It’s a myth that Harley riders are like the guys in the 2007 movie Wild Hogs who just ride down to the local cafe or bar for a drink, then ride home again.
In fact, Harley-Davidson claims their customers are big travellers, which is why the Touring models are the biggest sellers in the USA.
Here in Australia, Harley riders also clock up quite a lot of miles.
And Harley riders are encouraged to travel even further with the annual Harley World Ride Day held over two days in June.
All it requires is for you to register how far you travel on the “day”.
Last year Harley riders clocked 10.5 million miles(16.8m km) but this year they beat that with 11,966,614 miles, or 19,258,351km.
Riders from more than 75 countries participated in the World Ride, with the highest mileage totals coming from the United States, Mexico, Brazil, India, Saudi Arabia, Canada, United Arab Emirates, Vietnam and Malaysia.
Australia still put in a respectable 30,667km, but it was down on the 2013 total of 146,039.
We don;t have last year’s figures, but here are the country stats for the World Ride 2013 in which 10,018,231miles (16 122 779km) were covered by Hogs around the world:
United States 4,507,025 miles
South Africa 144,392
Australia had only been involved for the two years in 2013 but was already ranked eighth.
A previous Harley-Davidson Australia boss told me that Aussie Harley riders do above-average mileage on their bikes.
I forget the annual average kilometre figures, but they would know, as they log mileage when bikes come in for authorised services.
He said it was a myth that Harley riders just rolled their machines out on a Sunday for a ride to the cafe.
HDA marketing guru Adam Wright hits the nail on the head when he talks about the feeling of riding: “There’s no doubting the feeling of freedom and sheer joy riding a motorcycle offers, it’s one of those experiences in life that breaks the monotony of the daily grind and brings a smile to the face every time,” he says.
“The exciting thing about the Harley-Davidson World Ride is that it’s all about just that – getting out on your bike, flying solo or with your friends and getting back to what makes you happy.”
Harley World Day was launched in 2008 by the Harley Owners Group as Million Mile Monday but was expanded into the two-day Harley-Davidson World Ride in 2012 to give more riders worldwide an opportunity to participate.
And in 2015, the event shifted to Saturday and Sunday to enable even more riders around the globe to participate.
Every mile is recorded by logging into Harley-Davidson’s online mileage accumulator, where a rolling odometer records the collective distance travelled by all participants in the World Ride.
After completing their rides, participants log their mileage directly on to the World Ride web site and share riding stories and photographs on social media using the hashtag #HDWorldRide. Participants could also download a certificate of participation after entering their completed mileage on the web site.