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  • Writer's pictureIan Speight

January 2022 - New year, new boots!

Well, here we are at the start of a new year and despite the rather chilly weather, I was still able to get out on the bike a few times. So, here's what I got up to in January. Training Matt, riding his BMW F800GT kicked off training for 2022. Matt holds a RoSPA Diploma and as he was due his triennial retest, he decided to have a full days refresher.

Next up was Geoff on his BMW R1200RS. Geoff is a relatively new rider, having only passed his test 5 years ago, however, Geoff has crammed lots in, in those 5 years, with tours in the UK and Europe.

Friends Andy and Steve were up next. Andy was on his R1250RT and Steve on his Tracer 900GT. Andy already holds a RoSPA test pass but it was Steve's first experience of advanced training. The guys travelled over from Louth in Lincolnshire, staying in a local hotel ahead of their days training and the guys came fully prepared for roadside brews!

Alex finished off training for January on his F800GT. Alex came back to biking in 2021 after a 15 year break. Prior to stopping riding, Alex held an IAM qualification and had been an IAM Observer. Now back on 2 wheels, Alex decided to have a refresher session. It's fair to say that Alex was very quickly up to speed and was soon displaying smooth lines and a progressive ride.

BikeSafe 2022 Humberside Police recently released their 2022 BikeSafe dates and I am very pleased to be supporting this great initiative for another year. For more info about the events, check out this link.

Interphone Tour Intercoms Kim and I headed out on the Versys on the 1st of the month for a refreshing new years day ride. We only ventured as far as Scarborough but it gave us a chance to try out our new intercoms. A couple of days before, I fitted a head set to Kims' Shoei, which was a pain free exercise that only took a few minutes and then took the units out of the box to charge them up. Much to my surprise, they had come fully charged. What was more impressive was that they had been sat on a shelf since being delivered in mid November and hadn't lost any of that charge. The units paired immediately and were as clear as a bell, even at motorway speeds. Although I've been using bluetooth comms for training and when group riding for a few years, me and Kim have always used wired Autocom units for rider to pillion. In fact, I've been swapping the same Autocom unit between bikes for about 15 years but it now seems it may well be redundant! Time will tell. Social ride On the 22nd I met up with friends from my local RoSPA group, (Advanced Riders North Yorkshire) for a little social ride. Good mix of bikes. Me on my Versys, Richard on his 1200RT, Chris on his Ducati Hypermotard, Andy on his Vstrom and Geoff on his Tiger Sport. It was a nice ride which took us to the NY500 cafe near Pickering. Only negative point to the day was the state of our bikes afterwards....all filthy!

Altberg Clubman Roadsters

During my time in Humberside Police I spent some great years in the dedicated motorcycle section. Part of the kit they issued to riders was a pair of Altberg Clubman Roadster boots. I'd never heard of Altberg prior to that but I so impressed with their boots that I bought a pair for personal use and I've been buying their boots ever since.

They are warm, totally waterproof, comfortable and when you've worn out the sole, just send them back to Altberg and for a small fee they can resole them!

First Motorbike

And finally. I thought I'd leave you with some photos of the first motorbike I owned at 17 years old. The year was 1980 and I bought myself a 250 Superdream. The bike came in a strange orange colour and had a HUGE full fairing fitted. As you can see from the following photographs, it changed style and colour many times during my ownership! Collection day.

Followed by a complete colour change and removal of that hideous fairing. It was now sporting a small nose fairing and a Dunstall 2 into 1 exhaust.

Then the nose cone came off along with the Dunstall exhaust and the standard pipes went back on.

Then another colour change. This was based around the the CB900 colours of the time. Note the black wheels and red plastic front mudguard, rather than the original chrome item. Unfortunately the large top box (bread bin) somewhat spoils the sporting colour scheme!

I completed many miles and some really stupid stunts on that bike and loved almost every minute of it. It was the first bike I ever did a wheelie on, the first bike to 'get the pegs down' and the first bike I fell off! Happy days. Next month there will be more archive photos from me yoof. Ride safe everyone. Ian

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