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The Rider\'s Digest

The Rider\'s Digest Motorcycle Magazine

The Rider's Digest: for the best Motorcycle writing anywhere on the Internet.

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Appalling!

Bikelife
on Sun, May 22, 2016 | By Dave

This story has caused barely a ripple in the mainstream media but there’s been a fair bit of chatter within the ‘biking community’ and although the responses have varied widely – largely dependent on the kind of group who were discussing the issue – they have invariably all been ‘appalled’ for one reason or another. This...

The BMW R5 Hommage

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on Sun, May 22, 2016 | By Dave

Motorcycle manufacturers commissioning one off specials is nothing new, in fact judging by the amount of PR blurb that we see in our in-tray it would appear that it has become de rigueur for any self-respecting marque that wants to flog their machines to the kind of discerning well-healed customers that demand something out of the ordinary. Generally this seems to involve...

The Dark Side

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on Wed, May 18, 2016 | By Dave

Tom battles rain and London gridlock on a diverse pair of Dark Custom Harleys “In a world of the bland leading the bland, Dark Custom motorcycles are for those who take a different route. These bikes aren’t for everyone. And that’s how we want it. Because not everyone appreciates a motorcycle stripped down to its raw essence.” So says Harley-Davidson about the seven...

Precious Children Revisited

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on Tue, May 17, 2016 | By Dave

Towards the end of April a mum from Texas found herself at the centre of a veritable Twitter-storm after this photograph appeared online showing her boyfriend carrying her seven year old daughter on the back of his BMW S1000RR. Although it is perfectly legal in Texas to carry a child over the age of five providing they are wearing a helmet, and in spite of the fact that...

The Rider’s Digest issue 192 – Spring 2016

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on Mon, Mar 28, 2016 | By Dave

The PDF of issue 192 of The Rider’s Digest is available to download absolutely free from our online shop HERE and as usual it is rammed full of the best motorcycling writing anywhere on the Internet. Within its 142 pages, alongside all our regulars we have a brand new Girl Biker, a report on the Excel London bike show, touring in Southeast Asia, a pictorial feature from...

Dream Racer: Review

DR1
on Sun, Jan 24, 2016 | By Stuart Jewkes

It seems incongruous to review a DVD that’s been on general release since 2012. However, Dream Racer has recently been nominated for another slew of documentary awards to add to the considerable amount of recognition it has gained since its release, and together with the fact that its background subject – the Dakar Rally – has, at the time of this review, just...

The Rider’s Digest Issue 191 – Winter 2015

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on Sun, Dec 20, 2015 | By Stuart Jewkes

Issue 191 of The Rider’s Digest is available to download absolutely free in Adobe PDF form from the online shop right here. In this 154-page issue we road test the Indian Chief Vintage, spend the weekend at Assen with the True Heroes Racing team, and interview sidecar builder Mike Richards and BMW custom specialist Kevil’s Speed Shop among many other highlights....

The 2015 Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride – London

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on Wed, Oct 21, 2015 | By Stuart Jewkes

It’s late September and while Maggie May’s toy boy really should be back at school, hundreds of motorcycle enthusiasts across London and the South East of England were spending their Saturday washing and polishing bikes, ironing razor sharp creases into trousers, and polishing their shoes. Many of them were also trimming and waxing moustaches, and gently pruning huge beards,...

Thanks for the Imagery

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on Tue, Oct 20, 2015 | By Dave

To kickstart this little article, I ought to declare that as a non-biker of forty years standing, my knowledge of motorcycles is non-existent. I know nothing about bikes whatsoever, absolutely diddlysquat. Yet, in common with a lot of my ilk, I still possess an emotional attachment, albeit by proxy, to motorbikes and more importantly for this piece their resulting/associated...

A CAR!!!

Margate
on Mon, Oct 19, 2015 | By Dave

When I informed the editor that due to a series of unforeseen events, I would be substituting a Saab convertible for the BMW/Ural combo that I described in “The Grand European Tour revisited”, he responded with, “I’m fascinated to see how you’re going to work a car article into a bike mag.” Which made me chuckle; I’d already considered appalled letters to...

Looking For Adventure and Whatever Comes Our Way…

Screen
on Tue, Oct 13, 2015 | By Stuart Jewkes

More than 700 outdoor types attended the Adventure Travel Film Festival (ATFF) recently at London’s Mill Hill School. The school, whose alumni includes one Austin Vince, (former army officer, former teacher, film maker, husband of adventurer and author Lois Pryce and curator of the ATFF) is the new setting for the festival, which has outgrown its former venue in Hampshire. Set...

The Rider’s Digest Issue 190 – Autumn 2015

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on Wed, Sep 30, 2015 | By Stuart Jewkes

Issue 190 of The Rider’s Digest is now available absolutely free in the usual Adobe PDF format from either the online shop right here, or from the links in the nav bar above. This issue has a bit of a theme of risk running through it, with features on the Belgian Classic TT, this year’s Brighton Speed Trials, and a retrospective on travelling through Asia on a Royal...

