Spyder club tours

The Best Bike of 2016 at Spyder Club

Add comment December 8th, 2016 05:31pm spyderclub

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It’s a great thing to do at the end of each year, work out what bikes you have gelled with during the last 12 months.  Once again, Spyder Club members had access to many new motorcycles and this year more than ever, they were truly spoilt.  With a total of 30 motorcycles to choose from and our first trip fleet of the year averaging at over £16,000 per bike, it’s been a good riding season.

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And for once I was blessed.  Group One of the Season Starter trip in Spain picked their steads and jaw droppingly, left me with a brand-new Ducati Monster 1200R.  Not only did they leave me with the bike I most wanted to ride, we were also heading to the A-397 from San Pedro, the fantastic Ronda road!

The road is a favourite and after 50 kilometres of heavenly tarmac, so was the Monster.  The engine is a peach, so smooth, so refined but with that Ducati character that lets you know it’s a special bike.

I’ve ridden the standard machine and the S and both are great bikes, but the R, it’s just so much better.  On the Ronda road, a technical ride, it didn’t miss a beat and its hat was firmly thrown in the ring for bike of the year.

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We have owned a KTM Super Duke R for a few years now but I rarely get the chance to ride it, members and trips guests always come first.  Finally, I had the privilege and proper first ride on one of our Open Days, and the hype is right.

The Super Duke is so capable; refined when required, brutal when the throttle is opened, with spirit and handling to flatter every rider.  Just like the Monster, it’s a bike that has so much to offer, and going on the numbers of members buying the KTM, wins hands down, but let’s not make that decision just yet…

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Staying naked (!), I have run two 2008 Triumph Street Triple R’s over the last three years and covered many, many miles on them.  We also have a 2010 Street Triple R and this year bought a brand-new RX.  It doesn’t matter which one you climb on, it just feels like home.

Sometimes the members/trip guests ask to ride my bike, ‘I’m sorry, it has the Sat-Nav and I have no idea where I’m going unless I have it,’ is a great way of saying ‘no’.

With a lot less horses than the Monster and Super Duke, and a price tag of thousands less, you could argue this bike shouldn’t feature, but you’d be wrong.  If you haven’t ridden a Street Triple of any variation, do it.  Sadly, it’s time to say goodbye to the 2008 R but luckily the RX isn’t going anywhere.

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Okay, a very different animal, but again, ride one.  Piaggio Group UK were kind enough to lend me a Vespa GTS 300 for my Lands End to John O’Groats and National Three Peaks challenge in May.  Setting off from Cornwall with 1,013 miles in front of me, plus 21 miles of mountain climbing, I was going to get to know my little white Vespa.

The challenge was to go non-stop so if this was a bad scooter, it wasn’t going to be any fun and could seriously dent my usually, sunny (ish) disposition.  In rain, on the motorway for hour after hour and on the epic roads right across Wales, the Lake District and Scottish Highlands and the East Coast, it looked after me and I genuinely enjoyed every mile.  I love the Vespa GTS, and yes, I am going to buy one.

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And so, what of the most expensive bike we’ve ever bought?  The Ariel Ace had its first outing in Spain in March and was interesting.  In short, it completely divided opinion.  There were many things that didn’t make any sense, the frame being right where you needed to grip the tank, the riding position being somewhere between a sports bike, in relation to the bars, and a touring machine regarding the pegs.

It felt like riding an old race bike, or at least how I expect an old race bike to feel.  It was heavy and whilst it never felt like it was going to leave the road, into corners, it never truly inspired confidence.

Members and trip guests were divided, many thought it was a good motorcycle, others just couldn’t get on with it.  The problems did diminish with more time on the bike; it was a grower, but a slow one.

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Understanding which bikes are in the top tier, is usually cemented by member purchases.  If members and trip guests go home and buy, you know they’ve truly bonded with a bike.  With the Monster, and Super Duke in particular, this has been true, but also for a number of adventure style bikes.

