History

The Beginnings
The original club was founded in 1881 as the “Hamilton Bicycle Club”. During the ’90’s and into the early 20th century bicycling was the sport and pastime of gentlemen! Riding their penny farthings the civic notables would head out to Stoney Creek etc in all their finery. A bicycle racing stadium was built at a cost of over $15,000 (the equivalent of $1/2 million today) for racing events. The armory was used for indoor circuit tournaments for adult tricycles! Club Banquets were a must attend for the mayor.

The Club history is silent till the mid 30’s when it was known as the Maple Leaf Cycling Club changing its name in ’46 to “Century Cycle Club”. Gus Hogben the one armed rider and top time trialist was Racing Captain. Then in ’56 to the “Hamilton Century Cycle Club”. Between ’59 & ’62 it was known as “Hamilton Roma Cycling Club” and finally in ’63 to Hamilton Cycling Club. Alan Cole held the club 50 mile record for several decades after riding a 2:04:02 in 1953. Alan went on the following year to represent Canada in the Commonwealth Games in Vancouver. In the 50’s & 60’s the club ran major road races with use of the highway much encouraged (even used the QEW!) Some of our top riders in the 60’s were Stan Pokupec, Tom Liptrot, Les Humphreys.

1968
Tom Liptrot held the 10 mile TT record at 23:19 (1968) and the 25 mile at 1:00.03 (1955). Alan Cole held the 50 mile at 2:04.02 (1953). Club members Tom Liptrot, Stan Pokupec, Les Humphries, Jack Connor, Jack Newlin, Clive Brunskill and Brian Chewter  out on a ’68 winter training ride. Note sexy spandex not! Jack Newlin, Albert Penrose, Jack Connor, Eryl Hall, Brian Chewter, Les Humphries (with cheesecutter & moustache), Al McKechnie, Stan Pokupec & Clive Brunskill. Pictures courtesy of Les H. but taken by the Spec.

1969
Club started the “Hamilton Spectacular” a crit around city hall. The Mt Nemo was already established. Ray Vise was our points champion based on 15 events.

1970
The Good Friday started in Waterdown north on Centre Rd through Carlisle to Mountsberg east to Campbelleville. south to Lowville up to Mt Nemo then over to Cedar Springs and back to Kilbride then west to Centre Rd at Carlisle and back to Waterdown 40 miles. Club members John Harmgardt won the Ont Junior Road Championship and Clive Brunskill won the National Juniors.

1971
The Delhi track was built by the Delhi club. Brian Chewter won the points championship, Gary Scattalon won our Hamilton Spectacular on June 20th and Brian Chewter came in 2nd in the Junior event. Les Humphries ’71

1972
The club hosted the Provincial TTs. Martin Cramero took the Cadets with a 1:07:42 over 22.55 miles. HCC bought shares in the Delhi track! Now who knew we were part owners!

1973
The points series was taken by Adrian Prosser with Martin Cramero placing 2nd. The club hosted the Nationals. The Road race was held at Lowville with 100 starters and 25 finishers!! A Norman Lowe took the race with international cycling star Jocelyn Lovell second. Out own Ray Vice placed 8th and Angelo Beraldo was 9th.

1974
Membership declined to 39! The championship RR on Nemo was curtailed when a car driver crashed into the back of the Peleton injuring Claude Lanthier and Mike Pangia. This was the year for the World’s in Montreal with the 165km RR won by Eddy Merckx. Circuit included 16,500 ft of climbing! Brian Chewter took the Good Friday Seniors and Robert Cramero beat out Adrian Prosser for the juniors. Laura Robinson placed 3rd in the Ladies. The real Andy Keyes circa 1975 a 1975 club run. Tuesday Night Race 1975. Provided by Brad Sale – member 1973-8. You may recognise some faces such as Tom Liptrot, John Cameron, Claude Lanthier, Adrian Prosser, Hans Harmgardt, Les Humphreys, Rob Hill, Rob Cramero, John Budd and Norm Prosser. Oh, and Brad Sladeis in there at the back hiding behind Les!

