Driving at 250km/h can be daunting. And that’s when you’re in a vehicle. Imagine doing those speeds on a motorbike, and oncoming bikers are doing the exact same thing!
A French rider posted a harrowing experience on his YouTube channel of one such moment where two bikers came charging towards him. Granted, travelling at such high speeds is an illegal act by all parties involved, mainly because it took place on a public road.
At one point, one can see on the bike’s dashboard that the rider is doing 155mp/h (250km/h), but he slows down - not by much - as the oncoming bikers approach. As soon as the first biker passes him, two others follow but the one on the right is in the wrong lane.
Fortunately, 'our' rider manages to squeeze between the two oncoming bikes and coming out unscathed on the other side.
He wrote in the YouTube video’s description bar: "I am very happy to be able to write to you and to be still alive at the moment after having avoided a few crazy bikers by a few centimeters!"
At the end of the video, one of the bikers who followed the two 'crazy bikers' was involved in an accident and suffered a broken arm. He rode into the car that came into the shot just before the oncoming bikers did.
Keep road carnage down!
Wheels24’s Charlen Raymond says: "I’ve been in conversations where riders say that high speeds increases the experience on your iron steed. And though I’m not a biker, I can say that - when you ride for the first time - even 60km/h will have your palms sweaty. Imagine doing that at 250km/h!
"I get it, the longer you’ve been an active rider for, the more comfortable you become doing such speeds. But like the end of the video proves, an object (a car, in this case) can come out of nowhere and leave you with little time and room to react.
"Road safety is everyone’s business. And just because this clip was filmed in Europe, it does not mean that we, as South Africans, are exempt from adhering to the rules of the road. Given that South Africa’s biker community is such a close-knitted one - yes, I understand the significance of the skull - I call on all bikers to ride with 'road safety' at the forefront of their minds. And motorists, let’s also do our part to minimise the carnage on our roads."
Understanding the rush
Johann van Tonder, editor of Ultimate Drive and also an avid biker, shares some thoughts on above video.
He says: "Speed and acceleration are addictive. More so on a motorbike where the experience involves all the senses. The power of that machine is something else, and it’s under your control! It’s difficult to explain the experience to non-bikers, though.
"Car enthusiasts get excited at around 200km/h. For a biker, 200km/h is an indication to shift to third gear. The power-to-weight ratio on a superbike enables it to propel forward at a rate no car driver will ever experience unless you drive a very fast super- or hyper car.
As a biker, I understand why bikers ride fast. Whether you are on a track or just on your way to the cafe, any powerful bike begs to be opened up. But as the saying goes: with great power comes great responsibility. The bikers in the video got lucky that day. And we, as bikers, watch the video because we understand the rush. I’m guessing they are taking it easy now, at least for a couple of months.
But it's important to always adhere to the rules of the road - whether you're in a car or on a bike. Let’s learn from the video and be safer road users. Let’s be safe out there.