The 2017 riding season is here, there will be a lot of runs and events as always. You will inevitably find yourself riding with people who you don’t know, that also means you don’t know there skill level or if they have even been on a run before, so it would be wise to take a few precautions. Personally, I'm not a big fan of group riding, but there are times that make riding in groups and attending a run necessary and even rewarding.

Here are some things you should know that will help keep you safe.

Have a full tank before arriving at the departure point, tell the leader if you have any special concerns or if you plan to leave the group before the end destination, also tell the person(s) riding in front and behind you so they don't think you are having a mechanical problem. Take clear eye protection if the ride will extend into the evening. Watch for hand signals like “slow down” or “single file” and pass them back.

RIDING STAGGERED, It is best to ride in a stagger formation for safety reasons. The minimum recommended spacing to the bike directly in front of you should not be less than two seconds, the bike in the lane to your left or right should not be less than two seconds ahead of you. You will find that two seconds is a long distance when riding at highway speeds. That is it's a long distance when everything is going well. When things go wrong; however, two seconds distance is gone in the time it takes to figure out that there is a problem.

KNOW WHO YOUR RIDING NEXT TO AND BE A SMART RIDER, A smart rider is the combination of many things: Humble, consistent, reliable. Even though each person’s definition is probably different, we all know what being a smart rider is. 

If you’ve decided to follow some of my suggestions by surrounding yourself with smart riders, and ensure that everyone rides at their own pace, you’ve eliminated a great deal of the obstacles of having a safe ride.  I have been out there for a long time and I know in a group ride, there are really only two options: Lead or Follow. It sounds simple, I know, but don’t think its execution is easy, especially when you have a mixed crowd. Groups get completely FUBAR’d when people behind the leader stop following and start thinking. There is no reason for someone who is a new rider to think about anything other than following with regard to where to go. Of course you have to think about the ride, but if you are following, know where you are supposed to go and get there.
Bo’s Monthly Words of Wisdom:
I stopped fighting my inner demons, we are on the same side now!
“Live to Ride or Step Aside”

Written by Bo 
“The Hog Shoppe Inc.”
 Source: Full Throttle Magazine (March 2017)

18th Annual Ride Announcement

Watch Dee's message on the 18th Ride

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