Motorcyclists ride from Perth to Sydney and back for Guide Dogs Victoria

It takes $35,000 and two years to breed and raise a Guide Dog ready for final training and matching with someone who has vision loss. 

A group of motorbike riders are aiming to raise enough money in just 28 days to breed and train three guide dogs.

On December 26 a group of riders left Perth to ride 9000kms all the way to Sydney and back, with the aim of raising $105,000. 

On January 8, the group stopped in Bowral, just before the halfway mark of their ride, with more than $31,000 in donations. 

Brian “Beetle” Bayley came up with the idea of riding across the country on a Royal Enfield 350 after tying the history of Winifred Wells and his grandfather together. 

“About four years ago I started learning about Winifred Wells and she absolutely took my breath away,” Mr Beetle said. 

At the age of 22, Winifred left Perth on Boxing Day 1950 and rode her Royal Enfield Bullet 350cc motorcycle solo all the way to Sydney and return.

Given the road conditions of that time, it was an epic ride which seized the imagination. 

“This little 22-year-old girl got on her bike and decided to ride all that way, it took a lot of guts, especially considering the state of the Nullabor at that time,” Mr Beetle said. 

“I just fell in love with her and I wanted to do the same ride.”

Beetle’s grandfather fought in the war and came back vision-impaired. 

“I decided that I wanted to raise money for Guide Dogs Victoria to help people like my grandfather, all while emulating Winifred’s ride,” he said. 

The PAMS Motorcycle Across Australia ride has been running for 14 days so far, and Beetle said he had been shocked by the generosity of people along the way. 

“We’ve almost got enough for our first puppy because of the kind and generous nature of people we’ve met along the way. It’s been really fantastic,” he said. 

There have been fundraisers, game nights, dinners and events along the way and PAMSMC Ride project manager Judy Hawkins said it had been a great experience so far. 

“We have five or six riders go the whole way with us and other riders who have joined us just for certain parts which has been great because we are meeting so many people,” she said. 

Each of the riders has self-funded their jouneys so that 100 per cent of donations goes to Guide Dogs. 

“We’ve had full and other things donated to us by members of the public to keep us going which is really special,” she said. 

Beetle’s bike has a mini guide dog statue fitted to the back, which is quite a funny sight when paired with his flame-adorned helmet and leather outfit.

“I’m not trying to change the world, I’m just raising money for Guide Dogs Victoria,” Beetle said. 

To donate, or register your involvement in a certain leg of the ride, visit http://pamsmcride.com.au/