Friday, August 06, 2010

Class photos.

Somehow what little blogging time I had this week went into organizing photos. I had backed up a bunch of photos on an external hard drive. The same hard drive that suddenly developed an I/O port issue which makes access slower than a bike with two flat tires. Guess I will have to start building redundancy into my backups.

Anyway, since I have a lot of my pics somewhat in order, I thought why not share some? This post is mostly pictures with just a few thoughts thrown in. Hope you enjoy. I'm spending my weekend on the bike doing some quality control functions for our training program. May you all get to ride, as well.

Bluekat should recognize the rider in the photo below. The instructor is my buddy Laurie.






The rider in the photo above is Susan, aka The Empress. That's my nickname for her. I use it with the deepest affection. There's a story behind it but I won't share it here. Susan works in the training program office. She's intelligent and very capable. I recently had the great honor of being her instructor. Check out that awesome head turn!

Actually, I've now been privileged to have four of the office girls in my classes. I don't want to picture how badly things would run without them. This group takes great care of the instructors and students. Since they control the schedules they can chose which class to enroll in. I take it as a great compliment when they choose one of my classes.

There are all kinds of riders coming to classes. The guy below is a young racer wannabe. It can be a trick to keep these guys engaged in the learning process. In this young man's case, all went well.



Then there are those who rode years ago but quit for decades. Now they are coming back. A training class is a wise move.



It's always interesting to see the concentration in the students' faces.



A gratuitous photo of Elvira in working mode.





More instructor bikes.



It's always my goal to make learning fun for the students despite their being a little stressed and tired. You can see the student smiling under his helmet as he's coming into staging.





Even the pros come for training. What does that say about the rest of us? If you ever get caught by a motor cop after a chase you can thank me and all my fellow trainers!



Jeff is not only fast but you would never outrun or outlast him. After all, he finished second in last year's Iron Butt Rally.



Add nerves of steel to stand so casually while pumped up cops go whizzing by within inches of him!



Training on an airport taxiway can lead to some unusual companions. This jet landed on the runway next to us then taxi'd to the airport facilities. Successfully swerving into a jet engine blast is worth extra credit!



Big helicopter? No problem. Just make sure your faceshield is down when it lands next to you.





Before setting off we should all take a moment to get our heads into the ride.



Some choppers are handy to have close by when training at very high speeds. Like this medical unit. Fortunately, we had no need for it.





The number of female students in our classes is on the rise. That's a great trend.

How long has it been since you've seen a Yamaha Venture Royale on the road? This guy handles his very competently on the track. Skillful riding starts with the rider. A fact that is too often overlooked, in my humble ( ok, maybe not so humble ) opinion.



Finally, here's an "artistic" photo to wrap this post up.



Hope you have a great weekend!

Miles and smiles,

Dan

16 comments:

Arizona Harley Dude said...

Hello Dan...good post and pictures, but I have a question....why did the guy riding the Yamaha Venture Royale change the name badge to Honda?

irondad said...

Arizona Harley Dude,

That's what happens when I do a post from a netbook with a tiny screen. I got the wrong photo.

Great catch! Guess I'll leave it alone and suffer my humiliation publicly.

Bryce said...

Ah Dan the first photograph (all by G11 I suppose) "Bend Police,'
leads me to think of all kinds of weird scenarios.

Bend? I know Oregon. Why could they not have simply said "Police"
and left the word Bend out of the signage? Or do other police services enter the picture, such as state police, police from nearby
towns and cities.

Just asking.

bluekat said...

Ah yes, the lady motor cop from Bend. I see some others below in training. Hmmm...maybe you shouldn't train them quite so well! Kidding, kidding. Four were working the freeway this week. They didn't notice a green ninja skulking by in the opposite lane. Invisibility cloak must be in good working order.

See, that's the problem...you train them for skills, accuracy & speed then send them on a iron butt to build endurance. How's a hooligan supposed to win?

Nerves of steel. Sure, send the well trained motor cops riding by. That's easy (...like I'd stand there...) Wait til you get one scared, nerves-of-whipped cream, freezes-in-corners, ninja in there...you'll all be running for cover! By the way, I had a stoopid, bite-off-more-than-I-can-chew moment and signed up for a ART class. You've been warned...keep your armor on, and wear your running shoes. Make sure the Life insurance is paid up...oh wait, that's on Ron's list...

