Rider Placement- Experienced riders should ride on the left in the front or rear of the formation. Less experienced riders should ride on the right in the middle of the formation. Motorcycles with a passenger should ride on the right. Trikes should ride in front or rear of the formation.
Formation Changes – Single file formations are recommended on curvy roads, under conditions of poor visibility or poor road surfaces and when entering or leaving the highway. The Road Captain will communicate the need for a single file formation by pointing her index finger on her left hand straight in the air. When a single file signal is given, the bike on the left proceeds in front of the bike on the right.
Communication – The attached hand signals will be the standard ones used to communicate during the ride. These will be used by all members to communicate with the rest of the group. Signals are passed back by every rider so that everyone is informed.
Group Pace – The Road Captain will maintain a steady pace with as few dramatic speed changes or sudden moves as possible. The Road Captain will attempt to time traffic lights to allow the group to proceed with a minimum of stops and starts. Periodically check the riders following in your rear view mirror. If you see a rider falling behind, slow down so they may catch up. If all the riders in the group use this technique, the group should be able to maintain a steady speed without pressure to ride too fast to catch up.
Separations – In the event the group becomes separated, the Road Captain will slow the group down to enable the separated group to rejoin. If this is unsuccessful, the Road Captain will pull off the road in a safe location and wait for the separated bikes to rejoin. If you are separated from the group, don’t panic and don’t break the law or ride beyond your abilities to catch up with the group. Vehicles Entering the Group – Do not try to prevent vehicles from entering the group. If a vehicle wants to break through the group on a multi-lane road, give them space to safely do so. Close formation once the vehicle exits the lane. If the vehicle does not move, cautiously and carefully pass to reform.
Navigation Errors – If a navigational correction needs to be made, such as a missed turn or exit, continue with the group until the error can be safely corrected. Road Hazards – Avoid potholes when you can safely do so. Signal others using the designated hand signals, of road hazards, potholes and debris.
Breakdowns – If there is a breakdown, the Sweeper will stop with the disabled bike. The adjacent rider of the disabled bike may also stop. The remainder of the group will proceed with the Road Captain who will move the group off the road at the first safe stopping area. The Sweeper will update the Road Captain of the status of the disabled bike, by cell phone or by riding to the group. If the Sweeper does not contact the Road Captain in a reasonable time, the Captain will send a rider back to ascertain the status.
Exiting the Highway – When exiting the highway the Road captain will commence lane changing no less than one mile from the exit ramp. Rejoining the group – If you leave your place in the group, re-enter at the rear in front of the Sweeper
Law Enforcement – If the police stop the group, the Road Captain should lead the group to a safe place and riders should stay in formation. The Road captain should be the only one who approaches the officer and should promptly identify herself.
Hand Signals - Click on the printable version to view the hand signals at the end.
All group rides will be led by a Road Captain or designated alternate. Every ride will have a Sweeper who will ride in the rear of the group in the last position. The group will ride in a parallel staggered formation (see illustration) unless indicated otherwise by the Captain. Riders should maintain a 2 second distance from the rider directly in front of them. These guidelines allow a proper space cushion between motorcycles so that each rider has enough time and space to maneuver and react to hazards.
Women in the Wind