Riding through the rain isn’t fun!

InXpress Ltd

When thinking of Europe, we think of glorious sunshine. But that wouldn’t have made our bikers’ fundraiser much of a challenge! So, not only did they “live the dream” for 3,500 miles – they smashed their target!

Going out for a Sunday afternoon motorbike ride is one thing. Travelling non-stop over a number of days to reach the Annual Convention in Portugal is another matter entirely. Back in April, we shared how three of the InXpress network, with a passion for motorbikes, were planning to ride in discomfort from the UK to Portugal. Franchisee, Neil Hatt had done it before, but for UK Country Manager, Jon White, and fellow franchisee, Mike Toal, this would be a whole new adventure.

As the ‘responsible one’ who knew what he was doing, Neil planned out the route, with stops for each night. So how did he find it this time around, with others on the expedition? “Last year, was actually quite lonely. When I’d pull in to the hotel, I’d have a quick bite to eat and… well that’s it. So this year’s challenge was a better experience. I love the sense of solitude you get from being on the bike, and still had this, even though Jon and Mike were with me. But, I also had people to laugh about the weather with, or compare how much water was in our boots when we stopped.”

Most people don’t realise how much time is required each day, on the bike, to travel the 1,600 miles between the UK and Portugal, but Jon and Mike soon realised what was involved! As Mike says, it was definitely more of an endurance test than he’d thought it would be. “I quickly realised this was going to be harder than I’d anticipated with the amount of hours we were on the bikes, and the miles we had to do to reach each night’s motel! When it’s the middle of the afternoon, and you’ve been riding most of the day, but still have five hours to go… it’s tough mentally!”

And Jon would agree, “I didn’t expect it to be as hard as it was. We had a couple of days of wind and rain, which really kicked us. We all assume when we go to Europe, it will be sunny. But, during the ride, we faced awful riding conditions – trying to feed a wet ticket through the toll booth, was a nightmare! Then, day three we went from one extreme to the other with intense heat, and it felt like we were riding inside a microwave.”

Of course, it wasn’t all bad. The route Neil, Jon & Mike took, led them across some amazing views, as Neil explains. “When you come across the mountains between France and Spain, there are these fantastic roads, winding through the mountains and over impressive viaducts. With the clouds beneath you, it’s absolutely stunning! As Mike and Jon rode past me, I could see their eyes all crinkled-up, beaming as they took in the scenery. This was a big highlight for me, seeing how much these two guys are enjoying the moment, and being able to share it with them.”

Along the way, the three bikers encountered some low moments, like:

  • Mike losing his specially-designed fundraising flag
  • Mike’s raw hard-boiled eggs – bit awkward, when you realise his son is a chef!
  • Sitting in wet pants for two days
  • And Neil’s visor breaking on the way down

However, as Jon says, “Actually, when we think about it, we did really well. The bikes performed brilliantly. When you realise we clocked around 3,500 miles there and back, but didn’t have any problems with any of the bikes breaking down, or tyre blow-outs, etc., it’s fantastic! This was a truly life-changing experience. One I can’t wait to do again.”

As a result of their efforts, Jon, Neil & Mike have raised a whopping £5,263 for InXpress Gives Back! Through this, InXpress will be able to support people and charities close to their hearts. All three agree the shared experience of riding through Europe on their motorbikes, watching the donations come in, made the experience so much more enjoyable, “we weren’t doing it for ourselves,” says Mike, “we were doing it to help make a difference to others.”

And they’ve collected key skills, ready for next year’s challenge. So, if fundraising flags on the back of their bikes didn’t’ work… maybe matching tattoos or “InXpress Angels” biker jackets might be better.

InXpress Logo Image

InXpress Ltd

Haulage Logistics

Redefining how we appeal to customers

Samantha’s Cycle to Recovery

Personal dreams and business motivation combine for a beautiful life-changing moment

InXpress Gives Back is on a mission: to change lives for the better!

Sustainability – why it matters to us!

Walking through extreme challenges to show kindness

Discover a franchise with a mindset for growth

InXpress marathon runner gives back to the hospital which saved her life as a baby

InXpress Shortlisted for a Global Franchise Award

How the right technology can transform your business, by Melanie Martin, InXpress Global Head of Marketing

We use cookies to track site usage and improve user experience.