We have owned a BMW S1000 XR for two years and will keep it for one more.  It suits so many riders and has been a popular purchase after a Spyder Club test ride.  With the inline four cylinder from the RR under the tank and an up and down clutch-less shift, plus handling that inspires even the least experienced rider, it’s got to be a contender.

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And so has its brother, the BMW R1200 GS.  Again, a long-term resident at Spyder Club, we’ve had three this year, it does everything so damn well.  It’s a bike I never wanted to like, why would I want to ride an old man’s bike or ‘pretend adventurer’ machine?  Because the GS is truly a world class motorcycle and I’m now a paid-up member of the old mans, pretend adventurers club.  I can wax lyrical about the GS and as many of our riders own a GS, so can they.

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And you can’t leave the Multistrada out, last year on the Isle of Man it made me smile the most.  Just like the Monster, it has a beautifully smooth V-twin and as with all Ducati machines, the handling is the very best.  A worthy mention also goes to the ever popular KTM 1190 Adventure, which I prefer over the 1290 Super Adventure, and a few years ago, was my favourite bike.

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So, what about the sports bikes?  For the first time since 2008 our sports bike offering has been reduced, with only three new bikes on offer at Spyder Club: the Aprilia RSV4 RF, Ducati 959 Panigale and for the sixth year running, a BMW S1000 RR.  Everyone loves the V4 engine in the RSV and the Aprilia is at the top of the pile when it comes to superbikes, however not far behind are the S1000 RR and the Ducati 1299.

All of the modern day 200 bhp Superbikes are just mental and for me, working out which one is the best is impossible.  I am not talented enough to use these bikes to their potential and therefore I love them all, because they really are super bikes.

The 959 Panigale however, now there’s a bike to rave about.  It’s still no pussy cat and with 150 bhp on tap, no slouch either, but I feel in control of it rather than the other way around.  And once again, Ducati have developed the V-twin motor into something of real pleasure.  Gone is the low-down lumpiness of old, now there is a smooth, refined, predictable and precise engine with the usual pinpoint accurate chassis of a Ducati.  Now if only they would plonk it into a Monster 821, which we have just bought and I can’t wait to ride.

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So which is it?  There are many other bikes to mention but if we stick to the bikes bought by members and trip guests this year, those are the contenders.

And at the top of that list, it’s the Super Duke, well actually the 1290 GT and Super Duke R as some wanted a fairing.  Members voted with their wallets and seven have bought or ordered a KTM.  However, if I was buying a bike for me, it would be the Ducati Monster R, well, with the GS or XR, oh and a Street Triple, and can I have the Vespa GTS too?

Although, luckily I don’t need to choose, I’ll just stick with Spyder Club!

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Spyder Club at the NEC Motorcycle Live Show 2016

Add comment December 8th, 2016 04:04pm spyderclub

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Another season finished and what better way to end it than at the Motorcycle Live Show, our ninth year, and 9 whole days standing on your feet!  Actually, it’s a great way for us to meet potential members, trip guests and short-term lease customers and also catch up with current members, manufacturers and our partners.  2016 has been our busiest year so although the show felt a little longer than usual, it was still great to be there.

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And how the motorcycle world has changed during the last 9 years since we began Spyder Club.  In recent years, the retro scene has been building, with an increasing presence seen over the years in the NEC halls.  This year there was a veritable retro tornado throughout almost all of the manufacturer stands, and some of the new bikes looked awesome.

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Triumph in particular have embraced the mass of interest in retro bikes and the scene.  Their unveiling of the Bobber in London recently was a fantastic event and nod to their commitment towards this genre.  The Bobber launch was superbly organised and filled to bursting with bearded, Belstaff jacket wearing bikers, free drink in hand and primed for purchases.  So far, we have only had the pleasure of owning a Street Twin, which, for the base model, is a truly brilliant motorcycle.  Triumph have really made their mark in the scene, hats (or helmets) off.

