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First bike, first ride (call me crazy)

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by DaRock, Jul 4, 2009.

  1. I picked up my first ever motorcycle today, a '08 Suzuki GS500F with 6k km on the clock. After organising the buy last weekend a friend offered to come with me today and ride it back from Peter Stevens in Geelong (to Deer Park in Melb.). Long story short, I spent all week humming and harring about riding it back myself, then I got sick on Thursday (flu like with fever, etc. :( ), and pretty much decided it would be a bad idea.

    After waking up this morning and feeling quiet a bit better, I decided to take some Sudafed (non-drowsy) to stop leaky-wind-nose and suit up in my gear "just in case" I changed my mind. My friend quiet helpfully said that if I decided to ride he would be happy to drive my car behind me to give me a bit of breathing room, and then if I wasn't happy we could just pull over and swap. So I decided to ride it out and see how I went.

    Surprisingly I wasn't really nervous and found myself relaxed and comfortable on the bike. I made a few newbie mistakes that I know I have to work out, like forgetting to cancel indicators once or twice, or not being in the right gear for turns, etc., but I noted my errors and didn't allow them to unnerve me. I lost my friend at a set of lights for a while, but I didn't let it worry me too much and after some time on the freeway he caught back up. The trip was mostly straight and easy on the freeway, and I stuck to the left lane mostly. Passing a couple of cars doing 80km in a 100km zone was a little tense for the first time, but not so tense as sitting in the right wheel track of the left lane with cars next to me zipping by 20km+ faster on the freeway. The worst bit on the freeway was some gusty winds at times that pushed me about a fraction or caught me square on at times. I just reminded myself to stay relaxed and comfortable and the bike wasn't too hard to manage.

    After the freeway I took a bit of a backway home through an industrial area. A few roundabouts and intersections later I was on Station Road, which isn't King St., but isn't a quiet road either. Then some quiet back streets and home.

    What surprised me most was that I found myself looking ahead and anticipating the traffic alot. Had a couple of clowns cut into my lane (though not right on top of me), I buffered away from a few trucks passing me, and I found myself already throttling back from one or two traffic hazzards before any of the cars even started braking etc. I've done a couple of quality advanced driving courses in the past and have been driving for more than 15 years but I didn't really realise until today that I already do a little bit of the pre-emptive roadcraft stuff. I've still got a hell of a lot to learn about roadcraft on a bike though.

    I DEFINITLY would NOT recommend this kind of first ride to anyone else, even with a friend as backup like I had, mainly because logically thinking about it I'm not sure it was the best of ideas. Having said that, I didn't feel threatened at all on the trip, and it was an awesome feeling pulling into the driveway on my new bike with a 70km first ride under my belt.

    Can't wait to get back on the bike as soon as I can find time.

    Anyways, thanks for reading if you got this far. I didn't expect it to be this long, but I really felt like sharing the ride :)

  2. why crazy?? best way to start, get out there and have a go, htfu, i reckon if u start off riding as a pussy, youll be scared all your life, my 2 cents worth, so good to see you have some gonads
  3. The first ride on my old GS500 was from inner Sydney back to my home in Newcastle. Was pretty intense! But loved the new found manouverability (sp?).

    I agree with goz, you gotta learn somehow. Of course if you are a complete numpty then perhaps you should start in a parking lot or something but most should be fine (if they have had previous road experience)
  4. Nice work.

    I was more cautious to begin with - had the bike delivered at home and rode around my quiet local streets to start off with for the first few days. I kind of felt it was better to be in familiar surroundings if I made any silly mistakes.

    But, when did I get out on to the freeway, amongst real traffic for the first time... I felt pretty much the same as you did - comfortable on the bike and not nervous.

    Once again, awesome work :)
  5. Nice one! Memories flooding back...

    I got my Ls Wednesday, rode from Sydney to Canberra Friday morning, went for a blat with my dad through the hills, then rode back to Sydney that night. Wind on the tablelands was pretty intense.

    Got my first big bike after a 6 month layoff in Geelong and rode back to Melbourne. Best way to get comfortable quickly!

    Well done, and welcome to the world of riding!
  6. good work mate...very impressed...not sure i have the confidence to do that straight away!!!
  7. Well done, reminds me of my first ride only a few months back.
    Bought the bike privately in Melton South and rode it back to Blackburn North, roughly a 75km ride.
    Had some highways, wind and traffic to content with but felt comfortable on the bike around traffic.
    Nice choice of bike, the GS500 gets a huge rap from riders as a great learner bike with grunt and nice looks.
  8. Well done indeed!!! Obviously your long driving experience helps with the road-craft, but your just reminded myself to stay relaxed and comfortable is a big plus.

    Beware the demon of over-confidence, (but you already know that, anyway :LOL:).
  9. Nothing crazy about it...you did what you're supposed to do...glad you had the gusto to get out there...just don't get over-confident, ride smart, and you'll be fine.
  10. Same name, both had the same bike, bought from the same area and ridden back to the same area haha.
  11. It's a conspiracy against GS500's! :shock: i think i've confused myself and possibly a few others... lol
  12. That's so cool .... Fantastic effort :)

    I was way too nervous to even contemplate riding my bike for ages ..

    now I ride whenever I can :grin:

    Expect to see you out and about on our Saturday ride this week !!
  13. And here I was thinking of how many people had done that, let alone people with the same name! :p
  14. Solid Effort dude, if you go out of your way to avoid situations, you won't feel comfortable confronting them them when they do occur. The attitude you have means your a willing to have a crack in situations instead of flipping out and avoiding them, mean while being acutely aware that there is lots to learn,and not being over confident.

    My first ride, as soon as I go my L's was up Jamberoo mountain road to Robbo pie shop, then down Macquarie Pass in the pissing down rain lol.

    Nothing better then trial by fire and coming out the other side!
  15. Thanks for all the encouragement everyone. Can't wait to catch up with a few of you on rides soon.
  16. Fantastic effort! Well done, hats off to you. Couldn't have done that myself. I live in Deer Park too, Station Rd can be very busy, let alone riding a freeway first time out.

    If ya see a cager nodding to u around our area that just might be me :LOL:
  17. very good effort. don't be afraid to get out on a variety of roads to practice on the windier days and down the track in the rain too. It will put you in a good place for when you inevitably get caught and have no choice but to keep riding.
  18. Wow nice effort. I would never of done that so props to you man lol. I still gotta experience the wind pushing me around bit :(
  19. Applause on putting the flu and nerves aside and making the trip!

    I did something not that similar when I got my first bike all those years ago by riding from Ray Quincy's on Elizabeth St home to Broadmeadows with the L plate flapping in the wind. My mates thought I was mad lol. As for Station St/Kings Rd, well yeah, they suck. I've flashed down them on a fully loaded postie bike with the only advantage for me being the gawdy fluro and that was enough - really have to wonder how some people get a drivers licence.
  20. Nice one. Good on you for getting out there and good thinking to have someone come with you in case you needed.

    What happens now though is when you start looking to upgrade you'll be drawn to bikes in other states just to enjoy the ride home. :LOL:

    PS Great choice of bike too.