By Guy Howard-Willis
A journey of lessons which paved the way to a true innovation: the world’s first hydrofoil bike.
“Do you want to reach the end of your life only to be left wondering, would my dream, my idea have worked?”
This question sparked a profound inner fire that set in motion the extraordinary journey of my dream – the dream of cycling on water.
Few understand your dream as you do. When someone asked, ‘With 8 billion people on our planet, wouldn’t someone have already cycled on water if it were possible?’ I pondered. Maybe it was impossible, but I had to find out. And so, my six-year journey began.
In the quiet city of Hamilton, New Zealand, my friend Roland and I embarked on a journey of prototypes, testing the limits, and learning countless lessons. My life became consumed by ideas, thoughts, and research, but my dream was taking shape, and excitement surged. Before long, I had a team of ten remarkable individuals by my side, all dedicated to accelerating our progress. The pinnacle of our excitement came when we clinched a gold design award. However, as we neared production, tragedy struck – a devastating fire consumed our entire workshop. We faced adversity head-on, rose from the ashes, and began anew.
In 2020, the Manta5 XE-1 bike was launched. Little did I know that a global pandemic would halt the world, yet we managed to sell 800 bikes and gained worldwide recognition through viral videos. Our second edition, the Manta5 SL3, is a masterpiece with an auto-start sequence and an exhilarating ride duration. Launching it this year amidst global economic uncertainty was challenging.
The journey of Manta5 hydrofoil bikes has been a thrilling one, showcasing the power of innovative thinking, unwavering persistence, and unbreakable mental resilience. It was made possible not just by our local supporters but also by you, my global followers.