The fundamentals of group riding

We all want to enjoy riding with our mates on the road and be quicker than them on the track. We show you how to do both

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By Tim Dickson on Mon, 29 Nov 2010 - 03:11

Riding bikes with your mates is a right laugh. In fact, a shared biking experience - whether it's blasting an Alpine pass or simply having a Sunday run to a nice boozer - is much better than a solo one.

Plus there's nothing better than riding around the outside of your mate on a track day, and re-living the pass at the bar for the rest of the evening.

But it seems there is a serious problem when groups of bikers ride together - people crash, and for lots of different reasons. There are right (and therefore wrong) ways to enjoy a mob hoon - turn the page instantly if you have any doubts (or even if you don't...) and prepare for mass enlightenment.

A summer run with friends is what biking's all about. But how can you keep it smooth, swift and safe?

For many, biking is a social thing, and a big part of that is riding somewhere with a group of mates. For others, group riding holds less of an appeal, but situations arise when lone bikers end up riding with others.

If everyone is riding at the same pace, in the same frame of mind, going the same way to the same place and they all want to get there at the same time, then it shouldn't be a problem, but if anyone is out of kilter with the rest then problems can arise.

Gary Baldwin, an accident investigator with the Thames Valley Police, says group riding has become an identifiable cause of bike accidents. "In 2003 it became a real issue," he says. "You'd get 20 blokes riding together at a pace only one was happy with. It's a recipe for disaster."

But it isn't all doom and gloom. If you're up for a group ride there are few things you can do to make it run smoothly and, with Gary's help, we're going to tell you how.

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