Globetrotter back home: Nick Sanders gets last flight home from Sydney
Nick Sanders MBE has made it back to the UK safe and sound after catching one of the last flights out of Australia on his latest round-the-world trip.
His journey started in November when he collected a Ténéré 700 from Yamaha’s factory in France. He then rode it home to Wales before setting off on the first leg of his epic journey, following a practice run to Dakar in Senegal, the spiritual home of the Ténéré family. It was here that an XT500 claimed overall victory in the very first Paris-Dakar rally 40 years ago.
Last time we spoke to Nick he was navigating across Death Valley in North America but since then he’s made his way down through South America, taking in everything from the giant salt flats of Bolivia to the dense jungles of Panama.
Having finished the Americas, Sanders is just shy of halfway on his trip, that will see him cover over 60,000 miles on Yamaha’s latest adventure bike.
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"I sailed the bike over from Argentina and I’d just arrived in Australia," says Sanders. "I had hoped that I could set off around the country with a plan to cover it in around seven weeks.
"I had just set off that very day when Australia took the decision to restrict travel, not just from outside the country but within the territories themselves. I did think about staying but I didn’t know how long I’d be there, so I managed to get on the last flight out of Sydney.
"The plan at the moment is to head back to Australia in September, where I’ll pick up the bike and continue my journey. I’ll then head to Asia, aiming for Kazakhstan before turning towards Europe and home."
And of the bike itself? "Absolutely faultless," adds Sanders. "I don’t really fall off much at all these days but sand can be tricky and I’m safe in the knowledge it’s light enough to pick up if I need it. Nothing has broken either – it’s just been a case of changing oil and fitting new Continental tyres when needed."