Magic circle firm throws a ringer into charity cycling competition — and wins

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By Judge John Hack on

Freshfields enters a fitness trainer into Tour de Law competition, who, funnily enough, manages to cycle faster than just about everyone else


Hats off to Anglo-German global law firm beast Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer for not taking its eye off the professionalism ball — even when it comes to a charity cycle race.

Results for this year’s Tour de Law — organised by the Breast Cancer Care charity and raced over two days at the end of last month — have just come in. And it seems the firm that produced the trainee who flogged insider interview tips has courted controversy again, this time by fielding a ringer.

Thora Andersen bagged the prize for being the competition’s fastest female, covering 10.26km in a blistering 15 minutes, which was only a little more than click behind Marcus Fink, who took fastest bloke honours by covering 11.79km in the same time.

But while Fink is a partner in the employment department at City firm Ashurst (meaning that just surviving 15 minutes of remotely strenuous cycling would be worthy of some sort of medal), Andersen is not a partner, or an associate, or a trainee, or a paralegal. She’s a … personal trainer … who conducts bespoke sessions at … Freshfields Bruckhaus Derringer.


Andersen’s LinkedIn profile describes her as an

“experienced and well qualified personal trainer and exercise professional”, who enjoys “utilizing my vast experience and knowledge of exercise prescription to positively influence the health and fitness of clients”.

But if there were any women Freshfields lawyers competing in the tour, then there has to be a tiny question mark over Andersen’s commercial nous. If a female partner or senior associate were anywhere near her rear wheel for the fastest female title, surely she should have eased up a bit to let the lawyer (i.e. her client) take the prize.


Elsewhere in the tour, the London office of US firm Sidley Austin was the fastest firm with a time of 18 hours and 40 minutes. It also took the prize for travelling the farthest distance — 1,414.14 km.

Following Sidley Austin in the main race were fellow US firm Latham & Watkins and Midlands-based, memorably-named Wright Hassall.

At last count, the event has generated more than £68,700 for the charity. Latham & Watkins won best fundraising firm honours, raising £9,289.71; Weil Gotshal & Manges was close behind, raising £8,910.72.

Another set of Yanks, the London office of Proskauer Rose, won the best small office prize, raising £3,838.85. Back on the course, the firm finished 10th with a time of 35 hours and 48 minutes, covering a distance of 1,038.27 km.

Some 3,600 legal professionals from 20 law firms took part in this year’s event.