First, there was the inclement weather. Next was the pending implementation of enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila. What could possibly be the next obstacle for this team of adventure-loving riders as they head back to their home province of Cebu? Oh, and their target date of arrival? The morning of August 6.
When they went live on social media from Tagaytay City last Monday, Jimmy Clemente, his wife Sheila Cangke (a.k.a. Sheila the Biker Chic), and their team members were high-spirited. They had just completed the Central and Northern Luzon routes of the 5,000km Philippine Loop.
At 3am this morning, we chanced upon the crew while they were gearing up for their ride to Legazpi City. We asked if there had been any changes to their schedule due to the tightening of border controls in many areas in Luzon. Cangke replied: “Yes, nagbago po. Mayroon sana akong meet-and-greet with Can-Am owners sa Manila.”
However, there were unforeseen developments that prompted Cangke’s group had to modify its schedule. Her three-wheeler, a Can-Am Ryker Rally, bogged down while they were heading south. “Yun motor ko bumigay sa NLEX, biglang nag-shutdown,” she related.
Aside from that, Cangke had another concern: “Medyo na-worry lang ako sa mga anak ko. I have a 12-year old and an 8-year old kid kasi [kaya nagaalala kami] nun nabalitaan namin na tumataas [COVID-19 cases] sa Cebu.” This strengthened her resolve to be with her children before the situation worsens.
Cangke and her cohorts were very thankful to a group of Luzon-based big bikers, known as Team Kirat, for patiently assisting them as they passed through Metro Manila. The team, led by Erwin Agra, is escorting the Cebuanos up to Tacloban City.
Both husband and wife already feel very accomplished, though they have yet to complete the entire tour. For Cangke, it’s because she achieved her goal of learning to ride a two-wheeler.
On July 30, Cangke managed to squeeze into their tight schedule a training session with Zero2Podium riding school at Clark International Speedway. They also took time out to ride with coaches Che Estepa and Marvin Caspe on the tarmac. With a Yamaha YZF-R15 as her training bike, Cangke pulled off some hot laps alongside her fellow riders on the first day of training, despite the intermittent rain.
After the training, Cangke’s Ryker broke down on the way to Los Baños, Laguna. She ended up a backrider after they left the three-wheeler to a rescue team from Manila. As of today, the group has traveled some 3,900km since they started their Philippine Loop journey.
Later on, in his Facebook Live broadcast in Tagaytay City, Clemente was seen chanting in front of Sheila: “F750 GS! F750 GS!”
He was referring to the BMW F750 GS, an off-road machine that is fast becoming popular with the lady riding community. The question is, will Sheila the Biker give in to her husband’s prodding?
Stay tuned for more Philippine Loop updates from these adventure-thirsty Cebuano riders!
(Editor’s note: Clemente’s group arrived in Legazpi City at 12 noon today, with only five riders left in the team. The two others rode straight to their respective homes in Laguna.)
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