Ride with us: Speak’s cycling highlights
If you’ve spent any time at our bike-cluttered Brick Lane content agency, you’ll know we’re cycling obsessives. On World Bicycle Day, we look back at our work with cycling brands, teams and the sport in general.
1. Lunsar Cycling Team
One of our most exciting projects is our partnership with Sierra Leone-based Lunsar Cycling Team. We recently sponsored the first ever Tour de Lunsar – a national race attended by thousands – providing bespoke cycling shirts, cycling hats, marketing materials and food and drink for all participants. Find out more here.
2. Pennine Cycles film
We interviewed the wonderful Pennine Cycles in Bradford for Barclays, publishing this feature and video to mark the Tour de Yorkshire. With a rich heritage that dates back over 70 years, our cycling-mad team had a great day chatting to the proud shop owners Sandra and Paul Corcoran.
We loved every minute of producing the magazine-programmes for the Revolution series of events – starting with a major redesign and content overhaul in 2016 – and, as the official media partner, had our Speak Media logo feature prominently on the trackside hoardings.
Our editorial team got the chance to cover all the thrills and spills of track cycling’s ‘Premier League’ over several seasons, in print and on social channels, and produced a number of memorable cover features including in-depth articles on the hour record, and interviews with the biggest names in the sport: Wiggo, Trott, Hoy, Kenny, Storey … the list goes on.
4. Urban Hill Climb
Away from the starry track scene, we’ve also got stuck into many grass events – helping with promotion and content for great organisations like Rollapaluza, the roller-racing kings who put on some of the best events in the amateur calendar.
Our favourite – as contested on occasion (with middling results) by our Editorial Director – has to be the Urban Hill Climb. Other memorable partnerships included our work on pioneering Keirin racing in Manchester (we created the marketing collateral and the event programme).
5. Spin Cycling Festival
If you’re into cycling and live in or around London, you’ve likely heard of this annual event which has grown exponentially in the last few years. We were there in the early days, helping the founders with content and branding consultancy – and it’s still a must-do on our calendar. Hope to see you there next year …
6. Trase cycle wear
We helped Norwegian cycling apparel start-up Trase – which has now morphed into a bricks-and-mortar bike shop – with all its online copy including brand story and product descriptions.
7. Pedalsure PR
The cycling insurer approached us for a new way to get its message across to commuters, and we devised a practical yet fun-filled advertorial for its PR campaign – which earned it a spot in the Daily Telegraph’s sport section among others – on the ’11 unwritten rules of commuting by bike’. Our piece utilised the brand’s existing stock of archive imagery, with a tongue-in-cheek tone to match.
8. Herne Hill Velodrome
The Herne Hill Velodrome in south London is arguably UK cycling’s most iconic venue, built in 1891 it’s one of the oldest tracks in the world. Unsurprisingly, the velodrome is steeped in history – having hosted cycling events in the 1948 Olympics and been used as Crystal Palace FC’s home ground during WWI.
It’s a place where many of the Speak team have shed tears of joy (and a few layers of skin) on the track. So we were pretty chuffed to be asked to help develop promotional materials for the fundraising events that would eventually help pave the way for a major renovation of the venue in 2017.
9. Racing Chris Froome
Ok, wherever you are on the salbutamol debate, you can’t argue with the fact that taking Froome on, head-to-head, on the hills, is no mean feat … and that’s just what we did. Here’s how it happened.
10. Welcome to Yorkshire
Returning to the Tour de Yorkshire, we interviewed chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire Sir Gary Verity for our leading questions series for Barclays – part of the corporate storytelling we produce for the bank. We chatted about leading by example, living on a sheep farm – and whether there’s a specifically Yorkshire approach to leadership.