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Thread: Question for the Group

  1. #1
    Registered User Becky973's Avatar
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    Question for the Group

    This weekend I attended a Women On Wheels planning session for the year for Northern IL. During one of the session they had a man give a talk on "How to be a Road Captain" for a ride. This guy owns/runs a touring company in the Chicago area. He rides a HD (Hog). He said that National HOG Association has a 25 page manual on being a "Road Captain" for group rides and that all major association have a manual on the subject. My question to you is: Does BMW MOA have a "Road Captain Manual"? And if so where is it?

    Becky
    #973

  2. #2
    Registered User womanridge's Avatar
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    Interesting question. I'm sure you will get a lot opinions, but I would love to see if there is an actual manual.
    I would doubt it, but let's see..........
    Karen Jacobs
    Moderator
    2012 R 1200 RT
    MOA-133005, RA32109, IBA #37923

  3. #3
    2 Wheeled Troubador oldhway's Avatar
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    Not that I know of but I know that the group rides others take are far more organized and controlled than you typically see in BMW riders. Most of the folks I know might follow a suggested ride but massive group rides are almost unheard of.

    My observation only, others may have a different experience.
    Steve Marquardt, 2004 R1150RT

  4. #4
    Rocky Bow BMW Riders #197 bogthebasher's Avatar
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    Google Search

    I found many sites listing the following duties for a 'Road Captain' - definitely slanted to the cruiser/HOG crowd... as already said, likely to draw diverse commentary from this group.

    Road Captain Duties

    Conduct a Safe Ride
    Maintain a Safe Speed for Conditions and Riders Capabilities
    Signal Riders of Intended Lane Changes, Stops, Road Conditions and Formation Changes
    Maintain Control and Integrity of the Group

    Pre-Ride the Route. (Normally, more than one Road Captain will do the
    Pre- Ride)
    Map the Route
    Establish Rest Area's
    Set Gas Stops about 100 mile intervals
    Make allowances for Road Construction and Hazards

    Brief Riders before the Start of the Ride
    Explain the Ride Plans
    Destination
    Route to be taken
    Length of the Ride
    Scheduled Stops
    Gas
    Food
    Pictures
    Restroom Breaks
    Identify when and where the Official Group Ride Starts and Ends
    Identify other Road Captains for the Ride
    Big Groups may require more than one Road Captain
    Identify Tail Gunner(s) for the Ride
    Big Groups may require more than one Tail Gunner
    Give a brief explanation of what the Road Captain and Tail Gunners do during the Ride
    Question the Riders about any special needs or concerns they may have
    Medical
    Speed
    Small Gas Tanks and/or Bladders
    Freeway Traffic
    Twister Roads
    Riding Position

    Explain the Group Rules for Member and Guest Riders
    Illegal Drugs and Alcohol
    NO Alcohol before and during a Group Ride
    Illegal Drugs - Never
    Group Riding Rules
    Hand Signals
    Along with the Tail Gunner, do a bike and rider count.
    Ken
    [2008 R1200RT (Biarritz Blue) - Mine]
    [2007 R1200RT (Sand Biege) - Hers]

  5. #5
    Registered User ladybmer's Avatar
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    here's an eleven page one from Frontier Hog chapter http://www.frontierhog.com/LinkClick...to%3D&tabid=66

    and a ten pager from El Cajon CA
    http://psndealer.com/dealersite/imag...%2012-9-09.pdf

    enjoy

  6. #6
    Registered User Becky973's Avatar
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    Thanks for the answers

    I see that these rules are mainly for HD riding groups. I can not find anything on Honda or BMW group sites about "Road Captain"" guidelines. Thanks again

    Becky
    #973

  7. #7
    Rollin' by the River R1100rtp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Becky View Post
    I see that these rules are mainly for HD riding groups. I can not find anything on Honda or BMW group sites about "Road Captain"" guidelines. Thanks again

    Becky
    Not necessarily a "road captain", but here are some group riding guidelines from the MSF:

    http://www.msf-usa.org/downloads/Group_Ride.pdf
    Ride Hard, go far, and keep smilin...

