The biggest cycling event of the year is approaching soon. The Tour de France? No, the first official London cycle hire race, silly. Thirty brave contestants will test the dangerous waters of Smithfield Market through five perilous laps. And what will be the weapon of choice? Boris bikes. These blue coloured bikes have the power to tear down windy roads or take harrowing treks while shopping at your local grocer. The prestige one will gain by winning this race will catapult the lucky rider into super-stardom. Not really, but you will win a free Barclay’s Cycle Hire membership.
This featured race is a part of a series of races to test one’s endurance and mettle-the London Nocturne. But, this race will be more of a street festival minus a Kardashian or two. It will be a celebration that marks 30 million hires since the cycle hire inception. Never mind the fact that cycle hires have decreased recently.
The cycle hire is a bit under fire. Barclays recently announced that they will not be renewing their sponsorship after the contract ends in 2015. So Transport for London is looking to find someone to pick up the tab. In fact, I think I saw the ad on Craigslist.
“Hey, you like bikes? Got an extra 5.5 million pounds just lying around your flat? Looking for a long term commitment…maybe about 5 years? E-mail me with a picture, of course.”
The relationship with the Barclays has been rocky at best. There have been whispers of cycle expansions that were not funded by Barclays.
But, hey, let’s not worry about that. Listen to London Mayor Boris Johnson.
“Exactly a month before the Tour de France rolls into our great city, the London Nocturne will kick-start another sensational summer of cycling in the capital.”
I can hardly wait.