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Thread: Overtaking

  1. #1


    There’s certainly more than one way to skin a cat here. Let's look at a few standard chess moves and their alternatives, and some overtaking cockups and accidents. What I would stress here is that this is most definitely an area to be completely flexible, and what works one day won’t necessarily work the next. Because the road is such a fluid environment, I may well ride a regular route and approach an over take on the same stretch of tarmac in a different way every time. So maybe view this as a collection of ideas, for you to pick and choose from as you ride and not a black and white, this is how you do it guide!

    Lets start simply; a bog standard bit of road! What could go wrong and what can I write to people that have probably been happily overtaking things for the last 20 years!!

    If we want to over take a vehicle in front, we need to be able to see the road ahead, see that it’s clear... no oncoming vehicles, no hidden junctions ... The conundrum is that if we hang back to get that view, then we may well miss an overtake when it comes along because we’re too far away from the vehicle in front to do it. Conversely, if we sit too close to the vehicle in front, we might have very little ground to cover, but probably won’t get the view in the first place and won’t see some of those opportunities that are there.

    So, we need to be cute, and work two positions with good acceleration sense. A following position, and an overtaking position. A following position is somewhere behind a vehicle that’s good for you to see. How far off the vehicle in front? No black and whites, I can’t give you distances or car lengths, it’s simply somewhere that gives you the best possible view.
    Our overtaking position is going to be further ahead than the following one, much nearer to the vehicle in front. A forward assault point! And when we’re looking for an overtake, we're going to move up and drop back between these two points.

    When we're riding, if we're lazy and we drop our eyes onto the back of the vehicles infront and look no further, the only overtake we'll ever make will be simplistic and handed to us on a plate. If we make an effort to look beyond the vehicle in front, and read the road beyond it, we can plan for opportunities, and when we sense one is coming our way, that’s when we move up. And we time it just so, our moving up delivers us to our overtake at precisely the right time.

    ..I said we time it just so .....

    The thinking mans biker sees an overtaking opportunity before it actually presents itself. So sitting back and thinking ‘ahh, could have overtaken there but it’s too late now’ is not for us. We want to be thinking hundreds of yards ahead and to appear (somewhat frustratingly to other riders) to be always in the right place at the right time.

    Move up or move out?

    That book you all hate talks about moving up into an overtaking position. If we literally did that, we could at times be accelerating straight towards the back of the car in front of us, and that in turn could lend itself to a late manoeuvre out, and a swoopy style that carries all our speed whilst cranked over. Our tyre grip trade off would be all wrong, and a swoopy style can end up using far more of the off side than is really necessary …..

    When my overtake looks on, If I move out early (so by that, I mean stepping out to the right, other side of the white lines, but I don’t pinn it yet or move nearer to the vehicle infront..) I get a good view. From here, I can see the road really clearly before actually committing myself, and if there is something I missed, I can simply come back in again. There are dozens of times when I might choose to move out, but not up. Think how much acceleration your bike has - it's much, much quicker than most cars on the road, let alone the average one. Can you afford to have a little pause sometimes and confirm what you think? Too right! And the added bonus of this style, is that you will nearly always be accelerating in an upright position which is good for bike stability.

    So, should we always move out instead of up when we’re looking at going? Sometimes we have to move up first. We'll look at overtaking on the approach to bends in a moment, but there will be times when moving out early, will loose us our view and is not the way to go. You could also argue that the move out, pause, go routine, if done too deliberately can be very squared and angular, and arguably it could, if over emphasised, confuse vehicles both behind and in front. (‘What’s this bloke doing on my offside – is he overtaking or not..’). Quite often if the overtake is blatantly on, then it’s on – so do it and don't fanny. That having all been said, I like move out / go. In the right scenario (which is probably the majority) it’s a very useful tool. I use it quite a bit. And if I do move up (before out) it still has an element of up and out together.

