Monthly Archives:May 2015

Mick Doohan calls for compulsory defensive driver training after 10 bike fatalities.

28 May , 2015,
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When a man whose body is filled with steel after horrific motorcycle crashes tells you to ride safe, it’s probably time to listen.

After 10 fatalities and more than 1000 crashes this year, Queensland’s paramedics recruited motorbike legend Mick Doohan to ram the message home to riders.

The five-time champion famously broke many bones, including his right leg (twice), his left foot and hand, an arm and the A/C joints on both shoulders.

He has metal plates and screws in his leg and left forearm and doesn’t want to see any more riders suffer the same fate or worse.

“It’s not about how powerful the car or bike is, it’s about what you do with it,” he said.

“A Vespa is extremely dangerous if you don’t handle it correctly.”

Doohan said both car and motorbike licenses were “too easy” to earn and called for defensive driver training to be made mandatory in the learning process.

The desperate call for motorcyclists and drivers alike to obey road rules, pay attention and avoid driving tired came as paramedics saw too much “carnage” on the road.

Queensland Ambulance Service officer-in-charge James Thompson, a rider himself, said he didn’t want to see anymore Queenslanders hurt on the roads.

“These images can stay with some people for a lifetime,” he said.

“Certainly the more serious ones not only do you see the effect what it will do on the person that’s been injured but you will also see the effect on family and friends that might be there at the scene as well.”

Both Doohan and Mr Thompson stressed the importance of education, something RideSmart trainer Elliot Stone seconded.

“It’s really scary when I see some of the things that I see on the news and on Facebook and stories I hear from students and friend,” Mr Stone said.

“These decisions that people are making are quite scary and any extra training is going to go a long way.”

For people wanting to emulate their hero’s feats on the bike, Doohan had one final message.

“If you do want to challenge yourself there’s really only one way to go,” he said.

“Go to Queensland raceway or Lakeside (raceway) or one of these places that are locally around here and play and have some fun.

“Because the downside of the consequences of falling on a motorcycle in a public arena, it’s fatal.”

Mick Doohan talks motorcycle safety in Qld

May , 2015,
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Mick Doohans is interviewed on Ten News. As he has always stated the road is not a race track.

Watch and Listen Here.

Reckless motorcyclist caught texting while speeding along a Melbourne highway.

15 May , 2015,
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AN idiot motorcyclist has been caught texting while riding in death-defying speeds of up to 100km/h. In a shocking photo obtained by the Herald Sun, the woman is seen riding along EastLink at high speeds while looking down at her mobile phone.

Steven, 25, who did not wish for his surname to be published, said he saw the woman as his boss drove him home from work.

“It was just in her back pocket and I saw her whip it out and start texting,” the man, from Croydon, said.

“She was on her phone a good 20 to 30 seconds.”

Both he and his boss were stunned by what they were seeing.

“I was like, ‘You can’t be serious’,” Steven said.

“I said to my boss, ‘Look at this idiot’.

“If she came off, she’d be dead.”

But the reckless rider is far from the only motorist to put her life at risk with a breathtaking piece of stupidity on Melbourne’s roads.

Another rider was snapped riding with a BBQ strapped to his chest along the Eastern Freeway after finding it dumped on a nature strip in January 2008.

A P-plate driver, who later turned himself into police, was also snapped travelling along the Eastern Freeway with his feet out the window on Christmas Eve in 2012.

Steven, a refrigerator mechanic, said Wednesday’s rider appeared to be in her 20s or 30s and was wearing no protective gloves and only a thin jacket and pants when she pulled the stunt near the Melba Tunnel, about 4pm on Wednesday.

Steven, who recently acquired his own motorbike licence, said there were vigorous lessons on safety before being given the privilege to ride on the roads.

“I don’t even take my hands off the handle bars when I’m tightening my gloves,” he said.

“I couldn’t believe it.”

State Highway Patrol Insp Simon Humphrey said drivers who take their eyes off the road for two seconds at 50km/h effectively travel blind for 27 metres.

“Anything could happen in that time,” he said.

“Driving while using a mobile phone can impair a driver’s reaction time, ability to maintain speed and position on the road, and general awareness of other traffic.

“Run off the road and rear end crashes are the most common types of crashes associated with drivers using mobile phones.”

Those caught texting while driving loses four demerit points and faces a $443 fine.

Insp Humphrey said police were not in a position to follow up the offence as the rider could not be identified by the photo.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.



6 May , 2015,
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Look where you want to go!   Steer the bike with your eyes!    You go where you look!  How often have we motorcyclists heard these phrases? Looking where you want to go obviously relates to vision, an important sense for everyday life, however when we introduce motorcycles, the importance of vision increases dramatically,……….

Not just as an essential tool for high performance riding and racing but also for survival on the road.

The fact is most of us are damaging our vision, namely our peripheral vision with our modern lifestyle of sitting in front of TV and computer screens. Compared to our ancestors, our visual field has narrowed dramatically.

If we get into the habit of looking directly at objects while restricting the awareness of our surrounding field of view, it’s comparable to not fully using other areas of our body. For example if we routinely only bend our knee ten degrees, you could imagine this bad habit of restricted movement would ultimately lead to poor function, soreness and long term damage.

It’s safe to assume that our vision also follows the familiar “use it or lose it” rule that is evident in other areas of our body.In other words, if we only use one part of our visual field, the rest of our visual circuitry will begin to go inactive.

So how important is peripheral vision to our riding and what can we do to increase our visual performance?