1976
Karen Strong took 1st in the ladies RR at Good Friday. Typical Club ride July 18th started in Dundurn Park and turned at Niagara on the Lake back home via Hwy 8 for 176km. Andy Keyes and Bill Carson were among the riders (who said Bill didn’t ride?). One rider was identified as abandoning and another as abandoning “with permission”! John Cameron won the Andy Keyes. The list of prizewinners even included placings for “lanterne rouge”!

1977
Looks like we ran a Cactus race in Dundas. June ’77. Total budget $188.54 including $150 for prizes! Good Friday ’77 brochure and newspaper article. Lovell won but Adrian was the hero in sub zero weather! Love those entry fees of $2.75! The Andy Keyes 25 mile TT some where up by Eden Mills (not too flat?) resulted in a best time of 1:16:07 by Joe Misciocia. The club BAT TT on a 40km course was won by Tim Laspa in a time of 1:14:05. The Friday night 15km TTs yielded a best time of 23:16 by Longstaff. So who passed who? Did Carson take Tom Liptrot on the inside – Nope it was Mike his son?

1978
44 members. Quote ” 44 members in all and a high proportion of these contributed to the successful running of the club”. So what gives in 2004? We have 61 of whom 13 are honourary members (outstanding service to the club incl winning at the Nationals). Hugh Walton took the Good Friday with Brian Chewter in 2nd . Larry Reade (Buffalo) won the vets and Paul Schiebel the juniors. Joe Misciocia ’78 Albert Penrose – chairing ’78 AGM (as only he could!). Picture courtesy Les H. The BAR was won by Jack Simpson who also won the Vets BAR

1979
The Nella in Caistorville was won by Angelo Beraldo 1:09:57 (Mike Liptrot taking his dad by 2 minutes!) and the Hogben by Tom Liptrot. The Andy Keyes Century (100 miles) was won by Gus Nella. Adrian Prosser took the Good Friday and a Craig Podborski won the Steak & Mushroom (Highland Rd) – Peter Junek was 3rd. Martin Cramero took our Mt Nemo series

1980
Good Friday moved to the Waterdown Rd course and was won by Martin Cramero (senior). Marilyn Frieson took the Ladies event. John Cameron and Dennis Chilton slipped off to Bermuda to enter a 10km 2 man TT and 25 mile RR. “Bermuda GP” John came in overall 1st & John 4th, Club runs started 9am at Dundurn Castle. The Hamilton Historical Society entrusted an 1889 club medal to the club on stipulation it should be available for viewing at any time! Circa 2003 anyone seen it lately? May be that “chain” type trophy? Tuesday Night TT had 47 entrants June 17th! Looks like there was also a Thursday night TT so where did Nemo fit in?

1981
Albert Penrose appointed President. John Cameron retired from racing offering his cycling equipment such as Claude Butler for $350, Cristophe toe clips for $3 pair of Fiamme Ergals $110 etc. Good Friday started & finished at the top of King Rd in Burlington 5 laps 50km. Senior winner was Julio Goncalves of High Park. Karen Strong took the ladies. Dante Paltrinieri took the Andy Keyes. The Nella 40km TT on River Rd out of Caledonia saw some incredible times with the winner Cor Heester at 1:00:16. Unfortunately we discovered our course was 1km shy at the turn i.e. 2km short!! Club did a ride around Lake Canandaigua in NY. Unfortunately a good ol’ boy deliberately rode into the bunch wrecking one bike and injuring its rider – Dan Myler. BAR winner for ’81 was Martin Kerr, Dante Paltrinieri took the TTC as senior and Pat Gilroy for the Vets.

1982
Mike Pangia did a tour of China – being one of the earliest Westerners to show up on lightweight 10 speeds! Apparently they got mobbed wherever they went. As Mike put it “the Chinese regard the bicycle as the best mode of transport and 700 million people can’t be (sic) wong” (ouch). The Good Friday was won by a visiting Dane Jorgen Kilsga. Patricia Kammerer and Noel Cunningham joined the club. Pat subsequently started blowing away our male riders! IN her 1sy year she did a 1:07:18 40km TT. Mt Nemo grows in popularity with average 60 riders at the start line (Australian pursuit format). BAR winner & TTC was Martin Reid (wow that’s me!). Paul Murray took the Mt Nemo series (died of an illness in his early 30’s). The Nella was won by Joe Miscoscia (retired to Italy). The AGM at Mt Nemo had 20 in attendance! April 11th 40km RR. Race was won by Miles Chilton

