The free Fire Aid Ride this Sunday (23 February 2020) will be the first in a series of rides every two months for the rest of the year to draw visitors to towns that have been drastically affected by the recent bushfires.
A GoFundMe page was started in November to help the cafe cover costs. It raised more than $20,000 of a $5000 goal!
Fire Aid Ride series
No dates or locations have yet been organised for the other rides in the Fire Aid Ride series, but stay tuned for details.
The events are being organised by Sydney rider Jimmy Woodriff with the help of Mark Hawwa who established the now-famous The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride.
There are no administrative costs with the full amount of funds raised going toward local firefighter services and businesses.
The Fire Aid Ride series is not designed as a fundraiser, but to encourage tourism to fire-affected areas.
“There’s not a lot of people in Australia who haven’t been impacted by these fires,” says Jimmy.
“Now that the fire threat has eased there’s a real economic, social and psychological danger to people in affected areas, giving back should be our focus.
“Going to meet people, saying g’day, spending money with them or just rumbling through towns on a bunch of cool bikes and being present tells our regional communities that we care, that they’re not alone.
“We’re planning to visit and bring more cash, bikes and smiles to other areas of NSW every two months to help stimulate these shattered local economies.”
Organisers hope riders will spend their money with local businesses such as petrol stations, cafes, accommodation venues, and shops.
There are several bushfire charity rides in other states that you can attend. Check your liked Facebook pages.
Or simply go for a ride with your mates.
Fire Aid Ride
When: Sunday, 23 February 2020
Time: 9am until 3pm
Where: Meet at Macquarie Park, Windsor; End at The Grey Gum International Cafe, Putty.
If you want to secure your helmet on your motorcycle and helpanimal rescue efforts after the bushfires, buy a Helmet Hook for your bike.
For every $19.95 Helmet Hook bought, about $7.45 will be donated to animal rescue.
Australian importer Bill Murphy says his American supplier is a “huge animal lover” who was “devastated by the images he was seeing on the TV over there”.
“We were talking about doing this in early January while the fires were at their worst but I had no stock of Helmet Hooks at that stage due to a shipping error from the Chinese end, so we’re doing it now.”
However, Bill will backdate the donations to when his stock arrived until the end of March.
Furthermore, the USA supplier will donate $US3 (about $A4.45).
“We’ll tally it all up and make the donation in one transaction, rather than small amounts along the way,” says Bill.
“We’ll publicly post up proof that we have actually donated.
“It’s not a lot but neither of us is swimming in cash so it’s a way we can help.
“Also those customers of ours who have wanted to donate but are also tight on funds can at least do a little bit to help.”
Bill says he is a vegan and regularly donates to wildlife and environmental charities.
“Along with constantly being shocked by all my favourite motorcycling areas going up in flames, one of my first thoughts were that the animals were being forgotten to a certain extent,” Bill says.
“The animals don’t have insurance and, for them, the road to recovery is going to be long waiting for the areas to regenerate. And now they are having to deal with floods as well.”
The Helmet Hook sits on the end of your left handlebar.
It was designed in the USA and injection-moulded in China from 1/4″ ABS plastic and has a metal washer inserted in the middle for the bar end bolt to go through and two holes in the “J” section to fit a padlock.
American inventor George Penev says the Helmet Hook was born from frustration.
“I simply dropped my helmet one too many times. My helmet only cost me $137 and it still hurt every time that thing fell on the ground and started rolling around. I can only imagine what people feel that have a $500-700 helmet.”
On your seat because bit can easily fall off in a gust lot wind or if the bike is bumped. Then your helmet and/or visor is scratched and possibly damaged even to the point of not being able to wear it safely.
On the mirrors or footpeg because they will indent the inner lining. And don’t place it on the ground as spiders and ants can crawl inside and make a surprise visit down the road!
And let’s not forget that most service stations don’t have anywhere for you to safely store your helmet even though they demand you take it off before refuelling.
