Category Archives: Fim Africa News

MIKE WARD TAKES SECOND WIN IN DJ RALLY FOR CLASSIC MOTORCYCLES

Mike Ward, riding a 1936 Velocette 500, scored his second win in the iTOO-sponsored Durban-Johannesburg (DJ) rally for classic motorcycles, which started in Durban on 10 March and finished the next day in Benoni. He was not only presented with the magnificent, silver Schlesinger Vase floating trophy but, for the first time in many years he received a miniature of the trophy as a valuable keepsake.


This was the 51st running of this famous regularity trial which commemorates the annual race between the two cities which was held from 1913 to 1936 before the authorities withdrew permission due to safety concerns. It is for this reason that participating motorcycles must have been made prior to 1937.


Ward had a winning score of only 663 seconds error at the various timed control points on the 700 km route which was similar to that used in the road races. There was a total of 76 controls – 38 each day – so these low scores are amazing. Ward, who is always a strong contender for victory on these regularity trials, scored his first DJ Rally win as far back as 2004. He had the lowest score on Day 1 this year and was fourth on Day 2. This was Ward’s 24th DJ and the 15th time he had ridden his Velocette on this famous event.

Martin Kaiser, at 31 the youngest rider on this year’s rally, took second place overall with 672 seconds error and had the lowest score on Day 2. He rode a 1934 Sunbeam Model A 500. Third overall was five-times winner Gavin Walton (1936 AJS 500) with a score of 844, which was 20 seconds better than his brother, Kevin, who placed fourth on a 1931 BSA S31 Sloper 500.


There were 67 starters out of an original entry of 90 riders and 57 qualified as finishers. Weather varied from overcast, misty and damp to very hot. There were, unfortunately, two riders who crashed and had to be taken to hospital for treatment.


Other previous winners who completed the route were Kevin Robertson, a seven-time winner, who placed eighth and three-time winner Martin Davis who took 13th place.

Eighty-seven-year-old Neville Smith was the oldest rider to complete the 2023 DJ, finishing 55th on his 1935 Rudge Rapid Touring 250, carrying the number 35 that refers to 1935, which is the year Neville was born and the year his Rudge was made! The oldest motorcycle to be classified as a finisher was a 1920 ABC, ridden by Peter Gillespie, which took 18th place.


Gavin Walton, who rode his trusty AJS for the 17th time on a DJ Rally, said it was a tough event for both motorcycles and riders this year due to deteriorating road surfaces very few competitors had the benefit of rear suspension on their old motorcycles.

OVERALL RESULTS
1, Mike Ward (1936 Velocette 500) 663 seconds’ error
2, Martin Kaiser (1934 Sunbeam Model 9A 500) 672
3, Gavin Walton (1936 AJS 500) 844
4, Kevin Walton (1931 BSA S31 Sloper 500) 864
5, Ryan Duncan (1934 Norton Model 18 500) 932
6, Keith Kendall (1935 Velocette MAC 350) 1 187
7, Gawie Nienaber (1935 BMW 12 750) 1 450
8, Kevin Robertson (1936 Velocette MSS 500) 1 611
9, Dave Pitchford (1929 Sunbeam Model 9 500) 1 612
10, Neville Nicolau (1936 Norton Model 18 500) 1 626

Published by: Roger Houghton

FIM MARKS INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY WITH WOMEN IN MOTORCYCLING DOCUMENTARY

To mark International Women’s Day this coming Wednesday 8 March, the FIM has released a documentary entitled Women in Motorcycling.

Produced in conjunction with online broadcasting specialists WebsEdge, the FIM Women in Motorcycling Commission (CFM) has partnered with Can-Am, BMW Motorrad and MUNER University for this very special project with the aim of raising the profile of female motorcycle sport and inspiring the next generation of riders.

To watch the Women in Motorcycling documentary, click HERE

Featuring interviews with iconic female competitors, the twenty-two-minute film shares the inspirational stories of FIM World Champions Laia Sanz, Iris Kramer and Kiara Fontanesi along with trail-blazing road racer Andrea Coleman and up-and-coming prospect Ran Yochay.

A celebration of female motorcycle sport, Women in Motorcycling showcases three key areas in the motorcycle industry from on the road to engineering and racing.

