Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Pimp Your Ride

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Pimp Your Ride

Article excerpt

Byline: Nick Curtis

THE timing is perfect. As Wiggins, Pendleton, Hoy and Storey have cranked up interest in two-wheeled, human-powered transport to record levels, the Design Museum this Friday hosts its first-ever Bike v Design evening. The event has been spun off the museum's current sports exhibition, Designed to Win, and looks at the recent upsurge -- especially in London -- of people building and otherwise personalising their own bikes.

"The cycling world is very segregated between BMX-ers, track racers, mountain bikers and so on, and also very brand and marketing heavy," says curator Alice Marsh, 32, who commutes in each day from Brixton on a machine she built herself. "So we wanted to create a forum where no one's trying to sell you anything, and where we are all allowed to be really geeky about our bikes."

Among the many enthusiastic participants are bespoke (see what I did there?) frame-builder Dario Pegoretti, and representatives of the historic firm Condor and Moulton, the builder of beautiful, lightweight smallwheel bikes much favoured by connoisseurs. There will be demonstrations from acrobatic BMXers and circus trick cyclist Alice Allart.

There will be purists who favour stripped-down fixie (fixed-gear) bikes, eccentrics who dress in Victorian costumes and ride vintage bikes on the Tweed Run, and members of the Cosmic Bike Polo Squad. "Their sport is so new, their bikes haven't even been invented yet, and they have to hack them themselves," says Marsh.

Each participant will give a 10-minute talk, explaining the construction and components of their respective bikes. There will be a pop-up cinema programmed by the Bicycle Film Festival and a "bike library" of collectable steeds compiled by designer Karta Healey. The idea is to appeal as much to the lay cyclist or occasional commuter as to those who can argue the toss between Campagnolo and Shimano derailleurs. …

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