Wednesday, 8 June 2016

The Mr Porter London Nocturne

Craig of That Dapper Chap attends the London Nocturne cycle races as a guest of Mr Porter


Slap bang in the heart of London's financial district, and with the magnificent iconic landmark of St Pauls Cathedral looming majestically on the landscape, Mr Porter hosted the annual Nocturne cycles races.

Since humble beginning in 2007, the London Nocturne has grown and evolved significantly and now boasts an extravaganza of cycling, establishing itself a reputation for first class city bike racing.


Not all about cycling, Mr Porter showed some of their new collections


Cyclists giving it their all on the new 1.5km course


Launching in February 2011 Mr Porter has quickly and efficiently established itself as a multi award winning global brand, specialising in the best menswear brands such as Paul Smith, Givenchy and Gucci to name just a few.  They are also very proud to have a dedicated sportswear category covering nine disciplines, including cycling. Hence being sponsor of the London Nocturne.

As the party atmosphere built, cyclists whizzed along the course at lightening speeds to the cheers of onlookers, all wielding Mr Porter cowbells, showing their support for the lycra clad competitors. 

Mr Chris Lawless reigned triumphant with his second win in a row for JLT Condor. Lawless raced liked a thing possessed and set the record for the fastest lap of the day on the new 1.5km course.


Mr Chris Lawless, winner twice in a row


The Mr Porter cow bells and newspaper
Entering the VIP area which gave us incredible views of the start/Finish line, we were immediately distracted by the Sipsmiths Gin cocktails on offer, and of course had to partake in their summery delights, enjoying a class (or two) of their London Cup.

The food was also great. Supplied by Spook Catering we started with scotch eggs, spinach and Feta cheese pastries and sumptuously indulgent salted caramel chocolate squares. How could one resist! Later during the day they gave us deli burgers and a stunning salad including French beans, peas, macadamia nuts and other delicious additions.


The Sipsmiths London Cup cocktails

Enjoying just one more cocktail

The Spooks table, laden with culinary delights

A cyclist lycra clad and determined to win
I succumbed to the temptations of the scotch egg on more than one occasion

Delicious spinach and feta cheese pastries

The salted caramel chocolate squares, deliciously indulgent

Of the nine events throughout the day I have to say that one of my favourites was the Concours d'Elegance, which saw beautifully stylish ladies and gentlemen, gracefully making their way around the course in as a polite a manner as possible. This was not a contest of speed but one of polite riding to raise much needed awareness of cyclists on the streets of London.

Contestants were subjected to various obstacles throughout the course such as vans, lollipop men, stop signs and the odd iPhone zombie. All obstacles that London cyclists encounter on a daily basis during their treacherous commute to work. With 432 cyclists injured or killed on London streets in 2014 this was a fun race with a very serious message.


Dapper Chaps in their finery for the Concours d'Elegance

A lady and gent dressed to impress and cycling most politely 

The winning cyclists celebrate

The Mr Porter active wear collection

The event that I anticipated the most was the Penny Farthing race. These vintage contraptions, once favoured by the gentile have been reborn as ultra slim and light racing bikes. I have to admit I wanted to see vintage cycles topped with ladies and gentlemen in full Sunday best, tweed suits, top hats and deerstalkers, but it was not to be. This was a serious race and the bikes got up to some seriously high speeds! Would I like to try one? I'll pass thank you!


Ice Cream anyone? The Mr Porter Gelato stand

Bystanders lining London's streets for a glimpse of the races

Yours truly getting video content for what you've watched above



The stunning St Paul Cathedral watching over proceedings


The Penny Farthing race, made slightly odd due to the attire of the competitors
We had a truly great day and immersed ourselves in the proceedings, cheering on the racers, enjoying great food, great drinks and great conversation with other attendees. If you get a chance please come along next year, it's a great event and one not to be missed. 

And while you're driving to work tomorrow, please keep an eye out for that cyclist, you never know next year they may just be a competitor in the London Nocturne Concours d'Elegance!


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