Top Mountain Cross Point

Museum
on Tue, Sep 29, 2015 | By Dave

A Rider’s Digest Exclusive In spite of a rock solid reputation for straight talking, honesty and integrity that stretches back to 1997, The Rider’s Digest rarely seems to pick up invitations to the big bike launches. Of course it could well be that we don’t end up on the list precisely because of that rep; because we established a long time ago that we can’t be...

Royal Enfield’s New London Showroom

7 bikes
on Thu, Sep 3, 2015 | By Dave

Royal Enfield has continued with the planned expansion of its footprint in the UK by opening a second exclusive store in London. The store, in Mitcham, South London, will stock a full range of the marque’s motorcycles as well as clothing and accessories from their official range, including the new ‘Dispatch Rider’ collection inspired by military riders from the days when...

British F2 Sidecar Championship @ Anglesey Circuit – 25/7/15

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on Sun, Jul 26, 2015 | By

The editor (me) and Mark The Chef (author of the Honda Collection feature in Issue 187) went to Anglesey Circuit in North Wales for what was ostensibly a two-day club meeting organised by the Wirral Hundred MC, but which also featured round four of the British F2 Sidecar Championship. Sidecars! The ‘chairs’ get far too little in the way of press coverage in this...

Fatal Attraction

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on Sun, Jul 26, 2015 | By Dave


The original working title for this month’s offering was: “Women… D’oh!” However I decided that while the Homer reference (that’s Simpson, not the Greek geezer) gave a clue to the subject matter, it wasn’t quite right. But a recent near miss caused me to pause and contemplate the many dangers just waiting for the opportunity to teach...

Gallery: Electric Motorcycles – The Story So Far

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on Sun, Jul 19, 2015 | By

As a follow-up to his in-depth assessment of the Harley-Davidson LiveWire in Issue 189, here’s a gallery courtesy of electric evangelist Paul Blezard featuring a few examples of the LiveWire’s competition. There is considerably more of that competition out there than you may think, most notably from BMW’s C Evo step-through/scooter hybrid (think noiseless...

Behind The Lines

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on Sun, Jul 12, 2015 | By

During the summer of 2014, with the Tower of London surrounded by thousands of vivid red ceramic poppies and the nation finding many different ways of paying tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice 100 years ago, members of Full Throttle UK, a South East based youth charity were given a copy of ‘Adventures of a Dispatch Rider’ – an account of life behind...

You’ll Believe A Man Can Fly…

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on Fri, Jul 10, 2015 | By

Freestyle Motocross evolved out of playtime. Mainstream pro MXers would ride in their free time, off-season, on some piece of off-road ground that happened to facilitate air. As is the wont of all bikers, such playtime would become a competitive group activity, in which riders would try to stay in the air longer, further, higher. Then it became all about the Backflip and whether...

Falling Head Over Heels

The Bench copy
on Fri, Jul 10, 2015 | By Dave

Manoeuvring the Aprilia inside the small front garden was tricky. It wasn’t difficult in a way that was likely to convince the smiling woman in the doorway that I was any sort of bike god; nonetheless the Caponord was a tall heavy bike and the tiny concrete yard in Finsbury Park was decidedly short on space. It may have required a seven-point turn, but the execution was...

The Rider’s Digest Issue 189 – Summer 2015

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on Tue, Jun 23, 2015 | By

Summer is here and everybody is out riding, so here are 188 pages of top-quality inspirational motolit via Issue 189 of The Rider’s Digest, available via [free] Adobe PDF download from the online shop right here, and guaranteed to keep you thinking about bikes while you’re not on one. Alternatively, click on the online shop button above where you can browse all...

Souvenirs From India

Om_banna_bike
on Thu, Apr 30, 2015 | By

Of course I would have loved to have had my Enfield with me but it wasn’t that sort of trip to India this time. It was a ‘proper’ holiday with my daughter who had said she wanted to go to Jodhpur in Rajasthan. So Jodhpur it was, and motorcycling would not be a feature of it although we both agreed that if there was a possibility of hiring one, we would. Abby, who has...

Land’s End or Bust!

6@LandsEndRoyalEnfield_37
on Wed, Apr 29, 2015 | By

Blez recounts a memorable ride to the end of English earth on an Indian-built bike with a proud British history, inspired by an intrepid journey half a century earlier. When I was a nipper, Royal Enfields were still made here in Blighty and their Constellation 700 was one of the mightiest steeds on the road. British learner riders were first restricted to 250cc machines in...

Motorbike Fast

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on Tue, Apr 28, 2015 | By

Motorbike Fast by Suzi-Mae (who is 11 years and 5 months old). I hold on tight, I look straight ahead, Leaving behind my warm, cosy bed. Now I’m ready and steady, Raring to go, Ignoring the things that are quite, very slow. Motorbike fast, Rock to and fro, And motorbike vroom go! go! go! Your thunderous beast, Tamed by my granddad tall, You whoosh, whizz, zooooooom me right...