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Bitey things are niceless
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Way back in the day, a couple of young fellows used to hang out at the legendary Rock Store in the Malibu Mountains. They’d wait until a suitable victim rode out of the parking lot, then proceed to follow, and one would pass him. These young fellows would then keep a lively pace for a ways and as they entered, say, a second-gear turn, the leader would leave his breaking almost hopelessly late. The pigeon would belatedly realize he was coming in way too hot, invariably lock one or both wheels braking, and crash.
The victim had gotten SUCKED IN. It’s what happens when you allow yourself to leave your personal riding comfort zone, that envelope of speed and road conditions where you can cope with situations – turns, hazards, obstacles, and so on – based on your experience and skills. You can leave that zone willingly, on your own, by riding over your head. Or you can get yanked there by trying to keep up with unfamiliar riding partners, as in the case of our two unsavoury predators. Either way, the result is generally the same: a broken motorcycle, possibly accompanied by bandages and plastered limbs.
How do you keep from getting sucked in, then? It requires equal measures of discipline and the ability to be scrupulously honest with yourself. Discipline is merely a matter of riding your own pace, your own road, your own bike, or whatever you wish to call it. This simply means not letting anyone or anything else (including your own ego) determine how you ride. It’s all too easy to get caught up in the moment, either trying to keep up with another rider or trying to make time on your favourite backboard, until you’re picking decorate plants out of your visor. Public roads are no place to indulge the competitive instinct because nobody wins – not that you needed reminding, of course.
Being honest with yourself is simply admitting there are riders faster than you are. And you’d better believe some days even seven-time MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi himself has to own up to that fact.
So find your riding comfort zone and stay within it. Expand it when you’re ready by going to riding schools, track days, or safely practicing drills you’ve read about between the covers of [your favourite riding book]. And, for whatever reason, if you find yourself getting drawn outside the confines of that zone, return to it safe in the knowledge that the best, fastest racers in the world would do the same thing.
Because even they know crashing sucks.


**From the pages of the November 2006 issue of Motorcyclist, written by Charles Everitt**
 

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That's an excellent article, but can you really call someone a 'predator' when the person following takes their cues from the rider ahead, rather than the road, as they obviously should?
It's always unnerving having a rider with unknown skill/experience following you. Even when you set what you THINK is a nice, safe, super-slow pace, someone will find a way to put it in the ditch. They'll deny that they were trying to keep up, but how else does it happen?
So now, I refuse to lead. I ALWAYS follow. And if I see them start to get a little out of shape, trying too hard, running even a little wide, I'll start to fall back. Yeah, it means the pace isn't what I'd like personally, but ANYTHING beats going back and pulling another 30000 lb Thunderace out of a culvert.
 

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West Koots, I'm here....
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3,226 Posts
sucked in ?
unless your 12 that should be your last reason to blame for a crash
It shouldn't happen, but it does. A measure of testosterone, a dash of adrenaline, coupled with a dose of bravado is often the recipe for disaster. Too few people actually KNOW their limits riding, and hence are often beyond them without realizing it.

Thanks for posting this good read.
 
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It shouldn't happen, but it does. A measure of testosterone, a dash of adrenaline, coupled with a dose of bravado is often the recipe for disaster. Too few people actually KNOW their limits riding, and hence are often beyond them without realizing it.

Thanks for posting this good read.

agreed, but its the followers fault not the leader .No gun to heads ,no ropes attached ,my mom always asked "if jimmy jumped off the cliff would you follow him ? " you want to answer "sure if i had a parachute" or "depends how high" those responses dont go over to well tho.:rtfm

i understand the point ,but i dont see predators
 

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West Koots, I'm here....
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agreed, but its the followers fault not the leader .No gun to heads ,no ropes attached ,my mom always asked "if jimmy jumped off the cliff would you follow him ? " you want to answer "sure if i had a parachute" or "depends how high" those responses dont go over to well tho.:rtfm

i understand the point ,but i dont see predators
Good points. Perhaps the term predator is because of the perceived deliberate attempt (?) by some to lure another rider into a bad situation. I can't say though, because I don't know the author so therefore cannot ask the meaning of the term.

Unfortunately some riders do not have the discretion and maturity to not get caught up in the moment and end up in the bad situation.
 

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Bitey things are niceless
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think that if we put the article aside, and just hold on to the idea I think the author is trying to get at, there's a very valid point in those words. We hear it, and say it, time and time again. RIDE YOUR OWN RIDE!!! In the case of the story told here, it sounds to me like these guys are out to crash a lesser skilled rider through influence. In that way, I don't think predator is such a bad choice of words. None of us would ever do that. Intentionally. Just don't let it happen unintentionally.
 

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If your gonna ride wheel to wheel on the street (not a great idea)you had better be extra comfortable , when i ride hard and fast on the street i leave about 5-6 bike lengths distance unless passing, so i can make the adjustments i need to do and as the speed increases so does the distance. ,to do what I need to do .If you watch and follow taillights get ready for it , please take a course the net result sucks.getting stood up at 80 mph on a tightish road can ruin your day or more .
 

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ninja machinist
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I was leading a group up some twisties one time. We approach the tightest uphill hairpin and just as I'm about to drop in two dogs run out behind me. I manage to stay focused and ride out the turn. But the guy behind me was not so lucky. He bins it. The clear reason for this was he was following too closely to me. It's always a bad idea to follow closely when riding twisties. ALWAYS. Not only because there's the danger of hitting the guy in front when he goes down, but it's also the best way to ride your own ride. Especially if you're not as advanced as the guy in front.
 

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I know someone who likes to play the 55 mph game on the road up to Alice's. He does it on a race prepped VTR250, and the game is to hold the bike at a steady 55mph all the way up.

He is greatly amused by the number of people who somehow feel they have to keep up to a leetle bike like that, unfortunately most of the crashers don't know he has a collection of trophies on his wall from his racetrack days.
 

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100% Asshole
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I've "sucked " peeps in before last time was a buddies buddy we told him to ride his "own" bike don't try to keep up we'll pull over if we get too far ahead......so the last thing I see is buddy doing the chicken wing in my rearveiw and the next thing you know in the ditch with him. He was ok but bike totalled, then he says to us "wow should have taken your advice I went in over my head"...... moral to the story "ride at your own pace"
 

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Swivel on it
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My signature until a few hours ago used to be "Don't be afraid to slow down". Advice some people need to listen to ...
 

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Bitey things are niceless
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342 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I think we've all seen it, either leading a group and you suddenly realize you're riding an unusually lonely ride, or sweeping and noticed that guy running corners wide and then shooting up on the straights to catch the leader. It happens, don't let it happen to you. Talk to your group, let them know you'll wait. When I sweep (as I normally do) I never push anyone, in fact, I usually drop off the back of the group and ride with the slower rider. Slowing down sure beats pushing another bike out of the ditch.
 

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It would be easy to cause someone to crash if you had a predatory mindset. Just get someone following you at safe pace and once you know that they are taking their braking and cornering cues from you lead them into a turn way deeper and faster than you have been. If they are not at your level of riding there is a good chance for some carnage. It sounds like that is what these guys were doing in that article.
 

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Fastronaut
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It would be easy to cause someone to crash if you had a predatory mindset. Just get someone following you at safe pace and once you know that they are taking their braking and cornering cues from you lead them into a turn way deeper and faster than you have been. If they are not at your level of riding there is a good chance for some carnage. It sounds like that is what these guys were doing in that article.
And then the following rider's bike skipped across the pavement like a crazy collie and knocked the lead rider's bike out from underneath him.
 
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