Glorious Brompton Weekend at Goodwood
Historic motor circuit hosts an exciting weekend of Brompton races, events and a suitable dose of British eccentricity.
The inaugural Orbital Cycling Festival set the stage for cycle racing of all sorts, including the Brompton Eliminator and Brompton Sprint but the show stopper for many was the Brompton World Championship – the largest folding bike race in the world. Renowned for its strict dress code (all competitors must don a jacket and tie for the event) and international draw – 27% of competitors were from overseas – it shouldn’t be forgotten that for some, this is a very serious race.
Time trial record holder Michael Hutchinson made it a hat-trick; three consecutive years as fastest male, with an exceptional time of 23 minutes 44 seconds over the 15.2km course; Isabel Hastie won the female category, for the first time, in 25 minutes 24 seconds. Hastie and Hutchinson will no doubt be delighted to have each picked up a Limited Edition Barcelona Brompton.
Winners of the Brompton Treble, Susan Todzy of the USA, the defending female champion, decisively won the female category and joint male winners Gavin Morton and Antonius Wubben, will all be looking forward to their luxury Mr & Mrs Smith hotel breaks after a gruelling weekend of racing, with the 500m Brompton Sprint and the two lap Brompton Eliminator on Saturday before the World Championship on Sunday.
On top of the racing, all sorts of other entertainment took place to keep Bromptoneers busy across the weekend; these ranged from the large scale Brompton art installation, created by street artist Zabou, to Brompton roller racing with Rollapaluza, fastest folding competitions and, of course, the Sturmey Archer Afternoon Tea which many washed down with a Sipsmith gin and Fevertree tonic to cap off the afternoon.
Brompton event director Katharine Horsman said:
“As ever, we were blown away by the high level of racing shown, the dapper outfits sported and the good spirit of all the competitors. We try to keep things fresh each year so it was nice to introduce the Brompton Eliminator, as well as a number of non-racing aspects that we had not tried before. It all seemed to go down well and I’ll never get tired of watching the Le Mans style start, organised chaos doesn’t really do it justice but certainly evokes the spirit of it!”
Other winners included B Bike in the Brooks team competition, who had come all the way from Rome, Italy and included cycling from Gatwick to Goodwood as their pre-race preparation. Pal Singh and Stella Briggs took the Nutcase sponsored Best Dressed prize.
Brompton Managing Director, Will Butler Adams said:
“We were excited to bring this event to a new venue and to get onto a circuit with such a rich history of British racing gave it a real feeling of significance. We love racing our Bromptons and showing that, if you’re up for it, these robust, well aligned, rapid bikes can perform on the race track as well as the daily commute. I am a little disappointed not to have come in the top 100 but have resolved to start a strict training schedule and lay off the biscuits, in order to come back stronger next year!”
Official event video can be seen on the Brompton YouTube channel.