Her First Royal Enfield
Suzie first travelled to India 20 years ago, back in 1999. She spent a year there and bought herself a Royal Enfield. « I learnt to ride on a Bullet in Delhi! One day, while I was travelling by train, I realised that if I wanted to travel all alone in this country, I needed to feel free and independent. So I bought a Royal Enfield so I could blend in with the landscape and local culture. »
A Project like no other
Having fallen for the country's charm and exploring it on two wheels, she decided to get into motorcycle tour planning shortly after her trip. « Twenty years ago, the concept wasn't at all established in India. We would only ever come across a few solo travellers, but never really any groups. » She went on to set up a travel agency, which took English travellers on Royal Enfield Tours of India. Since then, Suzie has been involved in all things motorcycle: travelling, planning tours, sales, logistics as well as leading tours.
« I really enjoy taking groups with me; being a tour leader in India is a wonderful experience. I’ve been doing it for about 12 years. »
Passionate about India
She tells us her travel stories and anecdotes; we could listen to her for hours. We learn that her first guide experience was with a group in South India. « It was more like an event than a small group tour: I was one of six guides looking after around 150 Royal Enfields! » Suzie has spent all these years immersing herself in the Indian culture that she very much loves. She learnt Hindi and enjoys sharing her passion of adventure touring motorcycle with her English-speaking riders when she's on the road.
2019 : New Adventure
She joined Vintage Rides six months ago as our UK Country Manager. Based in the UK, she is in charge of putting together Vintage Rides motorcycle tours for our English-speaking customers. Like Gene-Vincent in France, she organises warm-up events and goes to fairs looking for partners and bikers, spreading the Vintage Rides spirit on British soil. What's more, two more biking experts –one British and one American– have joined forces to help her with her mission!
« English, Australian and American riders have been taking part in Vintage Rides tours for some years now. »
An english community
« We want the point of contact for these riders to be someone who share the same native language, as they can better understand their needs and expectations. » Bringing together people from different cultures who share the same passion is an added bonus. That was the case on the last Frozen Ride with an international team of riders from France, Switzerland, England and Ireland. The riders don't only get to explore the country they're visiting, they have the chance to learn from the other group members.
Travel & Passion
Suzie doesn't consider herself a die-hard biker. For her, the motorcycle is, above all, an excellent way to travel and spend time exploring. Now we understand why she is so crazy about Royal Enfields! « I feel at home when I'm on a Royal Enfield. For me, it's the best bike to ride and not only in India. » Her last Vintage Rides experience was last January on a Royal Enfield tour of Rajasthan with a group of international riders. « It was an intense but perfect road trip to the Thar Desert, with breathtaking experiences every day, having the chance to meet locals and enjoy amazing scenery. But even after all these years, I'm still not a big fan of sandy stretches! » Her dream destinations for Vintage Rides tours would be Morocco, Vietnam or Chile. « What really matters is that the passion lives on, the country isn't all that important, as long as we ride Royal Enfields! »
Sophie Squillace / Vintage Rides