Motor School with Quinn Redeker: Ride Less and Ride Better

Motor School Quinn Redeker motorcycle balance
When Quinn Redeker tells you to “sit ’n spin,” it’s not an insult but rather a Motor School lesson. (Photos by Kevin Wing)

When I was 9, I spent every single day riding my dirtbike in the hills north of Los Angeles with all my delinquent buddies. Rain or shine, light or dark, we burned so much premix I’m pretty sure they will find traces of Golden Spectro two-cycle oil in my tissue if they ever do an autopsy on me.

But these days, I just don’t get seat time like I used to. Yes, I was a motor cop and rode with my buddies every day, but that was different because it was merely the platform for a host of other responsibilities: traffic enforcement, collision investigation, emergency patrol support, and so on. It lacked that element of exploration, freedom, and discovery you get when there are no strings attached.

And the worst thing? When I finally do get time to hit the track, tackle some challenging single-track, or sign up for a local club race, I have these painful moments of reckoning that my skills are nowhere near their peak. So there I am trying to enjoy an experience muddled by a crappier version of myself. I try to maintain a glass-half-full mentality, but I swear every time I take my eyes off that damn glass, it loses a little more water.

But I’ve been doing some proactive things around the house to slow the leak, and trust me, they’re helping. What types of things? I’ll give you a hint, they all revolve around one primary goal: improving my balance. I agree it’s a bit obvious and I probably won’t be doing a TED Talk on the subject, but without spinning a single lap, balance drills vastly improve my core strength, reaction time, breathing, on-bike focus, and indeed, my generally souring self-image. They can do the same for you.

Motor School Quinn Redeker motorcycle balance
It’s easier than it looks. Unicycles offer massive gains in balance despite occasional pointing and laughing from passersby.

What tools do I use for the job? I just finished my morning self-affirmation ritual, so now I can set my mirror down and go over them with you. They’re listed below, from easier and more accessible exercises to those that are more challenging and require some investment. A word of caution: While these exercises will surely improve measurable performance metrics and enhance your overall riding abilities despite less actual time in the saddle, they can also get you hurt. If, like me, you’re of a certain age, bones are easier to break, and muscles can get pulled just doing the dishes. If you question your ability to perform one of the activities listed below, err on the side of caution and skip it.

Spin Training: Crazy as it seems, all those wasted hours you spend spinning around in your office chair might just pay dividends. Here’s why: Spinning around in a circle increases your inner-ear activity, which, in turn, improves the information your inner ear feeds to your cerebellum. And it’s the cerebellum that controls movement, so better information (in the form of a more active inner ear) will improve your overall motor skills. To reap the benefits, you will need a swivel chair. The goal is to slowly increase your spin speed and number of spins over time. Start slowly and keep your eyes open. As you gain comfort, try it with your eyes closed for greater challenge and benefit. The good news here is that even if your riding skills don’t improve, at least you can feel like you’re doing something productive at work.

Motor School Quinn Redeker motorcycle balance
Who knew spinning around in circles could make you a better rider?

Balance Board: Using a balance board in the comfort of my living room and office has noticeably improved my balance, coordination, motor skills, and leg strength. And guess what? It all translates when I swing a leg over my bike. Instead of hunting for a used board on Craigslist, I recommend going with a new unit from a trusted manufacturer due to some boards being of questionable structural integrity. Mine is a Vew-Do El Dorado ($169.95 at, which is strong as hell and American-made.

Motor School Quinn Redeker motorcycle balance
Park your bike and grab your board. Balance boards improve your on-bike balance and control after just a few sessions.

There are plenty of YouTube videos to help get you started, but make sure you practice by holding on to a solid surface as you gain confidence and ability.

Slackline: More than any other tool, the slackline has been the best at improving my body control and breathing while I ride. If this is the only tool you employ, I feel confident in saying you will go from a midpack guy in your riding group to crushing all your buddies, including “Big Ronny,” the resident fast guy who still brags about his 10% racer discount back when he won a local Novice race. A slackline is a taut line tethered between two points, running a few feet off the ground and spanning 15-28 feet in length, or the approximate length of the sun-bleached jet boat in your neighbor’s yard.

Motor School Quinn Redeker motorcycle balance
Improved core strength and better body control are tangible benefits of regular slackline practice.

It’s fairly intuitive, but again, there are plenty of YouTube videos out there should you need coaching. As for recommended brand and setup, Amazon is your friend – you’ll find a variety of indoor and outdoor versions. Mine is just a long ratchet strap I got from a local hardware store and tied between two trees in the yard.

Unicycle: I get it. They look impossible to learn, and more importantly, you can’t imagine ever becoming one of “those people.” Get over it and pick one up on Craigslist for cheap. A 20- to 24-inch wheel will do fine, and you can watch some YouTube videos to learn. Within a few weeks, you will have balance like you’ve never had in your life, and trust me, it translates. Too old you say? I have buddies in their 70s that I bullied into riding unicycles, so borrow my mirror, hold it in front of your face, and repeat after me: “Yes, I can.”