    If you followed a rider doing this two stage approach for want of a better word, this hang back then a deliberate move up, would it be stilted and manufactured? It shouldn’t be so.. It should be smooth, fluid and quietly efficient. It should be, that one-second the rider is holding back from the car in front, and the next he’s moved up and has seemingly conjured an overtake from nowhere and has gone. It goes back to that ‘you’re lucky’ conversation. You make your own luck, and by clever use of an imaginary bungee cord between you and the vehicle in front, you can use good acceleration sense combined with good planning to make good progress. There might be the odd time, when you’ll sense an opportunity, move up but then not go. So be it. Drop back and start your planning again. This will be much more relevant a little later when we look at overtakes approaching a bend.

    It didn't happen for us, but that doesn't matter, we planned for it and gave it a go..!

    Overtaking and off side Junctions

    Can we pass vehicles on the approach to an offside junction? Again, there are no black and whites but in my opinion, as long as you’re thinking, there’s nothing wrong with passing a car opposite an offside junction. But, (big but!), you’ve got to be one hundred per cent sure, that he’s not turning. By and large, the faster the vehicle you want to overtake is going, the more obvious it is that he’s going straight on. This is why this sort of accident is more relevant in town where speeds are lower, because at 20mph a car can still change his mind and veer into a side road at the last possible moment.
    So at what point do we decide, he’s not turning right and it’s safe to pass? Only you can decide. Out on the open road in national speed limits, there will be a point when the vehicle you’re following physically can’t turn into a side road. On these occasions, the out but not up position can work well, and the moment you’re happy that he’s committed to going straight on, you’re in the right place at the right time to zip past. The downside of loitering out to the offside is that if he is going to turn, you’ll confuse him. All he’ll see is a bike in his off side mirror - “Is he passing me or what? Shall I turn, shall I wait, what the hell is this biker doing”?… Mean time you’ll be muttering “come on mate what are you waiting for…” and it’ll all get messy! It’s that biker’s instinct again, loiter out if you’re confident he’s going straight on and the second it’s safe pin it, but if there’s a hint he might turn, come back in to your 2/3s.

    Passing a line of traffic
    (Or a bit of a collection of ideas in no particular order!!)

    Lets say you’re looking to pass a line of three, four, five cars? Roadcraft (sorry!) talks about 'identifying a gap into which you can safely return'. Now that might be, the end of the line of cars. It might be that the overtake is five or nothing. That doesn't make it unsafe, you've just got to be completely sure that you can safely do it. If you can identify safe havens within that line then that's beter still, even if you don't have to use them.

    In this video, a bunch of guys are having fun on the IOM. Whilst the lead rider may well have 'identifed his gap into which he can ....' What about the guys behind? this sort of scenario is a classic group ride accident. The first couple go and the guys at the back, keen not to get left behind, somewhat blindly follow. Do the last two really know or have some sort of plan as to where they're going to come back in? It all works out fine, but if you regularly ride in a group, it's food for thought if you find your self at the back.

    Back to the move out idea again – If you’re passing traffic, it’s clear of oncoming and all is well, then providing you keep identifying safe returns, stay out! All to often riders passing a long line of cars will dip in and out of gaps as a little comforter, when there’s absolutely no need to. If there is no oncoming but you want to pause, confirm your view, then stay out opposite a gap, confirm all is good, and resist the comfort blanket of dipping back in unless you have to.

    If we are passing a long line of cars where there is the odd oncoming vehicle, and we are floating in and out of gaps, it’s nice to do it all without point, squirt and brake. Another rough benchmark is to snap your throttle shut as you’re alongside the last vehicle before your gap. By and large you’ll float into the gap ahead with no brakes.

    It’s human nature that we all like being thanked. Sometimes on the busy A roads, cars will move over a tad for you to pass. If they do, (and that’s if they offer it, not if you bully them!!) and it's safe, take it and then give them a little thumbs up. Contrary to what us bikers think! A lot of the car drivers do actually use their mirrors! You will be amazed how often, having accepted their offer, the car in front of you will see you thanking the car behind. So what do they do? They move over too. so we pass that one too; Thanks (thumb up). Car in front … car in front … car in front … We can start this sort of mexican wave, all because you’ve said thanks and they want a piece of it too. Try it – it works really well!