1983
Membership fees rose to $10!! Dante Paltrinieri one of our best riders got married and gradually retired from the racing scene!! Mike Pangia finished 3rd in the Tour of Guatemala. Had police escorts to protect them from guerrillas. On one stage they crossed a bridge over a racing river with one plank missing across the bridge!! Pat Kammerer in her 1st year as a licensed rider won the ladies event at Springbank. She clocked 8,267km in ’83 to win gold in the Mile Achievers Event. Jocelyn Lovell won the Steak & Mushroom. Pat K was 4th in the ladies. Patricia Kammerer outright won the 40km Nella TT with a time of 1:02:54 (believed to be a ladies club record even by 2003) beating out 6 male contenders. Your webmaster was 2nd at 1:03:20 followed by Noel Cunningham at 1:03:25. These were fast times for HCC though they seem slow by the sub hour times of today! Noel Cunningham took the 80km Hogben with a 2:17:30. Fastest time trialist for the year was Mike Lynch with a 22:30 15km and 1:00:28 40km TT. Jocelyn Lovell was crippled in a dump truck collision with his bike on Britannia. Good Friday resulted in a slugging match between Racer Sportif supporters and D’Ornellas supporters after the latter allegedly cut off the formers’ rider.

1984
Good Friday was held at the Highland Road course (usually Steak & Mushroom). Mike Lynch won the Nella 40km TT 1:02:30 and Martin Reid the Hogben with a 2:16:36 followed by Noel Cunningham with a 2:16:49 followed by Tom Liptrot with a 2:17:08 – wow! Paul Kennedy won the TTC Sen with an avg 23:05 and Derek Walton the Vets with a handicapped 21:57. Mike Pangia and Pat Kammerer won Bronze at the Provincial RRs. Noel Cunningham won the Andy Keyes with a 5:18. Albert Penrose came in 2nd to Martin Reid in the BAR 15km TT at 23:25 off 1 sec (handicapped). Mike Lynch took BAR Senior and Noel Cunningham Vet, Pat Kammerer Ladies.

1985
Randy Brown won the Andy Keyes in 4:56 in a bunch (4) finish (Nella, Cunningham & Reid). Rob Cheskey won the Seniors BAR & TTC and Reid the Vets BAR & TTC. Randy Brown won the Hogben and Mike Lynch the Nella. the 40km BAR TT was won by Mike Lynch with a 1.01.23 followed by Martin Reid with a 1.03.03 and Rob Cheskey in 3rd at 1.04.10 (last time Martin ever beat Rob!!). Good Friday had a record turnout of 197 riders on a new course using Britannia & Blind Line. Great course but the racing secretary (your webmaster!) goofed by erroneously telling residents there was a road closure – they rebelled with one owner getting into his car and attempting to run the Seniors 1 off the road. The police intervened. Brian Costello won the seniors. July 2nd we ran the Rattlesnake Triple Hill climb!! Three separate hills on Rattlesnake!! We also ran a crit race at the Flamborough Speedway under the auspices of the Chamber of Commerce. “Donkey Days”

1986
The one and only year the Good Friday had to be cancelled. It had been set up to run on the Longwood/Princess Point course in Hamilton but had to be cancelled due to the OCA’s failure to come up with insurance. Matt Varey took the Nella 40km TT with a 1.01.01 followed by Randy Brown 4 seconds off and Desi Desrochers at 1.01.30. Oct 19th the club held its first Snake Triple Hill Climb followed by a family picnic. Gus Nella won the Andy Keyes 160km RR in 4.46. Randy Brown took the BAR and the TTC followed by Rob Cheskey setting a pattern for years to come! George Fraser took the Vet BAR and Matt Varey the Junior BAR. Albert Penrose won the Vet TTC. Membership stood at 70

