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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 07:56 AM Thread Starter
 
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fear vs. confidence

It has been a couple years now since I got on my bike for the first time and I have to admit it has been an interesting road so far.
I have to admit though I have learned for myself that the difference between a good rider and a dead rider has a lot to do with fear rather than confidence.
Last fall I laid my bike down at about 50 and have to admit it hurt pretty bad, luckily (at the time it was luck) I was wearing gear and the only thing hurt was my confidence. Circumstances involved a brand spanking new front tire and following a friend a little too fast. Being my second wreck I was discouraged and the bike sat most of the summer.
I just moved back out to Colorado with my bike in tow and decided to go for a ride in the mountains and stay the night at a friends house, next morning of course there was snow. Being a 24yr old male i decided to try and ride 100 miles home anways. Didn't work and my good sense got the best of me after only 4 miles and i turned around. Went up and got the bike later that week and observed how my riding habits have changed 20mph turns mean 20mph for me now and I am worried about all the traffic behind me, sand on the road, pressure in my tires and I wouldn't consider getting on the bike without my gear. I got into this thinking it took confidence to be a good rider and am now realizing it is fear that will allow me to become a better rider from this point forth...if only i would have known.
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 08:10 AM
 
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Wrecking really puts things in perspective. I was an animal on my first bike. I would take the tires to the limit of grip around corners, do top speed runs, and try wheelies and stoppies constantly.

Then one day I was on a back road and I was approaching a blind corner. So, why not try a stoppie? I had done those little come to a stop and pop the back end up things but I wanted to do a 100+ foot rolling one like the pros.

Well, the front tire locked up at about 45 mph with the back tire 6 inches in the air. I was lucky enough to regain control as a full size Chevy pickup came around the corner at 50 mph. The side of his truck came 3 inches from taking my head off.

I did not ride for a year and now I am very cautious.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 08:18 AM
 
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Re: fear vs. confidence

Quote:
Originally posted by msuskier81
I am worried about all the traffic, sand on the road, pressure in my tires etc. and I wouldn't consider getting on the bike without my gear. I got into this thinking it took confidence to be a good rider and am now realizing it is fear that will allow me to become a better rider from this point forth...if only i would have known.
Riding on the track has increased both for me. I see all kinds of crap on the road that I didn't before nor did I worry about it. Riding the track has given me more confidence when I'm riding in a controlled situation and made me more cautious when on the street. I still love running through my favorite set of twisties near my house but when in unfamilar situations or roads I'm more restrained.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 08:21 AM
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While a certain amount of fear is okay, it sounds to me more like confidence vs. overconfidence. Riding with fear will get you hurt just like riding overconfidently will. You need to be confident in your skills and know exactly what they are (or are not). Fear clouds judgement and may make you zig when you should have zagged.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 08:27 AM
 
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Street riding is about risk management and survival. My goal is to make it back in one piece. For example, the question I ask myself is not CAN I negotiate this blind corner at 60 mph, but SHOULD I negotiate it at 60 mph.

A riding class or track day will show the night and day difference between the closed circuit riding (where you can go to the limit of your abilities) and street (risk management.)
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 08:32 AM
 
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Difference in my days as they started in '46 so by '47 I was into flat tracking, which tells you Indian & HD bikes & later on into Brit irons.

Still by '47 I was also into dirt hill climbing & believe me competiting as often as they were avaliable did humble you as to pre-war riders outdid you.

My street & hwy bikes were riden sensibly & by latter part of '47 I had latched onto my first two Brit irons.

Again sensible riding, for in '48 we were into starting up Scrambling, now called Moto Crossing, Enduros, Observed Trials, Cross Country Racing & Road Racing.

True in '49 I had a 1000cc Vincent HRD Rapide C that I used for hwy use & we are looking at a powerful bike of 45hp & the fastest one could buy bar a Black Shadow with 52hp & we could, & I did, convert a Rapid C into Black Shadow & even some Lightening power & so have a powerful bike of 60+hp which was outstanding in our time.

Still I continued to ride both dirt, some road racing & the streets to hwys. Like 42 yrs of the comp & here I am into my 59th year of riding the pavement.

So you can see the difference of one that learned what with powerful bikes then only now they would be a joke YET the growing up was a long & very learning curve which is something the riders of these days does not gain that.

When it came to stunting or wild riding that was done in competition. Still with a Yamaha YZF600r, Honda 929 & Honda 954 if my garage I do not go potato-potato-potato when riding & if the max speed limit I will be scooting along well above it (bar cities or towns where I ride at the flow of the traffic) & on suggested speeds, on the hwys, I will be taking the bends at twice+ the speed.

You see I am not a flat-lander with drolling long straights, but one that has done most of his riding here in the Cdn Rockie Mtns which means a lot of twisty up & down roads with most being two lane to some 4-lane.

With all those yrs of riding experience I am a somewhat different rider to those that are starting up or have riding a few yrs. Never created an automotive accident & my prangs (what you call crashes) have been many in practicing & in actual competition but pretty darn rare when it comes to pavement.

Last edited by Smitty; 10-17-2005 at 08:43 AM.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 06:31 PM
 
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I'm getting close to 3000 mi. now on my Z750S (my only miles, I'm a new rider) and there isn't a time I get on my bike when there isn't some fear in my stomach as I head out. I wonder sometimes if it's like this for everybody. I'm not saying this because of an accident I've had or anything, but it's been like that since I got my bike.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 09:45 PM
 
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If I was a bit frightened about riding, then for sure I will not ride that day for it would have to be the little guy inside of me.

Otherwise it is the pure enjoyment of throwling a leg over a m/c & riding it that has kept me at it for 59 yrs of riding.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by ESanders2
I'm getting close to 3000 mi. now on my Z750S (my only miles, I'm a new rider) and there isn't a time I get on my bike when there isn't some fear in my stomach as I head out. I wonder sometimes if it's like this for everybody. I'm not saying this because of an accident I've had or anything, but it's been like that since I got my bike.
Actually, that only happens when I'm wearing gears and warming up the bike. The moment I engage the clutch, it disappears, and occasionally find myself doing things I told myself wouldn't do before I got on the bike. Still, when approaching a curve, I have to be more alert than usual. But during close calls with a cage, a tiny spark lights up back of my head.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-17-2005, 10:09 PM
 
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This goes for even when im in a cage, for the law of numbers dictates, the more people, the more retards, assholes etc.. and this is jersey so i always think, man this could be the last time I drive, ride, dont make it home. It just seems to stick out more in my mind on a bike due to no airbags or crumplezones to protect me.
Not to get to off topic, but has anyone ever had dreams of a bike accident and not decided to ride that day?
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