All The Way Up: Dutch Adventurer Riding Yamaha R1 To North Pole

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Most riders hide from winter. Dutch adventure motorcyclist Sjaak Lucassen embraces it, seeing bitter cold, snow and ice as a path to one of the most remote places on earth. Beginning in January 2021, Lucassen will ride his modified 2001 Yamaha YZF-R1, from Anchorage, Alaska to the geographic North Pole. The 3,000-mile journey includes hundreds […]

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DrGMIA

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Ahhhh, to tag the North Pole.

Sjaak Lucassen is a determined fellow. I've met him twice while I was circling the globe, once when he did repairs at my Denver, USA studio over a three day period and again in Chiang Mai, Thailand some years later. Both times he was planning attempts to do serious cold weather motorcycling. One winter he and another acquaintance rode their motorcycles to Deadhorse (a.k.a. Prudhoe Bay), Alaska, a cold weather adventure I was glad to have passed on.

This new attempt, to tag the North Pole, is with merit, especially given that he's using his aging (2001) R1 and some grit.

In 1987, Shinji Kazama from Japan, was the first to ride a motorcycle to the North Pole, a 200cc Yamaha. That not being enough for Kazama, in 1992 he tagged the South Pole.

The closest I have come to the North Pole on my six rides around the world have been to Deadhorse (10 times) and Nome, Alaska., and twice to the North Cape. Unlike Kazama and Lucassen, I reach the far north in the warmest seasons, usually June/July, and then head towards the southern hemisphere as the sun drops below the equator.

I was supposed to meet with Lucassen next month, May 23 in Germany and looked forward to his sharing of road tales and plans. Looks like I'll just have to root for him success from afar via the Net given current global travel restrictions.

Fellows like Kazama and Lucassen make for interesting fodder for journalists and authors like myself. That said, I'm much happier writing about them than joining them or following in their tracks on these cold adventures.

'Dr. G'
Professor of Motorcycle Adventure, SOUND RIDER magazine, and Adventure Motorcycle University
Moto-Journalist, author and script consultant
Sole sexual survivor: www.greataroundtheworldmotorcycleadventurerally.com
 
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