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20 May 2011

Arctic Charity Adventure.

News from Vines Bikes of Guildford and Caterham.

BMW R 1200 R riders set off on Arctic charity adventure 
Circle 2 Circle trip aims raise £10k for Wiltshire Air Ambulance 

Two BMW R 1200 R riders set off from the Avebury stone circle in Wiltshire on the first
stage of their 4,500-mile charity ride to Nordkapp in Norway, the most northern point of
Europe, deep within the Arctic Circle.

Neil Hardman, 37, a police traffic motorcyclist, and Dave Smith, 52, from the MINI plant
in Oxford, are riding in aid of the Wiltshire Air Ambulance and are hoping to raise
£10,000 to help support the life-saving service. The trip took on a particular poignancy
after Neil’s original co-rider for the trip was injured in a road traffic accident last year and
was picked up by the Wiltshire Air Ambulance.

The 4,500-mile route - from ‘Circle 2 Circle’ - will see the pair ride through Denmark,
following the eastern seaboard of Norway up to and beyond the Arctic Circle and on to
Nordkapp, the most northern point of Europe. From here, the turn south and travel up
to the Russian border then on via Sweden, along the coastline of the Baltic Sea and
back to the UK via Denmark, arriving back at the Avebury stone circle on 07 June. The
duo are, where possible, staying with friends and in youth hostels and will be collecting
donations as they travel.

Along they way, Neil and Dave will have to contend with long days in the saddle, wild
elk and reindeer wandering onto the roads, a blanket 50mph speed limit throughout
Norway. Perhaps their biggest obstacle is the Scandinavian climate, which ranges from
bitterly cold in the snow-capped mountains, torrential rain where cold and warm air
meet through to blazing sun lowlands and even almost constant daylight – with the sun
being above the horizon for up to 22 hours as they reach Nordkapp.

Neil and Dave are riding on a pair of 2011 R 1200 R roadsters on loan from BMW
Motorrad UK and wearing the warm, waterproof and protective Streetguard 2 suit, ideal
for the variable Scandinavian climate, supplied by BMW Rider Equipment. The R 1200
R’s panniers and economical engine will let the riders carry the kit they need to brave
the weather and last the distance between petrol stops in the remote parts of Northern

Neil Hardman said: “I work on the roads policing unit in Wiltshire and I’ve attended
many accidents where the Air Ambulance has been absolutely critical in saving
people’s lives. It’s such a vital service and it’s under threat as funding is being cut from
the government. I wanted to choose a trip that was a true challenge – and would help
raise money and awareness for such a worthy cause.

David Smith said: “I came to be involved in the trip when Neil was visiting the BMW
Group plant in Oxford and had mentioned that his original travelling companion had
been injured and he was looking for someone to join him. Someone mentioned that it
was ‘exactly the kind of crazy thing Dave would do’ and, well, here I am. It’s a wonderful
cause and one hell of a ride, but one which we hope will help save lives in the future.”

To follow the progress of Neil and David as they travel to Nordkapp and back and learn
more about their chosen charity, visit, where they’ll be uploading
photos, stories and videos as they travel.

Vines BMW Bikes

Vines Motorrad have branches in Guildford and Caterham, Surrey. Keep up with news, offers and events by following us on Twitter @VinesBMWBikes and on Facebook.

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