The annual Day of Champions at Silverstone circuit has been a roaring success. The combined activities raised over 250,000 euros for Riders for Health, with some 90,000 of that being generated by the auction. See the Riders for Health press release below for full details:
MotoGP™ paddock and fans raise over £200,000 [€250,000] for Riders for Health
Thousands of MotoGP™ fans flocked to Silverstone ahead of the British MotoGP to support Riders for Health’s annual fundraising event, Day of Champions, raising an incredible £216,249 [€253,562] for the organisations’ lifesaving work in Africa. The whole MotoGP paddock came together on Thursday (29 August) to support the championships’ official charity.
Riders for Health’s co-founder and CEO, Andrea Coleman, explained the appeal behind one of the UK’s largest outdoor fundraising events: ‘What’s fascinating about MotoGP is that it is the only sport in the world that’s ever grown a humanitarian movement, to deliver health care in Africa. The fans come here because they love to see the MotoGP riders, their heroes, but they also come here to support Riders for Health because we’re showing that motorcycles save lives.’
With the British MotoGP taking place later in the season this year, fans at Day of Champions were treated to a day of glorious sunshine at Silverstone.
The gates to the exclusive MotoGP paddock and pit-lane were opened to ticket holders who had the chance to walk among the team hospitality suites and technical trucks, and get a glimpse into garages on the pit-lane as teams prepared for the weekend’s racing. Many lucky fans even had the chance to meet their favourite riders as many of the stars stopped to pose for photographs and sign autographs.
As always, the highlight of the day was the famous Day of Champions MotoGP auction which raised a phenomenal £77,090 [€90,388] as fans bid on 108 lots in five hours.
The crowd were able to see their favourite MotoGP riders as they took to the stage to give their thoughts about Sunday’s race and auction off signed personal racing memorabilia. After Valentino Rossi’s nine auction lots raised £13,250 [€15,529] in just 20 minutes, auction hosts Toby Moody and Gavin Emmett revealed that the MotoGP star and his fans has raised almost a quarter-of-a-million pounds at Riders’ fundraising auctions in the past 10 years.
Also at the auction, MotoGP teams offered once-in-a-lifetime experiences, including a weekend in Spain with the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 team and the chance to step onto the MotoGP grid before the start of Sunday’s race. The item which raised the most amount of money was a Bridgestone race tyre, signed by all of the MotoGP riders, which fetched £4,600 [€5,391].
Earlier in the day, an exciting new competition to win a VIP MotoGP weekend to Valencia was launched on stage with a special video featuring some of the stars of MotoGP. Thanks to support from Riders for Health’s partners MotoGP, Bridgestone and MCN, the dream prize includes weekend paddock passes, grid passes for the start of the race, hospitality with MotoGP teams, the chance to meet Valentino Rossi and an invite to the End of Season party.
The competition is open globally until 14 October and entry is from as little as a £3/€3 donation to Riders for Health at www.prizeo.com/motogp.
There was action away from the stage too. At midday the crowds were treated to a spectacular sight when 150 motorcyclists and their pillions arrived at the circuit on the traditional Day of Champions ride-in. The convoy, led by three-times British Superbike Champion Niall Mackenzie and British MotoGP rookie, Bradley Smith, then completed two laps of the famous Silverstone circuit.
MotoGP broadcasters Gavin Emmett, Steve Parrish and Matt Roberts all helped to host the infamous ‘Question of Bikes’ quiz. A team of British Superbike riders battled through two rounds of motorcycle racing knowledge to be crowned champions after beating a team of competition winners and a Bridgestone team, who had previously knocked out some famous faces from the MotoGP media.
Motorcycling journalist and broadcaster, Julian Ryder, interviewed riders from Moto3, as well as Moto2 star Pol Espargaro, about their hopes for the weekend. He also chatted to Monster Yamaha Tech 3 team boss Hervé Poncheral about British stars Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith, and to MotoGP Race Director, Mike Webb, about technical development in MotoGP.
Popular rock band Sidewinder also returned to Day of Champions to provide fantastic live music throughout the day.
Elsewhere in the Entertainment Zone, the Animal Action Sport Tour impressed the crowds with spectacular trials riding and aerial jumps. And a stunning collection of vintage bikes were on display in the Classic Bike Village.
All of the money raised at Day of Champions will enable Riders for Health to get more health workers on the road in Africa so that they can reach people in remote rural communities with vital health care. Riders for Health mobilises health workers with motorcycles and trains them to ride safely over the rugged terrain and to do daily checks on their motorcycle so that it doesn’t break down leaving vulnerable families isolated.