Sunday Ride 6th October 2019

Well done to Barry Dickinson as the only rider to brave the wet weather for today’s ride-out!

As Advanced riders, it is important to practise riding in a range of conditions, rather than just those sunny dry days. The right gear will ensure that you remain dry and warm, whatever the conditions

We enjoyed a great ride with the added benefit of a large English breakfast at the Tavistock Pub in Bedford

Thanks to Keith Tremeer for a sterling job as Tail Ender

F1RST-class ticket

Congratulations to Anton Flexer, who recently passed his Advanced Test with a F1RST award. Anton provides this account of the journey

I began my IAM observed rides with Rich Bell in October 2017, with a watchful eye from Julie D’Alessandro. Having ridden for 7 years it seemed like time to polish up my skills & iron out some bad habits I could feel developing

We rode into winter (with & without heated grips), the feedback suggesting I was making good progress. Then, in January 2018, I was knocked off my bike. The spill proved the worth of my protective gear, but unfortunately left with me a bike in bits. Luckily a fellow biker, passing in his pick-up, scooped me up and dropped me home, bruised but in working order, along with a broken bike

The silver lining was the opportunity to get a new bike, but this put a bit of delay on the training. After some further great sessions and more learning I was feeling confident. Sometimes life gets in the way: with two kids under 3, I took a year’s break. I started back up again in May 2019 with new Observer – Keith Tremeer – who picked up seamlessly from where Rich had left off with the consistent support of Julie

With further sessions I was again feeling confident and deemed ready for a pre-test ride, kindly conducted by Chris Curryer. Chris gave me  feedback focused on specific points. A final confidence boosting check-ride with Keith, and it was time for the test

I arrived for an early morning start with PC Simon Burgin at Trumpington. It was a beautiful autumn day and the genuinely enjoyable ride had me smiling as we rode south towards Barley. I was hoping at a minimum for a solid pass, and it was a very pleasing surprise to have come away with top pass in the form of a F1RST

My thanks to Keith Tremeer, Rich Bell and Julie D’Alessandro for getting me to this point. I have enjoyed myself, learnt a lot and remain impressed by the commitment of the volunteers who make this happen!

Next step: finally manage to join a Sunday ride out 🙂

IAM Skills Day review

Many thanks to Associate member Steven Libby who, having recently completed an IAM Skills Day on the Thruxton circuit in Hampshire, has written and shared a review of his experience. Read Steven’s account of his Skills Day here

Inspired by Steven’s review you may wish to sign up for a Skills Day at Thruxton, Croft or Mallory Park. A total of eight Skills Days were held between May and September this year, with one date reserved for female riders. The 2019 season is now ended, but we’ll keep you posted when the 2020 schedule is announced so you can get your name on the list at the earliest opportunity

Associate Theory Evening

Thursday September 26th, Orwell Pavilion
See the Events Calendar for timing & further details

The evening is aimed at Associates preparing for their Advanced Test, but full members are also very welcome for a refresher on the theory of advanced riding. Observers are also encouraged to attend and share their insight and experience

This training takes the form of an interactive session which is led by experienced National & Local Observers. There will be plenty of time for questions & discussions. It doesn’t matter if you have been to a previous session, there are always new topics to debate! Please let Catherine know if you will be attending (if only to ensure she gets sufficient biscuits)

Night Ride

This event will provide an opportunity for members to gain more experience riding at night in a variety of road types, from motorway to B-roads. Departure details can be found in the Events Calendar here

The evening will start at 7.30pm with a briefing on night riding by our group examiner, PC Simon Burgin. The ride will cover approximately 90 miles, with a coffee stop at the half-way point, before finishing at around 11pm

The ride is limited to 12 motorcycles and is on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that it is a prerequisite that riders wear suitable reflective clothing

For more details and to book a place, please contact markpawson@live.co.uk by 14th September

Meccanica Ducati

Still time for a taster…

Know a rider who you think might benefit from IAM membership? There’s still time (just!) to alert them to the free taster ride day being held on Saturday 7th September, from 10am to 4:00pm

Having booked a slot, a rider will enjoy a 40-minute rideout with one of the Observer Team. who will give them detailed feedback at the end of the ride with pointers to how they might take their riding forward

The venue is Ducati Harston, in whose showroom visitors can browse the renowned Italian manufacturer’s latest models. CambsIAM will be in the car park, where Taster Rides will begin and end. There will even be a van selling burgers & cold drinks!

