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The cover photo was taken by Derek Barker, the bike supplied by Lings Ipswich and Santa came for a test ride from Lapland. Mike Roberts did the digital editing. A few of us visited Haughley on our bikes to view the Silhouette Soldiers for Armistice Day. There was one soldier for each member of the village who lost their lives in WW1 & 2.

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your Committee No Calls After 21:00 Please Officers Chairman Vice Chairman Secretary Treasurer

Richard Ockelton Martin Drury Les Steggles Bryan Duncan

07872 925532 07595 277831 01359 245898 07879 654122

Committee Members Chief Observer Caring SAM Charity Co-ordinator Events Publicity Co-ordinator Publicity Publicity Chief Ride Leader Webmaster Communications Magazine Editor

Derek Barker Brian Ellis Brian Ellis Rob Baker Glyn Hill Dean Harris Trevor Read Dean Harris Mike Roberts Les Smith Felix Oliver

01473 327555 07740 564097 07740 564097 07710 537844 07986 319163 07956 339112 07525 724002 07956 339112 01473 718915 07792 273334 07712 649860

Committee Support Members Membership Secretary Dave Franklin Associate Co-ordinator Graham Parker Admin Support Sara Hale Buddy Co-ordinator Vicky Smith

07801 688639 07905 468995 01359 241552 01255 830352

National Observers Mike Roberts 01473 718915 Richard Toll 07855 838347 Geoff Scott 07983 939998 Paul Newman 01473 620450 Paul Ballard 07850 715063 Richard Ockelton 07872 925532

David Rudland Kevin Brendish AndrĂŠ Castle Ruth Acworth Tony Chyc Matthew Barker

01473 401362 07854 494041 07730 526674 07783 007100 01206 231782 07931 700725

Local Observers Steve Gocher Dean Harris Phil Sayer Terry Fellowes Ian Bishop Steve Bingham

01473 430643 07956 339112 07990 565451 07870 764187 07775 920661 07971 075424

John Rudland Rob Baker Glyn Hill Graham Parker Nick Braley

07740 874300 07710 537844 07986 319163 07905 468995 07990 734581

I.A.M. Examiner Ian Maxwell

07974 941545

Neale McConnell

07899 714136

The SAM Observer December 2019

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Contents Armistice Day Committee Chairman’s Chat Latest Associates IAM Test Passes SAM Committee Nominations SAM Membership Fee’s SAM Membership Renewals A Massive Thank You The Promotion Team Do You Speak www A Fake Bike Tour SAM Theory Evening Copdock Motorcycle Events Ltd SAM’s Breakfast Run Ride Co-Ordinator and leaders Saturday Jaunt Oversea Trip L'Aboutissement d'un Reve Sam Shop Update Editorial Advertise Here Members Information SAM Dates for you Diary November Passes Our Venue

by Mike Roberts by Richard Ockelton

by Dave Franklin by Derek Barker by Glyn Hill by Mike Roberts by Roger Payne by Derek Barker by Phil Sawyer by Sara Hale by Bryan Duncan by Andrew Goody by Mike Roberts by Editor by Committee by Mike Roberts

2 3 5 6 6 7 8 8 9 9 10 12 17 19 20 22 23 25 27 31 32 33 34 35 39 40

next Issue Closing date for copy – Friday after club night. Send via e-mail or on a USB memory stick (which will be returned) or even hand-written, not a problem. The Editor reserves the right to edit, amend or omit as he feels fit.

WEBSITE ADDRESS SAM is a registered Charity ~ No. 1067800 All Official Correspondence to:

The Secretary, Les Steggles, 1 Apple Grove, Wetherden, Suffolk, IP14 3RB The SAM Observer December 2019

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Chairmans Chat A very warm welcome to the December edition of the SAM Observer, last of 2019. Wish you a happy festive period. December’s Group Night. The venue has changed to, Kesgrave Community Centre, Ipswich, IP5 1JF. The room will be clearly marked, so please be aware that is to be held on Monday 16th December 2019. If you are unsure please check the SAM calendar. Thank you. Due to the proximity to the festive session. There is no Theory Evening this month either, for the same reason. January’s group night will be held on Wednesday 15th at 19.30hrs. At Stowmarket Rugby Club, for further details see the SAM calendar. January’s theory evening will take place on Thursday 16th January 2020 at Kesgrave Community Centre starting at 19.30hrs. This month’s topic: Planning and Position shall be presented by TBC. A gently reminder for the New Year. The AGM is due to be held on Wednesday, 19th February 2020. If you're considering a position on the committee and would like to know more about any available opportunities please feel free to get in touch with me or any other member of the committee and we'd be happy to discuss it further. Nominations for election to the committee at the AGM need to be presented to the Secretary a month before the event. i.e. before or at January's group night at the latest. Nomination forms can be found on page 7 and on the SAM website, under 'Extras', 'Committee Nomination Forms' or directly via this link: I would like to thank last month’s guest speaker Jon Southgate from “Biker Down”, Suffolk Fire & Rescue. One of the points raised by Jon, was the topic of the website and app. This app is something that is being adopted by the rescue services. It may be a worthwhile App to utilise. In short it pin points your location within a 3m square grid. So if an event should occur, or you come across and incident, it may be a useful tool. However you're celebrating the end of 2019 & the beginning of 2020, I wish you and yours a happy, peaceful end to the year and a healthy, prosperous New Year. Cheers