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You could argue BMW started the interest of the general populous in retro bikes with the fantastic R nineT a few years ago.  BMW have seen big things from their initially limited run R nineT and this year, have further capitalised on its success with exciting variations and many custom options.  With four R nineT’s spending time at Spyder Club since their launch at the beginning of 2014, it’s safe to say it’s a popular bike with our membership and trip guests, indeed, eight members and trip guests have voted with their wallets and bought their own.

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Whilst the R nineT can be given some of the credit for the eruption of the retro scene in the UK, the Moto Guzzi V7 has been a steadfast option for many years.  At this year’s Motorcycle Live show, the Piaggio Group stand had on display in their Moto Guzzi area the most beautiful V7 model.  The V750 with its chrome tank and brown leather seat was a real show stopper.  The V7 is often at the top of many group tests and whilst Spyder Club has never owned one, we house the Moto Guzzi press fleet so have been lucky enough to ride one on a regular basis, they really are fantastic, simple fun.

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We have owned a Ducati Scrambler, and we’re big fans.  Again, a simple, cracking, great motorcycle.  Retro bikes tend to do without the modern gizmos many bikes now have bolted on and that’s one reason to love them.  With enough power on tap to make you smile, these bikes make huge sense on damaged, busy English roads.  All the bikes mentioned are great on our B roads, however we have enjoyed the Ducati Scrambler on the flowing bends on the Route Napoleon where it kept many a big bike at bay.

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The show wasn’t all about the retro bikes, as usual it was filled with so much we would like to buy, the Spyder Club wallet ached at the thought.  The new KTM 1290 Super Duke and Adventure look stunning and as the current Super Duke and Adventure are already just that, the new ones are only going to be better.  The new colour schemes on the fantastic BMW R1200GS and RS look great, as do those on the Ducati Monster 821.  We love the Ducati SuperSport, one will be on the 2017 Club fleet for sure.

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Of course you can’t pass by the Aprilia stand without ogling the RSV4 and Tuono, well we are bikers!  The V4 engines are just to die for, and now we hear there’s another Italian V4 on the way, that’s a back to back test ride we’ll definitely want to organise for our members and trip guests.

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It’s been a while since the Club had a cruiser, the last being a Victory Judge and Hammer S; great fun and having been, at that time, predominately a sports and naked bike riders, it showed us a more relaxed and laid back style of riding that isn’t to be sneered at.  Another Polaris marque is the Indian, as yet we haven’t had the pleasure of riding one, but the Scout looks to be a popular contender.

Two more honourable mentions to the Moto Guzzi Flying Fortress which looks incredible and of course the new Norton V4 which simply has to be seen to be believed.

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The bikes are of course the stars of the show, however there was a lot of other things to spend your money on, or dream about.  Whether planning your trip to the Isle of Man TT or the annual European tour, testing your next bike or trying on the next set of leathers or helmet, the Motorcycle Live show has a mass of things to see and do.  But let’s face it, us exhibitors know that every morning, when the doors are flung open, the masses flock straight to the manufacturer stands so they can sit on all the new bikes, and we wait until you all filter through to the other stands from 11.00 onwards.

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And so, another year at the NEC, Motorcycle Live show is done, and with it the Spyder Club season.  We are already full speed ahead with plans and ordering bikes for the 2017 season which will be here before you know it.  It’s a tough job deciding which bikes to add to the fleet but one thing’s for sure, with over 160 different motorcycles being ridden by Spyder Club members and trip guests since we started in 2008, we’ll be pushing to break the 200 mark before our tenth birthday.

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Spyder Club November Spain Trip 2016

Add comment December 8th, 2016 04:04pm spyderclub

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Another Spyder Club season has finished in Spain, north of Alicante, in the best possible way.  With 9 guests, perfect weather and blissfully quiet, challenging roads, our November Spain trip was fantastic.

