The British Cycling National Road Championships jerseys have been awarded in Lincoln, in what has been one of the city’s biggest sporting events to date.
The final leg of the four day championships included a 67 mile women’s race and a 123.5 mile men’s race with a world class lineup of names taking part.
In the women’s race, 26-year-old Lizzie Armitstead completed her road championships hat-trick – after wins in 2011 and 2013.
Lizzie was completely unchallenged during the final climb of the infamous cobbled Michaelgate hill.
On her first place finish, she said: “It means I get to be proud of being British in all the races that I do.
“The crowds have been fantastic and really supportive.”
Alice Barnes, aged just 19, took second place in her first elite road championships to win the under-23 women’s champion title with defending champion Laura Trott coming third.
In the men’s race, Peter Kennaugh won his second successive road title in a race that was much closer towards the end than the women’s.
In a tense battle with Mark Cavendish, Team Sky’s Peter Kennaugh managed to distance himself from his challengers in the ninth Michaelgate climb.
After the Race, Peter thanked the crowds for their support. He said: “The crowds have been incredible. The cobbles were bit of a nightmare, especially when there was little room from the spectators, but it was a beautiful climb up to the cathedral.
“I was looking forward to getting the big loops done so we could get onto the Lincoln circuits.”
The silver medal went to Mark Cavendish and in third place was Ian Stannard.
Visitor boom in 60th year
The British Cycling Championships road race formed what was the 60th anniversary of the Lincoln Grand Prix.
The Lincoln Grand Prix is one of the longest running races on the British cycling calendar and almost every big name rider in national history has raced and won it.
The annual Lincoln Grand Prix has grown to expect crowds of around 5,000 supporters. This year, as the event celebrated its 60th year, the national championships attracted around 30,000.
With a budget of around £250,000, this year’s event is particularly special.
The man who stood at the helm of the operation for 52 years is Ian Emmerson OBE, and this year marked not only his biggest event to date, but also his last.
Ian, or “Mr Lincoln”, has served as Sherriff of Lincoln in 1990/91, president of British Cycling Federation, and was awarded an OBE for services to cycling in 1994.
As the championships came to a close, Ian spoke to The Lincolnite about how his final project has been his most cherished to date.
“There’s nothing like going out on the top!
“The 30,000 strong crowds that the event has brought has seen people visiting the castle and city attractions which is great. And this is the first time we’ve had an event shown live on television for over five hours.
“It’s brought lots of benefits to Lincoln and a number of people will be coming back again I’m sure.”
The Wilkinson family from Sleaford travelled to the city to spectate for the first time. Dad Andrew said: “We like cycling as a family and this has been absolutely brilliant.
“Today, we’ve watched the female riders come past and we have been watching the big screen on Castle Hill for the finish.
“I think we have been inspired. One of the kids wants a new bike now!”