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New Associate Members A warm welcome is extended to our most recent Associate members:

Joshua Cotton Andrew Salisbury Ian & Lewis Bareham. If anyone else has joined us and not had a mention yet, let the Editor know and he will put your name in the next Issue

IAM Test Passes Congratulations to the members who have passed their Advanced test this month.

Jo Kellaway Craig Osborne Matthew Francis Andy Carmichael

her Observer was his Observer was his Observer was his Observer was

Terry Fellowes Matthew Barker Paul Ballard Steve Gocher

When you pass your advanced test please let Graham Parker know. The SAM Observer December 2019

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SAM Committee Nominations AGM 19 February 2020. th

Would you like to help your club out ? Can you spare a few hours a month ? And make a huge difference on what happens within the club. Like all well-oiled machines it needs cogs. Become a cog and join the committee. Now is your chance. Fill in the form and send it to Les Steggles via post or email. Nominations have to be given in one month before the AGM. For more information and to download a nomination form visit This Nomination Paper must be returned to the group Secretary at least one month before the election by Tuesday 15th January 2020 SAM Committee Nominations 2020 I nominate .................................................................................. For the post of .................................................... Proposed by: Name ............................................... Signed ............................... Date ………… Seconded by: Name .............................................. Signed ............................... Date ………… Nominee’s signature ............................................. Date ………… Please copy, scan or download this from the website. Saves ripping it out of the magazine.

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SAM membership fees REMINDER Dear Member Please be aware that payment for membership fees are due in January. If you pay by Bacs’ then your card will automatically be sent to you. If you joined the group after 30th June 2019, you will automatically be sent your new card. Payment can be made directly to SAM’s bank account, please see the website for details. Look for Join Us and Membership Renewal.

SAM Membership Renewal SAM membership fees are due in January. Please remember that fees are due at the beginning of the year - Not on the anniversary of your joining or when you paid last year. The current cost is £22 for single membership and £25 for joint membership. If you have a current standing order with your bank for the correct amount, you need do nothing, your membership card will automatically be sent or can be collected at January’s meeting. SAM prefers that subs are paid by Standing Order as it is quick and painless. If you would like to pay your subs this way, contact your bank online, or fill in the form (available on SAM’s website under Join Us) and send to your bank. If you wish to pay with cash or by cheque please fill in a SAM membership renewal form (available on the SAM website, under Join Us) and either send this via post to me, my address is on the bottom of the form, or I will be at January’s group night. Thank you,

Dave Franklin

Membership Secretary

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A Massive thank you As you may know Linda Barker, the Club’s Membership Secretary for 8 years and Susan Smith, the club’s Associate Coordinator for 13 years, have decided to stand down from their posts this year. They have both done a fantastic job for the club and on behalf of the committee and all the members I would like to thank them both for their commitment and hard work over the many years. The changeover is taking place on December the 1st and from that date the Membership Secretary will be Dave Franklin, Contact 07801 688639 The Associate Coordinator will be Graham Parker Contact 07905 468995

Derek Barker Chief Observer

THE PROMOTIONS TEAM NEED YOUR HELP As you may or may not know the promo team are out and about pretty much all year round. The group has over 300 members with new members joining all the time which I think shows that what we do works. At two shows this year we were able to sign people up on the day using a direct link to the IAM, this resulted in us signing 20 new members in just two days, I’m not sure how many sign up after speaking to us at other shows because we don’t get that information but we know from speaking to new members that they do sign up after seeing us at one event or another. We have an excellent team of volunteers but we need more to cover all the events that we go to, the events start around March and finish in October, the events we cover are Police Safe Rider, Fire Service Biker Down, Demo Days at all local dealers, and various shows during the year including, Kesgrave Bell Bike Show in April, Hadleigh Show, Stonham Barns Bike Show in May, Wheels at Trinity Park in August (two day event) and of course The Copdock Bike Show in October plus other events during the year. The SAM Observer December 2019

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We need help with manning the stand and getting the promotions gear to and from the venues, the gear consists of a gazeebo a couple of flags a couple of pullups a table and chairs, it sounds a lot but will easily fit into an average size car. So if you would like to help give me a call on 07986319163, or email It’s a fun day out with no training needed just telling people about SAM and your experiences is all you need to do, that usually does the trick.

