While a road trip or adventure-tour experience isn’t a new idea, “Neale Bayly Rides: Peru” has the unique payoff of benefiting an orphanage in Peru. And it’s a venture helmed by an Emmy-winning producer.
Bayly, a Brit ex-pat, has made a few appearances on MO over the years and has been a regular contributor to Speed.com’s motorcycle section. But he might be most recognizable as a co-star on SPEED’s “Trippin On Two Wheels”, a series of motorcycle touring episodes set in exotic locations like Scotland, Quebec, Spain, Italy and Switzerland. You can read our article about “Trippin” here.
“During my time making ‘Trippin’ I went to Peru to perform a medical mission at Hogar Belen in 2008,” says Bayly, picking up the story. “I came home and formed Wellspring Outreach and decided I would make a TV show about adventure travel, to go help out these kids and other abandoned children around the world.”
READ MORE: Bayly Rides for Peruvian Orphans
“I rode 3000 km and spent two weeks mapping Peru top to bottom and ended up visiting the kids and taking donation money,” Bayly explains. "I came home and wrote articles for magazines about the trip and went looking for a TV network. This led me to Emmy award-winning producer Linda Midgett, who read a story about me in a magazine, and we went into business.”
Bayly returned to Peru in 2010 on BMWs and with a full TV crew. The pilot was titled “Kickstart,” and its promo reel can be seen on YouTube. Unfortunately, Bayly’s project got rejected by several networks. “Too soft, too fluffy, too earnest, too intelligent – we heard it all,” Bayly laments.
After being rejected twice at SPEED, its new president, Scott Ackerson, met with Bayly and agreed this was a story that needed to be told.
So this past winter Bayly led an eclectic group of travelers mounted on BMW F800GSs and R1200GS on a nine-day trip of a lifetime. The cadre of riders faced many challenges as they traversed deserts and mountain, with more than a couple of bikes hitting the ground. But the culmination of the trip at the orphanage was hugely rewarding to all the participants.
“You can’t go through something like this and come out the other side the same way,” Bayly comments. “The way we sort of compress time and add so much adventure, excitement, adrenaline, hopes, fears – it really digs into them emotionally.”
The three-part series will air on SPEED Sundays at 9pm EST, beginning June 9th.
“Spend five minutes with Neale as he expresses his passion for this project and you, too, will be ready to drop what you are doing and join him on this odyssey that is so much more than the sum of its parts,” said SPEED’s VP of Programming and Executive Producer Robert Ecker. “The ride to Peru is every bit as much about the journey as the destination. He really is this socially conscious two-wheel adventurer who wants to impact people’s lives and make the world a better place. His enthusiasm and passion are genuine and contagious.”
“It’s a unique way for motorcycling to reach a non-motorcycle audience in a compelling way, while not neglecting the two-wheeled world,” Bayly asserts. “With my background in motorcycle journalism, I’ve been able to make a show from our two-wheeled perspective that respects the need for safety, training and protective clothing etc. With my career in motorcycle television, I’ve been able to utilize my experience producing and hosting television around the world to hopefully make it exciting.”
SPEED has taken a chance by supporting Bayly’s project, so do them a favor by tuning in to “NBR” next month. You can also show support by visiting the Neale Bayly Rides Facebook page. More information can be found at http://nealebaylyrides.com/. Follow Bayly on Twitter @NealeBaylyRides.