“As soon as you put on the helmet it doesn’t matter what your gender is,” explains nineteen-year-old racer Ran Yochay. “What matters is our love for the sport and what matters is how we ride. If you’re good, you’re good – it doesn’t matter if you’re a man or a woman.”

Janika Judeika, FIM Women in Motorcycling Commission Director: The FIM is devoted to making motorcycling an open, inclusive and benevolent environment for all. That is why the Women in Motorcycling Commission continuously seeks ways to showcase role models who can inspire more and more women to not only join our sport, but also strive in it, no matter which path or discipline they choose. Joining forces with WebsEdge, BMW Motorrad, Can-Am, and MUNER University was a great opportunity to deliver our message to a wider audience and show girls and women everywhere that they are strong, capable, unstoppable and, most of all, supported by an extraordinary community of people!”

Stephen Horn, CEO, WebsEdge:“We were delighted to partner with the FIM to produce a film that explores the challenges and achievements of women in motorcycling. This is a ground-breaking and unique point of view of women in the industry who have made a difference. As a company we feel strongly about advancing gender equality and breaking barriers, we know the most powerful way of doing that is to share knowledge and experiences through storytelling.”

Markus Schramm, Head of BMW Motorrad: “Women are a strong part of our BMW Motorrad community. We have more and more female participants in track days and it is great that their interest in being actively involved in motorsport is also rising. As BMW Motorrad, we support them with many activities. The FIM commitment to support women in motorsports is fantastic and it has high importance for us to be a part of it. Our common goal is to interest even more girls and women for bikes and for racing and to assist them on their way into motorsports. We are excited about a future with more and more female racers competing in the different levels and disciplines of racing.” – Watch the BMW Movie Click HERE

Francesco Leali, MUNER professor and Advanced Automotive Engineering Program Director: “MUNER is promoting the value of diversity, with the belief that being able to attract more and more talented young women is not only a matter of equality, but it is a requirement to enhance the overall quality of the world of motorsport. For years we have been carrying out activities that aim to encourage women’s empowerment through, among others, creating a valuable network at both the national and international levels.
The collaboration with FIM on the Women in Motorcycle project makes us proud and confident towards a richer and fairer future.” – Watch MUNER movie Click HERE

Martin Ethier, Can-Am Marketing Director: “Can-Am is extremely proud to once again be a corporate partner of the International Female Ride Day for 2023 and support this global movement. With the largest female presence of any powersports manufacturer and programs like Women of On-Road Can-Am is committed to breaking down barriers and opening the open road to all. We look forward to celebrating this amazing event and empowering the next generation of female riders.” – Watch CanAM Movie Click HERE

FIM Communications

A NEW ERA FOR THE ROOF OF AFRICA

Lesotho Off-Road Association (LORA) would like to address the understandable concern and speculation around the future of the Roof of Africa event. As the long-term custodians of the ‘Mother of Hard Enduro’, LORA is conscious of its obligations to the local and global Hard Enduro communities, the people and government of Lesotho, Lesotho Tourism, local businesses, and of course the sponsors, and would like to assure all stakeholders that the event will indeed continue.


The riding community at large will be aware that Live Lesotho has taken the decision to terminate their involvement as organisers of the event, with immediate effect. This follows the breakdown in renewal negotiations between LORA and Live Lesotho at the end of their 4-year contract period.


LORA is dismayed that this is the ultimate decision made by Live Lesotho, but we want to assure all interested parties that we will now begin the process of vetting a suitable management partner, in order to ensure that the bar that has been set for The Roof is upheld and taken to new heights.

“On behalf of everyone at LORA, I’d like to express my thanks to Charan Moore and his team at Live Lesotho for their hard work over the 4-year duration of our contract with them,” commented Koo Lemeke, Chairman of LORA. “We regret that a mutually agreeable resolution to our negotiations was not arrived at, but would like to assure everyone who loves the Roof that the Roof will continue, starting with the 2023 event,” he added.

LORA recognises that planning and organising an annual event of this scale and calibre is no small undertaking. This awareness will guide the selection process and ensure that future partners are able to build on the awesome legacy of the Roof, and continue to elevate the status of the race through innovation and a determination to give back to the riding community and people of Lesotho.

