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June 2014


As the majority of Roadrunner reading is taking place on smartphones we have changed the format to suit smaller screens (especially in landscape mode). 

If you’re planning a motorcycle related event in Ireland in 2014, let us know by sending details to events@magireland.org and we'll add it to the Irish Motorcycle Events Calendar and the MAG Ireland smartphone app for free.

Your feedback (email to roadrunner@magireland.org) is always welcome.


National Ride to Work Day - Monday - June 16th,2014

Join us for Ride to Work Day, Monday 16th June 2014!

Ride to Work Day aims to show the positive side of motorcycling and the benefits that using a moped, scooter or motorcycle can bring not just to the rider but to everyone.

The idea is simple, get on your bike and ride to work, school or college, or simply meet up with a few like minded souls for breakfast or a coffee. Encourage others who usually only ride at weekends, or ride classic or vintage machines to participate.

Whether it's one less car on the roads or not having to stand on overcrowded public transport, everyone gains when you ride to work. With the fall in the number of motorcycles on the roads over the past decade it's more important than ever to participate because fewer bikes on the roads makes it harder for us to promote motorcycling and easier for the authorities to ignore our needs.

Why not encourage your employer to support your efforts by providing designated parking, changing facilities or secure lockers? Or maybe just somewhere to store your gear? Whatever is appropriate in your workplace.

We realise that not everyone is fortunate enough to have "work" to ride to, so if you're in that position why not show your support by meeting up with a friend or three for a cuppa or a chat?

Ride to Work day works because thousands of individual riders like you make it happen. It doesn't matter what you ride, it matters that you ride it!

You can help to promote motorcycling as a positive and beneficial activity by simply taking your bike to work on Monday 16th June next.

For more see www.ridetowork.eu

RSA's Driving Test Consultation

The RSA recently launched a public consultation on proposed changes to the practical driving test.

While there are no motorcycle specific amendments proposed at this stage, the reforms will affect all candidates sitting the practical test regardless of category.

There are eight changes proposed as follows:

  1. Increase the amount of time of on-road driving time
  2. Introduce independent driving into the practical driving tests
  3. Include the assessment of eco-driving techniques in the practical test
  4. Hazard management should be assessed in the practical test
  5. Change the emphasis of the oral part of the practical test to be an assessment of understanding
  6. Remove the oral part of the practical test to allow for more emphasis to be put on the on road driving assessment.
  7. Driver tester feedback after the driving test
  8. HGV specific recommendations

MAG Ireland will be making a formal response on behalf of our members and we will in due course be publishing that on our web site at www.magireland.org/category/responses/ where you'll also find our previous responses to various public consultations.

BikeSafe South Eastern Region recruiting

BikeSafe South Eastern Region is currently inviting applications from riders who wish to do a BikeSafe Assessment. Areas covered are Waterford, Wexford, Kilkenny, Tipperary, and Carlow but riders from further afield are welcome to apply.

Details on the MAG Ireland website

Election 2014 - Your new M.E.P.s

The local and European elections took place on Friday May 23rd last and Ireland has chosen the 11 MEP's who will represent ordinary Irish citizens in the European Parliament for the next five years.

Across Europe, voters delivered a backlash to the established political parties as the effects of austerity, particularly in the peripheral states like Ireland, saw voters express their frustration and anger with the "old guard".

What all of this means for motorcycling it's too soon to say. The balance of power in the European Parliament still rests with the big two political groups, EPP and ALDE, but there is no doubt that the incoming parliament will be a very different animal to the outgoing one.

We'll have to wait and see how this plays out once the new assembly gets down to business, some of which is likely to include proposals for mandatory protective clothing for riders.

Here in Ireland we returned a mix of fresh faces and established MEP's. These then, are the 11 people we'll have to convince of the merits (or not) of EU proposals which affect motorcycling over the next five years:

Dublin Lynn Boylan Sinn Fein GUE/NGL
Dublin Nessa Childers Independent None
Dublin Brian Hayes Fine Gael EPP
Midlands North West Luke "Ming" Flanagan Independent None
Midlands North West Mairead McGuinness Fine Gael EPP
Midlands North West Matt Carty Sinn Fein GUE/NGL
Midlands North West Marian Harkin Independent ALDE
South Brian Crowley Finna Fail ALDE
South Liadh Ní Riada Sinn Féin GUE/NGL
South Séan Kelly Fine Gael EPP
South Deirdre Clune Fine Gael EPP

MAG Ireland will be making contact with all of the outgoing MEP's to thank them for their support over the years and we'll also be making our introductions to the incoming MEP's with whom we look forward to advancing the interests of Irish motorcyling.