1987
The Good Friday came back on using the old Kings Rd/Waterdown Rd course. 551 riders participated! Peter Clarke of Bikenergy after Tom Zielinski one time Polish team rider) was disqualified for dangerous riding. took the Senior 1. Denise Kelly took the ladies. Matt Varey won the Nella with a 57:55. Randy Brown was 2nd. Randy Brown won the Andy Keyes Century inching out Varey with a time of 4:36:17. Club member George Fraser won the Highland RR Vet Cat. 375 riders rode our Mt Nemo “training ride! Randy Brown won the Hogben with a 2:09:52 and the Andy Keyes Century with a 4:36

1988
Good Friday held on Kings Rd again. Club rider Sean Baird won the Novice cat. 670 riders participated during the day. Randy Brown took the A Keyes in 4:47. Only other finisher was Andrew Iler. Club member Jamie Kerr die tragically when he lost control of his bike during a criterium in St Catherines – crashing through a plate glass store window. This young rider had great promise and his death was a great shock for all club members. Desi Desrochers took the 40k BAR TT Aug 13 with a 1:00:14 a full minute ahead of Randy. Again same result in our Hogben where Desi did a 2:02:26 to Randy’s 2:08:55. Senior BAR winner for ’88 was Randy Brown, George Fraser took the Vet BAR and May Clare Haley the Womens. Tom Hansen won the Junior BAR

1989
Good Friday moved to Lowville climbing to Derry Rd and returning on Appleby to do a circuit using #2 Side and Walkers. The event was marred by bad manners of some riders waiting to race urinating on resident lawns etc. Burlington has put a ban on our event and threatened the Tuesday Mt Nemo ride. 700 riders participated. Jim Morrow placed 3rd in the Masters Cat and Randy Brown placed 3rd in the Vets. Mt Nemo moved to Lowville running up to Campbellville west to Mountsberg etc i.e. “reverse Nemo”. Thursday 15km TT moved to Rockton. The first couple of events involved police harassment egged on by the local yahoo Alderman John Taylor! Desi Desrochers took the Nella 40k TT with a 1:01:01 to Rob Cheskey’s 1:03:03 with Randy 5 secs behind! Membership hit 98. The club held track championships down at Delhi. Andrew Iler was 1st overall and George Fraser 2nd HCC became incorporated. Mike Lynch took the Andy Keyes in a time of 4:31 inching out Randy Brown and Craig Dick. There were 24 starters and 9 finishers. Desi Desrochers won the BAR 40k TT with a stupendous 56:50 Rob Cheskey and Tom Hansen also went under the hour. Brent Fargo won the hill climb on Bell School Line (the wall) with3:06

1990
Burlington came up with a set of bike racing rules that were largely impractical. Mt Nemo continued. Brent Fargo won the Strabane 40km RR in a field of 26. Desi won the Nella with a 56:46. Steve Anscuetz and Randy Brown also went under the hour. At Binbrook Desi did a 55:18 to Randy’s 55:22. Matt Varey did a 19:50 at our 15km TT. Andy Keyes RR saw 20 starters and 5 finishers with George Fraser outsprinting Randy Brown to win in 4:42. Derek Martin won the hill climb on Sydenham with a 3:55. The Hogben was won on a cold windy Sept by Rob Cheskey 2:09:15. Tom Hansen won the track championships. BAR champion was Randy Brown. We had 396 riders for the Good Friday held out of the Flamborough Speedway (not on!)

1991
Oakville CC is founded. We had 125 members described as “an all time high”. Largely due to the efforts of President George Fraser. The Good Friday RR moved to Guelph after the race in Flamborough was veto’d by good ol’ boy councillor Cutler. This notwithstanding our earlier help to run a race FOR Flamborough. Our 15km TTs at Rockton typically had 25 – 35 riders. Mark Vermeiran did the Hogben in 1.56.58 20 riders showed up for the Sydenham hill climb with Mark and Randy (Brown) matching times at 4.15

1992
Club ran a weekend Learn to Race programme in Dundas, ON. Strabane club RR had 25 entrants including 1 woman, 9 juniors and 1 cadet. Winner was Tom Hansen. HCC dropped the Mt Nemo series due to increased traffic. This classic Tuesday night 40km hilly RR is still warmly remembered by Ontario riders far and wide. The club Mt Nemo Series trophy has subsequently been awarded to the Most improved Rider of the season. Tom Hansen took the Andy Keyes 160km RR. Randy Brown took the Provincial Championship in cyclocross.

