Ride Your Motorcycle Faster - The Danger

Riding faster can either be fantastically thrilling or life-threateningly dangerous. It all depends on your skill and experience, and when and where you do it – even top racers think tiding fast on the road is dangerous.

But before we get into things in greater detail, let's understand some basic fundamentals. Firstly, riding above the speed limit is illegal – even in Thailand. Obvious maybe, but a fact nevertheless. Everyone speeds at some point and I mean everyone from your mother to the police officer who writes the ticket for doing it. But rules are rules and whether you think they're unfair or unrealistic is beside the point. If the reference point to the spot, it doesn't matter what your friends think.

Secondly, riding fast needs everything to be in place. All your senses and skills should be at their very sharpest. Your motorcycle ought to be in top condition with tires, brakes and suspension warmed and ready for action. And you have to be in the right place. Unless you're in a safe environment to do it, where you’ll encounter less hazards like traffic for example, then don't even think about going faster. Charging down Ratchadamri road in downtown Bangkok on a Saturday afternoon is just asking for trouble. Getting a move on down a quiet backroad on 5 o'clock in the morning can be much safer. Though bear in mind that medical assistance takes a lot longer to arrive in more remote areas.
Trying to go faster than you're able to can be very risky. Pressure from your riding buddies to keep up during a groups ride is a good example of this. Drop out of that sort of competition and take the flack down the café later. It’s much better than taking it from a hospital bed. And if you're knackered for whatever reason, take that into account and either don't ride or ride more slowly and carefully.

Your mind set is very important. IF you are worrying about something, just had a row with your missus, do what you can to stay calm. Riding full of emotion can be risky as the heart is nowhere near as skilled as the mind. Avoid running late too. Do that and you will take risks.

Be very careful with alcohol. Long before it starts to affect your reactions and become illegal it can change your attitude, boost your confidence and make you feel like you are as good as the best. I've done drink-riding tests on private grounds and trust me that when I say alcohol is extremely dangerous.

Downtown city riding should never be done too swiftly but just because you're riding in the dry season your favorite road doesn't mean you'll be safe. Tuk-tuks or taxi's who can swing to the side-walk at any second, city workers watering the plants often spill water on the road where it forms a extra slippery spot, and a few conditions I not even can think off can create very difficult and dangerous things to stop for if you don't see them well ahead. And vision is reduced in the countryside in the dry months by heat rising from the tarmac, and vegetation can block your view.

If you want to ride fast, then only do it when it's safe. Have the sense to back off when it isn't, and save your speed hunger for another day. And if you want to ride really fast then go on a trackday. Circuits are designed for just that. Depending on the track there's usually plenty or run off so mistakes don't have to have the same consequences as they do on the road.
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