July 2011

“Side stand down and put it in gear, trust me”

Well, well, well to coin a Jeremy Kyle phrase…it’s Royal Ascot week!

Highlight of many a TVP biker as it’s a huge event on the calender and very trying to get the one way system up and running and keep the high street flowing, as well as ensuring the safe passage of Royalty to and from this prestigeous event.

It was a huge turnout this year with over 350 coach parties on ‘Ladies day’ alone which is where I had to pass on years of Ladies day experience to Steptoe when we were spotted by a group of ladies on a hen day.

“Side stand down and stick it in gear steppers”

“Why’s that Del?”

“Just trust me”

With that the entourage of ladies came over and having consumed maybe one Babysham too many blurted out the infamous “Can I have a picture by your bike!” of course we oblige but they ALWAYS try and SIT on the bikes. This always involves trying to get one leg over the bike with no chance of clearing the Copper on it and the fuel tank so it usually involves a heavy kick to the tank which puts the bike over on it’s side with us still on it!

Having done this the bike stayed fast as it was in gear (engine off of course) and the weight of the bike picked up by the stand. Steptoes colour returned to his face and after the ladies had left he simply said “see what you mean”

This was a reflection of Ascot as a whole – social, fun and enjoyed by thousands with little problems other than a few drink related incidents (see the official TVP website for a full report on this years events)

Biggest problem for us is implementing the one way system that surrounds Ascot during peak morning and afternoon times, the high street comes to a halt as well and you would be surprised to know that only two bike Sergeants and four bike PC’s managed the LOT.

Police cars don’t feature and it was a success this year albeit we still get the odd driver that cannot understand why they can’t access a closed road. A prime example of this was the last Saturday whereby we had roughly 65,000+ pedestrians/race-goers returning to the Railway Station and as a result it became so congested we took the decision to close Station Hill (the road that leads to the Station) for about 15mins just to clear the backlog of footwalkers.

So there I stood at the roundabout with my bike physically across the station hill and me stood there directing drivers down the high street…

Driver: “I need to go down there”

Del: “It’s closed sir for about 15 mins”

Driver: “but I need to go down there”

Del: “It’s physically impossible to get through and it’s closed”

Driver: “but I’m picking someone up so can you let me through”

Del: “no, sorry”

Driver: “Outrageous”

Del: “Come back in 10 mins and it should be back to normal”

Driver: “I’ll come back when i’m good and ready thank you!”

Can’t win them all I suppose!

Overall the racegoers were fantastic and a credit to the races as a whole, the local residents , as always, understanding and tolerant of the delays and the TVP bikers were still drying out thier leathers a week later!

Had cause to attend a few bike related RTC’s in the last week whereby all a little too quick for the conditions around -just remember that we are ALL very fragile and always expect the unexpected.

I wish a speedy recovery to the BMW RT rider I dealt with last week in Cookham and to the young lad on the scooter from Cippenham. Get well soon!

Finally,

DON’T overtake within the ‘zig-zags’ on a pedestrian crossing, it will get you at least three points on your licence and a fine of £60, and if there are roadworks in the centre surrounded by cones don’t kick them aside so you can squeeze down the inside in order to get the overtake accomplished! 

Yes, it happened today…

Keep it safe you lot!

Del

derek.ingram@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk

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