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Update as of 2045 on Monday 23rd March.
Following on from the Prime Minister’s announcement on the national news. I now have to update the guidance for training.
No unnecessary travel is to take place. We cannot claim advanced motorcycle training is an essential requirement. Therefore, if you haven’t done so already, please cancel any training arrangements you have made.
Keep you and your families safe.
Kind regards Stan
Well done Dave. Clearly dressing for the weather helped.
Always very pleasing to see Gold standards being achieved.
Hi Si, I am up for a ride out. I can do anytime except for Boxing day – Rellies visit.
Works for me – he computer numptey!
The training ride will be 3 sections each about 1:00 to 1:30 hrs in duration of about 30 miles each – total 90ish mile.
This may not seem very much but it will still be challenging – Observation, Anticipation and Planning will be fully tested as we negotiate past all the Fixed Moving and Environmental hazards.
The route is Costa Coffee M5 J27 down the B3181 to Exeter then A379 Dawlish to Teignmouth where we will have a food and comfort stop at the Railway Station cafe.
2nd leg will take us along A381 & A382 to Bovey Tracey and to Moretonhampstead where we turn onto the B3212 to Ide where we will bunch up and ride the short distance to Bridge Motorcycles, Alphington Road Marsh Barton for another snack and drink.
3rd leg will be up the A377 to Crediton where we turn onto the A3072 (aka The Toboggan Run) to Bickleigh & Tiverton where again we will form up and ride line of sight down the A361 Dual Carriageway back to our start point at Cost Coffee.
It is the bank holiday weekend and all the pubs will be rammed with tourists so that is why we will only do snack stops – saying that the Bread Pudding at Teignmouth Railway Station will keep anyone going for several days!
I have booked the weather to be warm and sunny – so take plenty of water to drink. Umbrellas not required!
Excellent result Martin.
Ha, that’s why I couldn’t see the pages on the website.
Anyway, following self destruct it also has self build.
I’d like to add to Dave Slocombe’s post by saying do not worry about either getting lost on your own ride out, or losing some of your riders – we have all doe it at some point. Leading does take additional thinking power and preparation, but is extremely satisfying when you pull it off. Sweeping has its own challenges as you are constantly looking behind to see what impact you are causing. Again, a well prepared plan works wonders.
View from the back,
As ride sweeper it was great to see some really good riding through ever increasingly narrow roads, my satnav just said “driving on road”!
We were all able to put into practice riding past horses from ahead and from astern or should that be abum? Either way the info gleaned from our Saturday Surgery was put into effective practice.
Ride Leader and Sweeper training has been posted so we look forward to seeing as many volunteers as possible.
A big thank you to all who attended the Saturday Surgery at Bridge Motorcycles yesterday. Caroline was able to give a very interesting horse riders experience of how to pass them when out on the road:
1. A horse and rider will normally hear you first so will be aware that a motorised bike or car is approaching and both will look back (blind spot check) to identify where you are. If need be the rider will position the horse so it can see you in the very narrow area that is the horse’s blind spot – as this is the area where a predator would attack from.
2. As soon as the bike rider sees the horse and rider they should slow down and select the appropriate gear – be aware of your bike and the likelihood of it “popping on overrun”.
3. The rider will sometimes signal for you to pass (similar to how we do) by sweeping their right arm in an underarm arc – however make your own decision to pass.
4. Pass the horse and rider “Slow and Wide” at about 15mph is the right speed and try and give about 2m if possible.
5. Continue on until you can see the horse and rider in your mirrors – this gives sufficient space for you to commence re-accelerating. However open the throttle slowly to increase speed – don’t rip it open and wheelie down the road. Landing on your back then have the horse walk past you and deposit a large dollop of grass will only add insult to injury.
A great discussion followed by a short ride finished off a great day. Looking forward to seeing you all at the End-of-Month ride.
March End-of-Month Ride
As with all DSAR Training rides there is usually a theme, this one being a slight exception as there were 2 themes!
Andy Phillips led the first part this being “Brake / Gear overlap”, riders really drilled down into the system ensuring the appropriate speed was reached before the next gear was selected. How often do we sometimes allow ourselves to use a gear selection (and engine braking) to aid slowing down? I know I am guilty of this!
The 2nd part was about slow speed control around a course designed to be challenging. Split into 2 parts, a slalom course and a series of linked left hand and right hand turns varying between 90º and 450º.
Why does this add any training value?
Slow riding is a skill we do not practice often enough but essential when we want to filter between slow moving and stationary traffic to continue to make progress, or the other choice to sit and wait in the traffic. The risk of dropping our prized bike and or potentially impacting other vehicles is high so clearly this is a significant factor in our decision making. So having an opportunity to practice becoming more skilled in this evolution is a good thing?
There is a skill in balancing throttle, clutch and rear brake to give sufficient bike control and stability at slow speed negotiating around mini-roundabouts, doing U turns where adverse camber could also be a factor. Being able to do this on a car park means we can remove some of the other hazards we have out on the road.
Why make it so challenging?
The standard DVSA test includes a 7m diameter U turn which must be conducted without putting your feet down or over-running the space allowed. As Advanced Riders we should all be easily capable of that on our own machines. The distances I set up were 5.7m and 6m diameters as I wanted the course to be challenging. The caveat being at any time a rider could simply ride out of the course or ride over as many cones as need be. We don’t know what are capabilities are until we reach that limit. As with all skills we learn there are times when we think “I can’t do this!” until we have a go and find out with a little practice we can do this. There is a bigger hurdle when we say “I won’t do this!”
