At 14 I coerced my parents into letting me purchase a motorcycle — a bright orange Honda Express. Technically it was a moped, but the 50cc Honda had fixed foot pegs, a two speed automatic transmission, and a peppy top-speed of 35 mph (downhill).
She was faster than the traditional mopeds (bicycles with engines) my friends owned. They were jealous, and that’s the way I liked it.
She had plenty of power and range to explore the entire city of Pensacola, and that’s what I did. A single quarter filled her tank, with a few cents left over. My parents would quiver if they knew the distances I explored. So far, in fact, that I had the engine rebuilt twice. Thank goodness they never noticed the odometer.
Goodbye Honda ExpressAfter the Honda became too old, too small, and too orange…it was retired. But the memories, feelings of freedom, and passion for exploring, never died. Over the years there were always good reasons NOT to purchase another motorcycle — not enough time, too dangerous, family resistance. So I didn’t.
Decades later I decided the time was right. I was exactly forty. After I assured my wife that a motorcycle was better than a fling — and that my life insurance bill was paid up — she gave me her reluctant approval. With less hair and more wisdom, and a family to take care of, the prospect of motorcycle ownership was different. This time, I wanted to make informed decisions.
I had so many questions:
- What type motorcycle should I purchase?
- Am I too old to start riding?
- What training should I take… and when?
- What steps can I take to minimize my risks?
- Will this FEAR I have when riding ever go away?
I sought, and found, two wise experienced riders to mentor me. There’s more to learn about motorcycling than I ever imagined. Funny thing, my mentor (in his 60s) has a mentor, and his mentor has a mentor.
“I wish more beginning riders could have this type of guidance there first year.”
MotorcycleMentor.com™ was born
The motorcycling community is a wonderful place to meet friends and enjoy the outdoors. I started this site to bring experienced riders together with beginning riders. I understand, first hand, the frustrations a new rider experiences. Motorcycling is a sport that takes decades to master. Even then, experienced riders will tell you they never stop learning.
I hope you enjoy the site.
Please participate by asking a question, making a comment or contacting us. If you like what we are doing, would you please consider tweeting it, posting a link in your favorite motorcycle forum, or liking us on Facebook?
Family and professionDavid has a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Auburn University, and a Masters Degree in Engineering from the University of Alabama Huntsville. This probably explains his interest in the physics of counter-steering and high-side crashes.
He lives in Northern Alabama with his wife, two children and three dogs (two Shih Tzus and the latest addition — a 23rd anniversary gift for his wife, a Great Dane). He has worked as an engineer in the aerospace industry for NASA for the past 25 years.
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