Glyn Hill

DO YOU SPEAK WWW? Do the following words and acronyms mean something to you, or are they in a foreign language? HTML


















Do you know your <HEAD> from your <BODY> ? Do you worry about your <IMG> ? If some of the terms above mean something to you, and you’d like to help SAM go from strength to strength, then please have a chat with me at a Group Night, on a Social Ride, or drop me an email (contact details are on the SAM website. I’d be very pleased to hear from you. Mike Roberts There are only 10 types of people in the world. Those that understand binary, and those that don’t. The SAM Observer December 2019

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A Fake Bike Tour I’ll make a confession up front, at no time did I sit upon or ride a bike during the events described in this article, so I take no credit for the exploits of the bike related achievements of those I met. Recent news articles have covered the troubles of this South American nation, with the ousting of its president Evo Morales but there is more to it than political upheavals. Bolivia - infamous for the end scene in Butch Cassidy & the Sundance kid, is a relatively poor country, even by South America standards, but parts of it are perched high in the Andean mountain range and home to some majestic scenery and difficult roads. One area will be known to those who followed the Dakar Rally from 2014 to 2018, a vast salt flat, the largest in the world, approximately 75miles across and covering over 4,000 sq. miles - it’s big. The whole area was once a lowland until plate tectonics had other ideas, and lifted it 3600m (12,000ft) in the air to create the Altiplano. Trapped by the Andean mountains on all sides, giant lakes formed, fed by glacier melt water, but with no form of egress the water evaporated and turned the lakes into giant salt deserts. Near the center of the flats is the Bolivian tourist board’s large monument to celebrate the Dakar Rally, which attracts motorcyclists from around the world to pay homage to the great race. Located nearby is a salt hotel, whose bricks have been cut from the very ground beneath your feet but is now just a tourist shop selling local bric-a-brac. Adjacent is a collection of flags from around the world brought by visitors and tied to the cluster of flag poles which are trying to stay rooted in the strong wind. The view in every direction is filled by blinding white salt reflecting the high sun, whilst mountain peaks rise to over 6000m on the far horizon. The Dakar was won by the KTM 450 Rally on each occasion that it passed through here. The bike was specifically designed with the aim of winning the Dakar, originally as the 690 but reduced to 450 due to rule changes, and by 2019 had 18 consecutive wins to its name, an impressive achievement. Travelling further into the desert on ‘roads’ across what looks like a frozen waste The SAM Observer December 2019

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land, on which you think you would be sliding around on the polished ice but no, the salt is smoothed to a reasonable surface by the passage of hundreds of tyres. They might not be much like what we would call roads but some are in fact major bus routes. Should you encounter another vehicle on these narrow tracks and want to pass, simply take to the slightly rougher salt to the side and continue unimpeded.

“Dakar” is embossed above “Bolivia” if you look hard After the rainy season, which creates a very shallow lake, these ephemeral roads disappear but are recreated by drivers navigating, not by satnav but by the mountain peaks on the horizon, so roads tend to be pretty straight. They also have a big advantage in winter, if it snows you don’t have to treat the roads. Like a lot of “lakes” this too has islands, basically the tops of mountains poking through the salt on which cacti, hundreds of years old, sprout like a punk haircut from the 70’s. Parked at the base of one was a couple on a Triumph Explorer. After a conversation mainly comprising finger counting and my very limited Spanish and their better attempt at English, we gleaned they were from Brazil having The SAM Observer December 2019

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travelled 6000km in 10 days. No mean feat if you look on a map and see the terrain they had to traverse.

Sid Vicious look-a-like island The area has many volcanoes, some of which still smoke (or are they vaping nowadays?). After a hike up the side of one, hike sounds like you are making reasonable progress, not at this altitude, at over 4000m you’re nearly half way up the height of Everest. Each step is slow and movements un-rushed but still your heart pounds and your lungs crave oxygen. You think to yourself you are doing well then you meet an elderly French lady with only one lung, traveling at only a marginally slower pace than our snails progress - to her, I take off my hat. Returning to the car park, which was accessed by a boulder strewn dust track that snaked its way up from the salt flat, we met a couple on a 1200GS. Breaking out the Spanglish dictionary again, he said it had been a tricky ascent and was not looking forward to the return leg. It so happened we saw them again, this time in the village at the foot of the track. They turned into the square and parked up, she jumped off the pillion and raised her arms in joy with a big smile on her face, he on the other hand, had an expression of relief and achievement. I applauded them and went over for a chat. “First gear and back brake,” he explained, adding that it was tricky and eyeing his GS he described it as an elephant and would have much preferred to have been on the small 300 bike parked nearby. We on the other hand had traveled in four wheeled, heads bouncing off the roof, comfort. The SAM Observer December 2019