FEMA meeting report

FEMA meeting Iceland

BLS Iceland were the hosts for the recent FEMA meeting in Reyjavik which took place on 31st May last.

MAG Ireland was represented by European Liaison & Vice Chairman Peter Bartlett.

FEMA (The federation of European Motorcyclists' Associations) is the umbrella group which co-ordinates the activities of riders organisations across the EU.

The meeting discussed and adopted a number of changes to the way in which FEMA is run, while upcoming EU proposals on Integrated Transport Systems were also considered by the delegates.

Work on a number of internal projects was discussed and there was an in depth debate of the proposed regulations on mandatory protective clothing. More on that in a future issue.

As a founder member of FEMA, MAG Ireland continues to work with and through the federation for the benefit of riders here in Ireland, particularly on EU regulations. 

New feature article - The Number Games

MAG Ireland

Our latest feature article, The Number Games, has just recently been posted on our web site. Originally published as the MAG Ireland column in the April 2014 issue of Bike Buyers Guide the article looks at what the last decade of sales figures tell us about the future of Irish motorcycling. Here's an excerpt:

"Rocket science is frequently held up as the hardest of hard sums, and indeed when we examine some relatively simple numerical problem to which the answer seems obvious enough we’ll often say “it’s not exactly rocket science”.

Arguably, the true pinnacle of numerical difficulty is particle physics, a world of subatomic strangeness so fiendishly complex that weird concepts like quantum entanglement, in which a particle can exist in two completely different states at the same time, are considered normal.

Physicist Erwin Schrodinger famously illustrated this concept with a theoretical experiment in which a cat was sealed inside a box with a mechanism which might or might not kill it. Only when the box was opened would it be known whether the cat was alive or dead. Thus, Schrodinger argued, so long as the box remained sealed the cat was both alive and dead at the same time.

MAG Ireland’s remit is to promote and protect motorcycling, and to do that we sometimes have to be dispassionate in examining the hard numbers. There are lessons here that need to be learned. They may be difficult to find, and perhaps more difficult still to accept, but learn them we must."

Read the full article on our web site

HU Travellers Meeting Ireland 2014

Horizons Unlimited Friday July 18 - Sunday July 20, 2014 - Enniskillen, Ireland

Thanks to Jochen Riehn for his piece in the May issue. As a reminder, this event takes place Friday July 18 - Sunday July 20, 2014 in Enniskillen, Ireland and is a must do for anyone with an interest in long distance travel.

Details & registration are at http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/events/ireland-2014

New MAG Ireland web site

As mentioned in a previous issue, we're lining our ducks up to overhaul the MAG Ireland web site and we need your feedback!

Tell us what's good and bad about the current site.

  • What do you like, and what do we need to get rid of?
  • What's missing, and what can we do better?

Thanks to those of you who have been in touch so far, especially those of you who gave your feedback on the membership sign up process. We're listening, and we'll be making changes to make it easier and clearer.

We still need to hear from more of you so please take a few minutes to send your feedback to office@magireland.org and help us to make your experience better.


MAG Ireland represents Irish riders and is funded by Irish riders.

MAG Ireland works tirelessly on behalf of all Irish riders but we can only do that with the financial support of members subscriptions.

It costs just €25.00 for a years membership, that’s less than 7 cent per day.

Not only that but we aim to save you the cost of your membership many times over via our exclusive vouchers and our group discount scheme. Join online here.

If you can’t stretch to a membership subscription but you’d still like to help, just click the donate link on the menu at www.magireland.org and give whatever you can.

Get your member-only discounts - Following feedback from members we’ve made it even easier to claim your member discounts with a link on the top right hand side of the web site. All you need is your membership number to potentially save the cost of your membership many times over with great discounts like 10% off at all Halfords stores. http://www.magireland.groupscheme.com

Has your membership expired?

If your membership has expired, we’d really appreciate your continued support with a renewal online at www.magireland.org/membership

BikeFest Prize List

Huge thanks to everyone who attended Ireland BikeFest Killarney over the May Bank Holiday weekend and especially those who called by the MAG stand.