“The Roof is bigger than any one organisation, including ourselves, and we are determined to see it continue for the benefit of everyone who loves Lesotho, and loves Hard Enduro,” he added.

Since its inception, the Roof of Africa has helped to raise Lesotho’s international profile and attracted a great many visitors to the country and the Maluti Mountains. LORA remains 100% committed to the future of the Roof, and to ensuring that this race remains a fixture on the Hard Enduro calendar for many years to come.

“We have already contacted the organisers of the World Enduro Super Series (WESS) regarding their criteria for both promoters and events, and will issue regular updates on any developments,” concluded Lemeke.

More details about the new Roof management partners and any changes/updates to the event itself, will be released in due course.

For any queries, please contact: lora@mokmap.com

CHARAN MOORE LEADS THE TOUGHEST CLASS IN THE DAKAR RALLY AT THE MIDWAY POINT

Charan Moore is no stranger to challenging terrain and the thrill of extreme Enduro racing. As the founder of Live Lesotho and Race Director of the iconic Roof of Africa event, he has a great deal of experience in putting some of the world’s best riders through their paces.



Having temporarily exchanged the Maluti Mountains of Lesotho for the deserts of Saudi Arabia, Charan is currently taking part in his second Dakar Rally. He took some time out from making running repairs to his rally bike in the bivouac to answer our questions. Moore is taking part in the toughest of all the categories, Original by Motul, where riders must compete without the benefit of a support team.


Monday, 09 January 2023 is an official rest day, with 8 stages already completed and 6 still to complete. At this approximate halfway point, Charan is in first place in the category, with a lead of 15’ 26” over second-placed Javi Vega (Pont Grup Yamaha).


Moore (bib number 40, riding for HT RALLY RAID HUSQVARNA RACING) actually extended his lead by winning Sunday’s Stage 8 from Al Duwadimi to the Saudi Arabian capital, Riyadh.

Q&A with Charan Moore
1.They said they were going to make this year’s edition tougher, and they have! What are the main elements that you feel have made Dakar 2023 so much harder?


Yes, the organisers have made the Dakar much tougher this year, and the first week was hectic. Compared to the 2022 race, the stages are much longer, and there are also long liaison sections to contend with.


Last year, most stages were 300km or less in length; this year, we’ve already had five stages that were each over 400km. This means more of every kind of terrain, from sand dunes to camel grass to rocky riverbeds.


The weather has also been terrible – cold, rainy and wet – so the whole event has been more intense and “in your face”. The frequent changes mean you have to be adaptable as otherwise you could easily be thrown out of your rhythm and routine.


Arriving in cities at the end of some stages and dealing with traffic on a rainy night after a long day in the saddle is just part of what makes this one of the toughest races in the world.

2.You come into this as both a competitor as well as a race organiser – what has impressed you so far this year about the organisation of the event? Also, with regards to the calls that have been made, are there areas you would have maybe treated differently?


I’ve been impressed by the number of people involved in organising the Dakar – ASO has a core team of around 300 staff, plus up to 3 000 workers. They’ve all been really competent, and the decision-making has involved considering a lot of viewpoints, including our opinions as riders. The riders’ representative has been regularly engaging with us and then sharing our feedback.


The organisers have made some good calls both for safety reasons, and to maintain the Dakar’s reputation as the ultimate Rally Raid challenge. During last year’s event, there was a perception that the course was too easy – that’s certainly not the case this year. In fact, even Dakar veterans are saying that this is one of the toughest Rally Raid events in years!


The greatest logistical challenge has definitely been the weather – this amount of rain is unusual here in Saudi Arabia, and it quickly pools up in low-lying areas, creating a bit of havoc. The organisers have a great set-up for moving the bivouac to a new location, if necessary, which definitely helps.

3. A two week event like this is an assault on your physical, mental and emotional well-being – any secrets to share on how you cope with it all?


The easiest way to cope is by having the right mindset. For me, that means always having a smile on my face, being the best possible version of myself and embracing all the difficulties and changes that this year’s Dakar has involved.

I’ve had moments where I’ve felt down and out, but then I just need to remind myself why I’m here. I’m doing this for all the people who can’t be here, and for the army of people back home who are behind me and sharing their regular support. I know I’ve got what it takes to deal with any situation, so bring it on!  

