The BRC Flunkee
May 5, 2009 at 3:39 pm #2780SafetyFirstParticipant
Yeah, that’s me.
I managed to pass the MSF written test with 100% and the MSF skills test. But what I royally f’ed up in the class was the state skills test. Dropped it on the ‘brake in a curve’ test. Locked up the front brake and I was done for.
I was shaken, but I’m planning on taking the class over. Skinned knee and all.
I’d never rode a motorcycle before the class, so I can say I learned a lot. I was quite good at turning in a curve under speed. The stuff I need work on is low speed maneuvering – tough stuff. And what scares me shitless still is emergency stopping at 15 MPH and braking in a curve at 15 MPH. Bikes have a lot of braking power which surprised me a few times in the class.
If anything, the class showed me I have a lot of practice and skills to get before I get on the road. Before the class, the plan was to get a 09 Ninja 250. Now I’m planning on getting a decade old or so Ninja 250 to learn on in a parking lot. I’d rather hone my skills and figure things out in a parking lot than on the road.
Any advice?May 5, 2009 at 4:30 pm #18176KellisanthParticipant
Like you, I’ve done the written and skills testing (not MSF) with Ride Chicago. And this is actually my first real time in riding an actual motorcycle and learning.
I’ve failed the State test. Twice. So, you’re not the only one.
One of my faults, I guess, is that I don’t have enough practice time on the bike. And I tend to follow rules pretty well thus haven’t rode mine ‘cos I have no licensed riders to ride with! 😮 One of the requirements of the M Permits.
That’s what the DMV tester said. I need more practice time. Thus back to square one. And how can I get practice time?
If I was in the country side or suburb, I would probably go out and ride due to the idea of less traffic and distractions (my personal thoughts anyway). But in the City, it’s a bit trickier with all the stoplights, intersections and trains/buses. 😮
I’m glad you’re okay though! Skinned knee is scary. I’ve bruised myself when I had the small bike drop on my left leg, and worry what will happen if I have this EX500 do that same thing.
I have problems with the weaving, and sometimes the 90 turns. The U-turn I don’t have a problem with sometimes (I use rear breaking a lot). The corner turns and white-box stop wasn’t bad (I thought) and the emergency stop is okay – I just have to remember to release the throttle when going for the front break *haha*. The swerve isn’t bad overall but I went wide once. For me though, overall, it’s a visual thing. Like, the corner turns and the swerving – I can’t pretend a bus is there or a turn is coming up when I see a huge wide space in front of me. If there was like a raised barrier or something I can see, then that might help. Or hinder.
Do you know the layout of the riding test? Or remember the layout of your BRC courses? Or are you able to make use of their training grounds to hone your skills?
The course I took, they don’t operate on Sunday, but being at United Center, Sundays are iffy if anything with all the events United Center has or does.May 5, 2009 at 5:40 pm #18183DKParticipant
No worries on not passing the test. I know it can be frustrating, but it is better than failing out on the road where the consequences could be worse.
Sounds like you just need more practice. I will leave the technical advice to the rider coaches who are better qualified, but it seems like your biggest downfall is that you are grabbing way to much brake for the circumstance. It’s not a light switch. Keep working to get a feel for how much brake is necessary for a safe stop and you should be able to improve from there.
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