Monday 12 July 2004

Motorcycle Training

I've passed my Compulsory Basic Training and my Theory Test. Just got my Practical Test to do!

I've always wanted to ride a motorcycle ever since first riding as a teenager. While 18 and backpacking in Nepal, my friends and I managed to rent motorcycles in Katmandu and ride around the countryside. That was the first time I'd ever ridden and it was great fun. Now I'm finally getting around to getting a license.

Last Monday I did the Compulsory Basic Training. It's a full day being taught the basics of motorcycle handling. There were four of us on the day and the instructor started by showing us a video of a motorcyclist hitting a car and being taken to hospital. Gulp. All through the day, a very healthy amount of paranoia was instilled upon us. Certainly enough to make me reconsider being there! On to the practical side of things, we went through some simple motorcycle handling on a private track in the morning and then in the afternoon we were wired up with radio's and taken on a ride around the local streets.

You feel very vunerable on a motorcycle and it's pretty exhausting because you are trying to be so hyperaware of everything around you. I was amazed at how many metal drain covers there are on the road. Never noticed them before but they're hazardous to motorcycles when wet.

Today, I passed my Theory Test. There's two parts to the test: 35 multiple choice questions and 14 hazard perception videos. The multiple choice questions were easy and I aced them but I'm embarrased to admit I squeaked by the hazard perception part scoring only 47 out of 74. With these video's shown on a computer you're supposed to click when you see a "developing hazard" and based on when you click you're awarded between 0 and 5 points. I think the problem is I sometimes clicked too early when I knew something was about to happen and then clicked again very late. Still, I think it's a very good idea that they've added this part to the theory test.

So now I have several lessons to go and then on to the Practical Test.

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