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Waiting for our lift one morning, at a salt hotel on the edge of the flats, a troop of Chilean bikers arrived to dump their luggage before heading off to the Dakar monument. We got chatting to them and in mixed Spanish & English we found that one seemed to be described as “leader of the pack,” or “old man” as one the lady bikers next to him piped up. His name was Claudio and spoke very good English despite having lived in Scotland many years earlier. They asked about the condition riding across the salt and how long it would take them the get to the Dakar monument. We assured them that the salt road was good and they had already traversed the worst bit getting to the hotel via a kilometer of churned up dirt track with deep ruts.

You’d need a lot of fish & chips to put a dent in this salt cellar. Later that evening on their return they said it had been a good ride and had made good progress. The next morning they headed off back to Chile. Talking to local drivers we discovered there is no car insurance in Bolivia, just pay for your own damage regardless of who was at fault. Should you call the police then you both get fined - a good incentive to ride with all the skills you have learned as a SAM club member should you ever visit. The SAM Observer December 2019

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A side note: Coca leaves seem to keep the nation running, including drivers and long distance truckers but they are banned in most of the world because from these, cocaine is extracted. By chewing the leaves the locals say it suppresses hunger, reduces tiredness and helps with altitude sickness and the practice is common amongst everyone you meet. For those not familiar with this innocuous looking leaf, from which a well-known cola derives its name and was used as its stimulant in its “elixir of life” in its early days. It too made claims of curing all ills. Since 1904 the cocaine is extracted from the leaves before being used to flavour the cola. The leaf is still legal in several South American countries and is available in town markets by the bag and most hotels offer free coca tea in the lobbies. There is even a beer made from it. When in Rome... - it only gave me a headache. I’ll leave you with a question: Which is better, a tired driver or one slightly ‘stimulated’ but more alert? Fraud Chilean bikes await in the dawn sun as their riders & pillions eat breakfast.

Roger Payne The SAM Observer December 2019

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SAM Theory Evenings As most of you know, on the Thursday evening, directly after Group Nights, SAM holds its monthly Theory Evening. Based on an ever revolving subject list of important rider skills these nights are an informal evening of facts and lively banter all aimed at improving your ride based on the information in the Advanced Rider Course Logbook. Each session covers one of the four main topic areas; Overtaking Cornering

Planning & Positioning Gears & Acceleration

Mainly aimed at Associates going through the course, these evenings are also a good way for full members to brush up on their theory and add their experiences and questions to the session. The great benefit of attending these sessions in the classroom means it saves time on the road, covering theory and has the added advantage of an opportunity to discuss any issues you may have generally on your Advanced Rider Course.

Derek Barker The SAM Observer December 2019

SAM Chief Observer

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The SAM Observer December 2019

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Copdock Motorcycle Events Ltd Chairman David Baldry Vice Chairman DonWhinney Treasurer Steph Ruddy Secretary Phil Sayer Dear Bryan

06 November 2019

I am writing on behalf of the Copdock Classic Motorcycle Club to thank you for your help in putting on the 28th Copdock Motorcycle Show. As you know we were very unlucky with the weather this year and the number of visitors attending the Show was significantly down on recent years. However, we’ve had many messages from the public to say what a good time they had in spite of the appalling weather. This year we had a bigger than ever trials arena showing displays of trials riding – in the rain – by local clubs featuring twelve times world champion Dougie Lampkin, and we were delighted to welcome Allen Millyard with his incredible motorbikes as our guest celebrity. As you know, any profits from the Show are given to local charities and other good causes; last year we gave away over £52,000. Unfortunately this year the Club made a loss and there are no profits to give away. However we raised an amazing £9,000 from the sale of draw tickets, and we were delighted to present a cheque for that amount to SERV Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. The Club only has seventeen members, and we could not put on the Show without the generous help and assistance we receive from the many individuals and organisations who give us their time and support, both financial and in kind. In particular I want to thank Bern Adams of CAM Rider who was again our main sponsor. Thank you again for your support this year, and we look forward to seeing you at next year’s Show. With very best wishes

