ALAN Guy is preparing to saddle up for the ride of his life.
Next week he will join 99 other bikers from across the globe in Johannesburg for an 1,800-mile two-wheeled odyssey across South Africa.
The 70-year-old elder statesman of Jersey’s biking fraternity is taking part in Enduro Africa 2008 to raise money for some of the most deserving people in Nelson Mandela’s homeland. ‘I think it’s the best way to spend my old-age pension, so thank you very much to Social Security,’ said Alan with a smile.
The eight-day adventure will see him tackle some of the most demanding riding the continent has to offer, on dusty tracks through some of the most beautiful, isolated and rugged scenery. He will be riding a 250 cc Honda trail bike. The route along the famed Wild Coast starts in Johannesburg and ends in Port Elizabeth.
Alan has been a keen biker for more than 50 years and is a member of both the Jersey Classic and Vintage Motor Racing Club and the Jersey Motor Cycle and Light Car Club. He owns a number of bikes, including a 1967 Triumph trial, a 1973 Bonneville, a 1953 BSA Gold Star and a 2006 retro Triumph Scrambler.
‘I am really looking forward to riding Enduro Africa 2008,’ he said. ‘It will give me the chance to experience a truly breathtaking ride and help to make a positive change to the lives of Africa’s poorest people.’ Cash raised by the event will be split between four charities: UNICEF, Sentabale (the Prince’s Fund of Lesotho), Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund and Touch Africa.
Alan is asking Islanders generally and particularly his many friends with a passion for two-wheeled adventure to get behind the cause and pledge money. The aim of the event is to raise a total of £150,000, which will go a long way towards improving the treatment and care for mothers with HIV so that babies can be born free of the disease throughout South Africa.
The programmes which will be boosted by the riders’ fund-raising efforts will include training nurses, midwives and other health professionals. Their aim is to help provide the best possible care and treatment in the country. ‘I hope that through this trip of a lifetime, I can help to ensure that these babies are born with brighter futures,’ Alan said.
• Details of the initiative can be found at www.enduroafrica .com. Anyone who wants to help Alan and the other riders to reach their £150,000 milestone can contact him at alanguy@ localdial.com.
• Pictures: Alan Guy, with a young admirer, is joining 99 other bikers for the trip of a lifetime through some of the most isolated and rugged scenery in South Africanextpage