Remember that riding in a group does not mean you surrender any decision making when it comes to your safety. Ride your own ride - be comfortable, stay hydrated and alert.
Before you ride:
- All motorcycles will be maintained in a safe condition.
- Motorcycles with malfunctioning lights, brakes, or worn tires (less than 2/32" tread) will not be permitted to ride.
- All fuel tanks will be topped off prior to arriving at the departure point. This means you!
- No drinking or drugged riding is allowed.
- A current liability waiver must be signed by every rider and passenger participating in Chapter sanctioned rides.
- Make sure you are well rested and hydrated prior to the ride.
- Bring a Cell phone (and rain gear) if possible.
- Bring your ID, Registration & Insurance information.
While you ride:
- All traffic laws will be obeyed.
- No rider shall be made to feel compelled to ride beyond her/his ability or comfort level.
- Reasonable measures will be taken to accommodate and coach riders new to group riding.
Our Chapters make use of ride "Shepherds" who can mentor new riders, riders who are new to group riding.
- All riders should bring water or another hydrating liquid to consume during the ride.
While we will make stops to accomodate thirst, hunger and nature it's important to stay properly hydrated at all times.
- Each ride shall be led by a Road Captain.
Leader of the Ride - Road Captains:
The Road Captain has the following responsibilities:
- Planning, mapping and coordinating the ride.
- Coordinating with the Tail Gunner(s) on actions to take (rendezvous points, cell phone contact, etc.) should one or more riders become separated from the group.
- Conducting a pre-departure group review of the ride plan including route, any planned fuel/rest stops, rendezvous points for stragglers and any known traffic hazards, detours or road conditions which the group should be prepared to encounter.
- Reviewing with the group riding protocols and hand signals.
- Determining whether the ride shall proceed as a single group or, if participation is large, broken into more manageable packs.
- If the ride is to be divided into packs the Road Captain will designate a Pack Leader to lead each pack.
- Taking and maintaining the lead position in the ride.
Position of bikes during the ride:
The Staggered formation places a bike at the outside of a lane and another inside.
- The bikes are a few seconds behind each other - not beside!
- In this formation there should be no bikes next to, in front of or behind another.
- The stagger allows for flexibility - a clear field of view for each bike and room to move to avoid any road hazzards.
- Staggered formations should adhere to the AMA guidelines where prudent.
- The guidelines state to keep within a 2- to 3-second interval of the bike directly ahead in the same 1/3 of the lane (1 to 1.5 second behind the bike staggered to the opposite 1/3 lane).
- This is especially important on interstates or other multi-lane highways where stringing out the formation invites infiltration by cages.
- Following distances may be increased where cage (car) infiltration is not an issue.
- The Road Captain may signal for single-file as conditions warrant.
- Single file is signaled by the appropriate hand signal
- Single file is to be maintained until the Road Captain signals otherwise.
- Parade formation (next to each other) may be used in rides under 25mph.
- This is an "event" ride formation (Parades, tributes, etc.) and will ONLY be used if requested by an event, permitted by local law and approved by the Chapter representative.
Back of the Pack - Tail Gunners:
- Each ride shall have at least one designated Tail Gunner.
- The Tail Gunner is responsible for keeping all riders in formation.
- Should a rider need to leave the group or pack, only the Tail Gunner will stop to assist them.
- Each rider who elects to drop out of a ride (time constraints, prior commitments, etc.) will notify the Tail Gunner before doing so.
- When riding during daylight hours each rider shall keep his/her headlight on to increase visibility to other traffic as well to the Road Captain or Pack Leader.