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London Cycle Show
London, UK, October 13-16, 2005
By Ben Atkins
The London Cycle Show (or Cycle 2005, to give it it's proper name) is the UK's answer to Interbike. Having outgrown the London Design Centre that's previously been its home it's moved downstream to the ExCel, an enormous exhibition centre in London's old Docklands district.
After winning the bid for the 2012 Olympic Games, the return of the Tour of Britain, and now the bid to host the Tour de France's Grand Depart in 2007, London is really taking its cycling seriously. Couple this with the capital's campaign to get more people out of their cars and onto their bikes to ease traffic congestion and get the population fitter and you get a bike show that pushes cycling for sport, fitness and - just as importantly - transport.
By far the biggest single presence at the show is Transport for London.
A huge area in the centre of the hall has been turned into a test track to simulate cycling in London - complete with landmarks. Visitors are invited to ride an enormous variety of machines, from folders, to recumbents, to low riders, all with the aim of getting more of London's population to get out and ride.
The majority of the show though, is all about cycle sport - both on and off road - featuring some of the world's biggest and best known brands, as well as many lesser known ones.
Bikes, bikes and more bikes! Surprising at a Cycle show, you might say... As well as the famous brands like Trek, Specialized, Colnago et al - all of whom were present in great numbers (in fact it was quite difficult to see from one end of the Trek exhibit to the other!) we managed to find some evidence that the great British cycle industry is alive and very well. The mainland Europeans and Americans have had their chance to show themselves off at Milan, Frankfurt and Vegas, so now was the time for the Brits to show the world what they can do.