STAR Touring And Riding Association
Chapter 363 Lake Champlain NY

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Reasons why we crash

We crash on cold tires.
Respect them by giving them a few miles to warm up, especially if they're brand new. After stopping to eat or something, remember you're not the only thing that has cooled down, allow your tires sufficient time to warm up again.

We crash on overloaded tires. If you are new to riding or rusty after a winter layoff, applying too much throttle or brake while leaned over could be very costly. Our tires can provide amazing levels of traction but they're not immune to "lead" hands. The instinct of grabbing a handful of front brake while leaned over will put you in the guardrail.

We crash trying to keep up. Ultimate speed on a back road has little to do with the bike and everything to do with the rider. Once you realize this, twisting the throttle WFO to keep your friends in sight on the straights while losing them in the corners becomes a non-option. Ride your own pace.

We crash because we want to go fast. Sometimes, even the posted speed limit is inappropriate. Coming over a blind crest at 45mph might be too fast if you can't stop the bike before hitting the hazard you only see when it's too late. Speed reduces time to react and adds distance to react in emergency situations.

We crash because we bail out. How many posts have there been about entering a corner too hot, standing the bike up and running out of road before getting the bike stopped? Too hot means your brain is probably freaked out but there is still plenty of tire traction available. LOOK through the corner, LEAN the bike until hard parts drag, BELIEVE in modern tire technology.

We crash because we lose our focus. The bike travels 88 feet per second at 60 mph. A moment's inattention puts you that much farther into a corner. Think about the next corner, not the one you just blew. That one is over, focus on getting the next one right.

We crash because we rush corner entrances. Slow in, fast out works for racers season after season. It works for road riders too. Slow down a bit on your corner entrances and see how much smoother you become.

We crash because we can't keep up with the motorcycle. Make sure your software is the equal of your bikes hardware. The bike has the ability to go 160mph, that doesn’t mean YOU do.

We crash trying to look cool. If it takes wheelies, stoppies and other stunts to impress your friends...you need new friends.

We crash because we don't practice enough. If you are going to be riding at 100kph you should practice emergency braking at 100kph. Otherwise, how are you going to know how to do it when the situation comes up?

We crash because of indecisiveness. If you're going to do something, then do it. If your bud decides to go through a red light and you decide to stop, then STOP!... and vice versa.. if you decide to go, then GO!, don't stop. Communication in group riding, make sure you understand what to do and what the signals mean.

 

Last updated:  May 26, 2015