Our Mission Statement
We are the Same Wind Riders Motorcycle Club of Rockford, Illinois. In March
2007 it was agreed upon by the majority of consistant Riders to form an
organized not for profit club. We are an all style (motorcycle) Men only
motorcycle club based soley on friendship and dedication. We invite
everyone to come ride with us. Our only expectation of those who choose to
ride with us is “Safety”. WE JUST LOVE TO RIDE thus: “No Matter What You
Ride It Is All The Same Wind.”
Group Riding Guidelines
There are more and more people getting together as groups not only for impromptu short
excursions but also for organized rides. A group ride could be defined as any group of two or
more motorcycles riding together. There are many specifics concerning group riding, including
instructions before the ride so everyone understands the hand signals, the route, how long
between rest stops, and a myriad of other necessary instructions.
A Group Ride is normally composed of a Ride Leader and a Sweep or a Drag
Rider(bringing up the rear). For organized rides they usually have radio or CB communication
and knowledge of the route including not only the final destination, but also the stops along the
route. If more riders in the group have radios, then casual chatter during the ride should be kept
to a minimum by the riders of the group so that the Lead and the Sweep riders can be in instant
communication whenever needed. Motorcyclists normally will monitor Channel 1, but this can be
easily changed if a new channel is agreed upon before the ride starts, or even during the ride, if
necessary. If communication between other riders in the group is desired; then they should go to
Normal riding as a group is done in a staggered formation. This is, basically, dividing a
lane in half with each rider occupying his/her own half of the lane. It is each rider’s responsibility
to ride in the half of the lane as dictated to by the next rider in front. If the rider in front needs to
change lane halves to maintain the stagger, then it is the following rider’s responsibility to change
lane position on the down the line to accommodate this change. The Lead rider usually starts the
stagger in the left half of the lane position. While in staggered group riding, the normal stagger
distance is 1-2 seconds, no more than a 3 second gap, in order to maintain a tight formation and
not allow traffic to interupt and break up the formation. This means that each rider will be 2-3
seconds behind the rider directly in front and using the same half of the lane. When comming to
a stop, the group generally forms up two abreast(side by side). When the group starts off, the
rider on the left starts first.
When riding in curves, the stagger is no longer warranted and a single file type of
fomation is normal. These changes in lane position should be dictated bt the Lead rider. Holding
two fingers straight up in the air(either the index and the little fingers, or the first two fingers)
indicates a staggered formation, while the index fingerpointing straight up in the air is a direction
for single file riding.
Single file riding allows the riders more freedom to negotiate the curves and to dodge
obstacles while having the freedom to use the whole lane. In single formation, the normal
distance between riders is increased to 3-5 seconds. For safety, the single file formation should
not be elongated to such a distance that the rider in front cannot be seen. There are two reasons
It is much easier to negotiate around corners by using the next rider’s position to “see”
further around blind curves.
The rider can see and pass back hand signals indicating obstacles or other information
If any rider feels that the group pace is too fast for comfort, then he/she should motion
the following bikes to pass until the only one left following is the Sweep/Drag rider. Then ride
at your own pace until the next stop; when you should inform the Lead rider that you are
uncomfortable with the pace. It will then be up to the Lead rider to either separate the ride onto
two groups, or go at a slower pace so that all members of the group feel secure. Group riding
should not be, and is never a race!
If a rider in the formation needs to pull out for any reason, the group will close up the gap
and reorganize the stagger. Please do not pull off, unless you need to do so. The Sweep/Drag
rider of the group will aid the rider who has pulled over. He will also communicate(via radio) with
the Lead rider so as to apprise him of the situation. The next to last rider becomes the
Sweep/Drag rider until the original Sweep/Drag rider returns to the group.
When turning onto another road, if the next rider back cannot be seen, either due to
having traffic in-between, or a large enough gap in the group for any reason; the last rider in the
line must wait at the turn for the next rider to show up before leaving the turn so as to signal the
route has taken a turn. This will keep the group together on the same route even though there
may be unforseen gaps in the formation.
Passage of Information Through Signals
During the ride, the Lead rider will make various blinker light, hand, and leg signals.
These signals indicate lane changes or turns, obstacles, increasing/ decreasing speed, or whether
to form a stagger formation or a single line. These hand signals need to be passed back through
the group from the front rider to the next rider in line. That way each rider only needs to be
cognizant of signals from the rider directly in front of him/her rather than everyone trying to keep
an eye on the Lead rider.