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Four of our guests were first timers, and all have booked another trip for 2017.  The riding was as we expect, safe and within each individual’s comfort zone.  No egos, no points to prove, just smiles and happy riders on a fantastic range of motorcycles.

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There are some incredible roads north of Alicante which is one of the reasons we head back each year.  We also have a lot of the same guests joining us year after year, why, because those roads just get better and better.  The tarmac is in great condition, the Spanish drivers are very aware and, did I tell you how good the roads are?!

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As usual our guests enjoyed swapping between a stunning fleet of motorcycles each day.  Bikes that joined us included a BMW S1000XR, RR and R1200GS, a Ducati XDiavel, Monster 1200R and 821, Multistrada and Streetfighter 848, Triumph Street Triple R and RX and Street Twin and KTM 1290 Super Duke R, not that shabby.

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As usual all the bikes impressed however, as with most 2016 trips, the Ducati Monster 1200R and KTM 1290 Super Duke R were firm favourites and Spyder Club members and trip guests have voted with their feet as each has sold well as a result of being ridden either on a trip or through membership.

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However, it’s not been just the super naked bikes that deserve praise and ended up producing a bank transaction.  The BMW R1200GS, S1000XR and Ducati Multistrada have all received the same acclaim and as ever, different motorcycles made more sense on different roads.

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A lot more manufacturers are going with wider handle bars on more of their bikes and it makes a big difference.  Especially if you are sat upright, in comfort and with good vision, those big bars mean you can flip from side to side so efficiently and enjoy the bike and road so much more, or does that mean I’m getting older?

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And so, that’s another trip season done at Spyder Club.  Already we are looking forward to our Season Starter in southern Spain, Andalucia and the rest of the 2017 short break, fly-ride motorcycle trips.  If you enjoy meeting likeminded bike enthusiasts, trying different motorcycles and riding enjoyable, challenging roads at your own pace, get in touch to find out why our guests keep coming back.

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Triumph Bonneville Bobber Launch Event

Add comment October 20th, 2016 01:09pm spyderclub

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What a night, well done Triumph for organising a fun packed and well attended night and the launch a very cool, very retro motorcycle…

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We were lucky enough to be invited along with a few of our members who had a great evening.  With music from The Vaccines and DJ Harriet Rose, Bobber sprint racing with Carl Fogarty and Freddie Spencer along with a host of journos, there was plenty of entertainment.

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But the main attraction was the bike.  A restyle of the Bonneville, with a floating aluminium seat, a torquier version of the 1200 cc twin engine from the T100, it sounded good and I can’t wait to ride it.

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So, should Spyder Club buy one?  We’d be silly not to.  The retro scene is a big deal and Triumph are ahead of the game with the Bobber.  It’ll go down a storm in London judging from last night’s reaction.

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So we look forward to another fantastic Triumph creation and thank them for their invitation to a great night.

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Riding a 1930’s Vincent Across Route66

Add comment October 20th, 2016 12:13pm spyderclub

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It’s a bucket list trip, to ride a Harley, usually, across the US of A on Route 66.  But Spyder Club member Harvey has decided to make it a little more challenging, he and his brother are riding two 1930’s Vincent’s from coast to coast.

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We take our hat off to him as the near 2,500 miles across the States on anything is a challenge, but on two 1930’s machines, that’s impressive.

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Why not enjoy reading about Harvey, Marcus, Ross and Frank’s adventures through Harvey’s blog, and if you fancy doing Route 66 yourself after the read, get in touch with The Lost Adventure, they guide you across, on something a little more modern!  Good luck guys, ride safe and God speed, or at least some speed!!

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Spyder Club Pirelli and Metzeler Motorcycle Tour Booking Incentive

Add comment September 28th, 2016 10:59am spyderclub

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Fancy a bit of this next year?

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Riding an amazing fleet of motorcycles on great riding roads over a short break motorcycle tour?

