The most unreliable part of your motorbike is you.
Teach me to ride FAST!
If I had a pound for every time I have heard this, I would be living it up in the Bahamas, sipping cocktails and enjoying the attention of all the pretty girls at the poolside. (I will take a moment with that thought … and wake up now)
The problem we face today is patience. NO one wants to wait or better still, no one wants to practice. Once I even heard “I watch MotoGP and it all looks easy”.
You have to realise the Motorcycle industry is all set up to sell sexy powerful machines that give the impression they are manageable or even easy to ride. (ultimately that’s where the bulk of the buyers are)
To a degree they are right. A motorcycle will only do what you tell it to do and with today’s aids at our fingertips such as traction control and ABS to name but a few, motorcycling has never looked as safe as it does today.
So why hasn’t the accident rate amongst motorcyclist dramatically fallen to reflect all these leaps in technology?
The answer is, HUMAN BEHAVIOUR. It’s what I call the X factor. The unknown factor that all the safety gadgets in the world will never ultimately fix.
The motorcycling industry in it’s never-ending quest to increase sales tends to update newer, more powerful models every year. Whilst we the riders tend to not update our riding skills in equal measure. It sorts of leaves us at a disadvantage.
It’s just when you think you’ve got it all under control when something happens, a millisecond to much throttle, a millisecond of a distraction, etc… and you get spat of your beloved for no apparent reason.
The first thing you do is blame everything around you. From the tarmac, the tyres, the jacket, the gloves, the weather or the old chestnut “the car driver”. (don’t get me wrong these situations can be all to blame but it seems we are all blaming the same things. The one thing we don’t hear enough is, I was to blame. I mean, why blame me, surely someone else is to blame. The reality is more than likely whether we like to admit it or not, we actually might be to blame.
I remember once riding home thinking wow, today was the day every idiot with a licence decided to come out and drive. Felt like I was riding with a target on my helmet. Then the realisation of, well it can’t be the world around me, so I am only left with one alternative. It’s me, I am the problem. My riding was too aggressive and I was not giving anyone around me a chance in hell of avoiding my path. Most bikers will at some point come across a big pride swallowing moment. It’s just part of the biker journey. As someone once told me, “there are no true accidents”, everything has a consequence, reaction and outcome.
So the lesson here is, take the time to skill check your current riding ability. Realise that your bike and even your tyres are way more capable than you think and that the most unreliable factor on your bike is you. So, instead of buying that MotoGP ticket, or even worse those ASV levers, (cause they won’t make you brake faster) why don’t you swallow some of that pride and just check that your riding skills are up to date. I did and I am grateful for it.
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