Phil Sayer The SAM Observer December 2019

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BREAKFAST RUN 5th January 2020 Heathside Café, A47, Swaffham By-pass Swaffham, Norfolk PE37 7QE Meet at Stowmarket Tescos IP14 5BE in good time for a 09:30 Briefing and subsequent departure. All riders must attend Briefing. Ride Co-ordinator: Richard Ockelton Turn left out of Tescos. At next roundabout take second exit onto A1120 then at next roundabout take the first exit to join the A14 westbound. Leave the A14 at J47 (Woolpit). Turn right at the T junction then take first exit at roundabout onto the A1088 heading towards Thetford. Through Norton then in Stowlangtoft turn left (just past the pink Morris Minor) toward Pakenham. Stay on this road through to Great Barton. Turn right at the T junction then left at the cross roads onto the A143 and then after a few hundred yards turn right onto Mill Road (B1106). At roundabout go straight over (second exit) then at next roundabout turn right (3rd exit) and stay on this road through Culford and Elvedon to Brandon. In Brandon turn left at the T junction then immediately right at the lights onto the High Street. Immediately past the level crossing fork left on the B1112 through Weeting and Methwold to the roundabout at Stoke Ferry. Go straight over the roundabout (second exit) to join the A134. After about ¾ mile turn right (signposted Oxborough). Stay on this road through to Swaffham. Immediately past the skateboard park in Swaffham turn right into Haspalls Road then left at the T junction. Go straight over the mini roundabout (first exit) and stay on this road as becomes a slip road onto the A47. Heathside café is about a mile further along on the left. The SAM Observer December 2019

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Ride Co-ordinators and Ride Leaders

Ride Co-ordinator and Ride Leader Chief Ride Leader, Dean Harris Robert Baker Dave Frankin David Wood

Brian Ellis Glyn Hill

Vini Evans Karl Grimwade Richard Ockelton Trevor Read

Ride Leaders Eric Aldridge Martin Drury Mike Roberts

Ken Beckinsale Chris Bond Roy Cribb Alex Jones Nigel Pye Tim Wash Fred Sparrow Adrian Tadman

Please check the SAM Calendar and SAM Forum on-line for last minute changes/cancellations. On the Forum you will also find the routes as text, route cards, and on Google Maps / Streetview, along with a photo of the destination, so you can familiarise yourself with the route before the day. The SAM Observer December 2019

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Saturday Jaunt 18th January 2020 Friday Street Farnham Saxmundham IP17 1JX Meeting in car park behind B&M IP8 3TT in good time for 13:00 Briefing and subsequent departure. All riders must attend Briefing. Ride Co-ordinator Trevor Read. Join the A1214 northbound to the Holiday Inn traffic lights and turn left on the A1071 to the next roundabout. Turn right â&#x20AC;&#x201C; third exit- at the Beagle and on into Claydon. Follow the old Norwich Road to Barham then turn right into Sandy Lane to Coddenham. Stay on the B1078 to Otley Bottoms. Turn right at the T junction. Take the next left (Clopton Crown) to Wickham market joining the High Street to the left. Turn right at the roundabout through Campsea Ashe to Tunstall. Turn left at the Green Man then left on the Snape road. Turn left at the junction with the A1094 and the Farm Shop and CafĂŠ are about a further mile and a half on the left.

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Social Rides Please note that it is you, the rider, who is deemed to be in control of the vehicle at all times during an Observed Run and during all other Group activities and that the Committee of Suffolk Advanced Motorcyclists cannot and do not accept any liability whatsoever for any injury to person or damage to vehicle occurring in the course of any rally or other event organised by the Group. Any member attending such an event does so entirely at his or her own risk and must maintain their own insurance to cover any said injury to person or damage to vehicle and must be riding a road legal vehicle, having valid road tax, insurance and MOT certificate (if applicable). Participants on S.A.M social rides are advised of the Events Committeeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s guidelines as follows: You will be expected to provide a suitable means of carrying a map of the route If possible, have breakdown cover for your machine. Be responsible for your own safety Rides will commence promptly at the published departure time. Have a FULL tank of fuel No more than 5 in a group.

Please watch our light hearted video with a serious message explaining all of the above.

