Lyndon Poskitt isn’t your ‘normal’ dirt biker. He’s likely one that you’ve never heard of, or know very little about.
Very much a ‘you only live once, get up and get at it’ kinda Yorkshireman, if he were to hand out motorcycling business cards they’d very much feature the words ‘adventurer, racer, traveller, journeyman…’ In reality Lyndon’s a rider and racer that while big news within the big-bike, adventure fraternity is little known outside of it.
His racing exploits don’t shower him in glory or specialist press column inches but in short what he’s achieved in recent years is as credit worthy as it is inspiring. You see, Lyndon’s now successfully completed two Dakar Rally events and is just one continent away from travelling around the world – all the way around the world – on a dirt bike. As if that wasn’t enough, during that time he’s also filmed and released countless video blogs of his travels and racing exploits, with many more to follow…
The early years
“It all started with trials when I was 10.
I wanted a motocross bike but my dad thought it was too dangerous. I really got into it, started competing and loved it. I won some local, club championship and then quit when I was doing my school exams. After that I wanted something faster so I got an enduro bike. Then a motocross bike.
When I was 21 I got my road license and bought a Honda Fireblade and started doing some track days and road racing. That was too expensive, so I switched to supermoto.
I loved it. But then I moved to the States, where I started racing enduro again as well as desert racing. In 2012 I took part in my first road book rally event, in Sardinia. Since then I’ve raced and ridden on every continent and never lost my love of bikes, including competing in two Dakar Rally events.”
Lovin’ long distance
“I’d always wanted an adventure-style bike – something like a Cagiva Elefant or a Honda Africa Twin. When I moved to the States I got the chance to buy a KTM 950 Adventure and started travelling on it.
As is often the way while I was travelling I met some guys in New Mexico and started riding with them, mainly off-road.
They were serious racers and asked me if I’d be interested in competing in the Vegas to Reno desert race in a team with them.
That never happened because one of the riders lost his father so we had to cancel our plans. But we decided to do the Baja 1000. Long story short I rode for 18 hours and have never felt so broken in all my life. I realised then that getting into a zone and riding long distances was what I really enjoyed.”
Money, money, money…
“When I decided to quit my job and go and travel around the world I had 11 motorcycles, a car, van, trailer and all the stuff.
While I’d been working hard as an Aerospace engineer every single penny I’d earned had gone into motorcycles in one way or another.
The only way to get the cash I needed to go travelling was to sell all of that stuff. That’s what I did. Dakar was a whole different story. First time around it cost me £72,000.
I’d not really needed or relied on sponsors while travelling but signing up for Dakar made me realise that I needed to do some serious fundraising. There’s no way I could have done it without sponsors. That’s when I realised that you have to work hard for your sponsors, to give back any way you can.
That’s also when I realised how important the media is, as well as creating my own media, and that in order for people to commit to you, you have to commit yourself. I re-mortgaged my house to pay for the entry and sponsors paid half of the total amount I needed to compete and complete the event.”
Doing, not collecting
“If I look at some of the opportunities I’ve had in recent years – like racing for KTM Japan in Japan – it’s amazing.
But it’s getting out there and doing things that leads to doing other cool stuff. The people you meet along the way when you travel and race around the world is something you can’t buy.
I’ve got some truly great friends all over the world. But more importantly I have a head full of amazing experiences.”
Freak for details
“My attention to detail comes from having worked in the Aerospace industry. I work on and prepare my own bikes so even when I got my hands on this year’s Dakar bike (that came from KTM’s rally competition department) I went right through the bike myself.
Not because I didn’t trust the KTM guys but because I wanted to understand it and to make sure that everything was the way I wanted it.
That takes days, not hours. If something’s not right I have to put it right straight away. I also built the engine in the bike I’m travelling around the world on. All I’ve needed to do since is general service stuff. I enjoy it, getting hands on with a bike is something everyone should do.”
Passion verses profit
“It’s very much passion first, but obviously money is needed. If passion’s not the priority then you’ve lost it totally. You have to be passionate – you have to want to do it because taking on a trip around the world, or to compete in Dakar, is huge.
I never have enough money to do the things I do. But I always find ways. A lot of people assume I’m a wealthy guy because of what I do, but there’s certainly no pot of gold in my garage.
I just have a passion for riding motorcycles and really wanted to do it. I’m a strong believer that if you want something bad enough you’ll find a way of making it happen.”
“It’s amazing but it does have its risks. I’ve travelled around the world for three years. Eight months of that I was with other people and it was great but very different to riding solo.
Whenever you’re alone you talk to the people around you – not with the people you’re with. For me, that’s really important, especially when in far flung corners of the world. Needing to ask for some milk or toothpaste while in Mongolia, that’s what travel and adventure is all about for me.
It’s great for your confidence to know that you and you alone can find your way around the world and you can communicate with people despite not being able to understand a word they say. Also, as someone who loves riding off-road it’s really hard finding someone else who wants to do that – someone who’s happy to spend 10 hours a day off-road.
I ride for as long as it takes to get through 32 litres of fuel – no stops for coffee, or whatever. I also want to take my time taking photos and shooting video alone. There’s no pressure on me to get it done and move on. I was apprehensive about riding alone when I started my journey, not now. I love it. But I’m a people person, so I do like riding with others. Just not all the time.”
Media on the move
“Travelling now, during the digital and social media age we live in, is very different to how it was 10, 20 or 30 years ago. I truly don’t make money from what I do. I love to share what I’m doing. What started out as just a few videos has grown into a series of 70 episodes of Races 2 Places.
Turning the Ads off on YouTube is a clear indicator that what I’m doing with the videos isn’t about money. I like having goals and targets, and the next episode of the video series is what drives me on a lot when I’m travelling. There’s nothing I enjoy more than finding cool places to ride. Exploring those places. Capturing cool footage of those places and sharing those experiences. I don’t think I’d still be travelling if I was doing the video blogs.
The mixture of the blogs, the travel and the racing all being mixed together is what motivates me to keep doing it.”
Races 2 Places
“I’m different to many other adventure riders because I also get involved and race events like Dakar. I remember being fascinated by the motorcycle competitors in Dakar when I was a kid. I never thought a normal guy like me could compete in Dakar.
The guy I raced the Baja 1000 with did the Dakar in 2012. He rang me from the finish line and said, ‘Lyndon, what are you waiting for – you’ll love it’. I knew then it was something I could attempt so I spoke to a lot of people about what it took.
First time through it was great – we had a team with three riders, nine people including my dad as my mechanic – it couldn’t have gone any better. We all finished. It was a dream come true. I had huge debts and decided to do some other stuff and ended up travelling and riding around the world.”