The Gauteng edition of the International Mass Ride in honour of International Female Ride Day (IFRD) took place in May and was universally acclaimed as a success. Participants reported that the excitement levels were already rising in the run-up to the event and that the combination of the rides (both on-road and offroad) to the venue and the Alice in Wonderland-themed picnic at the Avianto Clubhouse in Muldersdrift certainly did not disappoint.
Riders fully embraced the theme, with some spectacular fancy dress costumes on display. While the day was undoubtedly a lot of fun for all involved, it also made a positive and vital contribution to the development of the motorcycle industry in South Africa, and to encouraging more women to ride.
This of course is the ultimate aim of each year’s IFRD – to make riding a more inclusive lifestyle, and to show women from all walks of life that they too can ride – it’s more than possible and is something they should feel comfortable exploring.
For Motul’s Mercia Jansen, highlights of the event included the themed picnic itself and the offroad ride – one of several groups that converged on Avianto from different starting points across Gauteng. The offroad groups embarked on an adventurous yet very accessible ride, carefully planned by Morag Campbell from Open Rider, that took them through the iconic Lion & Safari Park, giving riders the opportunity to spot wildlife (including lions and cheetahs) en route.
A giraffe stole the show at the morning drinks break and proved to be very adept at photobombing during selfies. They also showed a great liking for the themed cupcakes.
“This event will be hard to top – it was far and away the best Gauteng IFRD to date,” commented co-organiser Kerry Puzey of Puzey Biker’s Warehouse. “We would especially like to thank all the sponsors of the event and the many prizes that were on offer. With feedback including “absolutely stunning”, “awesome”, “wonderful day” and “lekker and lovely”, it’s clear that the participants who took part – a total of 361 ladies with an estimated 150 men also present – very much enjoyed the ride and the day as a whole,” she added.
“Having the opportunity to ride in the Lion & Safari Park is not something that happens every day, and we’re especially grateful to Jason, Zweli and Marius for making this possible,” commented Mercia Jansen, Motul Area Manager for Southern and Eastern Africa. “The route was spectacular but also very inclusive, and suitable for ladies at all levels of riding experience, on every kind of bike,” she added.
The goal of the IFRD is to encourage more women to ‘JUST RIDE’, and to unite women from different cultures and countries through their shared passion for motorcycle riding. By providing welcoming rather than intimidating on-road and off-road routes (suitable even for new riders) and wonderful camaraderie, the event showed that motorcycle riding is an inclusive lifestyle and one that is achievable for everyone.
Sponsors included Avianto Estate, Puzey Biker’s Warehouse and the OEM motorcycle brands who ensured the picnic could be free of charge for participants: BMW Motorrad, Big Boy Scooters, Honda, Husqvarna, Triumph, Kawasaki, KTM, Suzuki, Sym, Yamaha, Indian Motorcycles, TVS Motor SA and Harley Davidson.
Some of Gauteng’s premier motorcycle dealerships sponsored the hosting and catering of the starting points or pitstops for the various rides, including ROC Harley, Fast KTM, BMW Motorrad Boksburg, BMW Motorrad Fourways, Raceworx KTM, World of Yamaha, and Triumph Hatfield.
For more information about the IFRD, visit International Female Ride Day – Women’s Motorcycle Ride Day.
To learn more about Motul’s product range and its commitment to encouraging more women to ride motorbikes, visit Motul.