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1888 - Newcastle - 27 February to 3 March

Press Cuttings from 19th Century Newspapers

Glasgow Herald (Scotland) Monday 5-Mar-1888

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De Kampioen (Netherlands) Apr-1888

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THE SIX DAYS’ BICYCLE CONTEST
Penny Illustrated Paper (London, England) Saturday, 10-Mar-1888

“at Newcastle, last week, was brought to a conclusion on Saturday night, the final scores being as follows;-”

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1

T BATTENSBY

766 miles

9 laps

2

J YOUNG

766 miles

8 laps

3

W LAMB

758 miles

6 laps

4

C TERRONT

756 miles

4 laps

5

J PARKES

603 miles

8 laps

6

J DUBOIS

532 miles

 

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You would have to assume from the fewer and much shorter press reports that interest in six days races had greatly declined - certainly within the media. Perhaps the novelty had worn thin. Or perhaps six day races had become too working class. But certainly the small pool of professional riders, the predictable results, the shorter race hours (and so distances) would not have helped. Charles Terront, for example, had been racing in England for 10 years by this stage - and had covered 144 miles more in his first six day race back in 1878. The average speed may have increased by the total distance declined.

So it would be the epic cycling in road races - with their heroic challenges against the weather, road conditions and finally, the mountains - that attracted the growing European crowds. While in England the track, or as it was called path, racing moved to one day, amateur meetings and shorter distances. Racing on the road became limited to anonymous trials against the clock - not a form of racing that could be adopted by professionals.

However six day racing had one more boost to its popularity before the end - in the daring form of women’s six day races ...

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