Group Riding and Ride Leads

Group Riding and Ride Leads

Ride Lead / Road Captain responsibilities

GROUP RIDING: Few activities build camaraderie and memories faster than chapter rides. They are one of the core H.O.G.® chapter activities. That’s why it’s so important that they’re conducted safely.


Ride Lead: the rider responsible for navigating the group from beginning destination to end destination

Road Captain: the chapter member responsible for designing the route for chapter rides



• It’s always a good idea to prepare a map of the route with all the stops indicated. If some bikes become separated from the group, they can catch up at the next stop. GPX, Google Map

• Plan gas stops at least every 90 miles, so folks with smaller tanks can fill up and stay with the group.

• Never block traffic yourself; it is against the law and UNSAFE!


• Brief the group prior to leaving for the ride

• Choose and maintain a comfortable pace within the speed limit.

• Keep in mind that people at the end of the group may have to ride a little faster to keep up if there are gaps in the group.

• Riding slowly may also cause a problem. Drivers in vehicles behind the group may become impatient and try to get around the group.

• Know the route well enough so that you can give the group plenty of notice that you are approaching a turn.

• Always signal your intention to turn or change lanes. If you find yourself at an intersection too quickly for the entire group to make the turn safely, continue until you locate a place where the entire group can execute the turn safely.

• Debrief the ride—if any issues or concerns arise


•Drinking and driving never mix. This is especially true when participating in a group ride.

• Always ride in staggered formation; it gives you an extra margin for safety.

• Make sure your vehicle is in good operating condition. For example, a bad tire could cause an accident on a group ride.

• Being too hot or too cold can also affect how alert you are as a driver. Be sure to pack appropriate protective clothing, such as a long-sleeve cotton shirt (for protection from the sun), helmet, eye protection, leather jacket, gloves, etc.

• A group of motorcycles is not considered a single vehicle. Be courteous and allow cars to enter and exit the highway and change lanes. Generally speaking, a car will not want to ride in the middle of a group of motorcycles and will get out of the group as quickly as possible.

• Familiarize yourself with the route and scheduled stops.

• Arrive to participate in a group ride with a full tank of gas

• All riders should have a map of the route so they can reach their destination on their own if need be.


• The lead motorcycle should be in the left third of lane, the second motorcycle should be in the right third of the lane, one second behind the first rider, and so on.

• Leave enough room between each motorcycle so that any rider can maneuver to the right or left without hitting anyone else.

• Always stay in line with the bike in front of you. Do not switch between the left and right side of the lane.

• At stops (red lights, stop signs), the formation should close. At stop signs, two by two bikes should proceed thru the stop when safe to do so.


Passing should always be undertaken one motorcycle at a time, in staggered formation. Remember, passing at any time can be hazardous. Use common sense.


• Pre-pass Position: Be far enough behind the vehicle you are passing to see clearly down the road to do an “oncoming traffic check.”

• Signal: If you have a passenger, he or she should signal as well.

• Check Your Mirrors: Then turn your head to check your blind spot and ensure that no one is passing you.

• Accelerate and Change Lanes: Remember, legally, you can’t exceed the speed limit.

• When Returning to Your Lane: Signal and make a mirror check and head check to be sure there is space between you and all other vehicles. Return to your lane and turn off your blinker.

AFTER MAKING THE PASS The lead rider makes the lane change, going to the right track, until he can clearly see that the other riders have made their lane changes


• Plan: The leader should look ahead for changes and signal early so the word gets back in plenty of time. Start lane changes early to permit everyone to complete the change. Put novice riders or those new to group riding at or near the front or back unless the riders wish to ride elsewhere.

• Follow Those Behind: Let the tailender set the pace. Use your mirrors to keep an eye on the person behind. If a rider falls behind, everyone should slow down a little to stay with the tailender.

• Know the Route: Make sure everyone knows the route. Then, if someone is separated, he or she won’t have to hurry to keep from getting lost or taking a wrong turn.

• Have fun


All Ride Leads will need to carry Waivers and have HOGScan downloaded to do ride check-ins

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