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Riding skills: Top three learner rider complaints

Rupert Paul, 11 July 2011 15:45

It’s tempting to go for the cheapest bike training course you can find. Here are three reasons why that might not be a good idea. 1. The bikes Training school bikes have a hard life. But they should still be reliable, of good quality, and come with a reasonable spares backup in the event of a drop. Many riders who’ve ...

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rating is 3.5

Riding skills: Why your brain makes you ride like you do

Rupert Paul, 24 June 2011 15:41

I'm writing this on a beautiful English summer's day. The birds are twittering, the sun is hot, and for the past couple of hours I've been listening bike after bike burble up the street before hitting the edge of town and howling into the open countryside beyond. I've been welding up a trailer, but the urge to drop everything and ...

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rating is 4

Riding skills: How hard can I brake?(And what stops me braking harder?)

Rupert Paul, 14 June 2011 10:59

Trying to answer this question on a real road, with a real bike, is bloody good fun. It’s also something almost anyone can get good at with enough practice – and it’s not quite as lethally dangerous as it sounds. More of which later. So how hard, then? Roughly speaking, a good rider on a good bike on a dry ...

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rating is 4.5

10 cunning ways to stay alive

Rupert Paul, 29 July 2009 09:50

1. Suspect-looking car driver waiting to pull out from side road: move rapidly from the kerb to the centreline, or vice versa. The sideways movement helps get you noticed 2. You go where you look. So in a panic situation, look for the way out, not at the obstacle 3. Psychological research has shown that group riding automatically increases your ...

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rating is 3.5

How to cover long distances on a sportsbike

Rupert Paul, 17 July 2009 16:06

Any idiot can do 600 miles a day on a sportsbike. But only smart riders can hold a civilised conversation afterwards, or stand up without assistance.  ZX-10s, 1098 Ducatis, R1s and the rest are famously uncomfortable on motorways. Here’s your one-hour guide to making them twice as nice.  1. Lower the footrestsIf your bike has adjustable footrests, use them. This ...

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rating is 4.5

Learn to brake really hard

Rupert Paul, 16 July 2009 10:00

Roughly speaking, a good rider on a good bike on a dry road can get from 100mph down to 40mph in three seconds, using maybe 85 metres of road. And no matter how rubbish you may think you are now, you CAN learn to get that good. Success takes a while Apart from factory customs, which have the wrong weight distribution ...

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rating is 4.5

Riding tips: How to be safer and faster on country roads

Rupert Paul, 11 June 2009 15:05

Jon Taylor has been a racer (he’s a former double Bemsee club champion), bike cop and long-time Nürburgring instructor. He’s now part of Rapid Training and one of the most senior IAM examiners in the UK. I can personally vouch that he is a superb rider, and an ideal man to ask about how to ride on country roads. “I ...

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