Local councils, along with the NZ Transport Agency, are working together to make sure motorcyclists in the Wellington region are ready to ride as they head into summer.
Riders across Kāpiti, Wellington, Hutt Valley, and Wairarapa are being offered free training and a free 10-point check for their bikes until 18 December 2016.
Training will be provided through ACC’s Ride Forever programme by NZ Transport Agency accredited providers, while local retailers will offer the 10-point check as part of the promotion.
NZTA/GWRC Road Safety Campaigns Manager Vanessa Rushton said the aim was for motorcyclists looking forward to riding this summer to first ask themselves whether their bike is ready and whether they’re ready.
“It’s all about tuning up for a great season of riding,” said Ms Rushton.
“Summer is when more motorcyclists take to the roads to enjoy the better riding conditions around our region, so it’s also a good time to think about taking their skills to the next level, and making sure their bike has been checked before they hit the road,” she said.
To take up the offer, riders are encouraged to go to ACC’s Ride Forever website and enter the code Spring16 to book their free training, and contact a local participating retailer to book their bike’s free 10-point safety check.
Ride Forever training, subsidised by ACC, aims to help motorcyclists become better, safer riders, regardless of their current skill level. There are three levels, bronze for learners (normally $20), silver for more experienced riders (normally $50) and gold for elite riders (normally $50).
Ms Rushton said Ride Forever can benefit riders who have had their bikes parked up in the garage over winter, or learners looking to go to the next level, and even elite riders who have the option to tailor a course to suit their needs.
“No matter how long you’ve been riding, there’s always something you can learn to help you be better prepared, so it’s a good idea to brush up on your riding skills. We’re going an extra step and subsidising the remaining fee so you can do it for free!” Ms Rushton said.
Kāpiti rider Roger Tidman recently did the Ride Forever gold level course and said that even though he’s been riding motorcycles on and off for over 50 years, he still got a lot out of the training.
“It was well worth it. They cover risk management and road safety, and I particularly found the counter steering stuff useful,” Mr Tidman said.
“I encourage other riders to do a Ride Forever course, especially if you don’t have to pay. It’s great, I highly recommend it,” he said.
Ride Ready is being promoted by NZ Transport Agency and Greater Wellington along with Wellington City Council, Hutt City Council, Upper Hutt City Council, Kāpiti Coast District Council, Porirua City Council and Wairarapa Road Safety Council. For more information, go to www.gw.govt.nz/motorcycling
Riders in the region are also encouraged to mark Sunday 29 January 2017 in their diaries for the Shiny Side Up Bike Fest at Southward Car Museum in Paraparaumu. This will be the event’s second year which promises to deliver more bike-friendly fun and information so riders can stay safe while enjoying the great riding this region has to offer. For more go to www.shinysideup.co.nz or look up the ‘Shiny Side Up Bike Fest 2017’ event page on Facebook.no