Runner up - Peadar Woolsey, Ireland
Winner - J Flintoft, UK

Runner up - Revelin Minitane, Ireland
Winner - Paddy Guerin, Ireland

Ladies of Harley
Token runner up - Marius Forster, Ireland

Runner up - Chris Laneveldt, Ireland
Winner - Lukas, Poland

Stock Custom
Runner up - Cormac Looney, Ireland
Winner - Phil Bothwell, Northern Ireland

Radical Chopper
Runner up - Paul Lynch, Ireland
Winner - Wingnut, Ireland

Runner up - Revelin Minitane, Ireland
Winner - Revelin Minitane, Ireland

Runner up - Willy Reusen, Belgium
Winner - Ger Goodwin, Ireland

Runner up - Fred Thellan, Belgium
Winner - Noel Connolly

Winner - Jay Keating

Winner - Sean O'Mahony, Ireland

Best Engineering
Winner - Wingnut, Ireland

Best Harley
Runner up - Phil Bothwell, Northern Ireland
Winner - David Guney, Northern Ireland

People's Choice
Winner - John Cunningham, Ireland

Best in Show
Winner - Wingnut, Ireland

ACEM New Secretary General

The European Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers, ACEM, has announced the appointment of Antonio Perlot as its new Secretary General, with effect from 1 May 2014.

Mr Perlot was appointed at the ACEM General Assembly in March 2013 and will replace Jacques Compagne (61), who after 10 years at the helm of ACEM will be taking his retirement at the end of July 2014. Mr Compagne will take on the role of Senior Advisor to the ACEM Secretary General and Executive Committee.

Mr Perlot (43) is an Italian-Swedish national and has substantial experience in the motorcycle sector and EU interest epresentation.

Between 2001 and 2006, he worked for the Federation of European Motorcyclists‟ Associations (FEMA), first as Campaigns Officer, then as Secretary General. Prior to that, he worked as an EU public affairs consultant representing clients from different industry sectors and, before that, in the NGO sector.

ACEM, the Motorcycle Industry in Europe, is the professional body representing the interests and combined skills of 14 manufacturers of L-category vehicles (mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles) producing more than 30 brands, and 18 national associations out of 15 European countries, employing over 125,000 people.

As regular readers will be aware, FEMA (of which MAG Ireland is a founder member) represents rider's rights and we have a say on European issues through FEMAs representation to the European Parliament and its institutions. Both FEMA and ACEM have worked together in the past, (albeit having differing opinions on various issues at times), but the relationship is one of mutual respect.

FEMA - www.fema-online.eu
Original Source - www.acem.eu

West of Scotland - Magazine Launched To Help Keep Bikers On Right Track

Scottish Biker

A magazine aimed at motorcyclists, both local and visitors, who ride on roads in the West of Scotland is being distributed free of charge throughout the area in an initiative supported by the 12 Scottish local authorities, Police and Fire Service.

This project delivered through Road Safety West of Scotland, is intended to encourage riders to improve their skills, increase their awareness of road hazards and make sure their bike and equipment is in good order.

The magazine, called Scottish Biker is written for bikers by bikers and aims to give information on all aspects of riding, from getting started on basic skills, more advanced training and tips on maintenance and equipment. It includes popular routes and links and covers the types of issues that bikers may come across, from the skills of cornering to where to get a cup of coffee.

Download the Magazine at: www.roadsafetywestscotland.com

IAM Calls For Safety Rating On Motorcycle Clothing

Road safety charity the IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) is calling for protective motorcycle clothing to have clear labelling for the amount of protection it gives.

The call comes after IAM research shows that motorcyclists find it difficult and time-consuming to find the right clothing at the right price.

The IAM say that 85% of motorcyclists consider protection the most important factor when purchasing motorcycle clothing although whether this is just IAM members or other motorcyclists and what age groups is unclear.

This was closely followed by 67% of respondents who saw comfort and fit as an important factor.

The IAM state that, “Nearly every motorcyclist who took part in the research had spent time researching protective clothing but 43% of respondents felt the right information was only available if you look hard enough.

Motorcyclists are willing to pay for top quality gear as only 30% of respondents consider price a priority.”

