue to grow the event whilst working with people in the region.”

Many of the thousands of riders who took part rode to raise funds for a host of good causes, including official charity partners of the Etape Cymru, which includes Macmillan Cancer Support. Some 55 riders rolled in support of the Nightingale House Hospice, which could receive a five-figure boost to its funds.

“Judging by the success of the previous two years, the Hospice could expect to benefit from more than £10,000 in sponsorship,” said fundraising manager, Margaret Hollings. “This makes a real difference, funding local palliative care. We cannot thank the organisers Human Race enough for their support.”

Organisers are claiming a £100,000 boost for local businesses, after seeking out local partners to help deliver the event. John Thomas of JTM signs, and Alex Smeaton, owner of the Holt Lodge and the Royal Oak, was one of many hotels and B&Bs to host the riders, were among those who backed the Etape Cymru as an income generator for North Wales.

“There was huge excitement with lots of spectators gathering and it was lovely to see so many of the local community supporting it in great numbers,” said Smeaton.

The date for next year’s Etape Cymru has yet to be confirmed. To register your interest, follow this link.

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