Two male riders have died on New Year’s Eve in NSW in a tragic end to 2019, bringing the total number of motorcycle deaths for the year to 67.
That is seven above the three-year average and was the third rider death in NSW in 24 hours.
Just before 9pm last night (31 December 2019), emergency services were called to the Mitchell Highway in Maryvale, just north of Wellington near Dubbo, following reports of a crash between a motorcycle and utility vehicle.
The rider, believed to be a man aged in his 20s, died at the scene.
Police say the male driver of the utility, and a female passenger, were airlifted to Orange Base Hospital with multiple injuries.
The utility caught fire and was extinguished by NSW Rural Fire Service.
Orana Mid-Western Police District officers have established a crime scene and the Crash Investigation Unit are investigating.
A report will be prepared for the Coroner.
Coffs Harbour crash
At 9pm, emergency services received reports that a male rider was found on the road near his motorcycle at Coramba Road, Coffs Harbour.
Passers-by tried to revive him until NSW Ambulance paramedics arrived. Despite their efforts, the man died at the scene.
The man is yet to be formally identified.
Coffs Clarence Police District officers will prepare a report for the Coroner.
Anyone who may have been driving along Coramba Road around the time of the incident, and witnessed or captured dashcam footage of the motorbike, is urged to contact Coffs Harbour Police Station on (02) 6691 0799.
Anyone with information about any of these incidents is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.
Our condolences to the riders’ family and friends.
We also sincerely wish you all a safe and hazy New Year.
As yet another action packed year draws to a close, what better time than now to reflect on some of the most dramatic MotoGP™ photos of 2019? While the pressure was always there to get results, it wasn’t always serious business in the Grand Prix paddock.
That drop in recalls is good news and shows that manufacturers must be taking a bit more care to test their product before rushing a new model to market. Mind you, it’s still 27 too many. In fact, even one may be too many if it affects your bike.
The most motorcycle recalls this year was six for Yamaha; followed by four for BMW, Ducati and Triumph; Suzuki and Triumph on three; two for Harley, Honda and Indian; and one each for Kawasaki, Piaggio and KTM.
That compares with the previous year where Ducati had 6;Indian, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Yamaha, KTM and Triumph 3; BMW, Harley, Husqvarna and Moto Guzzi 2, Aprilia and MV Augusta one each. There were no other product recalls.
Most recalls are issued voluntarily and posted online by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
Even though manufacturers and importers usually contact owners when a recall is issued, the bike may have been sold privately to a rider unknown to the company.
Therefore, Motorbike Writer publishes all motorcycle and scooter recalls as a service to all riders.
If you believe there is an endemic problem with your bike that should be recalled, contact the ACCC on 1300 302 502.
To check whether your motorcycle has been recalled, click on these sites:
Caravan and truck drivers could resolve not to try to pass other vehicles on the only double-lane uphill stretch for miles around, blocking a string of traffic behind them who could have passed a lot quicker.
How about riders resolving not to make disparaging comments about other people’s choice of bike? We are part of a small community, so we should stick together and support each other.
We would also love it if governments at all levels resolved to listen to riders and include them in their planning.
Drivers of all vehicles should resolve to understand that lane filtering is legal and not only a benefit to riders, but to all motorists as it reduces the number of vehicles in the commuter queue
Instead of adding performance parts to your motorcycle to squeeze out more power, riders could resolve to lose some weight to improve the bike’s power-to-weight ratio, or maybe take some riding lessons to sharpen your skills. Admit it; you don’t use anywhere near all the power your bike already produces!
We would appreciate it if some keyboard warriors would resolve to not fire off random abusive comments to us and other readers before thoroughly reading our articles, including this ironic list.
In a tragic end to 2019, a 22-year-old male rider has died in a late-night crash in Sydney’s Royal National Park while on a group ride.
NSW Police say the accident occurred at 10pm on Monday (30 December 2019) on Lady Wakehurst Drive at Lilyvale, in the Royal National Park.
“Police have been told a group of motorcyclists were travelling north when the bike left the road and struck a road sign,” they say.
The rider died at the scene.
Officers from Wollongong Police District established a crime scene and commenced an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the crash.
Inquiries continue, and a report will be prepared for the information of the Coroner.
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.
Our sincere condolences to the rider’s family and friends.
Night riding can be fun, but it is also more dangerous for a host of reasons.
Starting on January 15, 2020, in Chicago, Ducati will kick off its 29-city, coast-to-coast “Ready 4 Red” tour, a series of entertaining evening experiences that invite local communities to come together and discover the new 2020 Ducati lineup and learn about the World of Ducati.
The “Ready 4 Red” tour will present an inclusive and inviting atmosphere for seasoned motorcyclists, non-riders and new riders alike, showcasing Ducati’s new 2020 lineup, including the all-new Streetfighter V4 alongside the Panigale V2, Panigale V4, Multistrada 1260 Grand Tour, Diavel 1260 S, Hypermotard SP and the new Scrambler Icon Dark.
Ducati’s new e-bike, the MIG-RR e-mountain bike, will also make its North American public debut in preparation of its U.S. availability in 2020.
In addition to the two-wheeled entertainment, guests will have the opportunity to see the latest apparel collections and “Ducati SuMisura” at select locations — a bespoke fitting service which allows users to customize their own leather suit in terms of graphics options and manufacturing to suit the rider’s specific physique.
Local Desmo Owners Club members (DOC) will also be attending to share with visitors their range of regular activities, ride-outs, events and the benefits of joining the Ducati family.
“Ready 4 Red” events will be open to everyone through a free online RSVP process. For more information and to register, please visit: http://bit.ly/2sb9nF0
The mission was simple: See some scenery, carve some curves and soak up some cool temperatures before the summer heat arrived.