It was good to see many of the riders have a go either attempting all of it or just part of it. By having a go they were able to push their own skill boundary just a little further. Clearly the style of bike has an impact on how easy or not this can be achieved. Steve Barley had a go on probably the most challenging bike – a Hyabusa! With a steering lock of about 12º lock-to-lock and a throttle like a hair trigger it was always going to be difficult; however there was only one part he couldn’t do! Then he challenged me to ride the course on his bike, my turn to be well outside of my comfort zone!
The Determination Prize (if we had one) would have gone to Sandy on her little GS, not only did she “borrow” a couple of spare cones to practice off course but having dropped her bike immediately got back in the saddle to ride it again – fantastic effort and well done!
The tricks to slow speed manoeuvring are:
1. Keep your throttle about 500-1000 rpm above idle speed and grip the bar end weight with the little finger of your right hand so you maintain constant throttle all the way round (one less thing to think about).
2. Use two fingers on the clutch (the only time I approve of this) and the others on the left grip – this allows you to maintain near constant clutch slip just enough to maintain drive.
3. Use plenty of rear brake only to scrub off speed – do not use front brake as your tendency to snatch if you think the bike is going to fall will be magnified and the front will dip and you will drop the bike.
4. Look where you want to go – not at the obstacle!
5. Practice, practice, practice!
See you all at the next slow riding event.
Mandatory speed limiters – HGV’s have them fitted and have done so for the last 20 years but still they are involved with fatal road collisions. Note how long it takes one HGV to overtake another on the dual carriageway or motorway! A speed differential of 1mph means the distance required will be about 3/4 of a mile or about 50 seconds.
If all vehicles are limited could a driver then claim:
1. They were doing the “limited” speed limit when a temporary speed reduction was in force because the satnav hadn’t been updated or
2. The conditions dictate a much lower speed limit (fog etc) yet the original posted speed limit allowed a suicidal speed. It is the driver not the vehicle that should be in control.
3. Just with key-less ignition, I’m sure some skallywag with a laptop will be able to get round that little hurdle!
Hi David, Being a 20th century neanderthal (still using pen and paper for most tasks) I like the new layout – easy to navigate around. Not sure on the pale green lettering on a white background though especially as my screen faces the window – yes I know I’ve done my DSE Risk Assessment!
Being smooth on the bike
By Stan Hathaway
A post to “Care on the Road”
RoSPA Advanced Drivers and Riders Devon and Somerset Riders held their first official training ride of the year in the very unseasonal February blue sky and 15ºC with the theme “Being smooth on the bike”, polishing off any rusty skills due to the Christmas period.
Using a Root Cause Analysis method known as the “Fishbone” or Ishikawa process using the headings: Man – Machine – Method – Material – Measurement – Environment
I challenged the riders to “List all things which will impact Smooth Riding!” Some could easily be listed under several headings at the same time – All have an Effect!
Man (or woman)
• Psychological distractions
o Emotional state / Argument with partner / Stress
o Hungry / Thirsty / Need the loo / Cold / Hot / Tired
• I AM SAFE
• Lack of preparation
o Late for… / Bike needs fuel / skipped pre-ride checks
• Skill Levels
o Follow the leader – not ride your own ride / peer pressure
• Rider and Pillion
o Back in the Saddle / Ride fit (muscle memory)
o Worn / wrong pressure
• Maintenance & reliability
o Brakes and clutch sticking after period of inactivity / Electrical gremlins
o Poorly balanced / not secured
• Stale fuel or incorrect grade
• Bike set-up
o Pillion / luggage (suspension & tyres) / seat height
• Poor use of controls
o Brakes / Clutch / Throttle balance
• Poor observation
o Scanning / blind spot checks / shoulder checks
o Reaction not anticipation
• Disruption to pre-ride routines
o Bike checks – POWDDERSS
o Wallet / Phone fully charged / ear-plugs fitted
• Wrong kit for the weather forecast
o Too hot / Too cold / water leaking in / draughts getting in / too tight post Christmas
• Helmet & visor
o Not comfortable / not clean / Pinlock not sealing
• Poor use of “The System” (IPSGA)
• Poor anticipation of stopping distances
• Poor judgement of speed for the conditions
• Changes in weather
o Micro-climates / low sun
• Road conditions
o Mud / gravel / damp or wet patches / field run-off / pot holes
• Cold soaked manhole covers
• Animals – Dead or alive
• Other road users
o Traffic / cyclists / horse riders
• Over confidence due to local knowledge
Clearly the list goes on, but the thought process had been kicked into gear!
The pre-ride brief on the route, weather conditions, drop-off system, line-of-sight and stopping points completed the mix of Tutors, Pass holders and Associates were challenged to be self critical of their own riding and all given an opportunity to critique the rider in front. Being the ride leader at the front meant I had 6 “examiners” behind me – ensuring my ride had to be the best it could be!
Post ride de-brief identified how the prior preparation prevents a poor performance and all riders found it rewarding and challenging process of anticipation, execution and evaluation.
Well done for everyone who attended the End-of-Month ride. And a big thank you to David for stepping in to lead and Andy for sweeping.
Engine bars did their work but now need “adjustment” to straighten, boot managed to protect the rest of the bike. Good job for decent boots otherwise it’ll be a lot worse. Thank you to the NHS at RD&E for the x-rays proving nothing broken.
Ride safe and don’t allow your kit to shrink though not being used over the festive period. Have a good one. Stan