By: Dave Abrahams

Cape Town – It’s a concept that motorcyclists have made very much their own, that of having a good time for a good cause – and the ninth annual Emergency Medical Services Blood Run, hosted by the Straw Dogs motorcycle club at Youngsfield military base on Saturday, was no exception.

The convenors took this year’s event way beyond the usual ‘biker bash’ by inviting a number of local car clubs as well. Any gathering of this type soon becomes a reason to polish your machine within an inch of its life and brag just a little – so they formalised the show by offering prizes for the best, the trickest and the just plain outrageous.

ULTRA-RARE SHOWPIECES

From a slow beginning at about 11am, the trickle of bikes – and cars – gradually became a flood, as both individuals and club responded to the call. By the time the hard-worked Western Province Blood Transfusion Service crew packed up at about 4pm, more than 130 units of blood had been donated.

Meanwhile, outside, some of Cape Town’s most impressively customised machines, from superbikes to cruisers, were lined up next to the VIP area - home to a superbly customised Suzuki Hayabusa, a Lamborghini Aventador Spyder and an ultra-rare 1832cc, six-cylinder Honda Rune.

FROM MILD TO WILD

The Subaru club had lined up an impressive squad of Imprezas, there were a number of VW Golfs - from mild to wild – Toyotas by the ton and even a very neat fifth-generation Ford Cortina in impressive plain white.

And everywhere you looked there were motorcycles parked, of every type, size and vintage, from dazzling Sunday Specials to weekday workhorses, and their riders, greeting old friends and making new ones, were just as varied.

But late in the afternoon, when the WPBTS staff carried out several large containers full of blood-donation units, they were all the same for a moment, glad to be making a difference even though none of them would be individually recognised, doing something remarkable purely for its own sake.