131 months ago

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Why Target Fixation is Bad

One of the first things we're all taught when we learn to ride is how to get around a corner. Specifically, look where you want to go.

The title of the video below is "shocking" motorcycle crash. I don't think it's particularly shocking, except for the lack of experience shown by the rider. This crash on the Mulholland demonstrates why looking where you want to go (and conversely, not looking where you don't want to go) is something every rider needs to practice every time they are out riding.


The rider does not appear to be coming around the corner too quickly at all. The angle of lean is pretty low and clearly, the bike could turn a lot more. In other words, this is completely avoidable.

Keep looking around your turn at all times

Keep looking around your turn at all times

As the rider exits the turn, you can see the panic setting in. He (i'm assuming it's a man) seems to sit up and look forward, even though the bike is still leaning. In other words, he's not completing his turn. He's also now way off line as you can see in the shot above. This is the point at which is all starts to go wrong. Clearly, he's seen the bicyclists up ahead, even though they are out of shot. The bicyclists do appear to be riding correctly though - all the way to the right of the lane.

For some reason, our rider keeps looking at them and, as we've all been taught, the bike goes where you look. In this case, it means right through the back of the both of them. If only he'd looked away and kept turning. He'd have avoided the bicyclists and given himself some more room for the next curve.

For me, the real shocking part is what happens after the crash. Clearly, no- one is that badly hurt, but the corner is a reasonably fast one and close to where the accident happened.

If you crash so close to a corner, your first job is to make sure it's safe

If you crash so close to a corner, your first job is to make sure it's safe

It's reasonable to assume that other vehicles will also be coming too fast around that corner. So what is this bicyclist doing putting his bike in the middle of the road?

Bicyclists - Not always the brightest

Bicyclists - Not always the brightest

At least one of the other bicyclists moves it later on. A better option for this guy would be to run to the corner and wave at approaching vehicles.

That aside, the cause of this accident was clearly the motorcyclist and his inability to control his machine. I can only assume some road traffic charges were laid against him and if he wants to continue riding, he's going to need to get himself on a decent course to learn all those skills he's already supposed to have.

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