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Meeting likeminded riders who enjoy making progress on challenging roads?

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And experiencing lots of different motorcycles over the four days?

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Well that’s what we at Spyder Club do, take away all the hassle so you just arrive and ride some of Europe’s best roads on some of the latest and greatest bikes within a group of likeminded bike enthusiasts.

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Our 2017 trip calendar is now online and bookings are being taken.  If a Spyder Club trip is something you have been considering before, stop considering and take advantage of our early booking incentive in association with Pirelli and Metzeler tyres.  Book a trip before the end of October 2016 and receive a free set of either Pirelli Angel GT or Metzeler Roadtec 01 tyres.

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We have been lucky enough to be supplied by Pirelli and Metzeler tyres for many years at Spyder Club.  Our Pirelli tyre of choice has always been the Angel ST and now the Angel GT.  As a road going tyre it copes with everything, offering the rider confidence in the wet, excellent grip in the dry and longevity; there is little else on the market that performs as well.

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In our opinion, and that of our members, the other tyre on the market that does perform as well, providing the same trust and feel through the bike to the ground and miles of fun at a reasonable cost, is the new Metzeler Roadtec 01.

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It’s predecessor the Metzeler Roadtec Z8 was another well used tyre at Spyder Club and Spyder Motorcycle Hire and Short Term Lease.  It offered excellent value for money, with thousands of miles covered before a change was needed.  Having used the Roadtec 01 for the first time this year, we were very impressed, and again, so were the many that ride our club, tour, hire and lease fleet.

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As road tyres go there is little point looking at anything else.  Dual compound tyres that offer sports performance on the side walls for fantastic cornering feel and confidence, with a harder middle so you aren’t flattening them off the moment you think about sitting on straighter roads.

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If you ride a motorcycle you’ll need a tyre change, it’s what happens.  So book yourself onto a Spyder Club trip in 2017 before the end of October 2016, we’ll buy you a set of Metzeler Roadtec 01 or Pirelli Angel GT tyres, we’ll even fit them at Silverstone at a very reasonable rate.

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Terms and conditions apply, the offer does not include Isle of Man events, please get in touch for further details and to book your Spyder Club 2017 trip.

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Spyder Club Bruntingthorpe Exclusive High Speed V-Max Day

Add comment September 28th, 2016 10:59am spyderclub

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Another cracking day on the 2 mile runway at Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground in Leicestershire.  Guests enjoyed the craziness of being able to open up their motorcycles and cars to their limits in the safety of a closed circuit.

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As Sean W said, ‘wow, I’ve never been able to just whack open the throttle before and experience all the power and acceleration of my motorcycle.’  And that’s exactly what you can do at Bruntingthorpe with its masses of tarmac in front of you and either side.

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Whether in your car or on a bike, Bruntingthorpe is a great place to thrash your vehicle.  With a Porsche 911 Turbo reaching 191 mph (indicated) from a standing start and 192 mph with a flier, it was by far the fastest car.

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The bike title went to the BMW HP4.  We had two present, one however had had a few tweaks and with the non-stop track attack attitude of its rider Shaun K, he manage to clock a true 191 mph, he was a man on a mission.

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Faired bikes are the way forwards on a high speed day but for the few rides I managed at the end of the day, the naked KTM Super Duke R managed an indicated 185 mph.  Yes I had a sore neck later, but nothing a few glasses of wine couldn’t solve.  Man that thing moves, the torque of the line is relentless, however I was beaten by a Ducati 1198 SP.

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As usual our friends at RST and Arai came along to support the event and have a few runs down the runway, V-Maxing to their hearts content.  They also did a fair trade in selling a few sets of their superb leathers and helmets to the Bruntingthorpe Spyder Club guests.

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We also had Bahnstormers BMW join us with some of their customers.  We like positive comments and smiling faces and that’s exactly what we got.  We hope they’ll be joining us at next years event in their quest to go ever faster.

