Tony Kirby was a larrikin, a bush poet and an adventurer. He was a one-time editor of Australasian Dirt Bike and the founder of SideTrack Magazine, Tony Kirby, passed away on December 17 2010 after a tough battle with motor neuron disease. He was as far as ADV riders concerned, a national Treasure. Most of all he was a great bloke and called it as he saw it.
‘TK’, as he was affectionately known, had a great following within all spheres of the motorcycle industry, and his knowledge of the Australian bush was just about unparalleled. As one magazine was quoted on his passing away on December 17. 2010; there was not a fire trail, back road or track in Australia that he hadn’t traversed, this was why SideTrack became such a popular publication from the moment it was launched in 1995.
TK was instrumental in the formation of the Dual Sport Motorcycle Riding Association (DSMRA), which aims are to keep riding areas open and to bring like-minded riders together. His original Bridge to Bridge (The Yamaha Bridge to Bridge Imperative) was put together with YAMAHA Australia’s support in 1997. It was a five-day ride adventure ride and covered 1700 kms. There were 49 starters, two 4WD and a truck to support the ride. The ride then cost $450.00 plus fuel and camping fees.
RIDE ADV was asked to put together and run a memorial ride to honor TK. We felt the best way to honor TK was to produce a ride he would have been proud to be part of. In respect to TK we have consulted with some of his mates who were on his original Bridge to Bridge.
The Tony Kirby Memorial ride will also start under the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It will be a six-day ride kicking off on Sunday the 7th of September and cover closer to 2500kms ending in Brisbane on the 13th of September. It will be a GPS Navigation ride and still only cost you $450.00 if you ride the whole event or $250.00 for three days (Sydney to Nambucca or Nambucca to Brisbane). You will also need to allow for fuel and camping/accommodation fees. We hope to get over 50 riders. We will also have 2-3 4WD and a Truck plus sweeps and lead riders to run the track each day.
Once again with the support of YAMAHA Australia and the industry in general and specifically the RIDE ADV team, the Bridge to Bridge is a reality.