Video: MiX tracks Stuart Wring
Stuart Wring Managing Director of Avonmouth-based Wrings Transport Limited recently travelled from Miami to Alaska on his Yamaha XT1200 Super Ténéré. MiX Telematics tracked the bike the whole way even as it was shipped across the Atlantic ocean in a packing crate!
After 20 years building a business, you might think about taking life a little bit easier. Unless your name happens to be Stuart Wring, that is…
Developing a transport operation from a single van to a prestigious 62-strong heavy commercial fleet takes some doing. For Stuart Wring, Managing Director of Avonmouth-based Wrings Transport Limited, the journey began long before he purchased the 3.5-tonne Iveco Daily with which he started up.
"I got my National Transport Operator's CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) on a Youth Training Scheme," he recalls. "I was 16 at the time. By 24 years of age I also had my International qualification, so then I was all set."
Like so many other successful entrepreneurs, Stuart Wring puts his achievements down to sheer hard work: "That and getting up early," he adds. "You have to do so much in the beginning – everything from selling and driving to hiring and firing. It's demanding, to say the least. Today, we are fortunate enough to have staff to manage the day-to-day matters, so I focus on sales and finance; those are now my principal activities."
Having a team behind him also enables Stuart to indulge in his passion; motorcycle touring. Outside his office, alongside an impressive array of commercial vehicles in their distinctive Wrings 'W' livery, stands the Yamaha XT1200 Super Ténéré upon which he has recently completed an outstanding five-and-a-half week long North American road trip.
The bike is covered in dirt, a trophy gained as a result of travelling from Miami to Alaska and back again. "I can't bring myself to wash it off," says Stuart in a display of unabashed sentimentality and pride. "The trip was organised by a guy called Nick Sanders; he's a kind of Bear Grylls on two wheels who puts together fantastic long-distance motorcycle expeditions.
"This was my second trip with Nick, the first being a journey from New York to San Francisco back in 2012. But at 14,076 miles, the Florida-Alaska-Florida journey was far longer. Twenty riders set off, but only ten of us made it all the way as the dirt track roads of Alaska – the same ones used by the Ice Road Truckers – were too daunting for some of the guys.
"It really was an incredible journey; we rode for eight hours a day, averaging 400 miles and seeing everything from the sandy beaches of Florida to wild bears roaming the tundra in Alaska. Along the way we passed through 19 US states, five Canadian ones and even made a one-day excursion into Mexico. The Alamo, Nashville, New Orleans, the Jack Daniels distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee and a host of other iconic locations all featured on the route. We even rode through an earthquake – without noticing it! And we met some amazing people, including a woman called Sandra Presley who swore she was related to The King!"
To keep family, friends and work colleagues aware of his whereabouts, Stuart turned to MiX Telematics. "Every one of our trucks is equipped with a MiX Telematics fleet management solution, so it made sense to fit one to the bike as well," says Stuart. "At work, we use the system to monitor fuel consumption, help with driver development and track our fleet, and it was the tracking element which appealed to me for the bike trip.
"In practice it worked unbelievably well. My location was reported with pinpoint accuracy at all times; everyone was able to track my every move. MiX Telematics were even able to follow the bike as it was shipped across the Atlantic in a packing crate! It was a real success which not only enabled everyone to share in my adventure, but also provided great peace of mind."