The term “Kamote Riders” is now used to refer to motorcycle riders who act strangely and perform risky maneuvers while driving without any regard for their own safety.These are the dangerous people on the road that are also being despised even by their colleagues (motorcycle riders) and they are also the ones that are always susceptible to accidents. Why these “kamote riders” are still on the roads everyday should be the real concern of the authorities.
For Mel Aquino, the head of the newly-formed Motorcycle Riding School Philippines, this should not be the case if those being given license to ride a motorcycle must first be given the proper schooling on how to properly ride one.
During the recent Eneos Motor Oil Off-Road Experience last Tuesday at the huge KRB Off-Road Track in Antipolo City, coach Mel emphasized the value of undergoing the proper schooling so that our road would be free of these “kamote riders.”
“Who among you here has undergone such proper schooling?” he asked the participants, majority of them know how to drive a motorcycle. Not a single hand was raised.
“Wala naman kasing motorcycle school noon, hindi ba? (There were no motorcycle riding schools yet then, right?),” said coach Mel, a seasoned off-road campaigner during his younger days before he turned to motorcycle safety riding specialist after he retired. He used to compete against the likes of Jovie Saulog and Ernie Tiongson.
Coach Mel addressed his concern for the safety of the motorcycle riders was his primary concern when he formed the off-road riding school seven years ago. After he was sent to various motorcycle plants and facilities in Japan, coach Mel realized that motorcycle riders here in the Philippines have much to learn the basic safety procedures before they should ride their first motorcycle.
“Ang nakasanayan kasi natin dito eh marunong ka lang mag-bike puwede ka nang magpaturo kung paano magmotorsiklo. Madaling magmotorsiklo pero paano mo matutunan ang proper safety para magmaneho eh ibang usapan yan,” he said. “Kaya marami tayong mga ‘kamote riders’ ay dahil sa kakulangan sa kaalaman paano ang safety motorcycle driving.”
The Eneos Motor Oil Off-Road Experience, sponsored by the No. 1 motor oil for vehicles and motorcycles in Japan today, was really an eye-opener to all the participants who were given a 30-minute tutoring by coach Mel about the various safety procedures in riding motorcycles. Then an almost 3-hour experience at the huge dirt track nearby was where the real excitement was experienced by the participants as they were keenly tutored on the basic safety by coach Mel himself together with his able lieutenants. The whole proceeding was followed closely by Eneos Motor Oil Phils. president Kazumasa Imai and his GM for marketing and planning Roscel Isip at the sideline.
Soaking wet from sweat, all the participants expressed amazement from what they learned from off-road experience, aside from the lecture of coach Mel. They were one in saying that they learned several important riding techniques which they haven’t experienced before although they have been riding motorcycles for years now.
That was the same thing I told myself when we underwent a racing driving clinic under coach Vip Isada before we started racing in the Honda Media Challenge Series several years back.
If you think you are knowledgeable enough in driving a motorcycle, or even a vehicle, try to undergo a driving clinic and you would see a huge difference on how your current driving style is compared with what you would learn after the clinic.