There comes a time in most cyclists lives when we realise we just don’t need any more “stuff”. Obviously we’re not talking bikes or bike clothing here – there’s always a place in our lives (if not our homes) for that. Or holidays for that matter.
But think about the other stuff; the stuff that is bought or given with good grace, only to be disposed of a few years later. If we’re being honest, we often don’t really want it. And then something comes along that’s just a little bit exciting, something that takes your proudest moment(s) on a bike and turns it in to something beautiful that will last a lifetime.
We sat down with Paul Sonley, founder of Loopie to learn more.
Who is Loopie?
I’m Paul Sonley. A graphic designer, a cyclist and award winning beard grower*.
*Cappuccino Cycling Club Christmas party 2014, Best in Show Beard.
What was the inspiration behind Loopie?
Loopie began from my fascination with the mountains of GPS data generated on a ride. I was drawn to the sheer volume of information explaining every detail; from your route shape, location, speed, elevation and effort. All great stats, but you wouldn’t hang it on your wall and say “There. I did that!”
Loopie takes these numbers and creates a more visual, memorable and inspirational reminder of your epic sportive or classic climb. Each Loopie starts with a riders actual GPS data. The final print is a factual but artistic interpretation of that ride, and (hopefully) one you would want to hang on your wall.
Which other cycling artists do you admire?
As a graphic designer I’m more of a type geek but I’m always drawn to images that express movement and speed. Since my college years I’ve always been a fan of Otl Aicher, the German graphic designer who created the identity for the 1972 Munich Olympics. He created a beautiful, visual interpretation, of the Olympic sports that really capture their energy and excitement. Over 40 years later, they still look fresh and exciting.
What is your dream North Yorkshire route?
Firstly one where it doesn’t rain and there must always be a good coffee stop. Last year’s Grand Depart sportive was probably my best day out cycling in Yorkshire so far. Stunning weather and just the right mix of sweeping Yorkshire Dales roads that my deep rim wheels love, and out of the saddle climbing. Hoping for more of the same this year when I ride the Etape du Yorkshire in July.
Away from God’s Own County, where else would you most like to ride and record with a Loopie?
Loopies look best when you point your bike uphill and the Stelvio pass in the Italian Alps looks like it would make an amazing one. Plenty of up and plenty of switch backs. If anyone has ridden the Stelvio or is planning a trip I’ll offer 20% discount for the first bespoke Loopie order placed.
Is there an easy way to ask a loved one for a Loopie?
“Look darling, if you don’t buy me a Loopie then I’m definitely going to have to buy another bike!”
To find out more, go to www.loopieroute.com