Nowhere to place your helmet on the top of the bowser at a service station
Some bikes supply a helmet holder under the pillion seat, but they are sometimes difficult to access because you have to remove the seat first and/or the helmet rests up against the body work, scratching the helmet and your bike.
The Helmet Hook is easy to access, it can be locked securely and the helmet doesn’t rest against the bike, but swings freely by the chin strap D-fastener.
Unscrew bar end
Fit Helmet Hook and tighten
Bill says the only bikes e knows where it won’t fit is BMWs with a wider bolt, which can be rectified by people drilling out the metal washer, and some Hyosungs that did not have screw on bar ends.
You can use the Helmet Hook with ratchet-type quick release chin straps, just by threading the strap itself through the hook an can able locked with the padlock.
It may not be able to be used with some bar-end mirrors.
Australian importer Bill Murphy says the hook can be rotated out of the way so it is no hindrance to riding.
We tried it on a couple of our bikes and found it didn’t get in the way of the clutch operation.
Some Asian and Mid-East cities ban all motorcycles or impose a curfew.
Some countries also ban women from riding for “modesty” reasons!
In London, motorcycle theft has halved in the past two years, yet almost 10,000 were stolen last year.
In Malaysia, 26 unmarried couples have been arrested for riding together on a motorcycle.
AUSSIE BIKE HISTORY
More great reasons to celebrate motorcycling on Australia Day is our rich motorcycling history.
With its vast distances and rugged terrain, motorcycles were popular at the start of the last century. We even had a thriving motorcycle manufacturing industry, particularly during World War I when supplies of British motorcycles dried up.
While we have not had a motorcycle manufacturing industry for some time, Australia once built many motorcycles such as Lewis, Pasco, Blue Bird, Bullock, De Luxe, Peerless, Invincible JAP, Whiting, Mostyn, Rudge, FN and Norton.
Robert Saward wrote A-Z of Australian-made Motorcycles which details 396 brands of motorcycles, most of which were assembled here from imported engines and frames.
In 1928, the Auto Cycle Council of Australia was formed to represent the interests of motorcycle clubs and state associations at a national level. It is now called Motorcycling Australia which represents motorcycle racing.
Racing successes are more great reasons to celebrate.
Australians were among the first in the world to start racing motorcycles. Many believe the first speedway meetings were held in Australia and our speedway riders travelled to the UK to pioneer the sport.
Over the years, Australia has had many motorcycle champions. MA notes our first world champion as speedway rider Lionel Van Praag in 1936.
Here is MA’s list of champion Aussie riders and teams and more reasons to celebrate on our national day:
Lionel Van Praag
1936 Lionel Van Praag, Speedway
1938 Bluey Wilkinson, Speedway
1951/52 Jack Young, Speedway
1957 Keith Campbell, Road racing (350cc)
1961 Tom Phillis, Road racing (125cc)
1969 Kel Carruthers, Road racing (250cc)
1979/81 Barry Smith, Road racing (Formula TT)
1983 Steve Baker, Speedway (under 21)
1987 Wayne Gardner, Road racing (500cc)
1992 Leigh Adams, Speedway (under 21)
1994-98 Michael Doohan, Road racing (500cc)
Mick Doohan enters Hall of Fame
1995/2004/06/09 Jason Crump, Speedway (under 21)
1996/2005 Troy Corser, Superbikes
1997 Shane Watts, Enduro (125cc)
1997 Peter Goddard, Endurance Road Racing
2000/01/03/04 Stefan Merriman, Enduro
