December 13th 2010

‘Snow joke’

Ok, it’s gone all cold again and for a large number of riders the bikes are off into hibernation for the winter months….especially with snow all around!

But many of you will be bracing yourselves for commuting through the colder months and enduring the elements.

Fair play to you as well!

As for me, well since my off last year I promised myself not to ride in the winter months again, aside from the pain of punctured lung, broken ribs and dislocated thumb the image of watching my pride and joy sliding off down the road in an impressive display of sparks will be an image I won’t forget.

I have an old run around Mondeo I call ‘Veronica’ which I would wheel out for snow as that was the only weather I couldn’t ride in…..however, when the temperature gauge reads ‘0’ or below ‘Veronica’ will now be getting another airing…

You could put it down to me getting old, but the fact is, I have a car on the driveway I would be a tad foolish to risk riding in weather that is inherently unpleasant to ride in and risky.

For a lot of you though having the option of a car simply isn’t there so preparing for a cold winters ride is the key…remember ‘Fail to prepare, prepare to fail’ to coin an old cliché…..but one that is true to its word.

I’ve had cause to stop a few bikers in the last few weeks and most for the same two reasons……..inappropriate riding for the conditions and inappropriate clothing.

Now the latter isn’t an offence obviously but the first one is, I watched with disappointment last weekend as I was joining the Windsor relief road a KTM being ridden ‘with enthusiasm’ by a gentleman oblivious to the 40MPH speed in place due to the road works…what was more worrying was he was filtering between the two lines of traffic and the rear tyre was struggling to grip….instead of easing off he decided to ‘nail’ it…which works well when you’re on a crosser across fields but on an A road it’s a recipe for a quick trip to hospital or worse.

I was coming out of Maidenhead this week on the A4 by Boulters lock and was following a Suzuki Bandit with a slightly nervous rider travelling at around 50MPH with both feet on the ground!!! Now I understand this tactic at slow speeds but at 50? I would imagine he goes through boots quite quickly!! Feet down at 50 is not going to keep a bike upright!

Try and keep yourselves warm out on the bikes, try to keep your ‘Core’ warmest as this will contribute to keeping your extremities such as toes and fingers warmer, a couple of the lads here are testing out some heated jackets and I look forward to the reviews soon to appear on the ‘Products’ page here on Safer Rider.

It was a wonderful sight at the Funeral of my good friend Martin White to see in excess of 350 bikers and Martin himself having that last ride on a bike….he would have loved this send off and I pass my sincere thanks to all of you who made the trek to say goodbye, it was a credit to you all.

I’ll sign off now but I wish you all a very Happy Christmas from all of us here at Safer Rider.

See you next year!