Celebrities on motorcycles is nothing new: we all know Keanu Reeves is so obsessed with one-off bikes he builds them himself, Tom Cruise loves fast motorcycles, John Travolta has been riding since he was eighteen, Pink is often spotted on two wheels…but what about celebrities on adventure bikes? Turns out, Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman aren’t the only famous dudes who love adventure motorcycling. Here are four more unexpected celebrities on adventure bikes:
Long Way Round and Long Way Down inspired countless riders to take up adventure motorcycling – or, at the very least, buy a BMW 1200 GS – but few people know it has also encouraged Ziggy Marley and his brothers Robbie and Rohan to do their very own Long Way Down with the same producer, David Alexanian, who helped create the famous LWR series.
In 2010, Ziggy, Robbie, and Rohan set their sights on South Africa and rode the country aboard Ducati Multistradas while doing impromptu charity concerts and keeping an eye on the 2010 World Cup. According to Ziggy, he was always into bikes, but it was after buying a BMW 800 GS in LA that his interest in adventure motorcycling was peaked – and soon after that, he and his brothers decided to go on an adventure of their own.
“You’re much more aware of your surroundings and what’s going on around you. You’re much more in tune with the environment and more likely to go off the beaten path because it gives you that freedom and the will to do it. I used to ride horses when we were younger and I lived on a farm. This is my iron horse and it gives me the freedom to explore more of the world.
It also gives you much more of a community feeling and the reaction from people is great because they are much more likely to come towards you. It’s open, it’s an open space and you’re not in a box so you’re much more likely to communicate with people, too. That’s true anywhere in the world with motorbikes. Small or large or whatever, you’re a rider with a connection to the world. “, Ziggy commented on his adventure motorcycle trip in South Africa a few years back in an interview with ADV Moto.
Bear Grylls, the British adventurer and wilderness survival expert, is best known for his Man vs Wild and Running Wild With Bear Grylls series, but when he’s not hiking the Everest or battling North Atlantic icebergs in an inflatable boat, he loves to jump on his Triumph Tiger and adventure on two wheels.
“You don’t need to go to the Himalayas for adventure. It’s right there in front of you every time you climb on a bike. Riding gives me that personal space away from the cameras and all that work stuff. It gives me a chance to rediscover what really matters in life. It’s about pursuing those tangible beats in time when everything just comes together, when the concentration and focus that bikes demand mean you’re not worrying about yesterday or tomorrow. When it’s all about the moment. Bikes have always played a big part in my life. I have always loved the feeling of being alone and riding”, Bear has shared in an interview with Bike magazine back in 2015.
David Beckham, the global soccer star, loves bikes – so much so that back in 2014, he rode a modified T100 Bonneville across the Brazilian Amazon for a BBC One documentary Into the Unknown.
The journey started in Manaus, where Beckham and his two friends got to ride the bikes in the dirt, explore the Brazilian Amazon, and hang out with the local Yanonanmi tribe. Not quite the scale of Long Way Round or Ziggy Marley’s road trip in South Africa, but an adventure is aadventure – and it seems Becks definitely had one in Brazil.
Hollywood megastar Brad Pitt has been an avid rider and motorcycle collector for a while now, but rumor has it, his motorcycle fleet isn’t just about custom bikes like the Shinya Kimura or rides like the Triumph Boneville or Ducati Desmodedici RR. Pitt also owns a BMW R1150GS model, and although it’s impossible to know whether he takes the GS out on adventures often, the fact is, he does ride an adventure motorcycle.
So there you have it – four celebrities on adventure bikes you’d never suspect were into ADV at all.Who knows, maybe there’ll be more world ride documentaries produced by world-famous actors, footballers, of chefs soon: perhaps what Ewan and Charley had started will become a trend.
What other celebs ride adventure bikes and keep it quiet? Share in the comments below!