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Stoke Newington's Joe Brown aiming for top

PUBLISHED: 16:00 09 May 2017

Joe Brown smiles for the camera at the launch of the Rapha/Nocturne cycling event at London's Rapha store (pic: Sportsbeat/Roberto Payne).

Joe Brown smiles for the camera at the launch of the Rapha/Nocturne cycling event at London's Rapha store (pic: Sportsbeat/Roberto Payne).

© Sportsbeat/Roberto Payne

Local UK sales account manager is determined to earn podium finish in the Rapha Nocturne folding bike race next month

Joe Brown faces the camera at the launch of the Rapha/Nocturne cycling event at London's Rapha store (pic: Sportsbeat/Roberto Payne).Joe Brown faces the camera at the launch of the Rapha/Nocturne cycling event at London's Rapha store (pic: Sportsbeat/Roberto Payne).

Stoke Newington cycling enthusiast Joe Brown is aiming for the top of the podium when he takes part in the Rapha Nocturne folding bike race, next month.

The 29-year-old is a UK sales account manager for Brompton – the pre-eminent name in the folding bike trade – and has a best finish of third in the City of London criterium race, and was on hand to help launch the race last week.

Brown, who rides for the Brompton Factory Race Team, will race over ten laps of the 1.3km closed-road circuit around the City of London – but only after unfolding his bike, a skill he struggled with last year.

“I try and take part every year. My highest place is third round the old course in Smithfield, but last year I had a pretty bad unfold and led to me chasing the pack for the entire race,” he said.

“I’m quite fast, so hopefully with a bit of extra training this year, and a bit of extra practice unfolding, I can be back up on the podium again.

“One of the best things about the folding bike race is the atmosphere, and part of that is created by the outfits the people are wearing.

“You have a variety of bikes, a variety of outfits and everyone likes to have a laugh. So seeing people dressed up, some people more lycra-based than others, it’s really enjoyable and adds a bit of texture to the weekend.”

This year’s London Nocturne, which sees bicycle clothing manufacturer Rapha come back on board for a three-year partnership deal with organisers FACE Partnership, will feature nine separate races before the men’s and women’s elite fields go hell for leather as darkness falls upon the square mile.

The day’s races include a penny farthing race, the folding bike battle, fixed gear races and Concours d’Elegance, where riders get points for their bike, dress, etiquette and ability to negotiate obstacles placed along the course.

After 11 years of the London Nocturne, Rapha and FACE also announced, on Thursday, a second criterium race in Copenhagen, with plans to host the full array of races there before expanding to make the Nocturne a global series in years to come.

And Brown was excited to hear of the plans to grow the event around the world.

“I can imagine it’s quite nice for the crowd to see, especially with the speeds people are going at, it’s quite impressive,” he added.

“I’m really pleased to hear it’s going to be a global race, I’m very keen to join up and join in. I’d consider entering other races, but definitely with the folding bike race there is definitely the opportunity for Rapha and the Nocturne organisers to do good things with it, it’s going to be a great thing for cycling.”

The Rapha London Nocturne – a unique free to attend festival of cycling featuring the world’s most prestigious Criterium race – is coming to the City of London on 10 June. Visit www.raphanocturne.com for further information.

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