Become a Distinguished Gentleman
Q Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride Q Charity donation/sponsorship Q September 25 Q London and locations worldwide Q www.gentlemansride.com “That’s cheating,” the lad on the 60s-racer style Honda special to my left as I thumb the starter on my Ducati Scrambler FT. “I know,” I shout back over the fumy rumble of engines. “But there’s nothing to kick.”
Meanwhile he’s reaching down in neatly ironed shirtsleeves and waistcoat to flip out the pedal for another prod as the little single refuses to idle. It’s a bizarre but joyous scene as the Scrambler and I prepare to set out across central London in the annual Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride which raises millions for prostate cancer.
Startlingly, there must be nigh-on 1000 bikes here. Everything from Nortons and Vincents to Chinese Sinnis-based specials and a smattering of Scramblers (both of the Ducati and Triumph variety). We weave across Tower Bridge, tourists ogle and take pictures, and the whole thing is a riot.
London is the big one, but there are simultaneous rides in towns and cities around the country, and indeed the world. Registrations aren’t open yet but expect a small signing-on fee and then crack on raising sponsorship. the GIAG category with the intention of keeping it simple. There’s no lockwiring of sump plugs, no catch tanks, no need to drain coolant. The idea is to make your first go at hillclimbing as accessible and affordable as possible. All you have to do is attach regulation numbers to your bike, tape up the lights, get your riding gear and helmet approved for the event and then just have a blast.