Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Advanced Motorcycle Training Workshop - Normandy April 2013 - Day 2

Well after  a sound sleep and not hearing the church bells, down for breakfast and then out on the road for 10am.  Do you ever get one of those feelings that is going to be one of those days.......Well the Sat Nav packed up, had a mind of it's own....Switching between screens, freezing, you name it, it did it, then no power in the Drift HD camera.  Could job I had the old reliable Sony Camcorder and bullet cameras working, and five other motorcycles fitted with Drift HD cameras.....
Down to business - Not a good day for the weather, bit wet, but we are in Normandy and a few spots of rain was not going to spoil the day.
Just needed to decide on the running order and route, as my Sat Nav had all the routes.......Back to basics and memory:

Get the old maps out and hopefully I could remember roughly where we were heading...

Decided to head into  Bayeux for fuel and then head off along the D5 towards le Molay-Littry where we could stop for coffee and a debrief.

Organising the 9 riders:
Alison and Sue with me, with Alison being the first rider of the group.
Dave was with Kevin
Andy or as we got to know him as Dave, Dave, don't ask with Eva -Maria and Barry
Leaving Clinton as 'Tail end Charlie'
The D5 is a good road to just get you used to riding in France and Alison did well, with only a few minor issues which we discussed later.  The biggest thing, which never occurred to me before was the added pressure of being lead rider in a group of experienced riders.
Well the rain came down a bit more so we took longer than normal at the first stop before Sue had her turn in front as we headed for St Lo.  The roads were not that good in terms of rural dirt and the motorcycles looked a bit messy afterwards......

We made it so St Lo and the rain stopped, so I lead the group to our dinner stop in the quaint town of Villedieu-les-Poeles.  We use a cafe by the side of the church and treated ourselves to a sandwich, French style.  That big they gave you jaw ache.....

General chit chat at the dinner stop, everyone in good spirits and a lot of conversation about the riding etc......

Just to point out at this stage that all the riders on the Workshop had ether ridden with me before and some had gone on the gain advanced grades from the I.A.M and R.O.S.P.A. Other had had been on Bikesafe.  So the standard of riding was not basic and the general issues amongst the group was:
  1. Lack of observation in depth
  2. Being in CAR mode
  3. Balancing the motorcycle on the bends - CONTROL
The next part of the day was going to test their skills as we headed out on the D999 to Brecey, before turning east and heading along the D911 to Sourdeval.  This road has been on Youtube many times and used by me on numerous occasions.  It is a good surfaced road with good stretches between villages and hardly any traffic.

 
This is some footage from Andy (Drift Hd) as he follows Eva-Maria)

Once again Alison was the lead motorcycle and when we reached Sourdeval I decided to head North to Vire for a well deserved break in the town square by the old clock tower.  We had enough training for the day, so on the way back to Arromanches I took the group to see the gun battery at Longues s.Mer.

A great first day, progress seen in all the riders, another two days to go, just hope for some better weather......

Thought of the day - It is always great to have a reliable HOST, as I had forgot all about the evening meal.  I need not have worried as Karen had got it all sorted. - We had taken advantage of the offer of an evening meal at the bed and breakfast. Thanks Karen.

After the meal, it all became a bit technical with lap top, tablets, I Pads coming out from nowhere as the days camera footage was played back to the riders.  I tried to repair my Sat Nav, in otherwords take the battery out....Still did not work.....  Maps again for tomorrows run.......






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