Saturday, March 24, 2012

IAM - The Test.



It was raining (again) Sunday morning as I headed up to Westgate to join IAM for it's monthly ride.  Buy the time I got to the meeting point the weather had begun to clear though.  During the last month Phillip had been to Christchurch to test some guys from down there.  I had been busy to, so I had not rushed to sit my test.  For those regular followers of my blog you will recall that on the last IAM ride I had passed my check ride (you can read about that here).  During that time I been riding to work a lot, in fact every time I get on the bike I am trying to ride to an advanced level.  Consistency has never been a strong point so I have been working on that a lot. 

Since I completed my very first Advanced riding course I have been really challenged to improve my skills, and many of you will know the failures and struggles I have gone through even to get to the stage of sitting the test.  Geoff James who's friendship and support has been indispensable to me as he  has gone through the same thing.  My mate Richard Turnbull, Andrew Leys, Bruce Everett and the hours that Phillip and Simon had put into my training needs to be mentioned as well.  It all came to a head on Sunday morning when Phillip pulled my aside and informed me that since we had an opportunity he wanted to put me through the test today....like now...like in ten bloody minutes......oh crap.   Of course the advantage of this is I didn't have time to get stressed , or worry.  I just had to get on the bike and ride.  Ride like I always do.  Ride like Phillip is not behind me.  

We pulled out of the car park just on 10.00am, headed north through Orewa, Warkworth, Woodcocks Rd, through Helensville and back towards Westgate.  Two hours of riding, various speed zones, overtakes to be completed, various obstacles to encounter and be aware of, (cow on side of the road on SH16, Lady riding her horse along the road) all sorts of stuff.   Woodcocks road is a nice tight and twisty back road. It is a good road to test advanced riding standards on. Chasing the vanishing point, right gearing, right speed, all come into play on this road. I was trying hard not to over think any of the situations that arose.    What would I do normally if Phillip wasn't following me? After two hours and close to Westgate we pulled over.  It was time to see how I went.

I personally thought I had done well, I felt I had missed an opportunity to make progress at a roundabout, and also missed a overtaking  chance, I didn't think either was a major.   When we began to discuss things Phil brought up both theses incidents.....I was pleased in a way,  it made me realise that we are both working form the same page.   The end result.............


I PASSED!!!!

You *&^$ beauty....

Phillip reached out his hand to congratulate me....I just hugged him, and fought back the tears!  God I was feeling a bit emotional.

It has been a 12 months since my first Advanced riding course with Tricia, and 9 months and many observed rides to get to this point.  I had suffered setbacks and failure, almost gave up, swore at myself a lot, and at times felt very demoralised.  But here I was, a full member of IAM.  Phillips words to me afterwards really meant some thing to me, and really summed up what I have been trying so hard to achive.  "To me"he said; "You rode to an advanced standard, right gear, right position and right place".

For me this is just the beginning, I stilll have a lot I want to accomplish, observer satus is next on the cards...carnt wait, but for now I will enjoy my recently poured double (actually good be quadruple ) vodka, and enjoy a moment of accomplishment. 

For those who have supported me through this journey, and there are many, I offer my sincere thanks. Special note to my partner Terry who's love and support has been awesome.

Took this photo last year at the pink ribbon ride, Andy, Geoff, Richard, me and my son. Thanks guys.


40 comments:

  1. Hey mate, Let me be the first to congratulate you on the completion of your test. Awesome man !!!!! I love the way you ride mate. Andy

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  2. Awesome, Rog! You rock! Congratulations!

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  3. Congrats Rog, put the feet up and have a cold beer and enjoy the fruits of your success.

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    1. I did.....man I wish it wasnt Monday tomorrow.!

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  4. Well done! Congratulations! Aren't you glad that te testing happened this way, less time spent stressing about doing it or anticipating it. Sometimes it's just better to get it done, good for you!

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    1. Thanks hn, yes I am glad the way it worked out.

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  5. Hey Man, awesome and I love the way you ride, Andy

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    1. Cheers Andy....you helped a lot. You will do well Friday.

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  6. Roger,
    Great result. I have been following both your and Geoff's IAM training. Good to see that you've achieved your first goal. Well done .... and I like the red 1050.
    Cheers, Nils

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    1. Thanks mate, Glad you enjoyed the read, The Red Sprint, well she always looks gorgeous.!

