Time Out finds out more about The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, Dubai, a motorcycling meet-up for some of the most fashionable people in Dubai
*PLEASE NOTE, THIS EVENT HAS NOW BEEN POSTPONED*
Many people think of bikers as burly, bearded brutes wreaking havoc wherever they take their petrol-guzzling beasts. However, a group (not gang) of motorbike fans are setting the record straight, raising money for charity at the same time.
The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride (DGR) is returning to the streets of Dubai on Saturday September 24, with more than 100 bikers set to rev up their classic machines to celebrate the fifth anniversary of this decidedly dapper event. Among the turnout of the well-turned-out will be Riyaz Neem, founder of DGR Dubai and member of the Royal Enfield Dubai Motorcycle Club. One of his fellow members picked up on a post about 2012’s inaugural DGR in Sydney and so the Dubai version was born.
“The genre of bikes was a perfect match for the bikes we ride and we thought it was a good idea to have some fun here in Dubai too,” he tells Time Out. “It was quite spontaneous – we were then a bunch of nine guys in our finest suits, riding through town, ending on The Walk in JBR for what turned out to be quite a photo-opp.”
Mark Hawa, who founded DGR, took his inspiration from a photo of Mad Men character Don Draper astride a classic bike and wearing his finest suit. And both he and Neem are out to shatter a few myths.
“This perception [of bikers] has been driven largely courtesy of an overload of television and Hollywood content that stereotyped the entire universe of motorcyclists,” he says. “TV shows like Sons of Anarchy haven’t really helped either. Ironically, most bikers around the world are real people with decent jobs, professionals and genuinely well-mannered folk.”
As the worldwide event has expanded from 2,500 riders in 2012 to more than 37,000 in 79 countries last year, so has the Dubai incarnation grown. The movement is hoping to raise Dhs18 million for prostate cancer this time around.
“This year, we expect in excess of 100 riders to show up in their finest tweeds,” Neem says. “More importantly, we’d also like to spread the word so that good people such as your readers will slide their hands into their wallets and donate generously to a noble cause.”
So whether you’re taking part or willing to support, don’t miss this dapper Dubai ride. Visit www.gentlemansride.com.