    Generally speaking, if you get yourself into trouble passing traffic, it’ll be with the cars that you’re overtaking, not oncoming. Last summer I went to an accident where a motorcyclist was overtaking a line of cars. A car in front of him, (travelling in the same direction within the line of traffic that he was overtaking), came out to overtake as well. The car failed to notice the biker already overtaking behind him. The bike collided with the rear offside of the car. The rider lost his left leg.

    How about this video. I don't know the history behind it, but I'd put money on the fact that the camera is in a lorry, and that the bike involved had absolutely no idea that the car you see was even there. Remember the kitchy 'what can you see, what can't you see' and all that?!

    If you are passing a line of cars, as you start your overtake (or for that matter at any time during it) you can try a full beam flash if you like, it was always encouraged in the world of training, but with modern bikes and head lights wired to constantly on, I’m not sure how much difference it might make. In a car, yep, I often flash my headlights prior to an overtake. Use that biker’s instinct. Who are you overtaking? Is there an M3 amongst that line of people carriers?

    We mentioned overtaking opposite off side junctions earlier, and we said ‘go for it’ if it’s obvious that a lone vehicle isn’t turning. In a line of traffic however, be much more cautious. If you’re travelling down the outside of a line of cars and you see a warning sign for an off side junction ahead of you, alarm bells should ring in your head. If a vehicle way ahead wants to turn right into something, even though he (and the junction) may be hundreds of yards ahead of you, any gap you may have identified in your line of cars will almost certainly close up as they all concertina together, and before you know it you’ll be stranded on the offside, now unable to come back in, and sods law will dictate that oncoming traffic will appear. (Think about the IOM video - what if a car that those riders are bearing down on, completely out of sight to one of the rear riders, indicates right and demonstrates to every one around him that he intends to turn into something on the off side...?)

    Having said that, quite a cute overtake can be made when a vehicle just two or three cars ahead of you, does slow down to a few miles an hour to turn right. As a biker, our natural instincts are often to move to the inside, but sometimes, if you hold that offside position instead, after the lead vehicle has made his turn, providing none of the other vehicles want the same junction, your good acceleration from five or ten mph will see you whip past. In the blink of an eye, of your three vehicles, one's turned off and you've just overtaken the other two. I often see bikers instinctively make this move to the inside and miss this trick - it’s a gimmee!

    Is there a knack for judging distances for an overtake? Imagine we have a car in front of us and beyond that a corner. Have I got enough room to get out, past and back in before something comes into view? Or put another way, if I start my overtake now what will happen if the second I go, something comes into view? Again, these are all benchmark ideas and not set in stone, but as a rough guide, try and identify the halfway point between you and your limit point. Once you’ve identified it (and it takes tenths of a second!) ask yourself, ‘If I overtake now, can I get back in before that halfway point?’ Assuming any oncoming car is travelling at the same speed as you, the half way point is where you’ll both meet if you commit to the overtake just as the oncoming vehicle appears. Obviously if it’s a vehicle travelling quicker than you, that half way point moves nearer towards you, and if you’re on a mission and Miss Daisy comes into view in her Morris Minor, you’ll probably have more room and the point where you’ll both meet moves further away towards her. It is just a rough guide, but again, a useful tool for your backpack.

    Have a look at the next one below. First off, notice how the lorry driver at the beginning of the clip moves over for us. No flashing by us, he did it of his volition, but if he's going to offer it up, as we mentioned earlier, lets have it thanks. (And we did - a thumbs up out of camera). Two cars later we're behind a bus. Whilst we've been happy to overtake in the hatching prior to the bus, it's not safe now. There are a myriad of junctions on the right that the bus could drift into. After those right hand junctions there is a long hatched safe area for oncoming traffic to turn right across us. Three cars approach, any one of them could plan for a right turn. If we use their hatching, we could be moving out into a head on collision. When we do overtake the bus, we use the following / move up chess piece. This time, the arrival time is to coincide with a gap in the traffic. See how for the rest of the ride we use the hang back when we can't, move up when its on and this style for want of a better word, of step out, pause, accelerate in nearly all the overtakes..

