Friday, September 21, 2018

DuQuoin Illinois - GWRRA Southern Illinois Ride In Day Two

Sandy and I were up by 6:45 AM. I don't know what kind of birds dive bombed the hood of the Equinox yesterday or what they had been eating, but my attempt to wash some of the bird crap off yesterday with just water and a cloth resulted in a smeared mess. This morning, I tackled it first with Kawasaki PreWash and then used Honda Spray Polish with two cloths to make it look presentable.

The Weather Network said that it would start raining at 9:00 AM and stop an hour later. There were two group rides scheduled to leave the GWRRA Southern Illinois Ride In at 10:00 and we wanted to be on one of them, so we rode the bike down the street to McDonald's. At 8:00 AM sharp, we watched a heavy downpour through the restaurant window.

Looking at the sky and radar, as soon as the rain eased up we took the bike back to the hotel and then drove the Equinox to the fairgrounds. The sun came out at 8:20 for a moment and then it started raining again.

Registration underway

The mood was quiet

People worked on their "find a friend" sheets

Try to find people who fit the descriptions in the blocks

Do you match any of these??

The rides left over an hour late. The first was a lunch ride while the second went to Flamm Orchards. We chose to stay back and get to know some of the non-riders. Around lunch time, Sandy and I drove to Carbondale and had lunch at Arby's. We returned in time for a presentation by Sgt. Joey Watson of the Illinois State Police. The lunch ride was not so lucky.

Sgt. Christopher "Joey" Watson, ISP

ISP still used Milwaukee iron

Sgt. Joey was no stranger to the GWRRA. Today's demonstration covered two techniques. They were both cornering related since ISP stats show the majority of single bike wrecks result from failure to negotiate a curve.

The first skill was trail braking, where the operator uses both front brake and throttle simultaneously to enhance control in corners. It was pointed out that the Motorcycle Safety Foundation does not teach this technique. Joey suggested practicing in a straight line first and demonstrated. Observers were able to see headlight dip gradually as the front brake engaged and then rise as it was released.

Eager observers

Getting ready

Watch the headlight

Gradually dip

The second message was about body angle. The more vertical the body, the less vertical the bike resulting in reduced ground clearance. He took the same corner at the same speed four times.

"Nervous Nellie" body upright

Body neutral looks pretty typical

Upper body leans in causing bike to be more upright

Hanging off gives most clearance

The trail braking gave me something to think about. I do it sometimes but not as often as Sgt. Joey suggested was right. He asked if I could send him the above photos.

After the demos, everyone went back to the pavilion to await supper. It consisted of hot dogs, really tasty brats and mild chili followed by desserts.

Carlene, Reed and Steve

Willie deep in discussion

Don operating the grill


Carlene making sure all is running well

There was a light parade. A number of bikes made several circuits of the campground and then everyone voted for their favourite.

There were some very nice light displays. However, in a moment of I don't know what, Mike C won the people's choice. Here he was holding his one non-OEM LED flashlight over his head.

Yea, Mikey

Dirty bingo was like a cross between regular Bingo and a really warped version of Dirty Santa. Actually, it was nothing like regular Bingo. People pick prizes. People steal prizes. People steal prizes back. At the end, people who were lucky enough to keep prizes opened them.

Sandy is doing OK for now

Our table mates

Sandy managed to win a bacon press. We will either have to start cooking bacon at home or give it to son-in-law Mike.

When Dirty Bingo adjourned, everyone headed down to Ye Olde Country Store to celebrate Bob's final few days in the ice cream business. That flavour I could not remember yesterday was Caramel Collision. I will be doing penance for that for a while. Both last night and again tonight.

After we dropped Willie and Carlene at the fairgrounds, we returned to the hotel where I skipped my photo and blog chores and went straight to bed.

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