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As seen in 100% biker issue 236

As Blue neatly put in an editorial earlier this year, it would be amazing to know how much money that bikers raise throughout the year on all the various runs and rallies that are for charity. We really are a generous bunch, and then there are the wish list rides etc which may not involve cash but bring joy to others. I know that this ride raised in excess of £4000 which by any standards is not to be sniffed at.

With all the events on though I have to be a little cautious about how many events I go on, as the 100% Towers biscuit fund does not allow for subbing charity events or in fact biscuits after the great bourbon v rich tea debacle of 2015. So I pick those like most of us which have a personal affiliation.

Sometimes well-known charity events produce new spin off events such as this ride “The Ride of the Ruperts”. Which has come out of the Distinguished Gentlemen’s Ride and is the brainchild of Stefano Morrelli. Having enjoyed the DGR so much in just 9 months he planned and organised not just this ride but a charity dance raising more funds for the “Movember campaign” which campaigns for mens awareness of cancers and mental health. So I pencilled it in and went to look for checked trousers but found a large Rupert bear instead. Epic fail as the ride had nothing to do with Rupert bear. So I went for a tie and natty hat instead. For those that worry there were lady riders too, though while gents were known as ruperts I never knew how we should address them.

Slightly different while riders and pillions were asked to dress dapper in the spirit of the DGR, there were no rules on the style of bike was allowed, learner friendly and the ride was limited to 200 riders, each of us having paid a minimum pre book fee of £10. I believe 180 bikes actually turned up. There certainly was an eclectic range of bikes too from trikes, learners, 1970’s Honda 200’s and big single sunbeam flat tanker from 1920’s to modern Harleys and triumphs. A first for me also was a volunteer breakdown van following as well.

Blessed with an almost perfect riding morning we amassed at the start, with a slightly different breakfast of tea and cheese on toast for some. And we were informed of the 70 mile route to the destination of the Custom Café at Bexhill, a popular biker café, who not only had closed for the afternoon just for this event, but were also given 10% of all takings to the cause as well.

I had volunteered to be one of the small team of drop off Marshalls behind the lead rider to help all get to the two pre-arranged stops to allow regrouping. And a bit late we all set off with such small roads on the route the stops were very welcome, and even the sunbeam stayed with the pack for the first section, I had the pleasure of riding behind the sunbeam for a while and the thump, thump, thump exhaust was fabulous. for those of a nervous disposition, can I just say riding behind a kilted man can be interesting.

The drop off system worked wonders as you never were quite lost (ok I hadn’t a clue where I was half the time on these little roads) and some markers were almost making signalling a dance routine. At the first stop the sunbeam sneaked off to reappear closer to the end, while the breakdown van dealt with a bust brat bike. Each stop also was a chance to see more friends you hadn’t seen in years or realised were on the run and this is what made the ride such fun.

The views on the route were stunning too as we went through glorious Sussex villages and the sea popping up and down into view  regularly.

The end was almost an anti-climax as it had been such an interesting ride, but the great feeling continued and a relaxed afternoon continued.

Well done to all there is already talk of a ROTR 2 in 2019