    Overtaking on the approach to bends

    Ok, we’ve thrashed the straightish roads to death, lets have a look at overtaking and corners. Bikes were made for this! We are the velociraptors of the road. Ruthlessly efficient hunting machines that can pounce at the slightest opportunity!

    Lets start with the classic right hand bend and this is where the bungee cord of the following / overtaking positions really starts to work to our benefit.
    If I’m following a vehicle, and approaching a bend, what will come after it? Is there an opportunity to overtake just around the corner? Maybe I know the road or maybe there’s a hedge line or something similar that gives a good indication of the way ahead. Whether I can tell any of this or not, I want to close down that gap, and arrive, on this occasion, deep into the nearside of the corner just as that view opens up. Timing is everything. My deep nearside positioning will give me the earliest possible view down the off side of the vehicle in front, and by carrying some of that speed I’ve generated, if the overtake is on I’m in the perfect place at the perfect time and at the right speed to take it. The clever knack here is judging my bungee cord / acceleration sense, so I arrive in the depth of the corner and behind the vehicle at the exact time it all opens up.

    This chess move works well on the deeper more blinder corners. Like all these set manoeuvres there is sometimes a compromise, and the compromise here can be that you may have further to travel around the car, because you’re tucked into the nearside. (Although you can combat this by sort of squaring the corner off and turning a tad more sharply..) Nearside gives you the early view but further to go, offside gives you a later view but less distance to travel.

    So would I approach a right hand bend in an offside position looking for an overtake? Sometimes the shallower right hand bends can lend themselves to this off side ‘less distance to travel’ position. It’s contrary to our normal positioning, but there are occasions when this time, it’s the better place to be. We might get our view a fraction later, but the overtake is a whole lot quicker, and its just a quick squirt and we’re past. Shallow bends can lend themselves to this.

    If there are yin and yang for right handers, so there are for left handers too. Should you hold your normal crown of the road position?

    Or do you get into the verge and look for that view down the nearside of the vehicle you’re following?

    A lot of that will depend on the size of the road and the vehicle infront of you. We said at the very beginning of this thread, that these were a collection of ideas, so I can't say I never move to the nearside prior to a left hander, but more often than not I'll get my view from the crown of the road and drop back a bit.

    Again, it doesn't come off, but we're always thinking and looking!

    If our view is a bit limited, can we come out to actually look for an overtake or should we only come out to confirm what we think?

    Clearly, you shouldn’t come out to see if it’s safe to overtake in the first place but what about coming out to confirm your thoughts? It’s more semantics. In the video above we got a view down the inside of the lorry to start with. We can confirm what we think by inching out our view out on the offside and 'slicing the pie' (Any ex squaddies or firearms users here?) It safely opens up our view and is pretty similar to the move out idea.

    In the video below, we hold our crown of the road position getting a good view down the nearside of both vehicles. Then we slice the pie , and we do it deliberately prior to a right hand junction, (remember what we were talking about with off side junctions and overtaking earlier..?), we wait and confirm it's all safe and that the car isn't turning, before nailing it in an upright maximum traction position. When we write about it, it sounds a load of old roadcraft mumbo jumbo bollox!! But look how fluid and natural it actually is in reality! It doesn't have to be pipe and slippers!!

    If there’s one common denominator in left hand bends, it’s probably the fact that the vehicle you’re following will be much more of a visual handicap to you than it will be approaching a right hand bend. Left hand bends are possibly not the best for the bungee cord forward assault point. It’s very easy to loose your view if you move up too early. This is especially so if you end up behind a van or something larger than your standard see through-able car. Nigel (Advanced biker on this forum) lends us this clip. Do you remember in the urban thread we mentioned 'Black Holes', getting sucked in and how difficult it is to back pedal and reclaim your view? See how the student here allows himself to get sucked in to the vehicle infront of him prior to going. Just half a dozen yards further back and he'd have got the whole picture. (Thanks AB).

