The laws of the jungle: 5 tips for neo-racers

Imagine this special moment: you have just been given a motorcycle! The sun hasn’t risen yet and you’re already thinking of your brand-new Aprilia 125, waiting for you in your garage. Seeing that you won’t be able to sleep anytime soon, you start picturing what you will do tomorrow with your new motorbike.

Riding a motorbike is a sports activity that requires technique and coordination, just like riding a snowboard or playing tennis. If you think you can just sit on your bike like a bump on a log, think again! In order to ride it, you must use your arms, legs, and especially your brain!

We bet that before buying it, your parents lectured you on how dangerous traffic is nowadays, blabbering on about how in their time everything was much calmer and so on, and so forth… Whether we like it or not, they’re not entirely off-track, even if the essential concept, today as in the past, is that it’s entirely up to us riders to have a good head on our shoulders and not get ourselves into dangerous situations. Does this mean giving up having fun? Not at all!

Let’s start with Riding 101: a motorcycle does not stand by itself like a car, and our first fear is that we’re going to “face plant” to the ground, but what else is truly dangerous in a two-wheeler? If we think of the traffic of cars, trucks and buses, we and our motorbikes are among the weakest, smaller and less visible pawns. We are like lizards living in a jungle – small and speedy, always thinking of how to avoid all sorts of dangers. This is the right attitude to keep: don’t expect others to respect us. The old-timer driving with his hat on has slow reflexes; the yuppie talking on his cell phone is always distracted and the “airhead” putting on her makeup at the traffic light is surely not paying enough attention to everything that is going on around her!

When you’re on a bike, being right is not enough! After all, we will be the ones taking a hit, on the ground; and there are surely better ways of inaugurating a new, roaring superbike! In a nutshell: keeping out of harm’s way in the jungle is always up to us! 

But what about driving schools? The truth of the matter is that having passed the driving test does not mean you know how to drive in the real world. So, here are the 5 tips that driving schools often don’t teach us, but that we should know before getting astride our motorbike to embark upon adventures like those of an authentic racer!

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