(This Is How We Do It)
The purpose of riding in an organized group instead of an undisciplined pack is to provide the additional safety that a well-organized group inherently generates. This comes from within the group, as well as the outside. When a group rides in an orderly fashion, people don't get in each other's way, and the organization of the formation itself discourages cars from attempting to cut in.
Once riding rules have been adopted by an organization, EVERYONE riding with the organization is expected to follow them. Anyone violating the rules, and compromising everyone else's safety, will be warned, and if their actions continue, will no longer be welcome to ride with the chapter.
The following rules are compiled from a number of sources. Most organizations that ride in orderly formations follow similar rules. Details may vary from one group to another, sometimes because of a particular style of riding by the group, or sometimes because there are a number of reasonable options, so they chose the one they prefer.
- Be considerate - have a full tank BEFORE arriving at the departure point.
- Tell the Road Captain if you have any special concerns, i.e. speed, sharp corners, etc
- Tell the Road Captain and Tail gunner if you plan to leave the group before the destination. Also tell the persons riding in front and behind you so they don't think you are having a problem.
- When a rider leaves the group while in staggered formation, the best way to compensate for the hole made by his absence is for each rider behind the missing bike to change lanes. Doing this eliminates passing in a single lane.
- Tell the Road Captain if your bike (or bladder) has an unusually short fuel range
- Bring adequate clothing for the weather conditions expected during the day.
- Remember to take some clear eye protection if the ride will extend into the evening.
- When exiting a freeway, keep up the pace so the riders behind you aren't forced to slow down while still on the freeway, thus becoming a traffic hazard.
- The position of new (inexperienced with GROUP riding) riders within the group is significant. New riders should be positioned as close to the front as possible
- In the unlikely event of an emergency condition, the Road Captain will make every attempt to move the formation to the shoulder in an orderly manner. If a bike breaks down, let the rider move to the right. DO NOT STOP. The Tail Gunner will stop with the problem bike. The ride Leader will lead the group to a safe stopping place.
- We started with consideration...lets end there. When riding with a club or the same group frequently, plan to purchase a EZ PASS so that the rest of the riders don't have to wait for you to pay to come through the toll booth. Serious riders agree that EZ PASS is the greatest thing since black pepper! The Road Captain should be advised (in advance) of visitors riding with the club/group, or other riders, who have to pay tolls. These riders should split out from the group BEFORE reaching the toll plaza, so as not to hold up the group. When the formation arrives at the toll booth, all bikes should proceed through the toll booth one at a time. The formation will reform on the other side of the toll booth.