1993
Club changed its jersey design to present red, white & blue. HCC formed a Junior racing team Adrian Mezenburg, Jon Moncreiff, Jason Stenko. Ian Lawson. Team made their debut at Good Friday with Adrian taking 4th place & Jon 8th (after a crash). Race was won by John Rillett also a club member (?) who rode away from a certain Mike Barry, who went on to ride for US Postal aside Lance Armstrong! Club riders took gold at the HCC hosted Provincial TTs Adrian Mezenburg Junior, Leigh Hargrove Womens’ & Desi Desrochers Vet B. On May 13th 1993 Tom Liptrot suffered a fatal heart attack while riding the Rockton 15km TT. Tom had been an active member of the club since the late 40’s and in the 50’s & 60’s raced all the major events in Ontario, Quebec and the NE US. The Nemo series and the Good Fridays longevity owed much to Tom’s dedication. Tom was a good friend to your webmaster and remains missed to thid day. July saw the start of Tuesday night Crits in Milton which lasted till 2002. Randy Brown won the Nationals Cyclocross Vets Rob Cheskey was 2nd and also won the Provincials. The Andy Keyes was won by Peter Jordan in 4’33:21 4:56 ahead of a chasing group of three.

1994
The club joined the Combined Time Trial Association together with Oakville & Brampton. This survived into the early 21st century and ran a number of its own events but mostly allowed club members to join the other club TT events. Eventually with associate membership allowing other club members to participate in all kind of events the purpose fell away. Good Friday at Hanlon saw Mike Fletcher take the Juniors and Shawn Cranwell 3rd in Senior 3. The 15km TT moved to Troy. Steve Fletcher took the Milton crit series, Desi Desrochers the Hogben in 1:51 and Adrian Mezenberg did a 19:27 at Lynden. BAR was Adrian Mezenberg, Rob Cheskey took the Mens TTC, Jim Morrow the Vets and Judy Osborne the Ladies.

1995
George Garrett took over as President giving Allen Hansen a well-deserved rest. Club member Mike Millar won the Senior 3 event at Good Friday. Club hosted the Prov TTs for the 3rd time with 10 members in the field of 120. 6 went under the hour with Adrian the fastest at 55:30 for 8th. Leigh Hargrove won the National Junior Women’s RR making her at 18 the youngest honourary member. George Fraser took Vet C.

1996
Colin Fletcher took over as President resigning in April! February saw Copp’s coliseum turned into an indoor track (Peter Junek design) Ian Lawson took the Australian Pursuit before a crowd of 3,000. Good Friday was cancelled after blizzards struck Wednesday before. 4 HCC riders took the 4 out of the top 5 places at Turkey Point – Desi Desrochers 1st, Brian Chewter 2nd , Peter Hargrove 3rd & Rob Cheskey 5th. Chuck Bonnaffon set up some serious touring events this year. Desi took the Prov TTC Vet B, Linda Simonsen Ladies Vet A, Judy Osborne Vet B and Jim Morrow came in 2nd in Vet C. HCC hosted the vent again at Binbrook. Linda Simonsen took 1st Vet A at the National RR in Quebec and Desi took 2nd in the Vet B. Rob Cheskey took 1st at the Prov Track Championships in Delhi. Randy Brown was BAR champion, Keith Oliver took Vet TTC and Rob Cheskey Senior TTC

1997
Judy Osborne became our 1st woman President. About time! Barb Morrow was elected Vice President (after 1 year hiatus). Extract from “Outspoken” pictures from Old Mill Awards Banquet. Club entertained the idea in conjunction with Neworld Cycle of converting Good Friday into a crit at Mapleview Mall in Burlington. East Side Mario threw a spanner in the works. Fortunately Guelph facilitated a return to Hanlon Park with 3 weeks notice. Desi took 2nd in Vet B and “newcomer” Peter Morris “turned heads.” The Prov TTC was run by the CTTA of which HCC is a part. Held in Waterford area. Desi took 2nd at Sutton and Linda 1st in their respective categories. Desi won the National Vet B RR. BAR & TTC for ’97 was Randy Brown.

