Tell us a little about yourself?
Hello! I'm Sam Vincent! AKA SamVBikes. An avid fan of anything with wheels that will get my adrenaline pumping!
As a boredom cure in the first lockdown in the past few years, I started a YouTube channel dedicated to motorcycling, adventures and the lighter side of the hobby, which seems to be going well (at least I think so!).
I'm mostly known for my involuntary laughing/giggling which tends to come out when I do things like racing my Honda Monkey Bike around the ABR Festival and nearly falling off!
Currently I have a relatively heavily-modified 2021 KTM 1290 Super Adventure S, and the aforementioned tweaked Monkey bike - but like a lot of us, I'm constantly wanting to add more to that list!
How and when did you get into riding?
My Dad has been a motorcyclist since his mid-30s which definitely pushed me toward it. The countless hours of nagging from age 9 finally got through, and he bought me a Kawasaki KX65 motocross bike at age 11. I rode until I was 16, selling my then KX85 to put funds towards my first car and the ludicrous insurance premiums a 17 year old had to stump up! With dad still commuting into London witnessing the driving standard of the UK, I wasn't allowed a bike on the road until I'd been driving for a number of years.. until I was 24, when I bought one, did my CBT and hid the beasty little CG125 in my girlfriends' shed so he didn't know!
A few disappointed conversations later, he's on board and we have been on many trips together and it's really cemented a stronger bond between us since... without getting too soppy!
What are the best and worst things about riding?
Best things - the list is endless! The freedom it gives you, the escape from reality, the immersion of your environment, the connection you get with the bike, the community... and the little pops you get from an exhaust!
Worst things - Not many! You obviously get the few that spoil it for the majority in certain elements but that's everywhere. I guess the worst conversation is the old faithful "Oh you ride a motorcycle... I hate motorcycles because my dad's best-man's cousin's dog fell off in 1997 so you shouldn't ride them because they are dangerous".
Tell us about your most memorable ride to date?
I have quite a few! Everything from blasting around the alps, to riding through the Yosemite national park for my 30th birthday, they have all been incredible! Even something as simple as wild-camping on the tip of the Isle of Skye is a great, unforgettable experience! I much prefer a loose plan, if planned at all. Don't look at Google street view, don't over analyse everything. Find some places you want to go, and just ride. The unexpected is far more enjoyable!
What's the best piece of riding advice you've ever been given?
Slightly bias, I know, but get yourself off road! Whether its on your bike, or on an experience day! We can all learn the grip levels on tarmac, but learning your craft in the slippy, muddy stuff makes a surprising amount of difference on the road. Learning to be relaxed while the bike is moving underneath you, getting that body weight distribution spot on, all in sub-optimal grip levels all make for a much more confident road ride!
What do you bring with you on every ride?
Tyre plugs, portable tyre pump, small tool kit, and ear plugs are always with me! Oh and my wallet for the inevitable coffee/cake stop!
How do you keep your bikes secure at home and on the go? Share your best tips to help others keep their bikes safe.
I commute into London (unfortunately) and I'm a firm-believer that 2 mins extra securing your bike is a lot more time and cost-efficient than coming back to finding that it's not where you left it!
Core Moto 125 goes through the wheel and through some railings, then a bike cover, and a disc lock on each disc! Yeah... overkill I know! Unfortunately, we live in a world where you have to make your bike more inconvenient than the one it's parked next to!
Both my bikes also have trackers in them just in case my OTT security approach doesn't work!
On a trip, I stick with the Core Moto, and 1 disc lock. The LITELOK is super lightweight, and rolls up in the lid of the topbox so it's out of the way, but easily accessible. That's normally my overnight security locking it around something, or to whoever's bike I'm travelling with.
When someone asks what kit you recommend, you say?
Anything AAA rated, and Goretex. I've unfortunately had the misfortune of low-siding the bike (vid on the channel!) and I'd have been a LOT worse off without AAA rated gear. Had a small bruise on my leg.. that's it!
Oh... and GOOD crashbars! Those saved me thousands in that crash. Not the cheapest ones you can find... but well developed, tested one.
What's on your riding bucket list?
I've got some big ones bubbling in the back of my head. Including riding the Trans Euro Trail from the top of Norway down to the base of Portugal.
I think every one of us that was obsessed with the 'Long Way' series wants to go to Mongolia and do a world trip. If I don't make myself do this, I'll never forgive myself.. so it's happening. Just need to set a date and get planning!