Three of us left our homes in different corners of Los Angeles, California; I was on a KTM 1090 Adventure R, my brother was riding my BMW R 1200 GS and our friend was on a Honda ST1300, and we met at the Halfway House café, a popular stop for weekend riders. After a hearty breakfast — of the kind none of us ever eats on a non-riding day — we headed northeast through a string of sweet winding roads. Traversing Vasquez Canyon, Bouquet Canyon, Spunky Canyon and San Francisquito Canyon, we made our way through Lake Elizabeth and headed down into the wide Antelope Valley.
The cool morning air rose to warming levels by the time we’d run the long straight roads that climb past Willow Springs, through a forest of wind turbines to the town of Tehachapi, where we gassed up and hydrated. Then, it was down wiggling Woodford-Tehachapi Road — pausing to admire the famed Tehachapi Loop, a railroad engineering wonder that curly-cues a length of track around itself, and the César E. Chávez National Monument, a library, museum and memorial of the California farm unionizer.
I’d been impressed by the roadworthiness of the 1090 Adventure R. My impressions improved as we began the tight twists of Caliente Bodfish Road, a narrow two-lane series of sharp curves that brought out the beast in it. Mindful of the livestock roaming along the unfenced sides of the road, and not wanting to dust my riding partners, I modulated the throttle as we rose up and over the crest and proceeded north toward Lake Isabella.
Wildflowers carpeted the flat fields of Walker Basin, where we paused to take beauty shots of the bikes and complain about the rising heat. Knowing we had a lot of miles left to cover, and certain it was going to get warmer before it got cooler, we dashed down the mountain, past Lake Isabella, to air conditioning, cold drinks and lunch in Kernville at Cheryl’s Diner.
Revived, we scooted out of Kernville, running north along the banks of the Kern River up Mountain Highway 99, watching the trees change from willow and sycamore to oak and finally pine. This higher-speed road carves up an increasingly narrow ravine, the rock walls closing in as the corners tighten. Riding past the turnoff for Sherman Pass, we skirted Johnsondale, left 99 for the seasonally closed M-90, and summitted at 7,300 feet near Ponderosa.
The 25 miles of State Route 190 downhill to the town of Springville may be the most dramatic motorcycle road in California. Countless tight corners, including some tricky decreasing-radius turns, drop almost 6,000 feet in elevation through pine forests and past trickling waterfalls.
We gassed up again and guzzled cool drinks under a broiling sun in Springville before running the last leg of our first ride day — the splendid, high-speed M-296/Yokohl Valley Drive, a poorly paved length of pavement with some extremely tight hairpin turns that crosses oak-dotted ranchland. When that deposited us on State Route 198, we hooked right, slid past the edge of glistening Lake Kaweah, and landed in Three Rivers, where we’d booked rooms for the night.
We’d done a little more than 250 miles from the Halfway House. An ample meal at Sequoia Cider Mill prepared us for a good long sleep.
Again mindful of the heat, we saddled up early and rode north to the turnoff for Mineral King. Once a prosperous silver mining area — hence its name — Mineral King got national attention in the 1960s when the Walt Disney Company selected it to build a massive mountain ski resort. Environmentalists intervened; Disney departed.
What remains are the granite cliffs, groves of giant sequoias, rustic cabins dating from the 1870s and a narrow, patchy length of pavement that climbs 7,000 feet in a short 28 miles. It’s a slow, uneven road snaking through dense forests, past cabins hidden in the trees, hugging the side of a canyon wall that features sheer drops to the east fork of the Kaweah River far below.
At the road’s end, in an alpine valley dotted with wildflowers and interlaced with gentle streams, we paused to fill our lungs with crisp mountain air and take the obligatory photographs. Hikers setting out for the peaks were headed for 11,000 feet and higher. We mounted up and picked our way slowly back down the hill.
Soon we were on Generals Highway, entering the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks area — I was getting to use my lifetime “senior” pass for the first time — and biting into a delightful lunch at the recently redesigned Wuksachi Lodge. An hour later, we had the keys to our cabins at John Muir Lodge. While my companions headed for the showers, I did an hour-long hike among the giant sequoias at Grant Grove, communing with the silence as the sun went down and the temperature dropped.
Morning broke cold and damp, and it was 45 degrees as we walked to breakfast. It was colder and foggier when we saddled up and headed down East Kings Canyon Road toward the turn for State Route 245. Ordinarily a deliciously twisty downhill run through the towns of Pinehurst and Badger, this well-maintained mountain road loses elevation quickly through a 35-mile series of sweeping curves, each with its own impressive view of the great San Joaquin Valley.
This cold morning, though, the air temperature was just above freezing, the mist had turned to fog and the fog was turning to rain. We proceeded slowly, some of us maybe just a little smug that we had brought proper rain gear.
The unfriendly weather left us briefly as we paralleled State Route 99, but returned as we picked up Old Stage Road and climbed through Glennville and onto State Route 155 into Alta Sierra. Through a pleasant period of weak sunshine, I was able again to make the most of the KTM, carving corners as the two-lane rural roads took us up from farmland to grazing land to pine groves.
Soon the freezing rain had reduced visibility to a few bike lengths. We crawled over the summit and were still chattering in our helmets when we stopped again at Cheryl’s Diner in Kernville, this time to warm up with hot drinks.
We still had the southbound Caliente Bodfish Road to enjoy, and our reverse route through Tehachapi and Lake Elizabeth. But we’d already gotten more than we came for. Good scenery? Curves to carve? Cool temperatures? Check, check, check. Mission accomplished!