As the bikes assembled in anticipation for the great race, we spoke to a few of the riders:
Yuvi Jasti is the owner of a 1904/10 Durkopp pedal bike, the oldest pedal bike in this race. With no gear system and few shock absorbers it will be a race of skill for sure. One of the few bikes with a side car, this AJS 3000cc b twin is owned by brothers Brian Lange and Steve Lange, this bike has been ridden in 38 rallies, making it a true testament to the enduring spirit of cycling. But the pedal bike is not the only form of transportation that has stood the test of time. Motorcycles have also been an enduring passion for many people, and the stories of those who ride them are equally fascinating.
One of the most remarkable stories of motorcycle endurance comes from Neville Smith, the oldest rider taking part this year, is in his 80s. Smith has been riding his 1935 250cc Rudge for years, and his love for the machine is clear in the way he talks about it.
Gavin Walton is another rider who has made a name for himself in the world of motorcycle endurance. Riding a 1936 AJS 500cc, Walton has won the rally five times, and his love for the sport is evident in everything he does. He is a true testament to the enduring passion of motorcycle riders, and his dedication to the sport is truly inspiring.
Clive Edward won the 1971 DJ Rally on his Velocette 250MOV, which he built himself in 1961. Gary (Clive’s son) will be riding again this year, his passion for his family motorcycle was infectious. Today, Gary is a seasoned rider with ten DJ Rallies under his belt, having won the 250 class rally twice. Gary\’s son, Tyrone, is also a talented rider, having won the rally once in 2021. For him, the motorcycle is not just a way to get from point A to point B, but a connection to a time and a way of life that has long since passed.
Many of the bikes displayed a \”Riding for Stewart\” sticker a tribute to their fellow rider Stewart and his legacy . It is a way for riders to honour his memory and his passion for motorcycles and riding. Stewart was 100 years old when he passed away last year, he last took part in the 2013 rally at 91 years of age.
The Bikes left Hillcrest Corner at 6am on the 10 March, their journey is underway and we look forward to following their progress. They will complete their ride tomorrow, finishing in JHB. We wish them all the best and a safe rally!