Make Australia Mate Again

  • By Andy Strapz work

Sometimes the generosity of people blow me away and somehow motorcyclists seem to excel.

Our renovation has finally finished, woohoo! Like most of these projects we ran out of money before we could put the final touches on the place.

The result is directly connected with a stranger who offered to help. His expert Architectural vison shines every time I arrive home. He dropped by on a trip to Melbourne, spent time helping and socialising. He’s now a good mate, we ride together, catching up when time permits.

Our recent trip to Kangaroo Island came about after a new friend offered the use of his empty house for a week prior to the chaos of our WSBK pop up shop. It wasn’t until we walked through his backdoor that we met Marcus. Not only did we have the run of his small farm but an ATV and DR650 at our disposal. He even called a mate of his who provided a TE449 for me to play with. He took me on an amazing ride then fed us beers and pizza. Astounding!

It’s the thing we have in common and that (sadly no so universal) nod or wave we offer to passing riders. It bonds us against the odds, no way the same but just a hint of the feeling military comrades have. As an ED Nurse we had a similar “bond of war” cast by the tough things we dealt with daily. Tin tops, diesel spills, speed traps, errant Fourbys, rally fires and whale jokes draw us closer.

It’s the common ground we need to foster. Rid’n Bikes! Our society is increasingly enticing us to divide along so many tangents that we can easily lose diversity (Trumpy, you out there?).

Let’s Make Australia Mate Again!


Neckin One

Riders who wear neck protection collars have always look uncomfortable and restricted. A horse collar around my neck never seemed to be something I could put up with hour after hour of riding. After a short fly with a none-too-dignified landing in some serious sized sand dunes I thought I’d reconsider. One of my supplier reps organised an EVS “Race Collar” for me have a go at on a High Country ride. Geez I’m good at wrong!

I hardly noticed it, admittedly I didn’t use the chest harness straps, they looked like far too much Phaffing about. I wore it with my Kreiga Hydropack and could climb into the pack before or after putting on the collar and that was quick and easy.

Designed to stop excessive, damaging front to back and sideways flex it didn’t interfere with normal movement of my melon.

I made eyes at the ground a few times on that rough trip, once completely running out of brakes on a steeeep, long decent (the DRZ has road final gearing). I’m not sure it got a “sharp end” test but I was mighty glad I had it!

It’s now a part of my regular riding kit.

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