Simon Mottram is the founder of Rapha. He's been instrumental in changing cycling fashion and defining new standards in the industry.
This is not another Rapha history....it's not about what's coming up next.... I sat down for a coffee with Simon last week to find out why he loves to ride.
Words - Mike Boudrie
NAME - Simon Mottram
LIVES - London, United Kingdom.
Colnago. The C40. It's the most winningest bike, but it's more than that. It's probably one of the bikes that created new expectations around what carbon bikes could do. The look, the shape, traditional geometry. They still look great today.... if you can find one.
MY FAVOURITE LOCAL RIDE IS...
Regents Park in London, I've been riding around it for 25 years. A short loop at about 4km, cyclists ride laps and laps of the park. While it's a 'normal' ride, I love the beautiful architecture around the park and the ability to ride in central London before work.
I also like riding a local CX route out over Hampstead Heath. It's amazing to be able to ride a good CX route only a few km from the heart of London entirely on paths, through woodland and open areas then be back in city minutes later.
MY CURRENT CYCLING GOAL IS...
To complete the Manchester to London Challenge. It's a 350km ride that raises money for Ambitious about Autism, a charity that is close to me. Places are limited to 300 riders, that will take on a tough and iconic route that passes through the Peak District, Midlands, and the Chilterns on the way to London.
WHEN I AM ON THE BIKE I...
I am with my friends... I love the social side of riding, if I can't talk when I'm riding it means I'm going too fast...
HOW MY LOVE FOR BIKES CAME ABOUT
Growing up it was just the thing you did... I also have great memories of traveling to France to ride. The smell of the hot road, the local food and the way cycling is just part of the fabric of the nation.
SHARE A CYCLING MEMORY
I've been riding for 30 years so there's so many... I'm turning 50 this year... well next week actually.... so to celebrate I'm going on 50 interesting rides this year. I've started while I'm here in Australia, riding the #Belgie from Melbourne out along the Yarra to the North East, road, dirt and trails. Last week we were over at the TDU. There was great riding, and watching Richie Port on Willunga hill was pretty special...
I LOVE TO RIDE BECAUSE...
It is as close to being a human being as you can get. The reward you get when you put in so much is so much more valuable. It's the perfect representation of the human condition. Effort and fulfillment.