Peripheral vision is the part of vision that occurs outside the main focus of gaze or the means to know what’s happening around you without turning your head. The loss of peripheral vision is commonly referred to as ‘tunnel vision’. The role of peripheral vision is to spot the predators that lurk around us, originally tigers and nowadays more like cars and trucks or other riders and hazards that can do us harm. On the track, peripheral vision is a mega important skill essential to cutting fast laps, on the road its essential for survival.

Peripheral awareness is also linked to balance, movement, reaction speed, reduced mental fatigue and believe it or not intelligence. Its powerful stuff and improving our vision and, with training, our riding is there for the taking.

More Skill = More Fun

Information from the peripheral retina goes directly to the centre of the brain rather than to the brains visual centres. This means that your reaction speed is increased by using your peripheral vision. Boxers and martial artists know this. They don’t look directly at their opponent’s fists or feet, and can react quicker as a result.

Good peripheral vision increases optimum awareness of your overall visual environment. The more aware we are of our surroundings the easier it is to move around. As a motorcycle trainer, I see limited peripheral vision linked to a load of riding errors on motoDNAs advanced motorcycle training courses like target fixation, getting lost in turns, inconsistency, running wide, disorientation, mental fatigue, etc

Most riders also don’t look far enough ahead; however you can also look too far ahead; getting lost in the turn, hence peripheral vision is only part of the equation. You also need to understand how to apply it to your riding.

Fortunately, we can improve our peripheral vision by practising certain exercises, however, how many of us actually practise or exercise appropriate vision techniques to develop this much overlooked skill?

Next time you are riding down the highway, use your peripheral vision or your minds eye to look at the vehicles around you whilst keeping your eyes looking ahead. You will be surprised by what you are able to see with your minds eye, different colours, and different types of vehicles and also look out for an important benefit – a slower sense of speed. If you are on the track, you may want to use more advanced vision enhancement techniques such as light reaction training to improve reaction times and enhance peripheral fields of vision.

Vision, is a dynamic process that involves combining skills of aiming, tracking and focusing, along with a bunch of other mental and neurological processes. So how does peripheral vision help us on the track or road?

To figure this out, let’s consider the elements needed to negotiate a corner, elements known as reference points (RP), these guide us and are vital to help prevent getting lost in the corner. Typical reference points include, braking point, turn in point, apex point and exit point.

The trick is to look ahead, but not too far, and lock in these reference points with your eyes then use your peripheral vision to judge distance and track your motorcycle between those points. On the road you will be scanning too, looking for potholes, oil spills, gravel, etc

The mechanics of cornering on a track go something like this:

You approach the corner with throttle on, your vision is scanning for your braking reference point (RP), and you locate the braking RP and lock this in peripherally. Next your vision is scanning for your turn in RP. You locate your turn in RP and lock this in visually too. Meanwhile you are still on full throttle and have not actually reached your braking RP yet, however you are already aware of your braking and turn in RPs in your peripheral vision. You reach your braking RP, located with your peripheral vision and brake, meanwhile your vision is further ahead, scanning for your apex RP which you locate and lock in peripherally. Meanwhile you haven’t turned in yet. You get the picture. Effectively you are joining the dots.

As mentioned previously, using peripheral vision also slows down the sense of speed. If your average speed for the corner is 150 Km/h, that’s over 40 metres in just one second. In an 80 metre long corner all this would be over in 2 seconds, hence the value of slowing down the sense of speed!

So, like most things in life to be good at something takes practise and focus. Make a plan, get training, and improve your peripheral vision and ultimately your riding.  Loosen up, relax your eyes and let the periphery in!

Improve your skill and ultimately safety on the road with the motoDNA Rider Experience.

IRF & RA Conference calls upon world leaders to make road safety a reality.

May , 2015,
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The International Road Federation (IRF) – Roads Australia (RA) Regional Conference for Asia and Australasia, the largest of its type to be held in the Asia-Pacific region concluded in Sydney today calling for thought leadership within the national and international road sector when it comes to addressing the pandemic of Road Safety.

Under the theme of road safety and innovating for the future, the joint regional conference has affirmed Roads Australia’s and the IRF’s commitment to the goals of the United Nations (UN) Decade of Action for Road Safety – to stabilise and then reduce the forecast level of road traffic fatalities around the world by increasing activities conducted at national, regional and global levels.

Both the IRF and RA have pledged to work through their respective policy arms to advance these goals at both industry and government levels.

The conference also reaffirms our organisations’ respective commitments to working with stakeholders to facilitate and support the adoption of best-practice in ITS and the implementation of technology to facilitate better outcomes for road users and communities worldwide.

The conference has reviewed a number of innovative case studies, highlighting the significant growth of ITS in improving global road network operations.

From a funding and financing perspective, we support the trialling of road usage charging where suitable and applicable, particularly in an Australian context. The industry will continue to work with all stakeholders to promote sensible debate and further investigations in this area which is gaining traction worldwide.

The IRF and RA called upon leaders from various countries to support the move to place the issue of road safety on a higher pedestal in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN, which will be finalised in September 2015. It was urged upon the leadership to assist in the propagation of this important and critical issue far and wide, so it garners a large number of votes and is included in the SDGs.

The conference, which has been the largest of its type to be held in the Asia-Pacific region, has welcomed 90+ speakers and 300+ delegates and dignitaries from more than a dozen countries including Canada; China; France; Greece; India; the Netherlands; New Zealand; the Philippines; South Africa; Switzerland; USA; UK; Vietnam; Zambia; and Zimbabwe.

We see the conference as a springboard for greater regional and international cooperation to advance the worldwide cause of better, safer roads, and undertake to support and strengthen ties across industry and governments worldwide to realise this goal.