With 2014 coming to a close I wanted to thank you for reading my blog and supporting my efforts for Cerebra this year. Its been a wonderful year and I never thought that I would do so many new and interesting things! So, in the spirit of the internet's addiction to lists, I've created the Top 5 Arctic Rider moments 2014. Enjoy!
5 - NEMCRC Croft race meet VIP
The North East Motor Cycle Racing Club (NEMCRC) were sponsors of my Arctic Ride 2014 and as part of that they got me very exposed to club events to drum up more support. In April I was lucky enough to be invited to the club's Croft Race meet where I was a VIP guest for the day. This meant that I had exclusive access to areas of the track that are usually only for officials. I was able to sit a top the Race office with the Clark of the course to get a great view of the circuit and the starting line, and given access to the recording team. I was also interviewed by the race commentator about my ride and given an unrivaled view of the track. However the best part of the day was being given the honour of presenting the race winners with their trophies.
4 - Interview BBC Radio Newcastle
I certainly never expected to get the media coverage that I did for the trip, especially with the BBC at their Newcastle studio. I did 3 interviews in total at the BBC but the best was being interviewed by the drive time show's John Harle and having it filmed by my trusty buddies from MPH studios. If you buy the Arctic Ride 2014 DVD the full interview is included in the extras.
|At BBC Radio Newcastle|
3 - Meeting Norwegian Bikers
Ok this this one is a bit of a cheat as its not 'one' moment but a collection of a few along the way during my ride. I met up with what can only be described as some of the most genuine, generous, and epic people I have ever met. I was touched and amazed by their generosity to help me as a complete stranger. But at the same time it optimised the spirit of the biking community which spreads the whole world over.
Special thanks to Lars and the gang in Trondeim for the BBQ food, riding the Atlantic road, and the tour of the city. To Hallvard and the Helgeland club for the Reindeer curry, the cabin that kept me warm, and the company on my entry into the Arctic. Also to Geir and his family in Tromso. Thank you for welcoming me into your home, treating me to some amazing reindeer food / brown cheese, for the mountain climb on my 'rest day', and for the great banter and chat!
|BBQ in Trondheim|
|Hallvard and I saying bye|
|Geir and I in Tromso, Norway|
2 - Reaching Nordkapp
After I crashed in Sweden in 2011 I thought reaching Nordkapp was never going to happen. But 3 years later I achieved my dream and was able to raise ton of cash for Cerebra. It wasn't until I was home I was properly able to reflect on what it meant. It was life changing and taught me that dreams can come true... Oh and they do an epic hot-dog up at the visitor centre.,,, 10 out of 10
|On top of the world|
Without a doubt the best moment of the trip and #1 Arctic Rider moment of 2014 was getting back to blighty, riding off the ferry into Newcastle and seeing my (pregnant at the time) wife Kirsty. Only twice have we been apart for more than a few weeks, both motorbike adventure related. When I'm away riding its always hits home just how much Kirsty is light of my life and without her I wouldn't have achieved what I have... Arctic Ride 2014 and The Arctic Rider wouldn't exist without her.
Its great to travel and experience new things but it also gives you an appreciated for what you have at home... I'd do it all again and knowing that I'd get to come home at the end of an adventure like this to my family its the highlight of the trip.
Oh and coming home also meant that I didn't die or total the bike.... WIN!
|Knowing me so well Kirsty came armed |
to the port with a can or Irn Bru.... legend
Here's to 2015.... Ride safe everyone!