How the motorcycle community is doing its bit in coronavirus battle

Big motorcycle companies and individuals in the wider motorcycle community are making a different in the time of coronavirus

Benelli donates to coronavirus fight [credit: Benelli Facebook]

The rapid acceleration of the coronavirus crisis over the past few weeks has left everyone reeling.

Whether you have been affected personally by COVID-19, are having to self-isolate or adjusting to a new way of life in the interim, the shocking nature of its spread and impact globally has had a profound effect on society that we will recover from, but surely never forget.

Initially – in the UK at least – the narrative has shifted in only a couple of weeks from head-shaking stories of people fighting over loo roll, stockpiling basic essentials to sell on at inflated prices and companies furloughing staff without paying them.

However, after stricter lockdown measures to combat the coronavirus’ spread were introduced the media tide has turned towards the people who are making a positive difference.

These are the people – and companies - we will remember fondly when this is all over. As for the other aforementioned people… time will tell.

Automotive and motorcycle companies are fairly unique in the way their production processes can be adapted to assist in the fight against coronavirus. There are stories of companies halting car or motorcycle production to begin making ventilators to supply to hospitals, or to donate funds to under stress medical institutions.

In Italy, where the impact of the coronavirus has been felt hardest with 7,500 deaths from almost 75,000 cases (as of writing), tyre giants Pirelli and its partners have donated $800,000, plus 65 ventilators, 5,000 protective suits and 20,000 face masks to the fight, while Yamaha USA has provided 380 respirators, 49,000 gloves, 18,000 alcohol wipes and 325 suits to the Piedmont Newnan Hospital.

Even Benelli, one of the smaller motorcycle firms, has assisted with 2 ventilators and 4,500 protective suits to the Italian Red Cross.

Motorsport stars are also doing their bit, whether it’s promoting the Stay At Home message through their various social media channels, or the likes of Valentino Rossi and Pecco Bagnaia who have both donated money to their local hospitals.

With motorcycles – which by definition are self-isolating - becoming one of the key assets for essential workers getting around, whether it’s to necessary work, delivering supplies or just keeping the nations fed without the need for them to venture outside, there have also been faith restoring stories emerging.

These include TT rider James Hillier, who offered his services as a delivery rider for anyone that needs help, to local companies with motorcycles on hand offering ‘meals on wheels’ services or delivery medical supplies.

It’s tough to find positives in what is a dire situation with such an unclear outlook for the future, but in the moment it is reassuring to know people can be and are good.