2000/02 Warwick Nowland, Endurance Road Racing
2001/06/08 Troy Bayliss, Superbikes
2001/08 Andrew Pitt, Supersport
2001 Heinz Platacis, Endurance Road Racing
2003/08 Chad Reed, Supercross
2003 Chris Vermeulen, Supersport
2004 Karl Muggeridge, Supersport
2007/11 Casey Stoner, MotoGP
2009 Jay Wilson, Junior Motocross
2009/10 Darcy Ward, Speedway (under 21)
2009 Steve Martin, Endurance Road Racing
2010 Mick Headland, Jesse Headland, Track Racing Sidecar (1000cc)
2011 Darrin Treloar, Jesse Headland, Track Racing Sidecar (1000cc)
2012 Caleb Grothes, Junior MX (65cc)
2012 Chris Holder, World FIM Speedway GP
2013/14 Matthew Phillips, Enduro (Junior/E3)
2014 Jett Lawrence, Junior MX (65cc)
2015 Matthew Gilmore, Youth Speedway World Cup (250cc)
2016 Matt Phillips, Junior Enduro GP
2016 Toby Price, Dakar Rally
2017 Jason Doyle, World FIM Speedway GP
2018 Toby Price, FIM World Cross Country Champion
2018 Josh hook, World Endurance
2018 Braden Plath, World Junior Motocross
2018 Tayla Jones, ISDE (Enduro EW)
2018 Daniel Milner, ISDE Enduro E3 and overall
2019 Toby Price, Dakar Rally
2019 Daniel Milner, ISDE Enduro E3 and overall
1974 Pairs Speedway, 2nd
1976 Team Speedway (Phil Crump, Billy Sanders, Phil Hearne, John Boulger), 1st
1998 ISDE World Trophy, 3rd; ISDE Junior Trophy, 3rd
1999 Team Speedway (Jason Crump, Leigh Adams, Ryan Sullivan Jason Lyons, Todd Wiltshire), 1st; ISDE World Trophy, 3rd
2001 Team Speedway (Jason Crump, Leigh Adams, Ryan Sullivan, Todd Wiltshire, Craig Boyce, Jason Lyons), 1st
2002 Team Speedway (Ryan Sullivan, Todd Wiltshire, Leigh Adams, Jason Crump, Jason Lyons), 1st
Jason Crump and Troy Bayliss
2003 Team Speedway, 2nd
2006 Oceania Motocross (Nathan Brochtrup, Lee Ellis, Josh Strang, Kirk Gibbs, Chris Hollis, Cody Mackie, Ryan Marmont, Joel Passlow, Harley Quinlan, Tye Simmonds, Todd Waters), 1st
2006 ISDE Junior Team (Christopher Hollis, Joshua Strang, Blake Hore, Darren Lloyd), 3rd
2007 Team Speedway (Ryan Sullivan, Rory Schlein, Leigh Adams, Jason Crump, Chris Holder, Dave Watt), 3rd; Oceanic Motocross (Craig Anderson, Troy Carroll, Lee Ellis, Jay Marmont, Jake Moss, Cameron Tatlor, Danny Anderson, Lewis Stewart, Kristy Gillespie, Ashlea Bates, Adelia Barton, Tye Simmonds, Ross Beaton, Luke Arbon), 1st
2008 ISDE Junior Team (Jarrod Bewley, Geoff Braico, Blake Hore, Andrew Lloyd), 2nd
2009 Junior Motocross (Tye Simmonds, Jay Wilson), 1st; Track Racing Sidecar (Mick Headland, Paul Waters), 1st; Team Speedway (Leigh Adams, Jason Crump, Chris Holder, Davey Watt, Troy Batchelor), 2nd; Women’s Team (Jacqui Jones, Alison Parker, Jemma Wilson), 3rd
2010 Junior MX (Wilson Todd, Mitchell Evans, Joel Dinsdale, Scott Mann, Matt Phillips, Errol Willis), 3rd
2011 ISDE Womens Team (Allison Parker, Jess Gardiner, Jemma Wilson), 3rd; ISDE Mens Team – E2 Class (Toby Price, Matthew Phillips), 1st; MXoN (Chad Reed, Brett Metcalf, Matt Moss), 3rd; Speedway World Cup (Jason Crump, Darcy Ward, Chris Holder, Davey Watt, Troy Batchelor), 2nd
2012 ISDE Womens Trophy Team (Jess Gardiner, Tanya Hearn, Tayla Jones), 3rd; Speedway World Cup (Chris Holder, Davey Watt, Jason Crump, Darcy Ward, Troy Batchelor), 2nd; Speedway World Cup U21 (Darcy Ward, Sam Masters, Dakota North, Alex Davies, Nick Morris), 2nd
2013 ISDE Womens Trophy Team (Jess Gardiner, Tayla Jones, Jemma Wilson), 1st; Speedway World Cup (Darcy Ward, Cameon Woodward, Jason Doyle, Troy Batchelor) 3rd
2014 ISDE Womens Trophy Team (Jess Gardiner, Tayla Jones, Jemma Wilson), 1st; ISDE Junior Trophy Team (Daniel Sanders, Tom McCormack, Lachlan Stanford, Scott Keegan), 3rd; Speedway World Cup (Chris Holder, Darcy Ward, Jason Doyle, Troy Batchelor), 3rd
