Rhys Lawrey, the Youngest Biker to Ride Solo Across the World
Many motorcyclists covet a world circumnavigation, yet few of us have the time, the money, or the motivation to do it.
However, those who do manage it, do so spectacularly. Rhys Lawrey – aka 2moroRider – is a 24-year-old British rider who began his world trip at the start of May 2014. Now, over 14 months later and approaching the end of his epic ride, he hopes to soon claim his Guinness World Record as the youngest biker to have ridden solo around the world.
Rhys Lawrey, aka 2moroRider.
Whilst on his incredible trip, he also had another aim – to visit the most capital cities consecutively. The current record was set at five, which Rhys has not only beaten, but done so almost tenfold.
Rhys’ ride began as a conversation with his father. The world record attempt?
“Well, both my father and my step-mum are Guinness World Record Holders, so you could say it’s in the blood,” he commented.
Rhys riding across a bridge in Chile.
His weapon of choice was a British-made Triumph Tiger 800XC. The 94bhp adventure bike boasts a tank range of 230 miles, which made it ideal for Rhys’ journey given the long distances he was travelling.
Lovingly nicknamed ‘Tigger’, it has withstood over 55,800 miles of riding, through 68 countries and across six continents. “I’ve given her bad fuel, ridden at altitude, in the cold, the heat and she seems to just tick over every single time,” he said proudly.
Rhys chose the Triumph over more established adventure brands such as KTM, due to their iconic, British style.
“They are known for their cool, Tom Cruise, Steven McQueen, girl on the back, leather jacket image,” he added. “Also, what better bike than the Tiger which has a beautiful 3 cylinder engine – it’s a perfect all round adventure touring bike for someone young like me.”
And it was his youth which inspired Rhys’ to raise money for The Prince’s Trust – the largest youth charity in the UK. Asking sponsors for a donation of £1 for every continent he crossed during his ride, his aim was to help expand other young people’s horizons.
‘Tigger’ outside the Thailand Triumph dealership.
Knowing that he would be travelling through countries with varying receptions, Rhys prepared himself for hostile border greetings. However, he found himself surprised on multiple occasions: “When I entered into China, there was military everywhere. I wasn’t sure what to expect but when I rolled into the border compound all the custom officers came out with big smiles welcoming me and asking for hugs and photos and to sit on the bike. “
In other countries, he wasn’t so lucky: “Turkmenistan has been my least favourite place, just for the fact it’s not the most welcoming of countries. They are second below North Korea in dictatorship, but it is a country that is good to see so you appreciate what you have and what you can do freely back at home.”
Rhys has experienced all kinds of terrain during his ride.
Hostility wasn’t the only factor to consider. Riding terrain proved tricky on numerous occasions, for example when Rhys found himself trail riding on a heavily laden bike through the Colombian mountains. With a steep cliff drop to his right and rain pouring down, he had no choice but to turn around and find an alternative route.
Compromise is the advice that Rhys would pass on to other riders. “Don’t look at why you can’t do it, look at HOW you can do it,” he instructs. “It may not be the exact way but there is always a way. Concentrate on the solution instead of pointing out the problems and barriers which hold you back. Just jump and see it all unfold. It takes sacrifice and dedication but if you really want to do it you will be able to.”
And once he has reached his final destination at London’s Jack Lilley Triumph dealership this Saturday, what will be next for the man who’s conquered the world?
“I plan to rest and pay off my debts,” he finishes, “-And plan my next project…”
Check out this round up video of Rhys’ ride so far.