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2020 Overseas Trips As some of the more observant have noticed the editor managed to mix up the dates, which caused a bit of upset so please find and correct your diary’s to these dates. A group of us went to Ypres earlier this year and based on the fantastic success of this trip we are planning two further trips for 2020. We propose to travel to Berchtesgaden in Bavaria on the evening of Friday 24th April until 3rd May inclusive. We then intend to visit the area around the 1916 Somme Battlefield, Northern France is from the morning of Friday 18th until Monday 21st September inclusive. Please Note: these are not “SAM” events. They are not promoted by SAM or run by SAM, but they are run on SAM riding rules. For further information, please contact:-

Bryan Duncan

07879 654122

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L'Aboutissement d'un Reve With the longest days of Summer gone and not much holiday allowance left I contemplated how to best make use of what remained. Whilst trying to escape reality daydreaming via Google Earth the idea of going to France for the day came to mind. I'd previously only ridden a bicycle abroad so it would be a new challenge going by motorcycle. Over the course of a week I booked a Eurotunnel crossing, got a GB sticker, checked my insurance and breakdown cover, then familiarised myself with French road signs and legal requirements. I set a destination and route to try and avoid aimlessly riding around when I arrived, nothing too adventurous given my absence of foreign driving experience and a map or satnav. I just had to get up early enough, especially as a diversion was in place due to a large section of the M20 being closed. Just in case of an emergency I re-learnt the days of the week in French; altogether now... Lundi, Mardi, Mercredi, etc... It was a cold, mainly dark ride to the Folkestone terminal for a planned 6 a.m. arrival. I had mixed feelings of excitement and trepidation. When checking in I took the option of an earlier crossing, worth doing as an hour is lost en Francais. Using the Eurotunnel was a straightforward process, check in, get a boarding ticket (I used a clothes peg to attach it to my screen) park up and check one of many electronic information screens, either outside or in the terminal, when the letter on your boarding ticket is displayed follow the road markings 'France' and you're soon parked up diagonally, in gear, inside a carriage and Sous la Manche. The carriage was dominated by BMW GS's with the obligatory aluminium panniers along with a variety of other motorcycles. With the side cases fitted my CBF looked as if I was setting off for a serious tour, in reality they were attached so I could securely store my motorcycle boots and jacket when off the bike. The crossing takes about 30 minutes, during which you can sit/stand by your bike, get your boarding card scanned, use the toilet, clean your visor, talk to fellow travellers and wonder what you'd do if the train broke down. The SAM Observer December 2019

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On arrival you just ride through the carriages. (I rode on the right hand side of the carriages to help remind myself for the roads ahead) Then exit onto the platform and make your way out of the terminal. I got in lane for the nearby Total fuel station to re-fuel and check the bike over before venturing further. Going from the forecourt also allowed a quieter, less frenetic introduction to the roads. It was an odd feeling looking left when joining roundabouts and also using indicators the opposite way round to normal on them. The experience of going anticlockwise was worth repeating, not only to check the exit I wanted, but also as a futile and enjoyable attempt to even up the wear on my front tyre from the right to the left hand side. A couple of wrong turns provided me with more practice of urban riding than I anticipated along with the sight of a minibus full of Gendarmes raiding a block of flats. I got on the coastal D940 to Maison du site des Deux-Caps which had a Channel Tunnel exhibition. A short walk away was a coastal defence museum set inside a former German WW2 gun battery. After a brief conversation in French with the girl working there she asked if I spoke English, 'Je suis Anglaise' I replied, I don't think she was surprised.... I then took a walk down to the beach to look at England from the outside. It's good to have a bit of time away from the bike to enjoy the surroundings you've got up so early for. I headed a bit further along the D940 to a small town called Audresselles. I really fancied a cup of tea, it had become a bit cooler and started raining so I called into a cafe, 'Salon de The' anticipating a standard mug of tea, this was a misjudgment on my part, I got a pot of warm water and a wooden tray with a varied selection of teabags, none of which resembled the tea I expected, or were that appetising, however the pleasant atmosphere of the establishment and heavy rain outside had me contentedly sipping a cup of flavored tepid water. The rain eased off and it was time to make my way back, this was straightforward so I took a few turns off here and there to explore and vary the journey up. I was careful to keep to the speed limits, which proved timely as a Gendarme popped out from behind a boat with a speed detector, a little further down the road more Gendarmerie were gathered having put road cones down the centre of the road for no reason I could fathom. The kph readings on my speedometer aren't prominent so I multiplied by six the first number on the speed The SAM Observer December 2019

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signs, 70kph 6x7 90kph 6x9 etc..Along with Priorite a droite my mind was kept occupied! Returning to the terminal was easy enough, it's well signed and I'd checked over the latter stage of the journey a couple of times on the internet to make sure I knew which lane to get in to and exits to take. A seamless return and a re-fuel at Sainsbury's in Folkestone meant I was ready to begin the journey back to Suffolk. It was strange being at Sainsbury's with it's typical British Saturday afternoon scene, whilst just 25 miles across the Channel was France, with its different language and tea. After this initial trip I made another one the next Sunday, going a bit further inland to visit one of the V2 rocket launching sites, Blockhaus d' Eperlecques. Better weather combined with greater familiarity made it a more relaxing journey (except for the M20 closure again) It was also a chance to experience some different roads and scenery. There was quite a delay at the tunnel on return, engine off and paddling along a few feet every 5 minutes. The entire journey was 370 miles for the day, but it didn't feel like it until I got back home, ate, then quickly fell asleep on the sofa.

