Early start for me this morning- 5 am to get up to London for the ride. I know it would not start till 10am but registration would be from 8 am and there would be a problem parking. Drove up to the "Tower of London" area to find a very expensive parking lot for the day. Only 8 miles to the start from here but by the time I had assembled the bike- and got lost on the backstreets- it was 8 before I got there. Time for a Coffee and PIE after registration which is posted elsewhere. There were going to be 1,000 riders on this morning funride for Prostate Cancer and they had asked for Fancy Dress. Hence the Bananaman suit and a big placard on the back of the bike. Just chilled out till 9am and not many in fancy dress. But they were probably like me and did not want to give away too many secrets on what they were going to dress up as.
But the time came to get ready and On with the suit. That was going to be warm to ride in so start taking liquids. Then time to look around. Not many others were dressing up much- a couple had on Pink Leggings and a Pink wig- another couple in 60's style clothing-----and that was it.
Not one other person had taken the effort to do anything to make this a spectacular event for the Charity. Then it started- The Interviews- for local radio- Local papers and National TV. Then the event commentators had a long chat with me about the event. It was obvious that as the only idiot out there I got the lot. Even down on the start line and as I arrived the commentator started winding up the crowds to support "Bananaman"
Finally the ride and sorry but I did try to get pics but on this bike in this set up- I took one and it was decidedly unsafe but one you might all recognise. The route was easy Almost deadflat except for a couple of underpasses- but the problem I had was avoiding the Motor bikes. Once the ride started- and the crowd at the front had gone- All the Camera crews had to do was practice by getting shots of the one idiot out there. I was shown on TV on the news on the ride- and to be honest- I didn't realise how fast I did the ride. My cadence and poise on the bike is perfect. I look good- Even though a bit of an idiot in the way I dressed up. And 13 miles in 38 minutes. Not going for it at any time and still had the banter with the crowd. Tried to get one of the Police Cycle patrol to swop uniforms and bikes but she was not having any of that. Glad she didn't as her bike looked heavier than mine.
Only problem I had was on the ride itself. There were two of the Podium girls doing the ride and I just could not understand these young male riders taking part. These girls were ignored by everyone- Except me. They were Sponsored by Rapha Condor for the event with clothing and bikes. Neither had ridden much before but they manged the 13 miles easily with no problems. EXCEPT for the Chain tat on one of the girls. I just had to get a pic at the end- and that did start a chain reaction. Everyone wanted to get a pic of them after that.
Couple of other points and there were 20 "Selected" celebrities doing the ride. It was also the launch of a new electric bike- and they did impress me on the ride. Range of 25 miles and a top speed of 20 mph. And easy to ride as they put the celebs on them and got 20 bikes back in one piece.
Pics attached but none of the tour. Decided to get back to the car and when I got there to offload the bike- I was shatterred- so went home. Couple of interestings pics of bikes- The White/green bike is a 13lbs lightweight bought off the adverts in a UK Magazine- Dure ace and very lightweight but nothing special. The recumbent might be and it did get some speed behind it. And the GOcycles. Today was the official launch so no idea on prices- but it is aimed at a buy a bike system for commuting we have in the UK. Bought through your workplace and no taxes and a generous contribution from the taxpayers who are not able to get on the scheme- Could work out as little as $1600.