The Crown Lane Bike Race - Hastings Old Town Carnival Week

The Crown Lane Bike Race

The origins of the race go back to Hastings fisherman and boy ashore Jimmy Read.

Jimmy, who was killed on the beach during the 1987 hurricane, steadfastly refused suggestions to get a motorbike claiming there was no point as he could get anywhere he wanted on his old butcher’s bike.

He was challenged by a friend to ride up Crown Lane while staying on the saddle and with a £10 note under him. Jimmy won his bet. Jimmy’s friend,

Peter Trickett, came up with the idea of the bike race a year after his death. So now, 30 years later, the race still goes on!

Contestants have to ride a butcher's bike up Crown Lane (probably the steepest hill in the Old Town) sitting on the saddle with a £10 note tucked under them. If they stand up and lose the note, they're out of the game.

Proceeds from the race are donated to Jimmy Read's widow.


  • 2018
    • (don't know her name!) 23.40 secs
    • Richard Read 16.02 secs