2015 FIM World Junior Motocross Championships (Hunter Lawrence, Cooper Pozniak, Rhys Budd, Bailey Malkiewicz, John Bova, Regan Duffy), 3rd; Trial des Nations International Trophy Competition (Chris Bayles, Tim Coleman, Kyle Middleton and Colin Zarczynki), 3rd; ISDE Junior Trophy Team (Daniel Sanders, Broc Grabham, Tom Mason, Tye Simmons), 1st; ISDE Women’s Trophy Team (Tayla Jones, Jess Gardiner, Jemma Wilson), 1st; ISDE Senior Trophy Team (Daniel Milner, Matthew Phillips, Lachlan Stanford, Glenn Kearney, Beau Ralston, Josh Green), 2nd (Provisional); FIM Team Speedway Under 21 2015 World Championship (Max Fricke, Brady Kurtz, Nick Morris, Jack Holder), 3rd
2016 and 2017 ISDE Women’s Trophy Team (Tayla Jones, Jess Gardiner, Jemma Wilson)
2018 World Junior Motocross (125cc) Bailey Malkiewicz, Brad West & Braden Plath
To help people looking to donate safely and effectively, the National Bushfire Recovery Agency has published a list of registered charities that accept tax deductible donations and are running bushfire appeals.
The initiative is in response to the difficulty for many in identifying charities and fundraisers with the capacity to deliver relief and whose focus is on bushfire relief or recovery.
People who want to donate to a charity should check the charity’s details on the ACNC Charity Registeracnc.gov.au/findacharity. To confirm if their chosen charity has tax deductible status, they can access the ABN link on a charity’s record.
Former volunteer firefighter John England is selling his collection of Aussie motorcycle racing memorabilia and donating a portion to aid the bushfire appeal.
John says his collection of 22 commemorative bottles of Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix port, six Mick Doohan plates, various mirrors, signed prints and collectible toys could be worth as much as $10,000.
John and Rose England’s patriotic Can-Am Spyder and trailer
He is also selling his 1981 Honda Bol d’Or 900, bored out to 1000cc, with handmade exhausts.
John and his wife, Rose, plan to retire this year and hit the road in their caravan, towing their Can-Am Spyder around the country.
“We don’t want this collection gathering dust in storage, so we thought we would sell it,” John says.
“I used to be a volunteer firefighter, so we’d be happy to make a donation of a portion of the sale of this collection.”
“I just want it go to a motorcycle lover who appreciates it.”
He says he would prefer to sell it as one collection and the bike separately.
However, he would also consider splitting it up, preferably in groups such as all the ports or all six commemorative plates honouring Mick’s five consecutive GP titles plus a sixth lap of honour plate.
John, a former Sydney track racer, started collecting when he bought the first Australian GP port for $25 in 1989.
John has been told by the seller of the commemorative port that his first bottle could now be worth as much as $500.
“How that didn’t get drunk I’ll never know,” he laughs.
“It was all bought to drink. I’d usually buy two bottles each year; drink one and keep one.”
The commemorative port line ceased in 2008 and John has one from each year.
He also has a Harley-Davidson-styled port holder with six ports released each year. He says the “gearbox” bottle of port, alone, cost $196.
Harley port carrier
Most of the items in his collection come with certificates or letters of authenticity.
If you are interested in buying his collection and helping the bushfire appeal, you can contact John on 0408 880616.