Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Motorcycle Skills Test Failed
It couldn't have gone worse. The weather was changing. I found the DMV CDL and Motorcycle Test Course at Fort Ethan Allen to be much smaller than I expected.
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I had an early lunch and made sure I had the registration, insurance paper, my license, motorcycle learner's permit and passport (for identification) and headed out to the Fort on the Triumph Bonneville I borrowed from Bruce Cunningham.
There was a steady stream of young men there to take their skills test.
I walked out in the parking lot to see what the course looked like, but the inspector cautioned me back to the grass. The guy ahead of me took his time and asked for clarification. Good moves.
The course was much smaller than the parking lots I have been using for practice. It would have been a good idea to measure out and create a copy of the course for myself.
The first exercise was to ride right around the first pylon, weave left and right, and exit the last one into a U-turn back to the other side and stop in a box. Well, I started left and so by the end of the pylons I was on the wrong side. The inspector let me take it again. This time I put my foot down in the U-turn. But I stopped OK.
The next exercise was to go 12-20 mph from a standing start, and after passing a line, stop quickly. I slowed the bike and didn't do the exercise in the time limit. So the inspector let me try again. This time when I stopped I forgot to pull in the clutch and stalled the Bonnie. When I went to start again, the box was still in gear, so it lurched and fell over. I don't think I could have made more mistakes.
Now my left leg is sore from where I tried to hold up the falling motorcycle. No damage to the bike, Bruce.
The wind started up and blew papers all around. The inspector told me I could reschedule and comeback. I think maybe there are good reasons to test rusty motorcycle riders.