I like the photo of the police taking a "moment to get our heads into the ride". Has a nice emotional appeal. I'm always amazed at how much the head has to get into the riding, and how that chases away all other issues of the day.

The final photo is a wonderful artistic ending to your post. I prefer to see it in a frame and not in my rear view mirror!

Orin said...

I see lots of BMWs. Are those the bike of choice for police departments in Oregon?

__Orin
Scootin' Old Skool

irondad said...

Bryce,

There are also the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office and Oregon State Police in the area. I'm sure there are reasons they want each agency readily identifiable.

Orin,

The BMW has been the choice but it is sort of losing favor. The cops are saying that BMW stands for Buy More Warranty or Bring More Wampum. Maintenance problems and costs are high.

The Honda ST1300 is being used but they have that high speed wobble stigma floating about. The Concours is being used by some departments We'll see how that goes.

Take care,

Dan

irondad said...

Bluekat,

I sent you an e-mail from my Irondad account that might explain the four cops. Hope I remembered your e-mail correctly or some stranger will be wondering what the heck this is all about!

Congratulations on ART! You'll be fine. When are you signed up? I'm teaching on 8/23 and 9/13. How awesome to be one of your instructors!

Take care,

Dan

david said...

Love your photos man!! I want to ride like those cops ... All day every day would be nice too!!

Cops in the Cape got the Honda's, so we did a little research. May i assure you the wobble problem has been fixed? Weight distribution and suspension setup were the cause, but i've heard eyewitness accounts of them handling very well at high speds now!

peace :)

bluekat said...

Lost in cyberworld, I never saw an email. Please don't tell me they were on the look out for errant green ninjas.

I'm in the 8/23 class along with Brad, Stacy and Stacey, and I think, a couple others.
Saturday a group of us paid a visit to Pat's acres. Somebody pointed out the corner for emergency stops. I scoped out the hay bales that break the landing. Please have them well plumped, they need to be cushy. The last time I did a stop in a corner there was a whole parking lot to run off into. Perhaps I shall ride the ninja around the backyard...get used to plowing through the grass.

I still have 8 days and 7 hours to back out...

...as I said, don't forget the running shoes. Sprinting and leaping is difficult in motorcycle boots. :)

irondad said...

David,

I hear you about the riding!

Most of their riding here is drag racing. Speed up to catch up to a violator and then haul it back down. A lot of agencies don't allow the motor to pursue once a car shows up.

One of the new motors said he was rushing to a reported shooting and scared himself to death on a corner enroute. The training is good!

As to the Hondas, I had heard it was due to a steering head bearing combined with the extra weight of police equipment as you allude to. Glad it's getting straightened out.

Take care,

Dan

irondad said...

Bluekat,

I don't remember anybody running off the track during the quick stop in a corner drill.

You will do fine at ART. Hey, I'll be there, after all! Besides, I'm a professional evaluator. You can trust me.

Take care,

Dan

Plane Geek said...

Great shots of the Chinook Dan! Oh and the bikes too ;-)

kz1000st said...

I finally got around to taking the MSF ERC yesterday. What a blast. My Kawasaki W650 was just made for it. The place I went to gave me a private lesson so I had the instructor's complete attention.
I got to do the dreaded box-six times-and between her advice, and yours, about turning your head to look behind as you turn, I was successful with room to spare.

Dean W said...

David-

Yeah, suspension and weight distribution is a large part of the ST1300P's problem. The problem with that is- the weight gets distributed that way because there's no other place to put the gear (radios, etc.) except at the back of the bike...

So departments can buy an ST1300P and have to fiddle with what goes where and finicky suspension, or they can buy a BMW, or even cheaper, C14, and not have to worry about it.

I'm curious why Yamaha never put the FJR1300 police package out in the US.

irondad said...

kz1000st,

Way to go on the class! I have the deepest respect for experienced riders that go back for more training. There's a little pride to be put on the line and a lot of folks can't get past that.

Congratulations on the skill development and thank you for sharing it.

Take care,

Dan

irondad said...

Plane Geek,

Thank you for gracing my blog! Why would somebody with a handle like yours be interested in a helicopter, I wonder?

Take care,

Dan