Motor School Quinn Redeker motorcycle balance
It’s easier than it looks. Unicycles offer massive gains in balance despite occasional pointing and laughing from passersby.

I don’t want you to start feeling overwhelmed with any of this information, like I just dropped loads more work for you to do. We are having this discussion because both of us have less time to ride, so think of these tools as supplements. Any amount of effort on your end will pay dividends on the bike, so remain calm and bite off a little bit as you go. If it helps, I’ll even let you keep my mirror. 

Find Quinn at Police Motor Training. Send feedback to [email protected].

See all of Quinn Redeker’s “Motor School” articles here.

The post Motor School with Quinn Redeker: Ride Less and Ride Better appeared first on Rider Magazine.


2023’S KEY MOMENTS – ROUND 12, JEREZ: Oh, so you thought Portimao was special?

The sun was setting (even though the sun doesn’t move, the earth moves, but never mind) on the 2023 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship as the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto returned after a year absence and wow, it was back with a bang! After title celebrations for Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) in Race 1, a first podium of his WorldSBK career for Dominique Aegerter (GYTR GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) in the Superpole Race, Race 2 was always going to be emotional, with farewells and points to prove. Enjoy Race 1 and Race 2 here, whilst catching up on a dramatic Superpole Race – DON’T FORGET TO HIT THAT SUBSCRIBE BUTTON!

35 passes for the in the whole race at Portimao? “Hold my beer” said Jerez; 11 laps to go, 38 passes at the front of the final WorldSBK race of the season and you can guess the pair! Bautista aiming to sign off his 2023 season with a triple, Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) aiming to give the perfect gift to his Yamaha team in his last race with them before his BMW challenge in 2024. All this coming after Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) crashed from the lead in his final race in Kawasaki, albeit remounting but finishing out of the points.

Between Bautista and Razgatlioglu, only three turns weren’t used for overtaking – Turns 3 and 4 (who can blame them?) and Turn 7. Paul Denning went on to call it the “best WorldSBK race ever” after the race but the on-track action was alive. It went to the final corner of the season, Bautista sliding sideways up the inside, Toprak cutting back and standing the Champion up. A race to the line, Toprak held on but in his ambition to win, exceeding track limits on the exit of the final corner, giving Bautista the win. Incredible scenes to send WorldSBK into winter in style. Watch Rea’s farewell from a whole new perspective here, as well as Toprak’s emotional Yamaha goodbye here.

Get your must-have tool for all things WorldSBK related with the WorldSBK VideoPass!


2023’S KEY MOMENTS – ROUND 12, JEREZ: Bautista crowned Champion in front of huge home crowd

The last round of the 2023 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship at the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto and it was match-point in Race 1 for Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati). He needed just two points from the entire weekend to be crowned Champion for a second time and he wasn’t going to miss out on getting it sorted straight away. Enjoy Race 1 and Race 2 here as well as a dramatic Superpole Race – and subscribe to our YouTube channel for more cool content.

Leading every lap from start to finish and going relatively unchallenged, Alvaro Bautista put on a true Champion’s display. A Ducati rider hadn’t defended the title successfully in over 20 years with the #1 but now, a modern great had cemented his name in the record books. Bautista became World Superbike Champion for a second time, this time doing it at home in front of a packed Jerez crowd. Great scenes of sportsmanship from main title contender Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) were on show, as was a congratulations from arch-rival Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK). Donning a second gold suit in as many years and with the fireworks going off all around, the atmosphere was absolutely electric. Watch Bautista’s title success in a special episode of Unfiltered, here!

2024 IS UNMISSABLE: enjoy everything next year, past, present and future with the WorldSBK VideoPass!


Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags | Gear Review

Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags

When planning our trip to South Dakota to ride the Black Hills BDR-X, we knew we needed good adventure luggage and opted for Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags, which are soft bags with a rigid mounting system.

Each TR40 Terra saddlebag has an outer bag made of abrasion-resistant material with reinforced stitching and an inner dry bag, both with roll closures to keep out dust and water. Each side has 32 liters of capacity, holds up to 22 lb, and measures 15.75 x 9.8 x 14.9 inches. One side has an outer fuel/water bottle holder, and the other has a small roll-top accessory bag.

Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags

On the back of each saddlebag is a hard plastic mounting plate that is compatible with Shad’s 4P System Mount, which is sold separately and available for a wide range of ADV motorcycles. For Reid’s CFMOTO Ibex 800 T, the 4P mount is $309.99. The only mount Shad offers for Daniel’s Royal Enfield Himalayan is the 3P ($172.99), which has an inverted L-shaped hanger rather than the full loop hanger of the 4P, so the connection with the TR40 backing plate was more flexible, and the bags bounced around a bit more.

