British women have broken the world record for the largest female bike parade, set in 2014 by Australian women at the annual Babe Raid. And now the Aussies want it back!
The 2014 Babe Raid set the record when 284 women rode to the coastal NSW town of Ballina. Record Setter officially declared the record at 221 women on 190 bikes.
Last weekend, 618 women rode to the famous Ace Cafe in London to set the world record for the largest female bike gathering. They also broke the Aussie world record with 251 women riding 251 bikes in a parade.
Now, Babe Raid organiser Debb Dagger hopes to reclaim the parade world record, but not until next year.
“They only beat us by 19, so I think we can easily win it back,” she says.
However, the record will not be reclaimed at this year’s Babe Raids in Ballina from September 11-14 or Echuca in Victoria on November 13-16, 2015.
“It will not be at one of the Babe Raids, but a different time of year. Stay tuned for more details. It will still be a 2WheelBabes event,” says Debb.
“We have taken on a different format this year somewhat and have a heap of new activities including a ride through a pub on Saturday afternoon.
“We still have our favourite things, like the show and shine, gymkhana, rider training, massages, the shopping – let’s not forget the shopping – our theme dinner, the amazing Cath Simes Band on Saturday night and our scavenger hunt on Sunday.
“There is also a very special announcement that will be made only to those attending on the Saturday night … others will find out afterwards.”
Debb says they have capped the numbers for Ballina this year due to one of the local suppliers suffering a fire.
“We will always support the local community as best as we can, and as such, I decided not to outsource some of our requirements to Brisbane or Sydney but to keep it in Ballina. The community has rallied around and we have what we need, we will just have smaller numbers.
Debb says they have about 180 registrations for Balina, but the numbers for Echuca are “sky rocketing” and could surpass Ballina this year.
“There are lots of special things for Echuca as well … more to be announced as we get closer.”
The 38-year-old mother of two and senior property manager who has been riding since 2007 thought up the idea of the Babe Raid with two friends after attending many motorcycle rallies that were “really male based”.
The first Babe Raid was held in September 2010 when they expected 60 and attracted more than double.
Debb says Babe Raid has reduced the segregation that existed among women between various clubs and groups, and allowed women to express themselves in what is a “very male-dominated area”.
Men only play supporting roles in the annual Babe Raids, including a mechanic who gives free tech talks and advice. Debb says the information empowers women to look after their own bikes.