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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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The Somme 4th September (and some other stuff)

I wish to confirm Thiepval Memorial to the Missingthe dates for our next Bike Trip to France. We will be visiting The Somme Region and some of the major World War 1 sites and memorials. The Somme was the scene of the Bloodiest Day in the History of the British Army.

An 8am Ferry from Dover on Friday the 4th of September and returning from Calais at 7.30pm on Sunday the 6th.

The cost of the trip will be held at £250 (the same as the earlier trips), and this will include your ferry crossing, hotel on a Bed & Breakfast basis, and my professional guided services.

If you wish to book a place please let me know, by one of the following methods; either by making a deposit payment on the ‘Online Booking’ page of my main web site (click the link to go to the web site- over there on the left), or with an email, or by placing a comment on this blog together with your contact details, or by phone.

Please note that this initial deposit will be NON -Returnable as it will be used to secure your hotel and ferry crossing reservations.

To book the ferry I will need your name and address and the registration number of your bike.

The trip will be limited to just 10 places (and four have been snapped up already) so don’t delay, check your diary and pack your bags!

For Ron (and your pals), and David I’ve got you on the list but could you confirm your booking by paying the deposit on line and let me have your registration number in an email. Ron, I’ve got your bike details. Cheers.

For all those who generously donated for my collection for the NSPCC. We raised £60 on the Saturday Ride Out and I have sent it off to the NSPCC towards the funds needed for a new Children’s Trauma & Help Centre here in Cardiff.

The NSPCC gives invaluable support to Children who live in the dark shadow of cruelty and abuse and your support to ease their suffering is much appreciated. Thank you.


Here is another date for your Diary.  We are planning a three pronged Ride Out. Starting at Riders Showroom on Sunday the 16th of August heading for a Large Country House in Rhayader, where food will be laid on.  We will be running 3 different groups on 3 different routes to the same destination.  1 group will be for Harleys, One group will be for Ducatis and one group will be for BMW’s – and any other makes actually.

There will be a charge that has to be made for the food for lunch, which I am told is to a very high standard, but i understand that there may be a free breakfast at Rider before departure.

For further details watch out for further blogs or drop in to Riders and speak to the Dealership Principal, Kevin.  He’s a really nice bloke and will be happy to see you there and fill you in!

We will be collecting small deposits to cover the cost of the food (approx 10 quid ish we think). So please let me know if you are interested.  Free Breakfast and a Bike Ride??  Interested….count me in.  As over the years I’ve ridden a Ducati, taught on the Harleys and now ride a BMW do I get three free breakfasts????

Come on….you know you want to.

There Are 8 Responses So Far. »

  1. Hi Andy, Is there going to be a rideout in July? (not sure if I have missed a blog) Cheers

  2. Thanks for organising another great rideout on Saturday Andy….esp that sensational route via the Black Mountains. No problem you all shot off from Pendine while Matt and I were still yakking at the caff……we caught up with a couple of the boys in Llandovery before making it a 250-mile round trip via Abergavenny and Usk. August 16th looks good….hopefully a July one in between? Cheers……Biker Jules

  3. I received the following in an email;

    Hi Andy…..

    I’ve tried to get the attached comment onto the blog over the last 48 hours……but I don’t think I’ve succeeded.

    Would you mind putting it on?

    “Thanks for organising and leading another great rideout on Saturday Andy…..especially that sensational route via the Black Mountains. No problem you all shot off from Pendine while Matt and I were still yakking at the caff. We caught up with a couple of the boys in Llandovery before making it a 250-mile round trip via Abergavenny and Usk. August 16th looks good….hopefully a July one in between? Cheers…..Biker Jules “

  4. Hi Andy
    Thanks for a great day on Saturday and all your efforts that you put into organising the day.When’s the next one?

  5. Ref 16th. Will be well up for that.
    Please keep me updated

  6. Oooooops! I’ve been told that it won’t be a free breakfast at Riders. You will need a few coins of the Realm to exchange for such sustinence. Full details will follow.

  7. Slow manouvering and emergency braking course -I have completed this days training today together with two other riders,under Andys instruction.
    I have already completed a 4 day Rospa advance training course and have wanted to undertake this training for some time.
    I wanted to develope my control in confined spaces and at slow speeds especially manouvres such as “U”turns.On arrival at the centre I found myself a space and parked up avoiding making a U turn in the confines of the centre.
    After and hour or so of theory,chat,coffee and demonstration by Andy and under his watchful eye and verbal encouragement I was making “U” turns in 2/3rds of the space that I had avoided on my arrival,in and out of cones and figure of 8 back to the start and another “U” – I amazed myself so much I had to got back and do it again and again.Sure I “kangarooded” a bit to start off but now I know why and how to avoid it.It was a revelation.
    Lunch,then the afternoon is set for emergency braking.Again about half an hour or so on the theory and principles then outside for a demonstration session by Andy.
    Then you get to practice in both wet and dry conditions.Im sure we have all had occaisions when we have had to brake a bit quickly, but this allows you to discover how you and your bike
    behave when you need to stop safely,quickly and remain upright.Each attempt is debriefed and supportive feed back from Andy allows you to develope at your own pace and in a safe environment.
    The day wound up with a race .The idea was that the three of us started and the last one passed a given point won ie the slowest .Competing isnt my strong point and I lasted about have way, foot down disqualified,fair enough.
    But the winner got to race Andy, now it got questionable and he got lucky.From where I was standing Liz definately had the better of him,a nice slow STRAIGHT course, then down went her foot.
    Ah well its been a great day and well worth it

  8. I always knew Andy was a bit slow, or do we call him special.

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