I recently sat down for drinks with, and rode in this years Distinguished Gentelman's Ride with avid motorcyclist Sean Capovilla (shown in the red carpet photo) . During our conversation he mentioned a few things that many of us can relate to, so I wanted to share his "Moto Therapy" story.
When I first met Sean I won’t lie, I first noticed his 6’4” frame and amazing custom black motorcycle jacket. What can I say? I’m human! He immediately started talking motorcycles, and being the person I am, I didn’t stop him. Here is his story:
Sean Capovilla, age 51, living in Northern California, USA
When did I start riding? I was about 13/14 years old. I had ridden on the backs of motorcycles. My cousin’s Kawasaki 185 was a cool machine. My uncle’s Honda, a bit more reserved. My first solo rides were in Roseville, California on that Honda 160. I remember the thrill of riding back then, up the street, and then down the alley. What a thrill! However, it was a secret kept from my family because I was not allowed to ride motorcycles. This best kept secret is what prompted me to purchase a new motorcycle in 2006. Finding myself suddenly on the single waters of life, I was able to do as I pleased. Within a year of my change in status, I began researching which motorcycle I would like to own. Thinking back to the bikes with which I had experience, I wanted that retro look. After months of research, I found that the Triumph Bonneville was the best choice. So, why a Bonneville? Well, just look at it. It’s beautiful.
When I first bought the bike, I pretty much stayed local. However, after meeting some guys who liked to travel, I packed my bike and joined them. Now, I’m hooked. First trip was a coastal trip from Salt Point down Highway 1 to Big Sur. What a blast! After that, we did trips down 395 to Lee Vining, and then through the back gate to Yosemite. Four years ago, we headed north through Oregon, Washington, and into British Columbia. This loop took us across BC and then down through Idaho. 3200 miles in ten days. It was quite a trip. Rain, snowy passes, ferry crossings, and numerous deer were things encountered on this long trip. We camp on all of our rides so a night’s stay usually costs between seven and ten dollars.
I often ride alone. And, sometimes I join my friends, or head out to our local “Moto Meeto”.
The best thing that had come into my life? All the places I have visited on my 2006 Triumph Bonneville have been an adventure. Riding clears your mind. It’s a little bit like meditation. All your troubles are behind you as you ride. My bike now has 32,000 miles and I have never laid her down. I can attribute that to my years of being on two wheels. I’m a road cyclist. As a road cyclist, I have learned how ride on roads with varying conditions, heavy traffic, obstacles, and debris. These conditions are what motorcyclists face on a daily basis whether they’re commuting or traveling.
I must say that owning this bike has been a good experience. Traveling is fun. Even if it’s just a day trip to the city, it’s still a blast. There’s something transformative about riding, seeing things. It’s cathartic, transcendental even. I might have had a bad week, stresses of life. But, after a ride with my friends, and seeing the great blue Pacific on highway 1, those troubles seem to shrink away. And, you realize that all things in life are simply part of the journey itself. For my next trip, I might head east. We’ll see if the guys are up to it.