I've had a positive experience for my first couple of motorcycling trips abroad. The bike was no problem, a 15 year old CBF600 with nearly 65k on the clock and an M.O.T. that was due later that month. I didn't get a speeding fine and had no 'incidents'. I'd recommend a day trip to France via the tunnel as a good The SAM Observer December 2019

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introduction to riding in Europe for relativeIy little in terms of cost, stress or time. I thought if I tried it and didn't enjoy it then at least I'd given it a go. I was fairly laid back about the trip, thinking if I got to the terminal too late or any other reason cropped up to prevent the crossing there were plenty of places in Kent and Sussex to visit. Negotiating the M25 and filtering through the approach to the Dartford Crossing can be accepted as part of the experience. On my return I reflected on how fortunate we are living in Suffolk, not having a long trek down to Folkestone or Dover if the roads are clear. Some of the similarities were striking too, such as the undulating farmland and where it was a flatter like the Fens. Next year I hope to go further afield in France for longer and find a decent cup of tea. Andrew Goodey Practical information: Stowmarket to Folkestone 120 miles (150 with diversion) Petrol at Tesco Cheriton near terminal opens at 6 a.m. Couple of 250ml cans of chilled coffee. Took colour photocopies of V5 document, M.O.T. insurance. Hi-Viz vest, Breathalyser, E111 card, spare glasses, spare bulbs, puncture repair kit, driving licence, in date passport!

The SAM Observer December 2019

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SAM SHOP UPDATE NEW DESIGNS AND PRODUCTS The SAM shirt shop has had an overhaul with new products/designs being added matching the IAM Roadsmart colour scheme. Some have a large SAM logo, others a smaller SAM logo with the IAM RS logo below. Finally, there is the Tag Cloud design made of words from advanced riding.

Please note that all the products are now digitally printed for you and dispatched when you order, so do check the sizing charts carefully. The shirts labelled as Ladies have a close cut fit. Those marked as Mens can be considered as Unisex.

The shopâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s website address is

Mike Roberts The SAM Observer December 2019

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Editorial Firstly the editor has made a bit of a goof with the dates on the Euro Trip run by Bryan Duncan, so please see in this month’s magazine are the correct dates on page 25 Secondly… well erm not much, I took the bike to the committee otherwise it’s been sitting in the garden feeling abandon and unloved. Now on to next year, 2020, blimey last year went fast. Hopefully I might be allowed out a bit more, My highlight of 2019 was the Chiefs Challenge. I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the magazine. Without your input it would be very thin indeed. Keep up the good work. So when planning your trips away or home please remember to take notes and write a piece to share your experiences. The last page this month, we have the pictures of all our November Group Night test passes, congratulations to all of you and also to the Observers who trained, Cross checkers, and the examiner. I don’t think that the Observers get the praise that they deserve, giving up their spare time to train, each one is a volunteer and ask for nothing, yet rain or shine they are out and about. So I would like to, on behalf of the club I would like to thank all of them. Wishing you all a very happy Christmas and a relaxing New Year Safe Riding



Bowman’s Barn, Back Street, Gislingham, Suffolk. IP23 8JH. Tel: 07712649860 Thank you To all the members who have contributed to this month’s magazine.  But….. what about the rest of you….  The SAM Observer December 2019

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Closing date for copy Monday after club night If you’d like to help save the Group on the printing and postage costs of your monthly ‘hard copy’ of the ‘SAM Observer’ by opting to receive an email notification instead, then please give me your email details on Group Night or send me an email. I hope that you have been enjoying the reports that members who go on ride outs have written, and as you can see, it doesn’t have to be a wordy passage, so feel free to scribble a few words down, a few pictures and next month you will have another great magazine to read Don’t forget to take your cameras and a notebook to record your trip then you can write a nice article about it for your favourite magazine. I have a word template if anyone would like it, email me and I’ll send you a copy which has all the formatting re-set on it. Please remember that we use Times New Roman as the main font for the magazine at a size 16 so that when the printer converts the A4 pages down to A5 the font looks like a 12. I like pictures to be separate to your articles because I can make them bigger or small to fill the page

Advertise in our magazine Annual Advertising Rates: Advertise on the SAM website for an additional £25. Contact Felix for more details 07712649860 £50 for ½ page