    Blind overtakes.

    If we are in a nearside position, a vehicle in front is say a van and our nearside view of the road ahead is good, we still need to clear that bit of blind road that the van hides. One way of doing this is to identify something ahead of the van on the off side of the road, (like a lamp post or a telegraph pole) and whilst keeping our view of the road ahead, wait for it to re-emerge behind the vehicle (somewhere over to our right shoulder). Providing we’ve not taken our eyes off the road ahead, we now know its clear to move to the offside even though we’ll be momentarily loosing our view of the road. And we can overtake using the halving the road idea, the ‘can I get to this point if I start to overtake now’ that we mentioned earlier. This is quite a tricky ballsy manoeuvre and we must have identified a point of return that oncoming can’t get to, before we commit ourselves.


    A little bit of road craft stuff there, see, it wasn't that bad was it?

  2. #2
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    Islandmagee, Co Antrim NI
    NIce work Giles

    Here's a good question

    "Hatched" Areas or what we call protected junctions with Solid lines I always take as no entry to this area

    But During my IAM I was informed that it was okay to use these areas when there is dashed lines at each side of them

    I mention this as there is a "Seperation" zone on one of my routes home and it's used by the bikes to "slip by" the slower moving cars usually by just a few mph but occasionally we get a loon coming past at significantly higher speeds

    IS there an "Official" line on this "Using of seperating zones" and "Protected junctions" ? Assuming Dashed rather than solid side lines?
    Oh Great and Wise Deity, Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

    Courage to change the things I can! And the wisdom to know the difference!

  3. #3
    Yes! If it has a solid border, then treat it as a solid white line - You can't go in there!!

  4. #4
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    Jan 2005
    Woking way
    Very useful - thanks for putting these threads together

    Just one point about overtaking past offside junctions - the danger is not only from the vehicle in front turning right, but the possibility of someone approaching the junction and turning to their left. Suddenly there's an oncoming vehicle which wasn't there a moment before.... So I think you need a clear view of what is approaching in the road (or driveway/field entrance/farm track etc) that ends at the junction before making an overtake there.

  5. #5
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    great stuff Giles -enjoyed the clips. Is the tractor actually indicating right when the student starts his overtake ? - I can't quite make it out. in any case definitely makes the point about a)overtaking tractors who can be turning right in to a field anytime and b) avoiding the black hole.

    one thing you didn't talk about was the mental process of the overtaking decision. When getting over enthusiastic it seems we can take more and more split second decisons to go and assume we have seen the whole picture. Since our lives are at risk caution has to be worth at least as much as the decisiveness we pride ourselves on. miss a chance to overtake and your ride is held up for a a minute. overtake and miss a key hazard and there may be no second chance. I know that as a policeman often you will be pushing on to reach a problem and work within that imperative.. but what sort of thought processes and mental disciplines are or should the rest of us be going though.? would be interested to hear views on this

  6. #6
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    cardiff. wales

    Thanks for all these. You are pitching at just the right level I feel.

    A DVD in production?

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    Quote Originally Posted by davnjud View Post
    great stuff Giles -enjoyed the clips. Is the tractor actually indicating right when the student starts his overtake ? - I can't quite make it out. in any case definitely makes the point about a)overtaking tractors who can be turning right in to a field anytime and b) avoiding the black hole.

    one thing you didn't talk about was the mental process of the overtaking decision. When getting over enthusiastic it seems we can take more and more split second decisons to go and assume we have seen the whole picture. Since our lives are at risk caution has to be worth at least as much as the decisiveness we pride ourselves on. miss a chance to overtake and your ride is held up for a a minute. overtake and miss a key hazard and there may be no second chance. I know that as a policeman often you will be pushing on to reach a problem and work within that imperative.. but what sort of thought processes and mental disciplines are or should the rest of us be going though.? would be interested to hear views on this
    The split second that you mention seems to me to be a very key point here. How you could measure the probabilty i have no idea but just once in a while there appears a vehicle (invariably a car) which just seems to blend into the suroundings in quite a freakish manner . After moving out but before cracking the gas i saw one which was almost a game over moment that was a good number of years ago but it taught me a serious lesson to take a split second then use another to try and be sure , at least thats how i percieve it. I seem to remember in a science lesson at school an experiment that showed that although we think we see a full picture there is always a bit missing and the brain paints that bit in to suit the rest of what we are seeing something to do with the retina just a wee angle
    still no deid