1998
Rob Cheskey became President. In April long time member Jim Morrow died age 72. Jim did fierce times. He had a great sense of humour. His wife Barb was a valiant volunteer and exec member and one of the very best time keepers. Jim was a former runner having run for Ireland. White Swan got its first try out. Linda Simonsen took 2nd in Womens at Good Friday. Desi Desrochers suffered serious injuries in a crash at Ziggy’s in Kitchener. Stand correcting but this seems to be the point where Desi pulled back from racing after an outstanding decade. Eric Wohlberg had a go at a Troy and Empire Corners 15km TT doing 18:43 on the former & 18:46 on the latter. The first Dundurn Cyclocross event took place Oct 3rd. Peter Jordan took 1st. BAR, TTC & Jamie Kerr Overall BAR winner was me, myself & I namely Rob Cheskey! Women’s TTC was won by Judy Osborne and Vet by Dermot Kelly

1999
Hans Strasser won the Sen 1 and Erin Carter the Womens events at Good Friday. Desi Desrochers was 1st Master C. Sue Palmer-Komar finished 6th in the TT at the Sherbrooke Nationals – wearing HCC colours. Judy Osborne took 8th place in the RR and Hill Climb at the World Masters in Austria. Harold was there but no word on his results. Rob Cheskey was senior TTC, Dermot Kelly Master & Judy Osborne Women. Taras Kleban a 16 year old took the junior. Rob & Randy & Desi took most of the other silverware. Peter Lawson (Ian’s dad) a long time club member died in December. Peter was a notable on the Scottish circuit and there was a huge cycling turnout for his funeral.

2000
The Good Friday Senior 1 event was won by bike courier Kevin Speacht. Paul Rego & Rob Cheskey took 1st in a 2 up TT at Empire Corners with a 20:33. Ex-Olympian Brian Chewter took 1st in a sprint finish at Andy Keyes 80km RR at Strabane. Peter Mazur son of club member Mirek took the Junior Word TTC and RR. Sue Palmer placed 11th in the World Womens RR. Fred Pepper was BAR champion as well as TTC. Dermot Kelley took Vets TTC.

2001
On May 2 Chris Kiriakopoulos organized a RR on the Fallsview course – little realizing this would become the Good Friday home in 2006! Senior BAR was won by Randy Brown and Fred Pepper narrowly took the TTC. Our best known race is the Good Friday. Originally this used to start in downtown Hamilton, wend its way out to Campbellville and roar back into town via York Blvd. Policing & other costs prohibit that kind of race without major sponsors (we are an amateur club). In the 80’s the race operated on Kings Rd & Waterdown Rd in Burlington and a couple of times in N Burlington. For over 12 years we ran the Good Friday in Hanlon Park in the south end of Guelph.

2003
Hamilton’s glory days returned as it hosted the UCI Road World Cycling Championships – aka, the World’s – an event watched by millions around the world. We had more than 100,000 spectators lining the course on the final weekend.

2006

Finally in 2006 the Good Friday moved back to Hamilton – the top of Sydenham overlooking Dundas. The following year it moved to a 13k circuit over the drumlins of Flamborough with the start finish at Brock & Conc 6.  and was elevated to an “O” Cup event and ridership soared to 500+

2010

The inclusion of IMBA members on our exec has gotten HCC into trail building. Under the tutelage of Marc Risdale the club – its mountain bike folk in particular are out every weekend expanding a bike trail system at Christie Lake in co-operation with the Hamilton Conservation Authority! Visit our Trails page

2013

After some local residents complained HCC were forced to move the course to Ancaster. It turned out to be  a blessing in disguise. Finally well within the confines of the city. The race now starts and finishes at the Ancaster fairgrounds heads out Trinity to Shaver and Book back into the fairgrounds every lap etc. Ridership remains high though the tough hills have been replaced with typical early season winds!

2013

After a three year hiatus the Ayr road course was re-activated. OCA rules require all stop signs to be police controlled and the club felt this was uneconomic! But what’s a bike club without a couple of road races? So starting 2013 the exec decided to fork out for a policeman at the 2nd corner and now we have  two Australian Pursuit races –  a 40k RR in spring and near the end of the season the famous Andy Keyes 100km RR! For those unfamiliar this amazing course barrels through town without restriction! Course is also used by the OMCA.