Although Will may have started out as a self-confessed RC8 motor addict, his Orange Brigade currently includes a 250 Freeride, 250 EXC-F and an 1190 Adventure R.
Will tells us what it’s like to have Chris Birch as a riding buddy, why you should always check first if your pub accommodation has a mouse problem and why enduro riding is the perfect de-stressor.
My first KTM was an RC8R Superbike which I loved; the RC8 motor is addictive. I purchased this around 2008 and at the same time decided to get back into offroad riding and bought a 2009 450EXC. Like every other Aussie male, I thought this capacity was the only Enduro bike to own. Way to much power for my level of skill at the time !!! I grew up on a farm and had always loved the bush so it was not long after this I gave up road riding and racing for good. Now days I have the perfect quiver . . . 250 Freeride smoker, 250 EXC-F and 1190 Adventure R.
Australia in an amazing place to discover on two-wheels. I have done several long trips along the East coast – North and South as well as lots of miles in central Australia.
Favourite riding destination is a hard one . . . Probably Walkers Crossing between Innaminka and Birdsville. I have done it on a KTM 690 Enduro, which is pretty much the perfect bike for this kind of track. It starts off in sand and ends crossing the stony desert and as the name suggests consists of loads of tennis ball size stones. Note: take a pump with you so u can add a bit more tyre pressure for this part !!!
The Snowy Mountains is also a favourite and there are so many different ways to travel across it. These days being time poor I tend to ride short and sharp around Sydney on little bikes. Belangalo is where I spend a lot of time as well as Menai and Red Hill closer to the city.
Have ridden a few times with my mate Chris (Birch) in NZ as well. Did a day with him and Sean Clarke in Tokoroa with a bunch of their Kiwi mates. There were I think 12 or so NZ National Enduro Championships between them! Needless to say I spent the day as the Aussie sweep rider a long way back. NZ is a must for any two-wheeled off-road enthusiast.
I took my dad (also bike mad) on his German bike (frowned upon on the pages) on a Snowy Mountains crossing then out to South Australia with a bunch of mates. We ended up at the Olary Pup in SA for the night. The accommodation was basic to say the least and there was a large mice population also staying at the pub. Dad and I shared a room with 30 –40 mice. Its fairly unnerving having one crawl across your face in the middle of the night !!!
My best riding moment was with Chris on our 1190’s coming along Wombeyan Caves road on the same day it was being re-graded. The track was soft loam for about half of it an we had an absolute blast trying to roost our way around it. Have I mentioned how addictive the RC8 motor is!!!
My work is fairly intense and I love technical Enduro trails more than anything. What I love about riding is it takes 100% concentration to ride safely at pace which means all work thoughts and life stresses are eliminated through the duration of any outing. My business partner also rides so we get out most weeks 2 –3 times even if its just for a couple of hours. I am always in a much better mood when I have finished even if I have ridden like a muppet. (More often than not !!!)
What’s next for me? Looking at another trip to NZ in Feb and perhaps a trip to Japan later in the year. Other than that just trying to keep my closer to 50 than 40 body healthy and injury free!