i2i Motorcycle Academy June 2019

News just in!

i2i Motorycle Academy have offered us the possibility to secure up to 12 places for their 2-day Machine Control courses MC1 & MC2 on Monday 3rd and Tuesday 4th of June 2019 at Bovingdon Airfield, Hertforsdhire, HP1 2RR

Ordinarily this course costs £300 per person for both days. In order to qualify for a 10% discount we need to book a minimum of 10 places, bringing the price to £270. In addition, the club committee has agreed to subsidize the course by £30 for each member attending, bringing the price to £240 per person

The response from our attendees on this course in 2018 was overwhelmingly positive, with universal agreement that it represented an excellent investment in the acquisition of motorcycling skills. This training is both original and fun with explanations of the physics of motorcycling, practical demonstrations and of course plenty of opportunities to have a go yourself

In order to secure these dates we need your response by Thursday 18th October. So if you would like to attend please email our events coordinator Catherine Ryan ASAP (cm.ryan@tiscali.co.uk). Places are strictly limited to 12 and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that full payment of £270 will be required by i2i academy upon booking: the club’s treasurer will refund the £30 subsidy to attendees at a later date

Maintenance Day 2018

Our thanks to Simon and James of Cambridgeshire Police who once again lent their Huntingdon HQ facilities and volunteered their time & expertise to our bi-annual Maintenance Day

Steady drizzle throughout the morning did not dampen the enthusiasm of CambsIAM presenters Steve Alsop, Adrian Ashman, Chris Curryer & Matt Howes who guided attendees through cleaning your motorcycle, brake servicing, chain maintenance & bike adjustments. Serving forensics expert James gave a compelling & unique insight into the evidence police gather from vehicles after crashes

A special mention goes to the organizer of this event, Julie D’Alessandro, who has done so much to promote the club & safer motorcycle over the years. Julie has now passed on the events coordinator baton, but (along with Chris Curryer) continues to contribute to CambsIAM as a senior observer

October ladies-only ride

Calling all female members & associates! Please do come along to join us for a ladies-only ride on Sunday 28th October. The departure point will be the car park of Tesco’s in Milton. Please arrive by 9:20am with a full tank: we’ll set off at 9:30am

The ride will be book-ended by Janet PinionCatherine Ryan. We hope to see you there! Please email Janet to confirm your attendance
Click the Events Calendar to add this date to your diary

Following the original Hell’s Angels

Inspired by this Suzuki article, club secretary Paul Lester mapped the coordinates of ten memorials to USAAF squadrons based in Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire during WWII. The majority stand in dignified solitude on quiet country lanes, while a couple stand proud by busier roads. One is just inside a serving RAF base. And one more lies within the perimeter of a enterprise park where the airbase formerly stood (with luck the security personnel will allow you entry). All are a stone’s throw from the airfields which were home to the aircraft and crews

SatNavs set to curvy roads, Paul and co-pilot Patrick rode a 99-mile loop through some of the most attractive villages and best biking roads of the two counties. A stop at each memorial allowed a moment to contemplate the service personnel who helped achieve Allied victory in the war in Europe. The well-maintained memorials proudly bear the mottos and patches of the squadrons which they commemorate

Interested in riding this route? Download this Open Office document (Word compatible) for brief notes and the lat & long of each memorial, and/or this .gpx file

RideNepal presentation

Thursday 27th September: Hauxton Village Hall was the venue for a presentation by Udaya from RideNepal. His company devises and runs motorcycling tours throughout this mountain kingdom

Udaya’s engaging personality, enthusiasm for motorcycling and knowledge of his country made for an entertaining and informative evening. Stunning pictures of the wildlife & scenery brought the Himalayas to life. Video footage revealed the challenges of the biking: packed city streets, vertiginous mountain passes, cable bridges over gorges & fording wild rivers

Groups of 4+ can contact grace@ridenepal.co.uk to obtain a 5% CambsIAM discount
Voluntary donations raised £55 for East Anglian Air Ambulance

Thanks to Janet Pinion (cupcakes), Catherine Ryan (Moroccan biscuits) & Matt Howes (flying IT support)

Ode towards Wales

Our own bard-of-the-bike Matt Howes penned this homage to the recent Weekend to Wales, which he rode on his Pan-European. Thanks, Matt, for sharing your contemplations on the ride to Snowdonia

Ode towards Wales

Full tanks of fuel and we’re off
Well, maybe not….
A run across the forecourt
Oil smeared from the back tyre
And this time we’re gone
West towards Brum
… and fun

Winding roads, open skies
Noisy exhausts
Tractors & trailers, mud on the road
Keep Left signs, roundabouts
Slow down, speed up
Roll on, roll off
Out & round, out & round

West Midlands a hard slog
Road works, traffic lights
Garage food, garage loos
A detour or two
The SatNav defects and U-turns required
But we are all smiles
As today, no work is required

We are moving again…
As the Borders approach
Sunshine and dry roads
Twisties; what a delight
But then the rains come
and the SatNav recoils
Wet leathers, no view…..