4.You’re entered…and are leading…the most difficult class in the race, the Original by Motul category by 15 minutes over Javi Vega going into the rest day, the lead has changed a couple of times this week and it’s turning into a really good dice. Do you spend any time together, either out on the course or afterwards in the bivouac?


Over the first 3 stages I was able to establish a good lead but having a fuel pump issue on Stage 4 meant that I lost a lot of time syphoning fuel. Overall, I’m trying not to push too hard, and I feel that I’ve got a lot left in the tank to gain more time if I need to.  


Javi is a cool dude and a real character. We’ve been riding together a lot and hanging out in the refuelling zones. Of course, we’re competing against each other, but the camaraderie in the Original by Motul category makes us all feel like family.  


5.As part of the rules of the class you are doing your own maintenance and servicing after each stage, are you changing your set-up as well, maybe suspension clicks or riding position or do you stick to one formula for each stage?


I did a lot of testing in advance to work out the best suspension settings and rider position, so I’ve not been changing too much during the actual race. My main priority each day is making sure that the bike works, so it’s more about fixing than tweaking. I already feel really good on the bike, so I’ve been concentrating each evening on making sure that everything is 100% ready for the next day.

6.You’re receiving so much support and encouragement from so many quarters; it must make a big difference to your morale particularly on the tough days?


I’m very conscious that while I’m just one person in the race, there are a great many people behind me watching the results, sending me messages of support and following my story. The Dakar Rally has a huge impact on people and helps them escape from the mundanity of everyday life. It’s great to have this level of support and competing in the Dakar is much easier when you know you have a whole country of passionate enthusiasts behind you.
              
The 2023 Dakar Rally resumes on Tuesday, 10 January with Stage 9, and concludes on Sunday, 15 January in the Gulf coast city of Dammam, after crossing the notorious Empty Quarter.


“Although there is a lot of riding still to come, we’d like to congratulate Charan Moore on his achievements in the Original by Motul class at this year’s Dakar Rally,” commented Mercia Jansen, Motul Area Manager for Southern and Eastern Africa. “The Original by Motul class is very much aligned with our core Motul values – to succeed in this class, you need perseverance, tenacity, passion and camaraderie or brotherliness. We’re particularly proud that a South African and Motul partner, is in the lead at the halfway stage,” she added.


As part of Motul’s commitment to supporting motorsports, the global brand is a main partner of the Dakar Rally. The presence of the Motul Lab offers competitor support and oil analysis to keep them running.


Motul products are also available for all the Original by Motul riders. Motul also sponsors drivers, riders and teams as a way of testing their products in the most demanding circumstances.


Motul South Africa has partnered with the Southern Africa Dakar Group to offer all the enthusiasts and fans a chance to win much sought-after Motul merchandise. To stay up to date and get the inside scoop on all the Southern African participants at this year’s Dakar, follow The Southern African Dakar Group on Facebook and Instagram.


You can also follow Charan Moore on Facebook and Instagram for his personal take on his Dakar Adventure. To learn more about Motul’s product range and commitment to motorsports, visit https://www.motul.com/za/en

ABOUT MOTUL
Motul is a world-class French company with over 169 years of experience in the specialised formulation, production and distribution of high-tech engine lubricants (for two-wheelers, cars and other vehicles) as well as lubricants for industry via its Motul Tech division.  


Since its inception in 1853, Motul has been recognised for the quality of its products, commitment to innovation and involvement in competition, and is also acknowledged as a specialist in synthetic lubricants. In 1971, Motul was the first lubricant manufacturer to pioneer the formulation of a 100% synthetic lubricant, derived from the aeronautical industry and making use of esters technology: 300V lubricant.


Motul partners with many manufacturers and racing teams in order to further their technological product development through experience gained in motorsports. It has served as an official supplier for teams competing in iconic Road racing, Trials, Enduro, Endurance, Superbike, Supercross, Rallycross and World GT1 events, including 24 Hours of Le Mans (cars and motorcycles), 24 Hours of Spa, Le Mans Series, Andros Trophy, the Dakar Rally and the Roof of Africa.

Published by:  Listen Up