Other IAM research results included from the 700 respondents to the survey found that:

  • 71% of respondents believed the brand partly contributes to the effectiveness of protective clothing.
  • 60% said the torso was considered the most important part of the body requiring protection.
  • 46% said hands and legs.
  • 90% of motorcyclists stated that they always wear motorcycle protective clothing when riding.
  • 48% of respondents believe that protective clothing (other than the use of a helmet) should be compulsory.

IAM chief executive Simon Best said:
“The industry must introduce a safety labelling for clothing like the SHARP rating for helmets. Not only will it provide better guidance on the best way to stay safe on the roads, it will give motorcyclists clear and unbiased information and advice that they need. The current situation is confusing and relies too much on promotional information to be of any real use in making a judgement.”

Original Source - www.iam.org.uk

Upcoming Events

Saturday, 14 June
Rally - H.R.I. Harley Hooley
Rally: Raving Lunatics MCC, Stoneyford, Kilkenny
Family Fun Day - BBB Motorcycle Club
Wexford Motor Show

Sunday, 15 June
Rally: Raving Lunatics MCC, Stoneyford, Kilkenny
Charity: Highway Men MCC Rideout, Lisburn
Motorbike Run - Granville

Monday, 16 June
National Ride to Work Day (www.ridetowork.eu)

Friday, 20 June
Road Race - Kells
Rally - Velocity

Saturday, 21 June
Road Race - Kells
Rally - Velocity
Rally: Balor Demons MCC 4th Hole In The Road Rally

Sunday, 22 June
Road Race - Kells

Friday, 27 June
15th Midleton Tattoo Show
Rally - TriXXXters

Saturday, 28 June
15th Midleton Tattoo Show
Rally - TriXXXters
Rally - Forbidden Few MCC

Sunday, 29 June
15th Midleton Tattoo Show

Friday, 4 July
Rally - Conductors MCC
Rally - HDCI Harley Davidson Rally
Rally: Southwest MCC 22nd Missing Link Rally

Saturday, 5 July
Rally - Conductors MCC
Rally - HDCI Harley Davidson Rally
Rally: Southwest MCC 22nd Missing Link Rally
Road Trip - CARI Motorbike Run

Thursday, 10 July
Rally - Shadow International Tourers

Friday, 11 July
Rally - Shadow International Tourers
Bike Festival - Waterford

Saturday, 12 July
Rally - Shadow International Tourers
Bike Festival - Waterford
Rally - Brotherhood MCC

Sunday, 13 July
Rally - Shadow International Tourers

Monday, 14 July
Rally - Shadow International Tourers

Friday 18 to Sunday 20 July
Touring: Horizons Unlimited Meeting Ireland 2014

Sunday, 20 July
MAG Dublin Pet Food Run

Friday, 25 July
Rally - Druids MCC

Saturday, 26 July
Rally - Druids MCC
Bike Show - Belfast Motor Show
Rally - 1st Borderline Rally

Sunday, 27 July
Rally - Druids MCC
Bike Show - Belfast Motor Show
Hillclimb - West Cork Motorcycle Club

Organisers: To add your event, send an e-mail to events@magireland.org with a brief description of the event, facebook or web site link and the contact details of the organiser.

Full details to be found at our website or on the MAG  smartphone app.


MAG Ireland Group Scheme

MAG Ireland Group Scheme

MAG Ireland members have exclusive access to our online group scheme which has recently been updated with a range of new offers.

Of course that's all on top the the huge range of existing discounts on everything from consumer electronics to weekend breaks to car accessories.

If you haven't looked lately, dig out your membership number click here and see what you could be saving today!


You can also follow us on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, RSS and download our smartphone app.

MAG Ireland is specifically interested in hearing from riders with relevant expertise to assist the effort.

Areas include

  • Civil/Roads engineers for barrier and parking issues
  • Accountancy
  • Journalism/copywriter
  • Research (accidents / legal / roads / international / political)

We are also interested in hearing from riders with a specific issue or campaign which they are pursuing at an individual level or local level.


If you have received this from someone else please visit www.magireland.org/roadrunner for your free subscription.

We aim to bring you information of interest to Irish motorcyclists on a monthly basis. Please feel free to forward this on to other Irish riders. If you are in a club we'd particularly appreciate if you could forward it on to the other club members.

New additions to the MAG Ireland Group Scheme can see you save on car hire, holidays and more.

Bike Buyers Guide, June 2014

Read MAG Ireland's column in Bike Buyers Guide. Out now.

Irish Bikers Bible, First Edition, 2014, Out now.