We stop for a drink
And siphon the python
Or water the plants in a field by the road
We reprogram the SatNav
Back on the bikes we get separated
2 to the left, 2 to the right
Oh well, only 20 miles to go

Fueled once again with petrol & coke
Caked in road spray
We get to the village &…..
Surprise; 2 come from the left
We meet once again for the final 2 miles
Dolgellau here we are
Park up, clean up, the proprietor says Hi

Hang up the gear it’s time for a drink
Leathers in the drying room causing a stink
But who else is here ?
3 bikes came before us
2 arrived in a car
2 bikes come later
11 beers please, ‘Iechyd Da’ !

19:30 arrives & time for the meal
We sit at the table, but….. hang on
One person is AWOL
He never arrived
As he fell from a ladder
and injured his pride
A toast to our fallen comrade !

Tomorrow we ride into the mist
That’s another story…
For now you get the gist
Roll on, roll off
Peg down to the left, peg down to the right
Overtake that big lorry
Drink coffee and peeeeee !!

Weekend in Wales

An imposing Victorian house stands sentinel before the bend on the Bala road, announcing the end of the long journey to the Bikers Retreat. In twos & threes the 9 bikes found their way to Dolgellau, Snowdonia National Park. After some careful motorcycle Tetris all were squeezed into the covered bike shed, with one accompanying car left forlornly in the rain

Hosts Nigel and Tiv made us welcome for three nights, providing comfortable rooms, home-cooked evening meals and biker-friendly full Welsh breakfasts. Accomplished riders themselves, on Saturday Nigel and Tiv book-ended a challenging loop through Bala, the Llyn Brenig Reservoir (the Visitor Centre offering refreshments with beautiful views over the water), and the former Llechwedd Slate Caverns. The clouds gathered in the afternoon, and at altitude we were soon enveloped in drizzle. With rain settling in for the rest of the day, Nigel led us back using the direct route to Dolgellau via the A470

Evenings were spent in the cosy bar, where ale, Guinness, cider, wine and improbable tales were enjoyed. Precipitation was forecast, but its variety – mist, mizzle, drizzle, showers & occasional rain – caught some by surprise. However, the scenery is breathtaking (if you have time to glance at it) and the roads are extremely well maintained and afford great grip. True, there is the odd sheep wondering whether to cross the single track road under your wheels to nibble the greener grass on the other side, but this is terrific biking country

Thanks to Martin Pinion for suggesting this weekend and to Janet Pinion for organizing it

Aldeburgh – a rider’s account

8:30am and the temperature was climbing nicely for the ten riders gathered in Ely. Janet Pinion had devised a meandering backroads route through beautiful Suffolk countryside to picturesque Aldeburgh, where the pebbles on the beach shimmered and the sea had taken on Mediterranean hues. Although we arrived in time for an early lunch, an impressive queue had already formed at the fish’n’chip shop

As Janet’s program did not allow for a siesta we climbed back on the bikes, heavier but happy, to start the journey home. We lingered over drinks at our refreshment break in Stonham Barns, feeling the heat even under the parasols. The trip continued without incident, for a while following the fast A143, before a final regrouping at Mildenhall. Three riders peeled off here, whilst the rest of the pack rode together to Fordham where they finally parted company. A great ride & a great day: thank you Janet!

i2i Machine Control

July 2nd & 3rd: former RAF Coltishall was the venue for 2 days of advanced training with Tom Killeen of i2i Motorcycle Academy. This subsidised event saw 10 CambsIAM members work through Machine Control topics: bike stability, braking whilst cornering, body posture & much more

Tom explains the physics of machine control, then has participants prove & practise the theory for themselves on their bikes. The heat and high-grip runway surface made for optimal traction, and participants left Norfolk with new or improved skills. Read the British Motorcyclists Federation’s assessment of i2i’s Machine Control course here

TT legend John McGuinness supports TyreSafe’s Don’t chance it, change it motorcycle campaign

How often do you check your tyres – really?

Tyres are the only part of your motorcycle in contact with the road surface. Safety in acceleration, braking, steering and cornering all depend on this relatively small area of contact.

You can view the video of John McGuinness supporting TyreSafe’s Don’t chance it, change it campaign below.