You know off the Tour de France, we’ve already written about this legendary bicycle race, from a motorcycle’s point of view. But did you know there’s a Tour de France for motorcycles? It’s a motorcycle race through France, all very legal.
Called Dark Dog Tour (formerly known as the Moto Tour), the race starts on Saturday the 27th of September at Reims and finishes on Sunday 5th of October at Toulon (South of France).
The race is 3100 kilometers long, and has 17 special stages, usually on racing circuits or long stretches of country roads. There are two night portions, one of them in a city, the other on normal country roads. The Dark Dog Tour this year evens goes to the island of Corsica. The Tour covers forests, mountains and open roads.
At most of the race circuits, it’s possible to join the fun with your own motorcycle. The race at the Formula One circuit, Magny-Cours, is a night race.
The Gendarmes are seen as the “Guardian Angels” of the Tour, especially when you consider that the race was originally started by the Police.
Different categories exist in this race; from the professionals/experts to the Sunday riders, including a category for scooters, classic motorcycles and sidecars. The race is limited to 220 riders, so if you’re interested in participating better hurry, since there aren’t that many places left (you’ll need a pretty good grasp of French, since not much is translated in English).
You need a valid FIM license (can be obtained on the spot for €90), and your motorcycle can not have more than 100 hp on the rear tire (French law). You are not allowed to race with a backpack, top case or side cases. You also need to part with €1390 to participate (includes the ferry to and from Corsica). You can also elect to participate only in one of the circuit specials
The Dark Dog Tour also is held in Belgium and Portugal.