Wheely good fun for runners and riders alike as Hitchin’s Cobbled Classic and town centre 5k run are hailed huge successes

Hitchin Town Centre 5k

Hitchin Town Centre 5k - Credit: Archant

The final race of the Tarmac Tour of Herts in association with Kinetic Cycles and Hitchin Nomads Cycling Club saw a large number of people gather on Sunday to watch the riders across a number of races for all abilities and ages.

Cobbled Classic

Cobbled Classic - Credit: Archant

More than 250 cyclists took part in races throughout the afternoon.

Organiser Emma Ramsdale from Kinetic Cycles said: “There was a great atmosphere. It was a nice day out for a lot of people. We were glad the weather held out for most of it. There was a real family friendly, laid back atmosphere.

“Throughout the course of the day there must have been more than a thousand enthusiasts come along.

“A lot of people put a lot of hard work into this. We’ve put a year’s worth of organisation into this.

The Comet's Neil Metcalfe, looking replendent in lycra, also took part. Credit: Damion Roberts.

The Comet's Neil Metcalfe, looking replendent in lycra, also took part. Credit: Damion Roberts. - Credit: Archant

“I’m tired but happy. We hope we’ve encouraged people to get interested in cycling. It was great to see everyone from serious racers to Sunday afternoon riders turn out. We want to broaden the appeal for it to reach everyone.

“We’d like to thank Herts County Council, highways, and of course the people of Hitchin for backing the event.

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“We are already starting to look towards next year’s event and are going to make it even bigger and better than this year.”

Prior to the event, Market Place hosted the Hitchin Town Centre 5km Race – with 288 runners taking part.

Race director Jake Amos said: “Thank you to the runners and helpers for helping to create such a fun and enjoyable occasion and also to the people of Hitchin for coming out to support the event.”

Hitchin Nomads Cycling Club road race secretary Andrew Stevenson added: “It was a great day.”

The Comet’s very own Neil Metcalfe also took part. The passionate cycling enthusiast from the North East said: “It was my first race in 25 years and I thoroughly enjoyed it.”

A full list of results can be found at www.racesonline.uk/results/hitchin-5k-2016 – see page 80 of our sports section for a report.

The only casualty on the day was a cyclist in his 50s who was taken to Lister Hospital in Stevenage with a broken thighbone after crashing in Sun Street.