£75 for full page

Norfolk Advanced Motorcyclists 3rd Monday of the month, 19:30, at Dunston Hall, A140, Norwich, NR14 8PQ Chairman, Secretary,

Rob Chandler, Alex Mason,

The SAM Observer December 2019

01493 730409 01603 716735

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MEMBER INFORMATION A lot of useful information about SAM and its activities is available on our website. Below are some key links members will find useful. CONTACTS Contact details of SAMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Committee & Observers, complete with photographs so you can recognise everyone. CALENDAR Our online calendar with relevant links which can also be linked to your smartphone. Contact: Mike Roberts OBSERVER ASSOCIATE CHARTER What is expected of the Observer and Associate while preparing for the IAM motorcycle test. Contact: Derek Baker CARING SAM Our customer service & complaints procedures. Contact: Brian Ellis DISCOUNT SCHEME Proof of identity will be required to be shown. (e.g. Current IAM/SAM membership cards). Save your membership fee, and more, by using these retailers who give a discount to SAM members. Contact: Dean Harris ADVERTS Got something to sell? Want to see what other members are selling? See our online adverts section. Contact: Mike Roberts SHOPS T-shirts, sweatshirts, fleeces, hats, and more are available from SAMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s two online shops. Contact: Mike Roberts FORUM All the latest news and discussion on all things SAM and motorcycle related. Have a read, and then register to join in. Contact: Mike Roberts The SAM Observer December 2019

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SAM Events for your Diary December 2019 Monday 16th SAM Christmas Group Night. Announcements at 19:30 followed by, Quiz run by Les Steggles. Venue Kesgrave War Memorial Community Centre, Twelve Acre Approach, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1JF Saturday 21st Saturday Jaunt, Alder Carr Farm Shop IP6 8LX Meet at Martlesham Tescos IP5 3RU in good time for a 13:00 Briefing and subsequent departure. All riders must attend Briefing Wednesday 25th


January 2020 Wednesday 1st

Happy New Year

Sunday, 5th Breakfast Run, Heathside Café PE37 7QE Meet at Stowmarket Tescos IP14 5BE in good time for a 09:30 briefing and subsequent departure. All riders must attend Briefing Monday, 6th New Observer Training Kesgrave War Memorial Community Centre, Twelve Acre Approach, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1JF 19:00 – 21:30 Classroom session for new trainee Observers. Contact: Derek Barker Wednesday 8th SAM Committee meeting 19:30. Kesgrave War Memorial Community Centre, Twelve Acre Approach, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1JF Wednesday 15th SAM Group Night. Announcements at 19:30 followed by, Guest Speaker, Pete Doherty, the IAM Roadsmart Area Service Delivery Manage. Venue Stowmarket Rugby Club, Chilton Way, Stowmarket IP14 1SZ Thursday 16th Theory Evening. Kesgrave War Memorial Community Centre, Twelve Acre Approach, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1JF. Come along and learn more about Roadcraft. 19:30. This month’s topic: Planning & Positioning Saturday 18th Saturday Jaunt, Friday Street IP17 1JX Meeting in car park behind B&M IP8 3TT in good time for 13:00 briefing and subsequent departure. All riders must attend Briefing

The SAM Observer December 2019

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February 2020 Sunday, 2nd

Breakfast Run, TBA All riders must attend Briefing

Wednesday 5th SAM Committee meeting 19:30. Kesgrave War Memorial Community Centre, Twelve Acre Approach, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1JF Saturday 15th

Saturday Jaunt, TBA All riders must attend Briefing

Wednesday 19th SAM AGM Group Night. Announcements at 19:30 Venue Stowmarket Rugby Club, Chilton Way, Stowmarket IP14 1SZ Thursday 20th Theory Evening. Kesgrave War Memorial Community Centre, Twelve Acre Approach, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1JF. Come along and learn more about Roadcraft. 19:30. This monthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s topic: Cornering

March 2020 Sunday, 1st

Breakfast Run, TBA All riders must attend Briefing

Note from Editor

Please check the SAM Calendar, Forum & Facebook page for further details and for any changes after going to press. Especially in winter months when the weather can be unpredictable


The articles published herein do not necessarily represent the views of the Institute of Advanced Motorists or the Suffolk Advanced Motorcyclist Group. They are the opinions of individual contributors and are published with a view that free expression promotes discussion and interests. Any comments please email the editor. The SAM Observer December 2019

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The SAM Observer December 2019

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The SAM Observer December 2019

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The SAM Observer December 2019

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The SAM Observer December 2019

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Profile for Suffolk-Advanced-Motorcyclists

The SAM Observer  

The December 2019 edition of "The SAM Observer"

The SAM Observer  

The December 2019 edition of "The SAM Observer"