The Three Wheeled Duo are Back on the Roadbook

It’s a very, very rare occasion that a motorcycle and sidecar team take part in our Adventure Rallies and Raids, that is until quite recently. Early last year we met Dan and Billy, a father son duo who impressed us all by riding the Cotswolds Adventure Cannonball in freezing cold, very muddy conditions.  It was the first time running the digital roadbook app at an event, and with Billy operating the tech from the sidecar (whilst being plunged into deep puddles of mud through narrow rutted lanes), and Dan in the saddle they made a fine team!

Dan and Billy at the Cotwolds Adventure Cannonball, Jan 2022

It does beg the question, are ’two man’ riding duos even at a disadvantage by adding a passenger?  The second person essentially becomes the ‘co rider’, or at the very least they are a second set of eyes on the roadbook navigation, allowing the rider to focus on the riding.  This is what we’ve learnt from the ’two ups’ we see fairly regularly at some of our Adventure Rallies.

Anyway, Billy and Dan must have enjoyed themselves as they were recently back for more, joining in on the digital roadbook winter series, the RallyMoto Ice Breaker Challenge.

Here is what they both had to say about their experience on the Cotswolds route.



We headed out early to get to the starting point of the Icebreaker Challenge with our sidecar outfit. The bike is a Royal Enfield Himalayan with a Watsonian International sidecar fitted.
I’ve been really excited to do this rally especially after enjoying watching the Dakar. I was the navigator which was good fun. I enjoy the navigation because it’s interesting to see where the route goes and it is also a challenge following the notes and reading them in time, making sure the trip is accurate and also checking the cap to make sure we were going the right way. We made a few mistakes on the trickier sections but in the end, managed to get round.
As well as navigating, I had to lean out of the sidecar on the off camber tracks to help keep it upright. The ford crossings were fun too, and after them there was always a lake in the sidecar! I had to put my feet up so they didn’t get wet. At one point, the lane we were on turned into a huge rutted muddy puddle with ice in it, which we got stuck in! While we were pushing the sidecar out, it sprayed mud everywhere including down my neck, but we did get the sidecar out and continue.
I think that some bits are much harder on the sidecar, but other parts were easier. There was one very slippy section, which would be lots easier on a sidecar because you can’t fall over. It was fun sliding around on that lane. If ever we saw someone, they would smile and wave. It was a great day out and I’m looking forward to doing another rally. Thanks to Burt and the RallyMoto team.
Billy Preece (Age 10)



Riding the sidecar is a bit of a challenge but is also great fun.  Things that you wouldn’t even think about on a solo suddenly become difficult. Any off-camber sections make you nervous and it takes a while to dial yourself in and start learning where the limit is, it’s further than it feels. You also must think about the passenger and where you are putting the wheels and having to take 2 lines into account. Sections with deep ruts can be the most difficult to manage.
The bit we got stuck on would not have been any issue on a solo as there was a high line to the left that missed everything but with the sidecar we had no choice. I tried to stay on top of the main rut but it slipped in. Our sidecar does not have a great deal of centre clearance, so you need to try to stay out of deeper ruts.
Its great having Billy doing the navigating though as I can blame him for all the mistakes, I mean concentrate on the riding! (it is a little bit annoying as he makes less nav errors than I do on RallyMoto events). The RallyMoto events are a brilliant way to get out, challenge yourself and have some fun exploring the countryside.
Dan Preece (significantly older)