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  7. Good on you mate, When I have the time/license/bike back I will get onto these as well!

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    1. Thanks mate, cant emphasis enough how much good training helps. Reguadless how many years you have been riding there is all ways more to learn. If you ever want to come to IAM will be more than happy to introduce you to what is required.

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  8. CONGRATULATIONS!!! Fantastic accomplishment. (I knew it was party time.)

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    1. Hi Lori, was pretty stoked, had one to many Vodkas last night but anyway it was good.

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  9. Congratulations, good job, now full steam ahead on the Sprint :-)

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    1. Thanks mate, I am enjoying my riding more than ever, I love my Sprint will take a lot for me to part with that.

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  10. WooHoo, congratulations. I have goose bumps just reading about it. We all knew you would pass it.

    The test was a surprise but you rose to the occasion. Like you said..... not as much stressing about it and you didn't lose sleep over it the night before.

    Way to go Roger!

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    1. Thanks Brandy, couldn't sleep last night I was so excited. Feels good to have accomplished something. On wards and upwards.

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  11. Well Done Young Sir,

    You will have to come to the UK - Were having gloriuos weather here.

    What next - Video on Youtube or perhaps becoming an observer,

    All the best

    Nigel
    advancededbiker

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    1. Thanks Nigel, yes that is my goal to be an observer. I have a strong desire to put some thing back into biking. Thanks for your support.

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  12. Rog mate, you know how the rest of the riders who were at the ride felt but your other readers won't!!

    When it was announced that you were going for your test RIGHT NOW, we all laughed on seeing the stricken look on your face, but I think that everyone there came over, shook your hand and wished you luck.

    When you got back, ripped off your helmet and said you'd passed, everyone there came over and didn't shake your hand but gave you a bloody big hug instead! That's a pretty fair display of what everyone feels about you and how they've personally got involved in your journey.

    Warmest congratulations again Rog - you're going to be a top notch Observer!

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    1. Geoff mate! I think I wear my heart on my sleeve a bit don't I? As you will know I have certainly had my doubts at times. I am looking forward to pushing on now. I finally feel I am getting into a position that I can give something back.

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  13. As I said on fb. Well done!!!!
    If you didn't deserve the pass, you wouldn't have got it.
    It's not like most other. NZ licences, that can ALMOST be cut from the side of the breakfast cereal packet. "I can hear people sharpening their pencils for letters of complaint, already ".
    Now your riding in the last year, has taken a whole new direction. You have converted. But a word of warning. Don't think you are bulletproof.
    About a week after my very good friend in Ireland passed his gold Rospa ( highest award for a civvy

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  14. He ended up with a short wheel based pan European. He had just started to accelerate to overtake a car towing a sheep trailer. As he passed the sheep trailer he saw that the Right indicator was flashing. Lights on trailer not working. The car turned right into a field and chucked him. It may have been complacency or just bad luck or bad timing. Luckily he walked away. Pic of bike on my fb page.

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  15. Enjoy your dizzy heights of achievement, but never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    When I am allowed to ride again would love to go for a spin with you. See if you can teach me know 😄

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    1. Thanks Tricia, I think you remember you telling me that story when we were training. All good advice, look forward to going for a ride. What do you mean"when you can ride again" has something happened?

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  16. A pop quiz, eh? Great job, congratulations!

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  17. Let me add my congratulations as well Roger. Glad that all that off road riding hasn't messed with your on rodd capability - congratulations & well done!

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  18. Let mne be the last to congratulate you!

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    1. Not quite Nikos...Bob holds that distinction at the time of writing this, but I very much appreciate you compliment.

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  19. Roger:

    No, let ME be the last to congratulate you. Well done ! I liked the idea of THE TEST without warning. Not that you could really prepare for it anyway, I mean, you just ride like normal . . .

    bob
    Riding the Wet Coast

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    1. Thanks Bob, And I agree I shouldn't have to turn it on and off I should always be riding to a high standard. It was good not having to much time to think about it though, I do tend to get wound up by such things.

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  20. How did I miss this very important post? Congratulations Roger, great job accepting the challenge and passing the test. I look forward to reading more about the IAM and your journey.

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