  8. #8
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    Nice clips and comments giles. Quite takes me back, I wish we had had this kind of info doing our course back in 78. I was always told that the best place to overtake was after a right hand bend and I must admit to still using this tactic. One thing I do find when riding with the local lads is that overtaking is the biggest problem. There is a tendency for most to hang back behind a line of cars untill they can clear the lot. This of course leads to bunching up then going like stink and missing the car in the middle that might turn, some near misses like that. The other thing is the mind in neutral bit then suddenly realising that a overtake is on. I always tend to ride with the attitude that if I catch up on a car, I am going to pass it.. somewhere.Its just working out where that will be.
    On one of the vids when thebike was out near the white line on a left hand bend looking down the inside of a lorry there were approaching vehicles. I personally would have sacrificed my position a bit and left a bit more space between me and the approaching traffic.
    keep em comming

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by davnjud View Post

    I'm guessing the rider never even saw the tractor, but you'd have to ask AB on that one!

    There was a good documentry on the telly at the end of the summer, about Englands abysmal performance in the world cup despite being, on paper, the most prepared team. The programme specifically asked whether England had lost all their natural instinct and intuitive team play. Were they too corporate, too manufactured, over rehearsed, stilted? Had they lost that, 'just play' mentality? (Look how well Ghana did and how much more fluently they played..)

    So the paradox here is that we can improve (should improve!) our riding by further training, but we can also stilt our riding by thinking too much about it.

    If we ride along thinking position... speed... gear.. We sure as hell are going to ride like the England team played! But I've certainly been there, I'm sure I remember riding back then (80's) thinking to myself, errr, So i've got to consider my course here, my position, errr shall i brake or take a gear, errrr .....!

    I think it was Micky that wrote something about 'starting out with no experience and a big bag of luck, and sooner or later yer luck runs out but you've now gained all that experience'.

    I hope this doesn't sound cocky, but I don't think 'here's a right hand bend, I must move here now', 'I'm following a lorry, I need to move there now ..' I just do it. Its completely unconscious. I do think about stuff when I ride, of cooourse! But it's mostly about what I'm looking at and where is the road going, 'there's a line of trees across that field over there, I wonder if it's actually a road ....'.

    Whilst, for example, I wrote about the half way point in a road between a vehicle you want to pass, and your limit point, I don't think about that now, I just see it and judge it. But there would have been a time when I did.

    In the world of training people talk about Conscious uncompetant, Conscious competant and unconscious competant. (try to tie shoe laces but cant, can tie shoe laces but have to think about it, tie shoe laces whilst talking about the meaning of life...!).

    So whilst half of me compleeeetly agrees with some of the people (like Timolgra) of this parish who advocate 'just get on it and ride....', I also believe that you need tools in your back pack that you learn how to use, become unconsciously good with them, and then you 'just ride'..

    Wow. That was very well written. I've managed to compleetly sit on the fence!!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by pastyman View Post
    On one of the vids when thebike was out near the white line on a left hand bend looking down the inside of a lorry there were approaching vehicles. I personally would have sacrificed my position a bit and left a bit more space between me and the approaching traffic.
    keep em comming
    Yes, I know the bit you're talking about

    In my defence, the camera was stuck on the right hand side of the tank and it looks a tad closer than it really was, but yes, fair one!!

  11. #11
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    great post, thanks

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by giles lamb View Post

    I think it was Micky that wrote something about 'starting out with no experience and a big bag of luck, and sooner or later yer luck runs out but you've now gained all that experience'.
    "We all start with a bag full of luck and and an empty bag of experience. The plan is to fill the bag of experience before the bag of luck runs out"

    Good article Giles ... keep 'em coming

    Will take issue with you though on snapping the throttle shut alongside the overtake to fit in after it ... rather a little more fine and accurate use of throttle control should be used to smooothly ease in behind the vehicle in front ...

