TRF:Hi Austin. Looks like last year was pretty busy for you. We saw you riding round Devon with Ross Noble and then centre stage on the Honda stand at Motorcycle Live. Do you think that trail riding is on the up at the moment?
TRF:It must be satisfying for you to see a company like Honda recognising the efforts you’ve put in to trail riding as a ‘thing’ for so long?
Austin:It’s utterly weird; I spent over 20 years asking Suzuki to harness my energies, events and enthusiasm for the benefit of their brand but they were determined to have no involvement with me, Mondo Enduro or my projects. Honda approached me last year and simply asked if could collaborate at any level and here we are….
TRF:You’ve been helping trail riders get out and explore Spain for a while now. There’s a few different events that you put on, how does the the Mini Mondo Wilderness tour fit in?
Austin:At trade fairs and dirt-bike events I am often told the same thing by UK trail-riders: They would love to do a m/c ‘adventure’ but don’t have enough like-minded mates to form a team. That’s where I come in.
TRF:There’s obviously a good cross over between what you are doing in Spain and what a lot of TRF members are riding here in blighty. What kind of rider are you looking for to join you in this years event?
Austin:I only want people who are totally happy about getting ‘stuck in’ to the philosophy. There are many excellent guided trail-riding operators in Spain and elsewhere. However, on a Mini Mondo, the riding is merely the ‘medium’ for what is actually a broader team-building project. I need selfless people who can cope with 5 days of virtually zero privacy and no way of controlling the group’s daily rhythm. For many people that is simply too big an ask and that’s fine, they would hate it. Thankfully I am usually able to scare them off before they sign up in error!