Blinker lights should always be used to not only allow everyone to see the upcoming
change, but ti feed back acknowledgement. In a group ride, whether the Lead rider or in the
middle of the pack, the bike in front needs to see the blinker light of the following rider before
turning in front of the following rider(such as a right hand turn when the bike in left stagger
crosses over into the right stagger lane). This prevents the bike in front from crashing into the
(surprised/unprepared) following rider when making the turn, assuming that the following bike
sees your blinker light. Sometimes rider don’t notice blinker lights right away, so they should be
turned on well before the turn. That way eveybody in the group becomes aware that a turn is
If an obstacle is spotted in the road, it should immediatly be signaled to the riders in back
for saftey. Sometimes, when the obstacle is spotted in a blind curve, and one doesn’t want to
take one’s hand off the handlebars, the signal is often done with an outstretched leg(indicating
which side of the lane the obstacle is located). This can be very useful when you don’t want to
take your hand off the throttle and the obstacle is on the right side of a blind curve. Some typical
obstacles which should be signaled as to where they may lie in the lane are:
sand/dirt/gravel/rocks, pot holes, dead animals, road dragons(pieces of truck tire treads),
vehicular debris, range cattle, tar snakes(road tar repairs), furniture, ect. These obstacle signals
should always be passed to the rear as soon as possible ao as to give those riders the best
opportunity to dodge them. Don’t forget that the riders towards the rear in a group ride will not
be able to see as much of the whole road surface as those in the front due to the visual blockage
of the front riders. Other hand signals include speed changes, directionns for coming alongside or
passing, need for food or rest stop, and other miscellaneous things like telling another rider that
his blinker light is on unnecessarily.
There are certain tips which, when incorporated into one’s riding, will make the ride safer
as well as enjoyable. The following are some generalities of how to ride in rural areas. Range
cattle have the right of way. Riders should slow way down for cattle found alongside, or in the
roadway. Some of these, especially the calves, become skittish and very often bolt directly in front
of the bike, so have your brake covered in case you need to come to a complete immediate stop.
Some years seem to have a bumper crop of locusts which like to crawl out on the roadway
to sun themselves. Although, in places, the road might appear to be covered with them; don’t
worry about losing traction because of them. You will not hydroplane(skid) over them unless you
are in a full fledged migration, or swarm.
When there are an abnormal number of locusts on the road, there also seems to be an
overabundance of locust eaters, or chipmunks and ground squirrels. These can sometimes be
seen down the road in the dozens in certain areas. Even though no one wants to hit one of these
cute little critters; do not attempt to dodge or break for them as this will actually increase the
odds that you will hit them. They will dodge or stop at just the last moment, and if you attempt
to swerve or break for them; you will be more likely to lose control if you do hit one. On those
occasions where you are worried about hitting one of them; just get a good grip on the
handlebars and ride your line. At worst, even when leaned over in a curve, you will only feel a
slight bump if you happen to run over one.
Sand/gravel is sometimes found in curves from cars and trailers running a wheel off the
roadway and “splashing” up some of the sand/gravel from the other side of the road. Sometimes
in the springtime there are also some “dirty” sections of the roads in the higher elevations due to
snow melt runoff. When encountering a dirty roadway, the inside tire track of the lane(closest to
the centerline) is almost always the cleanest part of the road and should be taken in a single file
Cattle Guards while in curves are sometimes also encountered. These can be slippery,
especially to motorcycle tires with their small contact patches. When wet, either the water or oil,
they are extremely hazardous and should always be taken in a straight line while straight up on
the motorcycle(no lean angle). This can be accomplished by doing the curve in two stages. The
beginning of the turn before the cattle guard, then straight up over the guard, and finish the turn
after going over it. This is known as a “double apex” for those who may not already know the
In conclusion, group riding can be a lot of fun if all the members are comfortable within
the group. If one or more members of the group are not comfortable; then this should be
discussed at the next stop so as to accommodate or correct the cause of the problem. It’s very
easy to take each problem and, with a little tact, teach whom ever might not have a sufficient
understanding of these simple rules. We all can then enjoy the fine sport of Motorcycling.
Ten Ways to Wreck a Motorcycle Club
Don’t go to meetings.
If you go - be late & leave early.
If the weather is bad - don’t even think of going.
If you do go to a meeting, find fault with everything and keep a conversation going while
the meeting is in progress.
Never accept an office. It is easier to sit back and criticize.
Accept an office, but not the responsibility that comes with it.
If appointed to a committee, don’t go to meeting. If not appointed, get peeved about it.
When asked for an opinion, reply that you have no comments, but after the meeting tell
everyone how things should have been done.
Do nothing more than absolutely necessary, but when others do the “lions share” tell
everyone how the Association is ran by a clique.
Use the club as an alibi for non-club related activities.
Same Wind Riders M C
No matter what you ride, It’s all
the same wind.