It’s been some months since I wrote about the awesome event that is Women Riders World Relay. Since then the relay has well and truly kicked off. It started in Scotland on 27th February and is currently making it’s way around Europe. You can track the relay live here.
There has been incredible stories coming through of friendship, unity and damn right courageousness from the likes of people such as Colette, who is on a mission to complete the entire worldwide relay! I mean just WOW! Not to mention the weather conditions the UK and French have battled so far just to keep the baton moving…
I would like to bring you a story that’s close to my heart of two good friends of mine, Sara and Debbie. Friends united by their love of horse power, from the four legged animal type to the motorcycle engine type. Sara is also the founder of The Litas Cornwall where they often organise rides together and meet new friends. She is also an advocate for female bikers and gear.
This is the story of the Motorcycle Maids of Cornwall, UK and their WRWR adventure….
Day 1 – Cornwall to Leamington Spa (Day 10 of WRWR)
It was very fitting that it was on International Women’s Day 8th March 2019 that Sara and Debbie set off on their 4 day adventure. From the far South West Corner of England at their local bike cafe Chequered Flag and with their Cornish flags proudly flying on their bikes, they were ready to start the 1st leg.
However a stop over at Leamington Spa to meet with fellow riders was a must. As the start point of Day 11 of the relay they were taking part in was 234 miles away. But there was time to stop for lunch along the way at fellow motorcycle enthusiast, Sue’s house in Bristol who very kindly invited them and other guests over for a scrumptious lunch.
Being part of the WRWR was an experience in itself. But being able to experience it with my friend Sara was fantastic and the best feelingDebbie O’Donnell
After several hours of riding and not getting to Leamington until late, the importance of pizza soon became apparent and the ladies left it in the capable hands of their friend Phil to chat up the receptionist to allow them to have pizza at the bar. The highlight of day one for Sara, who you really don’t want to see when she get’s hangry!
Day 2 – Leamington Spa to Ace Cafe Launch Event (Day 11 of WRWR)
The 1st part of the ladies participation in the relay saw them arrive at Ace Cafe in London for the official WRWR launch event on 9th March with guest speakers such as motorcycle adventurer, Elspeth Beard and wall of death rider, Kerri Cameron. Debbie was stoked to get her copy of Lone Rider signed by the woman herself.
They also got to meet many of the admin of WRWR who flew from all parts of the world to take part in the launch. Including the lady herself, Hayley Bell, the founder of WRWR.
Day 3 – London to France Via the Eurotunnel (Day 12 of WRWR)
On the 10th March Sara and Debbie headed to Sittingbourne speedway for another WRWR event.
The best bit was meeting awesome, enthusiastic women who love motorbikes as much as me and were super friendlySara Hawkins
It was now Debbie’s turn to take charge of carrying the baton as they left Sittingbourne heading toward Eurotunnel terminal ready to carry the baton over to France.
Carrying the WRWR baton was an amazing feeling and quite emotional. This precious cargo that’s going to travel around the world was in my hands, my responsibility until I passed it onto the next relay sisterDebbie O’Donnell
But it wasn’t all plain sailing to get to the tunnel. Sara had to go ahead on her own due to unforeseen health issues and the gale force winds made it a challenging ride for everyone. But the baton must go on and pulling support from each other they battled the element’s to get the baton safely to it’s next destination. What a job ladies!
The baton was now on it’s way across the channel towards France ready to be handed over to the French ladies in the morning……
Day 4 – France to Cornwall (Day 13 of WRWR)
After some much needed rest, it was now time for the baton to be handed over to the French ladies. This time it was Sara who would do the honours.
Just like that the ladies guardian work was done, they had travelled hundreds of miles, battled horrendous weather conditions and carried the baton across countries safely. But before saying ‘au revoir’ and making their epic journey home, 295 miles away, there was just enough time for Sara to squeeze in a quick snog with a handsome French man called Marcus! Nicely done Sara.
In total the ladies had completed 863 miles in the 4 days they took part in the relay. Subscribe to my YouTube channel to see highlights of their trip coming this Friday 29th March at 9am (New Zealand time)
“Access to comparable equipment and bikes is something that is amplified living in the Southwest of England where Bristol is considered the end of the road by many companies. The daring pioneers stop at Plymouth.
I was active in the conversation about bike clothing on Motorbike Women that sowed the seed in Hayley’s online discussion.
I signed up for group moderation and also the taskers that Hayley asked help with last year”
“I participated in WRWR to be part of a unity to stand tall along side other women riders to let manufacturers know that women riders are just as important to the industry as male riders. We need to have the same security, protection and garments that fit accordingly.
With more and more women passing their bike test, there is a gap in the market and proper protective, suitable female bike wear is needed.
This relay wasn’t about breaking records. Signing the baton along with thousands of other female biker sisters globally, was making a stand”
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