There is an opportunity for up to 5 DWDAM members or associates, to attend the RoadSmart skills day at Castle Combe.

Date: 14 June with an 07:45 registration and noise check.

Location: Castle Combe track

Cost: £150

Thursday 14th June 2018

Castle Combe RideSmart Training Day – All about machine handling

The day will take and at times challenge published advice on motorcycling, the emphasis will be to pull out the best of what is offered in several other locations, including methods used by the Nurburgring Actionteam.  It is not a traditional IAM Skills Day: IAM Skills Days take the format of listen to the theory session go out and replicate.  This day will challenge and invite experimentation, making comparisons between cornering in accordance with Roadcraft principles versus cornering when riding competitively.  The essential difference being road safety and raw speed.  However, in either situation the need is to be able to control the machine. The old saying that to finish first, first you have to have to finish, means staying upright is a good plan and machine handling is what the whole day is intended to be about.

The Day

The mostly practical day will comprise machine handling instruction at slow, medium and circuit speeds.  For example what happens if:-

  1. I grab the front brake? The front wheel is likely to lock up, control is lost so how can I get out of THAT one!
  2. I stamp on the rear brake.  The rear wheel will certainly lock up so how does that help me stop?
  3. Why do braking, turning and apex points matter and how do those spinning gyroscopes called wheels help us control our machines?


Designed to run alongside Roadcraft training with an emphasis on machine dynamics and handling. The day is emphatically not a track day with some extra bells, but will challenge some published techniques by intensive use of the circuit including free lapping.

The day is built around road riding motorcyclists and is about safety and machine control with a ratio of no more than 5 students to 1 instructor and will encourage experimentation and challenge. The circuit is used because it offers acres of tarmac without kerbs, street furniture and oncoming traffic.

Only road legal bikes will be permitted. Outer clothing in textile is also permitted the only stipulation is that two piece suits must be zip and link.


Provided by Castle Combe’s dedicated team led by Rob Jones and augmented by experienced volunteer trainers tailored to particular requirements and skills.

Speed and control

The overriding aim of the day is to ensure that no participant finds themselves overwhelmed and for everyone to enjoy themselves.

Most advanced riders will recognise from their training journey, that as their skill in Observing, Anticipating and Planning(OAP) increases so does safe progress.

On the Castle Combe Circuit those skills will be further developed so that in highway conditions we may well find we have a little more in hand, greater confidence in our own abilities and a better understanding of our machinery and how to control it. AND THEREBY BE SAFER RIDERS.

Day logistics

  • +/- 50 delegates
  • Split into 2 groups of 25 – group A and Group B
  • Sub split into working groups of 5
  • 1 instructor per sub group when on the circuit

Activity logistics

  • Group A use tarmac/ car park area for low speed riding, including:
  1. Gymkhana type layouts but ridden at low speed (David Blackledge and Hector Vass supervising)
  2. Braking (Jim McCarter supervising)
  3. Tyre warming
  4. Picking up
  • Group B on circuit in 5 sub groups for section training as follows:
  1. braking, gears, turn and exit
  2. turn in determines exit/set up for next bend
  3. Double apex
  4. 1 handed cornering no hands on straight.
  5. 180 degree
  • Then swop

Timing logistics

  • 7.45 registration/noise
  • 8.30 circuit briefing (Rob Jones)
  • 9.00 groups split and commence activities
  • 9.15 section training /slow speed activities
  • 11.30 all groups assemble in Paddock and swop activities
  • 1.15 Lunch.
  • 2.00 Theory session (Eddy Lambah-Stoate)
  • 2.30 on circuit in sub groups as called by marshals  - 1st session for each group 1 handed.
  • 4.30  sessions end
  • 5.00 debrief and home

Theory session will range from machine dynamics, comparing road and track techniques, the rider’s mind and body.