** please note, that depending on the device you are viewing this on, the format may vary from the original**
Well, here we are in 2019. I hope you all had a great festive period and you're looking forward to the year ahead as much as I am.
I didn't think I would have much to tell you about for January but I'm pleased to say that due to the relatively mild temperatures, no snow and very little ice, I've been busier than expected.
Jim started the year off on the 12th on his BMW GSA. Jim already holds an IAM F1RST and is now looking to take his Masters.
Glenn was next up on the 21st on his Suzuki GSX650. Glenn is a relatively new rider who wants to improve his riding further and possibly look to take an advanced test in the future.
There was some disruption to training on the 31st when I had to postpone a session as it was -5 overnight ! Sorry Steve B.
I was also due to conduct some Masters Mentoring on behalf of the IAM but unfortunately the candidate had bike trouble but hopefully we'll be out first week of Feb. (fingers crossed Phil)
As well as my own training, I was also out with my local RoSPA group where I am the Training Officer. We are increasing our Tutor Team in 2019 so I'm on with that, as well as organising the annual Tutor Training weekend for May.
January also saw me and Kim get our faces in MCN for the first time in 2019, it was an article about riding through winter and although there were snippets from various people, we got the full page spread! haha
And finally, those excellent people at Barrie Robson BMW Motorcycles of York, put together a great deal to allow me to swap my current 1200 GSA Iconic for a new 1200 Rallye.
I bought my Iconic brand new in June 2016 and since then I/we have covered 33,500 miles and all completely trouble free.
In the UK it's taken us to the Isle of Mann, the Isle or Wight, we've been to the highest pub in England (quite a few times), the highest road in Wales and visited Scotland (numerous times) including most if not all of the NC500.
In Europe we've ridden most of the 'bucket list' passes such as Furka, Grimsel, Susten, Umbrail, Stelvio, Gavia and of course, the 'big one', the Grossglockner. It's taken us to the Opera in Verona, the Leaning Tower at Pisa, to lunch at Valentinos Rossi's Pizzeria in Tavullia, to the Eagles Nest, the Nurburgring and so many 'days out' that I've lost count.
It's also been featured in various magazine articles in RiDE, MCN, RoSPAs Care On The Road and the BMW magazine, The Journal.
And of course, it has been ridden for thousands of miles for bike training for myself, or on behalf of RoSPA, the IAM or BikeSafe and has seen me take and pass 4 advanced tests in the time I've owned it, 2 for the IAM, (a F1RST and a Masters Distinction), my repeat triennial test for RoSPA (Gold) and the Diamond Elite test (passed).
So the new bike has quite a hard act to follow but I'm really looking forward to seeing where the new bike will take us over the coming year, it's already booked for Wales in April and Spain in June.
Roll on 2019
Until next month.....