    I'm being picky

    PS ... For myself I don't have a problem with being the 'meat in the sandwich' The car to my right, going in the opposite direction, CANNOT hurt me. When it's coming towards me it can When alongside me, whatever it does, swerve, explode, it will not harm me

    I would rather be closer to a vehicle coming towards me than those I am overtaking even though the collision speed would be much higher

    I can see them ... they can see me, we can work to inches between ourselves. The guy I'm overtaking might not know that I'm coming past, he needs more leeway in my mind ... just my take on the matter ya understand
    Tours, training or custom made earplugs ... it's all here.

    "If you want the rainbow then you have to put up with a little rain" Dolly Parton

  13. #13
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    Oxford, England
    Excellent, certainly would not describe myself as an advanced rider, but reckon I do most things about right, and with age seem to take less risks.

    I think most seasoned veterans pick up much of this stuff subconsciously, but it is great to see it like this, I tend to think "Oh I do that sometimes", but will now remember to do it all the time

    Had big scare as a lad on my 250LC, coming back from work one night in the Autumn, twighlight (well almost completely dark) just off a roundabout I came across an artic, long straight road with nothing coming, so I nailed it, got almost alongside the cab when a set of headlights appeared, some twat in a dark brown car just decided to turn them on at this point, don't think I missed the pratt by much at all!

    The tractor clip is great, with some mates a few years back we came across slow moving tractor near Kielder, mate up front pulled out to go past and it suddenly swung out, missing him by inches with the big thingy on the back (like a giant rake) luckily it was actually turning left, but had swung out right to get a line into a field on the left, no indication, obviously not a junction so no signs, my mate thought he was passing slow moving tractor on straight road.

    The driver looked all of about 12 years old as well, I live in a reasonably rural area so am a bit tractor savvy, but when visiting my mate in Cornwall I find it bloody terrifiying. I find France the same in parts, just a huge farmyard.

    So one last factor, the environment!

  14. #14

    Planning an overtake

    A clip you may find helpful and a good discussion point:

  15. #15
    Subscriber Click here to find out how to Subscribe
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    nice one Giles... lots of hard work!

    Your pitch is nicely advanced and some of the twat vids off youtube are only just Primary School! Sort of makes you wonder how they have the neck to post them really...

    Some of my best "reminders" to myself....

    Always have an exit.... overtake multi vehicles mentally "in pieces" so you are never hung out to dry.

    Never, ever overtake purely on a left hand view....(trucks etc)

    Tractors are always unpredicable.... years of living in the SW taught me lots about tracccers

    Be in the right gear... It's quick to change up but not easy to need to change down once started...

    Once committed.... GO!

    When on a great biking road, always expect someone doing what you are doing coming the other way. Bike/bike accidents are very uncool...

    Don't overtake "line astern" as in the TT vid. My last TT in 92 which was a feckin mess with 10+ rider deaths showed me that many TTers leave their brain at the ferryport if they had one to start with. Overtakes on the back of the curcuit away from the mountain were a free for all and near misses/crashes were regular.

    Obviously quite a few more...

    From personal experience I always move left to give me some distance from oncoming traffic as mentioned. Riders will eventually meet a "wanderer" and never expect and all that.

    Also it can be the case with some advanced instructors that they may want their students to "advance" over and above their ability/experience as in the tractor vid. A tractor is very often on a short trip from base so will turn suddenly and often right into that nifty little gateway. The bloke was overcommited and had no get out.

    Another thing about overtakes is that other Police and many other drivers will think that you are driving like a twat even when making rapid and safe overtakes so you have to "fit in" with the traffic flow as you do it. The abilities of motorbikes are well away and above the expectations of other road users!


  16. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008

    Click here to find out how to remove these ads

    "Bikesafe" course..... brilliant, if you've not been on one then GO on one now!

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