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  • Writer's pictureIan Speight

February 2023 - I'm back on a GSA!


Yes, it's true, I have gone full circle and ended up back on a BMW GSA, this time on the latest 1250 version. But more on this later, here's what else I got up to in February.

Training.

Unfortunately the February weather kept most riders indoors but one hardy soul did book a days training and it ended with a great result.

Pete came along on his 650 Vstrom and had a full days training and then the following day took his BMF Blue Riband Rider Award assessment with fellow Examiner Jim B and passed successfully, achieving a Gold grade. Well done and well deserved.

RoSPA Examiner duties.

Only one RoSPA test carried out in February. This was an Advanced Tutor test, where the candidate has to ride to a Gold standard and then there's a 'role play' element where the test candidate becomes the trainer and I become the student. The candidate then has to brief me, then follow me and then debrief my ride, picking up any areas to improve upon and also offer 'praise' for parts of the ride that were good. Some call this 'kiss-slap-kiss', others refer to it being a sandwich with an unpleasant filling....if you know, you know!

The test candidate was Paul who was riding a 1250GS. Paul successfully passed all elements and so he can now relax for another 3 years. Well done, great result.

RoSPA group.

I also managed a few Saturday morning visits to meet up with my local RoSPA group - Advanced Riders North Yorkshire. As is usually the case this time of year, we are a little quiet, but despite the damp and cold conditions we did get some good turn outs, so well done to those that braved the elements, as can be seen in this photo.

BMF Taster Day 15th April 2023

The plans for the BMF Blue Riband taster day have moved a step closer, with promotional 'adverts' being released via social media. Bookings are filling up fast so it should be a great day. You can read more about the event here;

Here's the region 2 trainers who will be involved in the taster day; from L to R - me, Jim B, Martin B, Mark G, Colin C and Alf G.

My bikes.

BMW R1250GS Adventure, to give it its full title. I have been here before, having previously owned two 1200 GSAs back to back. I didn't buy a 3rd because having had 2 and covered over 60,000 miles on them, I wanted to try something different. As most of you know, I had a Versys 1000 for a year and then in late 2022 bought a Goldwing. Obviously that didn't work out and I traded it for an Africa Twin Adventure Sport. That was a really good bike but it still didn't quite tick all the boxes, but in all honesty I was kind of resigned to keeping it as I didn't think there would be a deal to be had anywhere. Fortunately, a visit to Barrie Robson BMW changed all that and a deal was done!

So, the Africa Twin and the S1000R have gone. letting the S1000R go was very hard, I loved that bike and didn't think I would sell it just yet, but sometimes you have to look at the bigger picture and I have a plan.....there's always a plan.....

So, here we are, BMW1250GSA.

It's a 2020 bike, with just 15,400 miles on the clock when I collected it and is pretty much in mint condition. It came with panniers and has had some powder coating done to the crash bars and pannier rails and also has an Akrapovic end can, dark screen and some crash bar sliders which all in all I think makes the bike look really cool! I collected the bike on 10th February and have already covered around 1000 miles on it and so far so good.

We are all different shapes and sizes and no matter how good the Versys or the Africa Twin were, they just didn't 'fit' me like the GSA does.

The bike will be kept very busy with training and testing, and will also be heading to Wales in March for the annual Motarrad Tours pre season Tour Leader training and then in June I will be heading to the Alps on it and in August to Vienna. I'll keep you all posted with how it all goes.

Previous bikes - Honda Fireblade.

Last month I told you about the GSXR750 I owned, well that was traded in for my first Honda CBR900 Fireblade. The bike had been registered new in Feb 96 and I bought it second hand in March 97 from Miles Kingsport in Hull. I had read so much in the magazines about how good the Honda Fireblade was, that I knew the time was right to buy one. Mine was N 'reg' and was red, white and blue in colour. and it looked mint!

I didn't know it then, but this would be the first of many Fireblades and would see me 'toing and froing' back and forth for pretty much the next 10 years between sports bikes and sports tourers, as I struggled between wanting speed and outright performance over a bit more comfort! So, the Fireblade was everything I had read about and ticked all the boxes at the time. It was so good, the following year I traded it in for a brand new one, but more on that next month.

Well, that just about rounds up February 2023, hopefully I'll have a lot more to write about for March, until then ride safe.

Ian S




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