HASLAM. The name is synonymous with motorcycle racing, and despite having long retired his racing boots World Champion Ron still plays a very active role in motorcycling.
In conjunction with Honda, the 61-year-old runs the Ron Haslam Race School, taking over Leicestershire’s Donington Park more than a dozen times a year to teach motorcyclists the tricks of his trade.
Thousands of riders have passed through the doors of the school since its inception two decades ago, with Ron and his handpicked gaggle of instructors teaching them how to ride both faster, and safer.
The school offers three experiences comprising On-track, Premier and Elite. On-track caters for novices from age 12, giving them access to a fleet of CBR125s, CBR300Rs, CB500s and CBR500s, age-dependant.
Premier gives more experienced riders in-depth instruction aboard Honda’s now-discontinued CBR600RR, while Elite – available to only those who have completed the previous level – sees riders graduate on to the revered Fireblade.
Back one chilly autumnal morning I visited Donington and joined instructor Nick on the Premier experience.
As we began the day by signing-on and kitting up, there was an excited buzz coming from the bikers sat in the welcome hall, drowned out sporadically by the roar of a superbike flying around the 2.5-mile track.
Soon enough, my Premier group was called into a trackside briefing classroom, where a biography of Donington Park was given, before cones, flags and other rules were explained. Unlike those on the Elite experience, for many of the participants it was to be their first time on track and a few choice jokes from the lecturer served to calm our nerves.
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