An Ice-olated DGR In Antarctica

Posted 2 years ago

Since 2012, tens of thousands of men and women around the world have taken part in the annual Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride (DGR). Riders from over 100 countries turn out at DGR annually to raise awareness for men’s health by connecting communities of riders and celebrating the art of looking dapper. Fast forward a decade, and the ride is a global phenomenon, making it an unmissable event for countless riding communities.

In the lead up to this year’s DGR, we spoke to Charles Delgrange, a legendary Mo Bro who, year after year, has participated in The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride across all corners of the globe. Charles let us in on what DGR and the community it creates means to him and men’s health more broadly.

Can you tell us a little about yourself and your love of motorbikes and what being part of the rider community means to you?

I’m a 29-year-old Frenchman living in Melbourne. I inherited my love of motorbikes from my family; my parents love motorbikes so much they had a motorbike wedding! I’ve been riding motorbikes since I could ride a push bike and don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. I love the sense of freedom it brings, the adrenaline, and the ability it gives you to discover new places and meet new people. The friendships I’ve made through motorbikes are as strong as family.

Can you tell us about your involvement with DGR and why you think DGR is such an important event?

I rode in my first DGR back in 2015 in France with Triumph Lille, and since then I haven’t missed one. I’ve been volunteering at the Melbourne DGR since 2018. DGR brings together a variety of people, bound together by a common passion in classic bikes, and raising awareness for an important cause

What do you think the riders get out of being part of DGR?

The connection between everybody, especially the feeling of knowing you can ask the people around you for help without any judgement, no matter what your problem is, or where you’re from. For me personally, I’ve enjoyed, and continue to enjoy, being able to help people involved in DGR as much as I can, making the journey easier for all.

You mentioned that a lot of motorcyclists think they are tough and invincible, but that everyone gets sick. Could you talk a little about that, and why you think men need to take their health more seriously?

Men are like everyone… we need love too! It’s important for men to speak up when they are not feeling right and to get help as soon as possible.

You took a photo with the DGR logo in Antarctica. Could you tell us about why you did that?

I spent 2021 working as a diesel mechanic at the French Concordia Station, based on the inland of the continent. It’s one of the most isolated, coldest places on earth. I wanted to show that it doesn’t matter where you are on earth, you can always find some help if needed. Living in the middle of Antarctica it’s not always easy. With the complete isolation, rough weather, and no sunlight for three months, your mental health can be compromised. You need a good, strong support outside to help you to go through the mission.

Why would you encourage people to get involved with DGR this year?

The last two years have been hard with the pandemic. A lot of people have suffered mentally and physically. We need to be able to open our ears to anyone and everyone without judgement.

Why do you believe in the work Movember does?

Men’s health is a massive issue and anything that helps more men make their health a priority is a good thing.

You’ve taken DGR to Antarctica, what’s next?

Space? Maybe not right now (just kidding). I don’t know, to be honest, it’s been a long and hard journey down there. So, I want to settle for now, but I’m always keen for new adventures.

On 23 May, 2022, thousands of dapper gentlefolk will unite in style for another year of DGR. Thanks to The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, Movember can continue implementing programs aimed at improving the health and wellbeing of men around the world. Visit the official Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride for more information about this year’s ride.