Monday, 25 March 2013

Training - Part 2

With 35 days to go, the Silk Road team were in Ystradgynlais (that's in Wales if you hadn't guessed)for the second briefing and training session.

The Off Road Skills courses are run by Simon Pavey who is a motorcycling legend having competed in the Paris-Dakar Rally on 6 occasions, finishing 4 times. Simon and his team of instructors put you through your paces in the 4000 acres of Walters Arena. The forest, dirt tracks, fire roads, hills and steams are an off-road playground.

We were given the brand new BMW GS 1200's to ride with 0 miles on the clock when we started them up. What a bike! Traction control, ABS, lots of smooth power and awesome brakes. A worthy successor to the long line of big twin engine BMWs.

However good the bike is, if the rider is a duffer it isn't going to get far in these conditions. It was a really stretching couple of days during which I thought about putting the motto "All the Gear and No Idea" on the side of my panniers several times. By the end though I had regained my confidence riding in rough conditions and was keeping up with the pack. But when you see the experts riding these things you also realise how far you have to go. Luckily we seem to have a couple of really good riders on the expedition, so I am looking forward to learning from them as we go.

If you want to have a lot of fun on a great bike, I can think of no better place to start than at ORS -

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