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New Horizons Motorcycle Training and Tours

Combining Motorbike Touring with Training

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Heading to France!

Friday 3 July popping to France to see if we can and what’s involved with getting in and out of the country. Taking a chap over who has never ridden there before, though he did drive back in the 1970’s but that’s another story.

Plan is to leave early morning, hop on the Chunnel, arriving in Amiens for dinner. Avoiding toll roads as best we can, we will follow good main roads for the most part burbling through and past many small villages and towns stopping only for coffee and pain au chocolats!

First night staying in a B&B chain hotel.

Saturday, heading to Le Mans and then onto La Fleche to camp over night. From there, who knows. The Loire perhaps? No rush.

The Friday will be the longest day of riding; the rest will be easy 4 hours max. Coming home on Wednesday July 8th, we will stop Tuesday overnight within an hours ride of the Tunnel though this day will be quite hard getting round the M25 again – a road I never enjoy to be honest!

Home for tea!

The great thing is, combining touring and training in one! That’s not bad is it. Our intention is to have fun and learn at the same time. Can’t wait!

Map of intended route, but likely to change depending on how we feel.

https://goo.gl/maps/iEQ6b8Kh679qHXrq7

Tutoring this evening, and planning for next year

Looking forward to 5pm tonight, 19 June, out tutoring a chap who hasn’t ridden in a few years. So, taking it easy and heading out towards Bibury I think, on nice roads with a few gentle corners. Its also a great place to stop, debrief and carry on again from.

Things I look for on a first ride such as this:

  • Cornering
  • Positioning
  • Systematic
  • Safety
  • Stability
  • Gear changing
  • Rural and Urban riding

I also consider the 4’S:

The 4 S’s

Lots to think about, but really looking forward to it.

Planning for next year

Touring is a bit of a write off this year, but Stuart and I were chatting this week about trips next year. Got some ideas forming so please pop back soon, with the first one around Easter, or even earlier in March! Mix of continent and UK based.

If you have an idea of a trip, let us know what you like to see and do and we can sort out the planning for you.

Some cornering fun!

Not a fast ride, but we had fun going round some interesting corners. Lyneham Banks, Ford, and leaving Stroud seemed to be either downhill or uphill where the most fun was had.

The intervening roads between those that are shown also had some great corners too – these were much faster and smoother. Often, you pick the best line through a corner (using the system of IPSGA) but that line is thwarted by the road surface!

Cornering fun!

Route was from Cricklade, Purton, Wootton Bassett, Lyneham, Chippenham (A420), Bath, Stroud, Cirencester and home again.

Nice round trip of an hour and a half or so!

Exploring the Cotswolds with Sally as pillion

What a great day it was today! Went back to Adlestrop following last week’s route through the back end of Fairford and along those quiet narrow lanes overlooking the Cotswolds! Plenty of cyclists, walkers and horses out enjoying the June air.

After Adlestrop, we stopped in Bourton on the Water to buy a couple of pasties and headed back to the Rollright stones – https://www.rollrightstones.co.uk/ – a collection of neolithic stones, around 3,800 years BC so older than Stonehenge and Avebury, and the most easterly stone circle in the UK.

Sally at the Rollright stones

From here, we decided to go via Northleach which is the setting for the mockumentary “This Country” – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/This_Country

Northleach back to Cricklade – set the sat-nav to “windiest” route so we could explore and it didn’t disappoint! We did go through Stow-on-the-Wold four times in the end with our to-ing and fro-ing, and at one point I was leading a group of bikers on their club rideout!

This is a nice ride, not too fast as the roads are narrow, but very pleasant. Some pot holes but but not as many as I would have expected so all good from that perspective. Not a ride for everyone I guess as its more of a pootle than a blast, but I do enjoy exploring whenever I can and there is so much to see on our doorsteps!

Only around 100 miles or so all told, maximum.

But fantastic to go for a leisure ride and spend it with Sally! Happy days!!

Training back on!

Update 6 June – already been out a couple of times in the evenings. Making a difference! Feels great!

Update 3 June – training back on!! Limit to two people at a time though; available for evening sessions or whole day. We can help you prepare for the Advanced Riding test, or coach you for any areas you want to improve upon such as cornering and even just a return to riding tune-up.

Look forward to hearing from you.

Ride to Adlestrop

Decided it was such a nice evening, a ride into the Cotswolds was called for.

With sat-nav set to “windiest” route, off we set to Adlestrop. I say “we”, me and the Tiger!

On the way home, down the Fosse Way, took a short detour through Bourton on the Water. Then, back home via the A419!

Great ride out. Not fast, but nice and scenic pootling along finding some hidden little scenic gems!

Back on the radio

Back on the radio next Wednesday, 3 June, around 11am to talk to Shirley about riding / driving and all sorts!

Plan is to discuss opportunities that we have to change how we work, how we travel and all that sort of fun stuff post lockdown.


Of course, I’m promoting Advanced Rider training where I can, and we will begin tutoring again in June.

With the light evenings, I can offer after work sessions for £55pp. Starting at 5pm, finishing around 8pm. We can work on specific areas that need tweaking, confidence building or just a general ride to gain confidence again!

Short video of pre-lockdown ride

Leaving Wroughton, we headed towards Avebury, Marlborough, Ramsbury, Aldebourne, Hungerford, Lambourn and then finally Ashbury and Bishopstone. A great morning ride with plenty of scenery and opportunities for opening the throttle!

Mad Wednesday!

With the recent government announcement that we can drive / ride as far as we like starting from tomorrow, Wednesday 13th May, the roads will be busier than ever with all sorts of motorists, so please take care.

For a rider who may have not ridden since lockdown began 8 weeks ago, be aware that skills do fade so take those first few miles easy – it won’t take too long to get back up to where you were. I know my skill level will have dropped even-though I did ride over winter, and was starting to enjoy the longer days!

If you stopped riding over winter, then the level of riding skill you ended up with last year will definitely have faded so take a little more care too.

For all riders though, take care and be wary even more so than usual of other road users as they are not used to seeing motorcycles so we could be a bit of a surprise to them. That includes cyclists, pedestrians, horse riders, cars and lorries.

Training – this is still on hold pending further announcements from the government which is all to do with social distancing. As is touring – we can’t stay away from home yet. Maybe sometime in July this could change for both training and touring.

If, like me, you are planning a ride tomorrow, then don’t forget to check the tyres, oil, water, seals etc – we call it POWDDERSS in Roadcraft.

Petrol, Oil, Water, Damage, Drive, Electrics, Rubber, Steering and Suspension.

Have fun out there!

And my short ride from today:

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