    Karol Patzer, Ambassador, 2014 BMW MOA Rally Chair
    Visit St. Paul July 24-27, 2014

  8. #8
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    I've led a whole bunch of rides. Here's what I do. I always have a pre-ride huddle.

    - Describe the general route, including stops to pee, get coffee, gas, etc.
    - Instruct everyone to ride their own ride.
    - Remind people that if they're riding faster than they'd like, let people by and ride at their own pace.
    - Remind people not to crawl up each other's butt.
    - Every time there's a stop sign, wait until the bike behind you comes into view before leaving that spot.
    - Appoint someone as sweep.
    - Take a head count before you leave.
    - Describe your location at the end, so people can call if they get lost, separated or something.
    - Remind people that if they're going to leave the ride partway through, they should tell someone so we don't have to go back and start looking for them.
    - Be sure to remember that your origin will require a place to park all the bikes.
    - If you're going to a restaurant and you have a sizable group, call ahead so they can be ready for you. In some cases, they may open up a room for you.

    As the leader, you need to think for the whole group sometimes.

    Leaving a parking lot and pulling out into traffic? Wait until there's enough room for everyone to come out. Passing a car? Make sure you move over to let the next guy in behind you. Riding quickly? Don't lose the group! Keep an eye on the folks behind you. Make sure they're doing OK and folks aren't pulling over or doing anything odd. This might be your first indicator that something bad has happened. Make sure you have a cell phone to get help, if it comes to that. If I'm leading a group, I'm usually on the RT and carry a first aid kit.

    I find that most folks are used to riding in a staggered formation, etc. Around here, groups typically start to split into fast, medium and "looking at the scenery" groups. It'll happen naturally and if people have been on a group ride before, they'll probably automatically sort themselves as they're leaving the parking lot.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  9. #9
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  10. #10
    Dances With Sheep GREGFEELER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Becky View Post
    This weekend I attended a Women On Wheels planning session for the year for Northern IL. During one of the session they had a man give a talk on "How to be a Road Captain" for a ride. This guy owns/runs a touring company in the Chicago area. He rides a HD (Hog). He said that National HOG Association has a 25 page manual on being a "Road Captain" for group rides and that all major association have a manual on the subject. My question to you is: Does BMW MOA have a "Road Captain Manual"? And if so where is it?

    Becky
    None that I've every heard of. Some of the local clubs might, but nothing the BMW MOA has.
    Greg Feeler
    BMW MOA Director & Ambassador
    1972 R75/5, 1990 K75, 1990 K1, 1992 K75S, 2003 K1200RS

  11. #11
    Registered User 88bmwjeff's Avatar
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    I know this may sound a bit obvious, but have a few set hand signals. And, go over them at the beginning of the ride. I was on a local shop ride a few years back and gestured to the rider waiting for me to go on ahead, which I meant I would catch up. However, the other rider interpreted as a wave goodbye from the group. Luckily, I was with someone who knew how to get back.
    Jeff in W.C.
    1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
    "I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer

  12. #12
    You stupid, fix it! r11rs94's Avatar
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    Group ride?
    The thing about traveling is, you never want it to end and you can't wait to get home.
    I answer to Roy, Chief, or Sarg.
    04 R-1150-RT current bike. 94 R-1100-RS74,383, Sold, 78 R-80/7, K.I.A by a D.U.I
    www.OceanStateBMWriders.com

  13. #13
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by r11rs94 View Post
    Group ride?
    Done well, they can be a huge amount of fun.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  14. #14
    Wired for sound!
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    Chartered Clubs just did my article on group rides...

    clicky

    Over on the Expresso Riders Forum EXR Forum there is a subsection called The Ride Leaders Discussion (you must be a member of the forum to see it) and in there are several articles about being a rider within a group, being the "caboose", riding the #2 position, staggered riding, etc.

    Been doing this too long not to have some insight...

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