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Andy Smith is a former Police Motorcyclist with years of experience in motorcycle training at all levels. He offers training through 1stClassRider.co.uk, and ride outs through his newsletter blog right here. To contact Andy click here.

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RoSPA Advanced Motorcycle Test

wet-cement2At 1st Class Rider Training we use only Police Class 1 Riders as our Instructors, but in addition to this professional qualification, and the valuable experience that goes with it, at ‘1st Class’ we have among our staff 2 RoSPA Advanced Motorcycle Test Examiners and a RoSPA Diploma Holder. (And NO…It’s not him above).

(With another recruitment in the pipeline the number of RoSPA Examiners will rise to 3.)

I am often asked what is involved and what makes the difference between a Gold, Silver or a Bronze grade.

We run Advanced Courses which allow the participants to undergo the RoSPA test at the end of the course, and their test fee also includes the membership to RoSPA.

But What is the RoSPA Grading.  My earlier post gives information on the different Police Grades (Class 1 being the highest available) but not everyone needs to join ‘the job’ and wear a funny hat before they can have their riding achievements recognised.

RoSPA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) has it’s origins in the early fifties and was set up to halt the rise in Road Casualties.  It has grown since those early days and now gives advice, guidance and training to prevent accidents of all kinds.  Household, Workplace and of course the Road.

The motorcycle test has 3 grades.  (Three ‘Pass’ Grades that is- The Test Can also be ‘Failed’)



and Bronze.

So what does each one mean.  I will look at how the test is run and what is expected of the candidate in a later post but will concentrate here on the Grades and how they are achieved.

What follows is taken from the RoSPA ‘Guidance for Candidates & Training Officers’.


This Grade will be awarded to riders whose performance is significantly above the standard required to pass the ‘L’ Riding Test.

These Riders will also show a knowledge of Motorcycle Roadcraft ……….. The Ride should be entirely safe, observing traffic signs, responding correctly to hazards and should display advanced riding techniques.


This Grade will be awarded to riders who are well above the average.  These riders will produce consistently safe and systematic rides but perhaps without the final polish, flair and smoothness of the Gold Riders.  They will demonstrate a thorough knowledge of the ‘System of Motorcycle Control’. Candidates must be able to ride up to the permitted speed limit where it is safe to do so but vary speed according to circumstances and conditions. It must be emphasised that SILVER is an extremely high grade and is a commendable achievement.


This Grade is recognised as the highest riding award available to the Public.

It will be awarded only to the polished systematic rider, who displays a complete understanding and appropriate application of the principles outlined in Motorcycle Roadcraft’. The candidate will display a confidence and ability throughout the whole test which leads the examiner to consider that, if afforded the opportunity, the candidate could achieve a Police Grade without further tuition.  The candidate’s performance must be consistent throughout the whole of the test and so any lapses may result in a lower grade.

Awards of this grade will therefore be reserved for the very best riders.


Of Course there are other tests and schemes in the market but you can see that nothing else comes close to helping you raise your riding ability to the highest level like the RoSPA Scheme.  I agree that any form of further training has value but the RoSPA scheme is way ahead of the game.

The DSA are striving to implement a Register of Post Test Trainers, open to anyone who ‘thinks they can ride a bit’ so you may find yourself being taught by a Butcher, a Baker or a Candlestick Maker.  Now nothing against any of these fine professions but they may not be ‘professional riders’ with the depth of experience and training background to warrant you spending your hard earned.

One thing for sure;  ‘Thinking you’re good is one thing….but knowing your good is even better.

There Are 11 Responses So Far. »

  1. Hi Fellow Riding & Eating Chums.

    I am aware that the email that was sent out to you directing you to this new Blog still had the old Blog Page attached to it. This has now been rectified. Sorry.

    Also I’ve started a News/Blog Page on the tail end of my Web Site. This Web Site blog page is a bit more formal but you may find something of interest to you there.

    With this new Blog Newsletter you should find it easier to post comments (you don’t need to sign up for a google account or anything like that….just comment away), So please feel free.

    This is your Blog as much as it is mine (except it’s got my picture on it!

    News of the Next Ride Coming Soon.

    Also Advanced Course Dates for the UK.

    Also, a French /Belgium Trip to visit Battle Siites and War Graves etc.

    All coming Soon.

  2. Just an note on Jackets for the Larger Bikers, I was down Thunderroad last weekend and they had a fair range for the fuller figure at varying price’s. So much for HG.

  3. Andy, got that Garmin waypoint list of battle sites and war graves if you want it … post some dates as soon as you’ve decided I might try and take a few days break to tour around some with you 😉

  4. Cheers Craig. Thanks for that. I’ll give you a shout when I get a couple of dates in mind. I think we may go a bit quiet when the new bike test comes in, for a bit.

  5. Hi Andy- not sure if I should ask someone who has Police Class 1 motorcycle grade and is a RoSPA Examiner- but anyway here goes! Can you recommend a good school that teaches wheelies and knee down courses locally to south wales ……….looking for something a little different to a trackday…thanks

  6. Most of the students we get can already get their knees down……unfortunately it’s usually in a straight line!!

    I’ll have a think.

  7. Who are yor RoSPA diploma holders?

  8. Hi Brian,

    It is I who has the Diploma.

  9. Brian.
    The Clue is in the little pen picture above these comments. Observation…the key to good riding eh!

  10. Cant wait for this ride out,realy looking forward to meeting a virgin welsh ewe and seeing coal dust again (it will remind me of the good old days).
    News off the press, or direct from Kev Badderly, new BMW, Ducati, showroom to open soon in cardiff on Sloppy road (sure it wont be Sloppy)
    Late march seems to be when this great event will happen, there will be a Full Coffee shop and Snack bar therein and I believe that bacon rolls and other tradional welsh foodstuffs will be on offer (perhaps the glow of the golden arches will start to fade in our leaders eye’s ).This is great news for all welsh BMW owners and bad news for all of you who bought shares in the golden arches chain on my advice,perhaps now is the time to sell the shares and buy a welsh virgin EWE, but be warned they are expensive.
    Another bit of biking news is that realworld motorcycles of Aberaman are holding an open Day on March 22 , on display will be the 2009 range of victory motorbikes and some italian stuff, there will also be a brief memorial service for all those killed in action at the Welsh whisky plant in Penyderyn , wales, on the 15 th march,2009 (they make welsh welsh wisky there , if you didnt know ). A collection will also be made to fund the legal expences of those caught talking to the virgin welsh ewe, those caught stealing coal dust and saddest of all those caught with application forms for the welsh male voice choir.
    The first Victory owners ride out will happen on a sunday early in April (date not yet arranged, but it will depend on my court appearance at the Aberdare Magistartes court (following the whisky trip),and whether DOLLY will let me out).

  11. John. It sounds like you’e been at the Whisky already or is it the excitement of meeting up with Dolly after all these years.

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