Overall, we’ve logged about 3,000 miles on the Ibex 800 T and 1,500 miles on the Himalayan with the TR40 Terra bags, including tough adventure miles on the Black Hills BDR-X. We like the size, shape, and style of the TR40 Terra setup, which keeps gear low and forward on the bike. The 4P mount is sturdy and survived multiple tip-overs. With six Duraflex cam buckles and eight reinforced straps per bag, our gear stayed put and didn’t rattle or slide around. The bag-within-a-bag design and roll-top closures kept water out, even when we used a high-pressure sprayer to clean mud off the bikes after the BDR-X. However, because both bags are black, stuff can get lost in the dark bottom. Also, when the inner dry bag was packed full, it would not slide into or out of the outer bag. 

Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags

The Double Locking System locks the bag to the 4P mount and locks the outer straps in place to prevent unwanted access. We appreciated being able to lock the bags to the bike, but having to use a key to lock and unlock the outer straps every time we wanted to open the bags was a hassle. Since convenience was more important than security for us, we bypassed the strap lock by trimming the locking tab for the C-ring. We also modified the top straps to allow more adjustability. The locking mechanism that attaches the bags to the 4P mount got jammed up a couple of times from mud and rocks, so keeping them clean and lubricated is important for regular removal and mounting of the saddlebags.

Priced at $578.99 plus the cost of the 4P System Mount (from $222.99 to $343.99), the Shad TR40 Terra Adventure saddlebags are a good value for durable, secure, waterproof luggage.

See all of Rider‘s luggage reviews here.

The post Shad TR40 Terra Adventure Saddlebags | Gear Review appeared first on Rider Magazine.


2023’S KEY MOMENTS – ROUND 11, PORTIMAO: Bautista denies Razgatlioglu in rollercoaster round

Six races remained as we approached Portimao for the Portuguese Round in the 2023 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship. After winning in Race 1, Sunday could have been the day which saw #TheDefence completed by Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati). A certain Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) had other ideas and was riding the best we’d ever seen, although ultimately it wouldn’t be enough for the glory of race victory. Enjoy Race 1 and Race 2 HERE, as well as the Superpole Race and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more cool content!

It started in the Tissot Superpole Race; Razgatlioglu led every lap and despite having a gap in the middle of the race, there was a Bautista-shaped shark closing in. On the last lap, the #1 was right with the #54 but Toprak held on down the front straight. Into the final corner, Bautista once again got close and this time, he was able to pounce, diving under Razgatlioglu on the exit to deny the Turk right at the close – similar to their battle at Estoril in 2022 from Race 1. Bautista led just one lap but it was the most important; Toprak smashed his screen and threw his gloves in anger and was out to prove a point in Race 2.

An instant classic and straight into the top five races of all-time, Razgatlioglu was relentless and Bautista battle-ready. From the start until the end, 35 passes for the lead between the two. The Ducati rider often leading down the straight, only for the Yamaha star to fight back into either Turn 1, Turn 5, Turn 11 or Turn 13. The 35th pass would be the most important; again, closing up to Toprak in the final corner but this time with a different strategy, Bautista was wise to Toprak’s tighter line on exit after his Superpole Race triumph and in-turn, adapted to go to the outside, blasting around the #54 to take the win. Elation for Bautista but even more frustration for Toprak, smashing the screen again, this time so hard that his own airbag had activated. Tears in Parc Ferme for the Turkish star whilst Bautista now needed two points at Jerez to take the title. Elsewhere in the weekend, more Ducati success as Nicolo Bulega ( Racing WorldSSP Team) took the WorldSSP crown and in WorldSSP300, MTM Kawasaki’s Jeffrey Buis became the first double Champion in the class.

Get your essential, must-have tool for all things WorldSBK related with the WorldSBK VideoPass!


2023’S KEY MOMENTS – ROUND 10, ARAGON: ‘Titanic Trio’ scrap it out for Spanish honours

Round 10 of the 2023 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship campaign was held at MotorLand Aragon, and the Spanish venue did not disappoint. From the Race 1 drama of Alvaro Bautista ( Racing – Ducati) crashing twice to teammate Michael Ruben Rinaldi returning to winning ways, it really did have it all. The Tissot Superpole Race is one that will live long in the memory as the ‘Titanic Trio’ – Bautista, Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) and Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) – fought tooth and nail for victory. Catch up on the Race 1 and Race 2 HERE and watch Superpole Race highlights on YouTube – make sure you subscribe, too!

Bautista was looking to bounce back from his Race 1 disappointment whilst Razgatlioglu and Rea were looking to take points out of the Championship leader. The #1 got the holeshot heading into Turn 1 but six-time Champion Rea responded immediately to stay ahead with Razgatlioglu in hot pursuit. With eight laps to go, the #54 looked to move into second ahead of Bautista but the Spaniard resisted, with Rea out in front. With four laps to go, the Ducati rider made his move for the lead at Turn 1 with Rea resisting around the outside and holding position into Turn 2, which allowed the 2021 Champion to claim P2 at Turn 3. The fight would come down to the final lap and final turns, but who came out on top?

What are you waiting for? Relive an unforgettable 2023 season in style using the WorldSBK VideoPass!