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It really is a brilliant day and one we really enjoying running.  It’s such good fun and a day that just makes our guests smile.  We had an evening do and of course the talk was all about the speeds we did.

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The excitement and out of the ordinary experience that a high speed day at Brungtingthorpe brings is unique.  Being able to ride your bike, and drive your car if you have both there, to their max, or the max your own self preservation allows, is thrilling!

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For some, reaching the vehicles V-Max or stop point is what it’s all about.  Going the fastest they possibly can for as long as they can, getting the best start so the final top speed is the best possible, from their vehicle is what it’s all about.

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For others, the delight of reaching their own goals or finding their comfort zone and staying there is perfectly good enough.  And that’s what makes Spyder Club so good.  No one is exactly the same, yes we all have the passion for motorbikes, and many for business and cars too, but we are all different.

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As long as everyone is smiling and waxing lyrical, we are very happy because our customers are, it may be a cliche, yes, but that’s why our business is growing and our members and guests keep coming back for move.  Until the next one, we can’t wait until our 2017 Bruntingthorpe High Speed V-Max event.

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Spyder Club Bavarian and Austrian Alps Motorcycle Tour

Add comment September 28th, 2016 10:04am spyderclub

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Bavaria, what a beautiful area of Germany and the world!  It’s stunning, and offers some great biking on roads that are well surfaced and easy to ride.  It’s a trip we haven’t run before but were looking forward to following our recce trip.

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Next door to Germany is Austria, so even though we concentrate on short break fly-ride or arrive and ride trips, we managed to take in some of the beautiful Austrian Alps and in particular, the unbelievable Grossglockner Pass.

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The Grossglockner was the highlight of the trip but there were many other fantastic roads to ride in Bavaria and the Austrian Alps.

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It’s only negative, would be that it’s not the most flowing, riding trip as to get to many of the good roads you need to travel through some towns and villages that slow progress and make parts of the riding a little stop-start; the stunning views compensate somewhat though!

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If you are on a sightseeing motorcycle trip it’s the perfect destination because the towns and villages are spectacular.  Placed within the alpine vistas and with many interesting buildings to look around, a two up touring holiday is the perfect way to see the Bavarian and Austrian Alps.

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We have spoilt our lot, regularly leading them on roads they can enjoy with little in their way to slow their progress.  Not that they didn’t enjoy this trip, it’s just different.  And of course the Grossglockner has to be experienced at least once.

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Austria is very similar to Germany in terms of the towns.  Great roads and stunning scenery, just with regular reductions in speed.  There are of course areas that you can stretch your legs for prolonged periods, not as you can in Spain and southern France, but in both Bavaria and Austria there are plenty of exceptional roads to experience.

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And that’s the best thing about visiting the Bavarian and Austrian Alps, the things to see and do.  Whilst a short break trip means we are there to ride, we did fit in a visit to the Eagles Nest, Hitler’s lair!

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What a crazy place, for no other reason than what it was, or wasn’t as Hitler rarely visited, preferring to spend his days at the Berghof.  But the association is there and whilst meandering up the road which takes you higher and higher up the mountain, through the forest to the tunnel that brings you to the brass lift, propelling you even further up to the top, it all adds to create an eerie feeling because of the history surrounding it.

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And then you arrive, leaving the lift you emerge from the building to see some of the best views in Bavaria.  A place that is related to such evil offers such beauty.  It’s well worth a visit.

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If you like touring, the relaxed style, visiting points of interest and spending time photographing the views, Austria and Bavaria are a must.  If, on the other hand, you enjoy making progress, riding technical roads that challenge your riding rather than sweeping roads you can enjoy with a pillion, you may be more satisfied elsewhere.

Spyder-Club-Bavarian-and-Austrian-Alps-Motorcycle-Tour

We all enjoyed our four days in the Alps of Germany and Austria, it’s an area I’d like to spend more time in personally.  If you are planning a motorcycle trip, just go on a more touring friendly bike, something you can enjoy the sights from.  Or, if you like a more spirited ride with little time away from work and home, take a look at our 2017 Calendar, we have some great riding trips planned.

