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

Aldeburgh – a tailer’s view

6:45am: turn off alarm. Check memo: first-aid kit! Phone: no message – ride is on. Breakfast then head to Ely ahead of 8:30 start

Six bikers and one pillion gather around Janet for her briefing. My first time tailing so I listen intently. Then we’re off on roads still damp from overnight rain. Clouds temper the light & temperature: perfect riding conditions all day

The buddy system: from the rear I see riders adjust their speed to keep the bike behind in view. A turn of the head assures riders they’re being followed at junctions. Fuelling break in Coddenham and bikes swap order. The group are riding for each other and not as dispersed as on a Sunday ride. Kids wave as the seven bikes enter Aldeburgh in formation

Tailing duties complete (Catherine takes over for the return) – off to the fish’n’chip shop, which has only just opened but already has a queue. Lifeboats are launched as we relax on the beach

Janet Pinion’s 2019 all-day ride to Aldeburgh (began in Ely, ended in Fordham): right-click here (save as..) to download the route in .gpx format

Meldreth & St. Ives Shows

A heartfelt thank you to all those members who gave their time to make the CambsIAM stand at the Meldreth Show and St Ives Festival a success last month

CambsIAM was brilliantly represented at both shows, with swathes of brochures & flyers handed out to visitors and a healthy sign-up rate for the Taster-Ride Day event organised for the end of this month. All this is in spite of noticeably reduced attendance at Meldreth as a result of downpours overnight and during the morning

Thanks to: David Cowen, Paul Crinson, Garry Ellwood, David Hyman, Tom Jacobs & Keith Tremeer for transporting, erecting and manning the stand. Special thanks to Barry Dickinson and Andy May for coordinating whilst Catherine was away, and to Lynette & William Elbourn for storing everything needed at the shows

June ladies ride

The ladies – Catherine, Jacqui, Janet, Jo & Megan – met for the 2nd ladies ride of 2019, on the last Sunday in June. The sweltering heat of the previous day had subsided, thank goodness

Conditions were perfect for a bike ride: a cool breeze and uninterrupted sunshine. The ladies meandered along the lovely roads south of Newmarket, free of traffic early on a Sunday, to rejoin Cavenham via the single-track Icknield Way. The route continued past Stow Country Park and under the cool canopy of Elveden Forest. Would a muntjac jump across the road?

Refreshments were at the Café, Elveden Courtyard, a firm favorite for its scones, creamy scrambled eggs and delicious cordial drinks. A well-stocked farm shop offers the opportunity to buy fresh produce, and at least one of the ladies found something for that afternoon’s BBQ. Just make sure you take a top box or Kriega bag if you visit!

The return journey passed through Brandon, Mildenhall, Fordham, Wilburton,  Haddenham and finally Sutton, where Janet had prepared tea & cakes. After a relaxed rideout this was one last chance to catch up with one another’s news

Ladies Cotswolds weekend

A small group of our female members recently took themselves off to the Cotswolds for a three-day biking weekend. Whilst there they teamed up with members of Cheltenham & Cotswold Advanced Motorcyclists, who took them on insiders’ ride through the backroads and picturesque villages of this lovely English region

Click here for more photographs and an account of their adventure

All-day ride, Sunday 9th June

Keith Tremeer will be leading an all-day ride through the backroads of Norfolk & Suffolk on Sunday 9th June. This rideout has been in the Events Calendar for a while, but Keith has now provided details of the route & timings for the day – these can be found here

All full members and pillion companions are welcome, but there will be a limit on the number of motorcycles. So if you’re free that day you’re encouraged check the ride description using the link above and contact Keith to reserve a place on what promises to be a fine outing

The White Horse near Badingham

First ladies’ ride of the season

Damp grey skies and a cold breeze were the backdrop for the first ladies’ ride of the season, which took place on the last Sunday of April. Well wrapped up & suitably waterproofed, we headed out on greasy Cambridgeshire roads in an easterly direction, passing through Kimbolton then turning right to Caxton, Old Weston, Clopton and Wadenhoe where we stopped at the Old Barn for scones and tea/hot chocolate

Warmed through, we left the car park following Janet Pinion for the return leg. Janet led us through the Giddings, Ramsey, Warboys & Bluntisham where (after another hot drink) the five of us went our separate ways. It was good to catch up and it was a great ride!

Image courtesy Catherine Ryan

A clean sweep

Congratulations to Jason Wingfield, who earlier this month became our 2nd member to obtain an IAM F1RST, sweeping the board with a One in every category

Jason started riding as a teenager on mopeds and 125-cc bikes, but family life intervened and he soon needed to get a car. It wasn’t until he was 32 that a change in circumstances allowed him to pursue his passion and obtain his A licence through the Direct Access Scheme. He owned Yamaha (RD350 YPVS & FZR600) and Suzuki (Bandit 1200) bikes, but once again had to put riding on hold

He got back in the saddle in 2016, buffed up his skills on Norfolk Constabulary’s Safe Rider Scheme and decided to take his riding to the next level. Jason visited the IAM stand at the NEC Bike Show and signed up

Paired with Observer Steve Alsop, Jason made rapid progress and was soon ready to take a pre-test ride with Chief Observer Graham Scott. Jason comments that in just a few sessions ‘Steve helped me to polish off the rough edges, so all credit to him for being a big part of my F1RST

An excellent ride throughout your test. You were safe, legal & smooth. Your good use of the system helped you make very good progress, you were courteous towards other road users & your acceleration sense was excellent”

Examiner John Atkinson

A F1RST-rate achievement

Congratulations to Stavros Theodoridis, who recently became an IAM F1RST member, only eight months after joining as an associate (and with just 18 months of motorcycling experience)

His participation in Cambridgeshire BikeSafe last July inspired Stavros to take his training further by joining IAM, and in August he was out on an assessed ride with Observer Barry Dickinson. Their partnership worked well, and over autumn and winter Stavros & Barry rode almost 300 miles together in 7 observed outings

Stavros rode in all weathers throughout the winter with his wife & friends, putting in approximately 5000 miles to develop the techniques he had discussed in his sessions with Barry. By January Stavros was ready for a pre-test ride with National Observer Chris Curryer. With a couple of pointers from Chris and one more observed ride with Barry it was time for the test…

Examiner Chris Devlin met with Stavros at the Wyboston Travelodge. The weather was ideal: slightly overcast, not windy, 10°C. The test route headed north on the A1, exiting at St Neots then all the way to Kimbolton, south on the B660 towards Bedford before joining the A421 back to the starting point

Joining the IAM and training with Barry Dickinson has been a great opportunity to develop as a rider whilst enjoying some superb rides with someone I’d now describe as a friend. I must give credit to Barry Dickinson, Chris Curryer and the support of the CAM Group who have all played an active role in helping me achieve my goal. Their commitment to rider safety and the biking community as a whole, is truly admirable

Stavros Theodoridis