Eight riders have been feverishly preparing their Tern bikes for the biggest folding bike race in the 2013 calendar.
Folding bike race?
The London Nocturne, held this Saturday 8th June for 2013, takes place every year. It’s a series of city criterion races, and on an annual basis, hordes of folding bike fans line up to race the circuit on their folders.
Sponsored by Tern (the folding bikes exclusive to Evans Cycles), the race begins with the riders on foot, and they first have to charge to their bikes and unfold them under pressure. Like any crit race, the benefits of being in the right position in the peloton still apply, so this first stage is all important.
The race exists alongside elite and supporter crit races, a penny farthing race and longest skid competition, all accompanied by food and drink, music and stands in the Smithfield Market.
What are they racing for?
Tern have put up some amazing prizes for the race. First prize is the Tern Verge P18, worth £800 and featuring a hydroformed aluminium frame and eighteen gears as well as a Tern reflective T-shirt and Biologic Mount for an iPhone. Second is a Tern Link Uno, a lightweight alloy design worth £425, and third is the Tern Tool worth £35 and specifically designed to work with the Tern. It features 20 integrated tools.
Who’s on our team?
Tern riders include veteran Keith Henderson, who won the race in 2008, 2009 and 2010, and Kane Hedley-Cummings who raced last year and is hoping to improve on his position.
Keith told us: “Racing at 25-30mph on a 20″ wheeled bike in a bunch of 45 riders around 90 degree corners is undeniably nerve racking. I can’t deny, I want to win, but I’m also just looking forward to the entire atmosphere as it’s such a great event.”
Other Tern riders include Stuart Read, Alistair Clarke, Ellis Bacon, Paul Featherstone, Kharl Mahmud and Pete Cooper.
All team members have been busy preparing and will largely be on Link P9s. Ellis, a freelance journalist who will have a pop-up book shop on the day told us: “They call it ‘the fast one’, which bodes well – or would if I could also call myself ‘the fast one’. It unfolds really quickly, but I still need to practise a bit more in the last couple of days before the event to make sure I’m ready to roll as quickly as I possibly can be. It’s always a mighty-fast race, and every second counts.”
Team mate Paul Featherstone lives in Tunbridge Wells in Kent and has competed in the race twice before. He said it was probably one the hardest things he’s done on two wheels and added: “It’s pretty much a sprint from the start and never lets up.”
He said: “I’m nervous about all those elbows at the start, and the first corner…it’s a little on the sharp side and there’ll be a lot of riders trying to get round in one piece!”
The team will be supported by Evans Cycles staff at the Tern tent on the day. There you’ll find bikes to test and examine, and plenty advice and guidance if you’re thinking of making a leap into the folding bike world. Tern will be giving away Tern Bottle openers to anyone who can fold a Tern bike in under 15 seconds on the stand (limited to the best 50!)
For more information on the event, check out: http://www.londonnocturne.com/