Spyder-Club-Bavarian-and-Austrian-Alps-Motorcycle-Tour

Arai Helmets Support the Spyder Club Bruntingthorpe High Speed Day

2 comments September 16th, 2016 11:53am spyderclub

Spyder Club Motorcycle Bruntingthorpe Event

It’s not everyday we, the general public, can thrash the pants off of our pride and joy to the max.  At Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground however on Saturday 24th September, our guests can do just that.

Spyder-Club-Bruntingthorpe-Proving-Ground-High-Speed-Day

Whether joining us with your car or motorcycle or both, you can experience the true top speed of your vehicle in the relative safety of a 2 mile straight with nothing coming the other way and no restrictions bar your own limits.

Spyder-Club-Motorcycle-Bruntingthorpe-Event

Our past events have seen us joined by RST Leathers with some of their clothing range catalogue pictures taken during the day with Spyder Club and Spyder Club member bikes featuring.

Spyder-Club-Motorcycle-Bruntingthorpe-Event

This year we are delighted to have not only RST Leathers with us but Arai Helmets too, who have promoted the day to their customers, they must have enjoyed themselves at our last three events.

Spyder-Club-Motorcycle-Bruntingthorpe-Event

Take a look at the Why Arai News Page and make use of the preferential rate you are offered for the few remaining places left on Saturday 24th September, Spyder Club Exclusive Bruntingthorpe High Speed Day, you really will enjoy a unique experience.

Spyder-Club-Motorcycle-Bruntingthorpe-Event

Spyder Club on the Scottish North Coast 500

Add comment July 29th, 2016 11:45am spyderclub

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

It’s all the rage, in every magazine, but luckily, one of our members mentioned it to us last year so we had already planned the spectacular North Coast 500 as the trip to Scotland for 2016.

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

We love bonnie Scotland anyway, the Highlands and the West Coast are simply stunning.  Scotland offer its guests some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, and it’s right on our doorstep.

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

We started in Inverness and within 10 minutes of leaving the hotel, the roads up the east coast started entertaining us. The east coast isn’t as pretty as the west but the roads are just as good.

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

Just 30 miles north of Inverness in Tain is the Glenmorangie distillery. Whilst tasting isn’t advised with a full days riding in front of you, it’s worth pulling in if nothing else and taking a short walk around the site and enjoying a guided tour.

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

The ride up to the most northeast point of the UK, John O’Groats, is fantastic. The roads are very impressive, the views beautiful and the combination makes for a great introduction to the North Coast 500. Once at John O’Groats, there’s a great place to have lunch and of course you can watch all the cyclists arriving having completed the journey from Lands End, safe in the knowledge your two wheel steed needs nothing more than a twist of the wrist!

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

A little before Tongue, the roads and scenery stagger you, it really is difficult to not pull over every 5th mile and start taking pictures. If you had time on your side, you’d spend just as much time taking in the vista as you do riding.

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

Between John O’Groats and Tongue the roads are very enjoyable but after our overnight in Tongue, it just got better and better.  Some of the roads allow you to make great progress, nice sweeping bends that offer good vision where as other roads on the west coast are either in part or completely single track. And these are the times you are glad of the slower pace, as being able to watch the road and take in parts of the breathtaking Scottish scenery is one of the main reasons for taking the journey north.

Spyder-Club-on-the-Scottish-North-Coast-500

After Applecross we strayed from the North Coast 500 path and headed south to the Kyle of Lochalsh so we could ride the A87 to Invergarry. It’s a fine Spyder Club Favourite and shouldn’t be missed if you are close by. We ended the journey riding along the shores of Loch Ness on the A82. No monster appeared but we all had a brilliant long weekend riding the most do North Coast 500.

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