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Group riding do's and don'ts

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by Tiga, May 23, 2005.

  1. After being on a few netrider rides I've picked up some of the do's of group riding

    e.g. 1) on a highway ride in the opposite wheel track to the bike in front 2) if you lose riders at lights slow down so they can catch up 3) when turning the front rider should pick a gap big enough for everyone (if possible).

    I've also been told that if the group needs to change lanes (lets say to the right) but there is a car that will end up in the middle of the pack, then the bike that ends up immediately in front of that car should slow so that everyone behind (still in the left lane) can go by and then move into the right lane, thus putting the car behind the group which is now in the right lane.

    So what are some of the other do's of group riding? and what are the don'ts?

    BTW - sorry if this has already been discussed, I did a search but couldn't find anything relevant.
  2. My only suggestion would be to talk through the ride before heading off. Arrange some hand signals, neeting points, emergency contacts, stuff like that. Sound simple I know, but on the few group rides I've been on, a little more organising before heading off would've made the rides alot smoother for everyone...
  3. Yeah, don't be put off by the OTT nature of the article.
    It's aimed more at organised rides, but has all the info you should need if you read through it.
  4. What is a 'mojo'?
  5. Thanks folks........
  6. thanks for the link boz.... Just wondering on this point though:

    Does that apply in Australia, or is it written for the US?
  7. Kundalini.
  8. Don't pass people in your lane in the twisties, even if you're on a short straight - overtake as you would a car. The rider might be about to adjust his position in the lane for the upcoming corner - don't assume they're going to stay in the same spot.

    NEVER pass another rider while cornering. Just don't.

    If you find that you've got another rider behind you can obviously be a bit quicker through the corners than you are, veer to the left of your lane, slow down a bit, and wave them through. If they don't pass then either (a) there's no enough space to do it safely or (b) they're using you as a pace-setter - they could go faster, but they don't want to.

    I've been in both situations before - I've been behind a guy thinking "come on, let me through" and I've purposely stuck behind somebody because I didn't know the corners and having somebody in front of me prevented me from taking them too quickly.

    If you're part of a group ride on a multi-lane highway, stick in the same lane as the leader so that cars and other vehicles don't get stuck behind the group. One ride that comes to mind is Nodz' learner friendly ride - we were doing 80/90 on a 100kph highway and a couple of riders were in the right lane, blocking traffic behind us.

    If somebody indicates with their foot or their hand to the road below, it usually means that there's a hazard up ahead which you may not be able to spot. Likewise, if you see some dirt, gravel, or oil on the road, stick your hand out palm down pointing towards the direction of the hazard. If you can't use your hand, use your foot.
  9. Would like his hand back
  10. You are reading my mind. :)
  11. I think it needs to be referenced to an earlier section regarding the formation of the group (lead rider is on the right, etc), but groups rarely (if ever) stay in strict formation. I tend to let the first bike to arrive, leave first (first in, first out).
  12. (1) riding in the opposite wheel track (sometimes called 'staggered formation' does give you a better view of the road surface, but you really shouldn't be riding so close to the bike in front that it makes a difference.

    2 , 3 and that rather odd suggestion about changing lanes....

    These seem to be consistent with an over emphasis on the need for the group to stay together. If all the group know where the next stop is, and (for larger groups) appropriate corner marking systems are in place, you shouldn't worry about keeping together.

    I have seen a lot of close calls caused by this idea that "the group" must stay together.

    My pet peeves:
    When the first rider in a group overtakes a car, and all the riders following feel it necessary to follow, despite the car/truck/bus now approaching rapidly from the other direction.

    When the lead rider overtakes, then slows (presumably to keep the group together) so that following riders squeeze in behind, forcing the overtaken car/truck/bus to have to slow down.

    When a group is split a set of lights, so the lead bunch stop usually in the gravel at the side of the road, then take off as the following bikes (and the rest of the traffic) approach, causing the other waiting bikes to lurch into an accelerating traffic flow.

    If you ride sensibly, and the group is briefed, then it shouldn't be necessary to stop and wait for those who catch a red light.

    If ever I am on a ride with you, and you deliberately try to slow a car in the right lane so that I can go by on the left. Don't expect me to be there at the next stop. I'd rather ride alone than share the road with someone who has a suicidal fixation on group togetherness.
  13. I thought they were sweets.
  14. Australia

    you compact the group at lights..so the cages drivers don't get annoyed
    and the guy on the RIGHT takes off first when the lights change


  15. Easy there moike - one of my reasons for asking about the do's and don't of group is that I've been concerned about some of the things I've seen on group rides, including tailgating.

    On Nodz' ride I started out in the middle the pack as we went along the highway. I left what I felt was the appropriate distance to the next bike (the same as I leave for a car). By the time we got to the end of the highway stretch I'd been passed about 5 bikes. Obviously what I thought was a safe distance was a big gap to other bikes. At lunch I made the comment that if there had been an obstruction to lets say half the lane it could have caused a problem. The riders I discussed this with were of the view that so long as you can stop by the time you get to the next rider who is in your wheel track then you are fine. I don't particularly agree with this but that's just my opinion and I'd like to hear other peoples views on this.

    And as for (3) that's what I've been told - I'm not saying it's a good idea

    Hence my query on do's and don'ts

    BTW - I see where you are coming from with your pet peeves, although I haven't experienced most of them
  16. I passed so I could get my breath again..... :D
    Sorry I just had too say that about the smok'in Aprillia...and I luv ya bike.

    And this is the place to ask as many questions as like....thats what the forum is for....

    Catch up soon.....
  17. Tailgating is easily fixed. When you get to the next stop, you find the person who was tailgating you, you punch them in the head and kick their bike over. Problem fixed. Same applies to anyone who passes on the left, except in that case you kick them also.
  18. Hey there ApriliaGirl......Congrats on asking this question, I daren’t ask the same although I often wonder….. one thing I know though…..I thought riding – like driving – has the same 2-seconds rule…….leave a 2 second gap from the vehicle in front…..I use this rule of thumb often, it applies whatever speed you are travelling.

    As oppose to popular beliefs that newbies don’t use their mirror, I use my mirrors often, if I find a rider/driver behind closer than the 2 seconds gap, I get really anxious, I ride badly……I do admire an obviously experienced tail-end charlie who gives me 2 seconds or more space, esp around twisties.

    Yeah, group dynamics are interesting, every individual that make up the group plays a part. I can’t think of a solution that fits all.

    heheheh…yeah, on a bike, we not only no verbal communication, also no facial/body cues….

    Here is my signal (blink blink on the high beam) signify:
    • I’m cold
      I need a 5 min break
      I need a toilet break
      I’m running out of petrol
      My helmet is not looped properly
      I’m getting hypothermia now, if we don’t stop soon…blink blink blink beeeep….:p :p

    BTW, G and Scumbag, can guys think serious for more than 5min? :p
  19. The 5 minutes are over now. :p