A 500cc motorbike is definitely bigger, heavier and faster than a 125cc

Now that may seem quite obvious, but I was really surprised at the weight difference!

On Tuesday, I had another motorbike lesson with Mick from KK Rider Training on the 125cc. I’m really keen to try and get on a bigger bike as soon as possible. 125s are fun, but really, really slow and emphasise every single bump possible on the road. I got there bright and early, and it was only me on the lesson. Here’s some of the highlights:

  • My slow clutch control was much better
  • I was happier on roundabouts – I didn’t lose the back end once
  • I was nice and warm in my new jacket, kindly donated by a friend
  • I felt like my observations were very good

After a couple of hours on the 125, Mick suggested that we go back to the base and pull out the 500cc bike so I could have a go on that for an hour or so. I was super excited! He warned me that it would be heavier, and much more powerful than the 125. I agreed, and acknowledged his warning, but in some ways, I really didn’t believe him. I sure learnt the hard way that there is a huge difference between the two!Suzuki GS500. It really doesn't look that big!

Literally minutes after getting on the thing, and trying to pull onto the road, I dropped it. I was so embarrassed and when I tried to pick the bike up, Mick came over and helped me. There is a knack to hoiking bikes around. I really don’t have it yet. So we set off again, and I actually got the bike off the line. Here are some highlights from the next 50 minutes or so:

  • Fear. Lots of fear and mainly in the form of wimpering in my helmet
  • Big, wide turns rather than nice, tidy ones
  • Putting two feet down when at junctions
  • Being pleased when I moved from 1st-2nd gear
  • Not being able to feather the clutch and indicate at the same time
  • Having a big something fly into my left eye as I left the visor up and couldn’t take my hand of the handlebars to pull it down
  • More fear

After a while, I was feeling better, but still not very confident. I couldn’t control the bike and do observations, indicate or anything as complicated as that. It took all my energy just to figure out the biting point and breaking that was appropriate for the different situations. Mick was very understanding and said that I was very good and reading traffic, predicting when problems may happen and things so he wasn’t worried about that. I just need to relax on the bike, and learn how to ride it.

I’ve booked my next lesson for Friday. Eep!

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