Please contact Graham Scott to book a slot. Partcipants are asked to ensure that their bikes are fully fuelled before departure

New National Observer

Congratulations to Steve Rowdon, who recently completed a detailed training program and test to become a National Observer. Chief Observer Graham Scott comments –

Steve Rowdon today passed his National Observer test with flying colours after a grueling time under the close scrutiny of IAM Staff Examiner Pete Doherty

Steve joined IAM in September 2005, and has been a very active member since joining the Observer team. My records do not go back far enough to say how many Associates Steve has helped to full Membership, but I do know that some have gone on to become Observers themselves, cascading down the knowledge gained with Steve’s help

The 100% pass rate which his Associates have enjoyed bears testament to Steve’s abilities. I know that Steve derives much pleasure from his involvement with CAM and fulfillment from being an Observer, a role which lets him see first-hand riders develop with his guidance and encouragement. Steve will now help experienced riders within CAM to become Observers in their own right, as he has been nominated Local Observer Assessor to strengthen our team further

Well done Steve on your well-deserved success!

image © Paul Lester

Reflections on i2i Machine Control

Many thanks to Associate Ian Dunckley for taking the time to share his reflections on the i2i Motorcycle Academy Machine Control course which he recently attended in York. Ian signed up for Machine Control on his own initiative, but note that CambsIAM negotiated a group discount & subsidised members’ attendance in 2018 and 2019

Read Ian’s account using the link below – if you like the sound of this unique course you can of course contact i2i directly. Alternatively, put a note in your diary and look out for an email towards the end of the year – we hope to offer subsidised attendance once again in 2020 for this outstanding motorcycle training

  • Read Ian Dunckley’s account of the course here
  • Review the 2018 CambsIAM Machine Control course here
  • Visit i2i Motorcycle Academy here

Ride to the Cotswolds

Full members: why not join Chris Curryer for his all-day Cotswolds ride on Sunday 11th August?

Leaving the Gulf Petrol Station in Barton at 9:00am, we’ll ride through the beautiful grounds of Woburn, followed by the roundabouts of Milton Keynes. A coffee stop in Buckingham then it’s on to the hills, taking in as much of the Cotswolds AONB as time & two wheels allow. There’s great scenery, pretty villages and, with luck, some A-list celebrity-spotting

The route takes us through Ayhno, Moreton-in-Marsh & Chipping Campden, with lunch in Bourton-on-the-Water. There’ll be a chance to visit the Motoring & Toy Museum with its Brough Superior (considered the Rolls-Royce of motorcycles in the inter-war years)

Pleasant riding along Cotswold lanes will take us through Bilbury to Burford, where – if you still have an appetite – you can enjoy an afternoon tea on the famous High Street. Following a more direct route back, we should be home around 7:00pm, having covered about 250 miles

To join this ride, see the Events Calendar entry & contact Chris directly

Taster Rides @ Ducati

Visitors to our stand at the Meldreth & St Ives shows were offered the chance to sign up for a Taster Ride with one of our Senior Observers. The Taster Day is scheduled for Saturday 27th July – all members and associates are warmly invited to pay a visit and lend their support between 10am & 4pm. Full details can be found in the events calendar

Our thanks go to Ducati Harston for making their facilities available for the day. In the showrooms the renowned Italian manufacturer’s models are all on display; in the car park visitors can sign up for a taster ride to see if the IAM Advanced Rider Course can help them take their biking to the next level. And as a bonus… there will even be a van selling burgers & cold drinks!

If you signed up for a taster ride at the Cambridge Advanced Motorcyclists stand at the Meldreth or St Ives Show, please contact Graham Scott to book your slot. Your bike will need to be adequately fueled for a 40-minute ride, starting and ending in the Ducati car park

Breaking newsIAM Roadsmart are offering a reduced fee of £99 (including the cost of the advanced test) for those who sign up on the day (the standard fee is £149)