11 August 2021

Ewen's IAM motorcycling training and test

Ewen's IAM motorcycling training and test

Ewen Stewart on motorcycleAfter 21 years and approximately 175,000 miles of motorcycling, I finally sat and passed my Institute of Advanced Motorcyclist (IAM) Advanced motorcycling test!

This all came about because I work within the Motorcycle Law Scotland legal team - a team of motorcyclists who represent fellow motorcyclists when they are unfortunately injured in road traffic collisions or suffer a loss through no fault of their own.

I was previously trained to drive a motor car to an advanced standard by Strathclyde Police, so I naturally thought that after being a motorcyclist for so long, I would have nothing new to learn. I entered into the IAM training programme with an open mind, however somewhere in the darkest corners of my mind, I thought that sitting and passing my test would be a skoosh.

My training was organised by the Borders Group of Advanced Motorcyclists (BGAM), and it was delivered to me by Alistair Finlay. On my first run with Alistair as my IAM Observer, he immediately picked up on two points where I needed to do some work. Alistair said that he could see from my actions that I was observing my rear-view mirrors, but he needed me to look in them more often. He also made the point that brakes were for braking, and while my engine braking was acceptable, I should also touch my foot brake or handbrake to indicate to others what I was doing.

This latter learning point fell in line with Motorcycle Roadcraft, a book where ‘TUG’ is taught in respect of approaching hazards. TUG means ‘Taking in information’, ‘Using information’ and ‘Giving information out’, so by touching the brakes when slowing, I would be giving information out to other road users behind me. One lesson, and all of a sudden I was refreshing my memory and learning.

On a second observed ride with Ali, he made me think about ‘The Limit Point.’ This is where both sides of a road meet in the distance and although I knew what it was and how to use it, I was not consciously using it on each and every occasion. Ali demonstrated with me following him, and from then, by travelling at the correct speed for the hazard (corner), by being in the correct gear, and by using the limit point each time, I was sailing through the bends more confidently and smoothly than I had done before. If you practise slight acceleration as the limit point moves away, and winding back when the limit point gets closer, you will immediately achieve a more controlled navigation on every bend.

My test was now looming, and the mantra seemed to be,‘We are not here to fail you!’ A mock test with Jimmy Wright, Secretary of BGAM, and then on to a full test with George Traynor, a recently retired motorcycle Police Officer and IAM Examiner, and I was, after all this time, an Advanced Rider.
Ewen Stewart's IAM Pass Certificate
How did I feel? Elated and proud.

Am I now wearing my red pants outside my trousers? Far from it, but I am almost certainly more observant and better placed to react to hazards, either real or perceived.

To round up, I would like to thank Brenda Mitchell, MLS Senior Partner, for giving me this challenge and supporting it. I would also like to thank the Trainers, Observers and Examiners from IAM, who volunteer their time, display tremendous enthusiasm, and exercise patience to make motorcyclists safer on the road.

Finally, if you haven’t done an IAM course, you have nothing to lose. I can guarantee you will enjoy it immensely and you may just find it to be the most worthwhile £149 you will have ever spent.

Ewen


TAKE_ANOTHER_LOOK_Logo_RFM_sm

20 December 2023

Take Another Look and search for us

Take Another Look and search for us. Education is needed to prevent needless deaths.

Read More >

Bike_and_Car_Collision_sm

30 November 2023

Navigating motor insurance claims

This is a guide to understanding and protecting your rights when navigating insurance claims following a non fault collision on your motorcycle.

Read More >

Damaged_motorcycle_sm

10 September 2023

Motorcyclist death toll rising

The death toll for motorcyclists will keep on rising unless the message is changed.

Read More >

A939_2_sm

1 February 2023

A939 Road Surface Warning

Warning to ALL motorcyclists, please beware of the tarmac patch repairs on the A939; they are absolutely lethal and you will come off your bike if you hit them.

Read More >

Chris_Plowman_Bike_sm

31 January 2023

Ay up flower, my luck has changed

We don't tend to proactively keep in touch with past clients as it's not practical. However, we do love to hear about good news stories and this is definitely one of those.

Read More >

Zara_CBT_1_sm

4 January 2023

CBT - an invaluable experience for all

When the opportunity to do my CBT arose, I jumped at it and I'm so glad I did. A truly invaluable experience which has made me a better driver. 

Read More >

Guiseppe_sm

17 November 2022

My CBT and First Bike

MLS Administrator, Jill Ramsay, shares the highs and lows of her CBT and the pleasures of owning her first bike.

Read More >

Jodi_CBT_Thumbnail

2 November 2022

CBT or CPD?

RTA LAW Partner, Jodi Gordon, jumps at the chance to complete her CBT. 

Read More >

Junction_for_Web

19 January 2022

Why drivers look but do not see

If car drivers don’t look out for us we need to look out for ourselves, especially at junctions.

Read More >

Motorcycling_in_France_with_MLS_200

17 January 2022

Springtime for Bikers

Unless you're a hardy all-year-round biker, it's around this time of year that we start to think about Springtime, dusting down our bikes and making sure we have everything in place to roar off into the sunshine when the time comes. 

Read More >

Overtaking_rsized_sm

28 October 2021

Safer overtaking

Given the number of collisions we deal with involving overtaking, it is important to understand how to overtake safely.

Read More >

Canva_-_Golden_Hammer_and_Gavel

5 September 2021

It's time for justice

In a criminal justice system where supporting victims is meant to be a priority, why are answers being hidden from those who need them most?

Read More >

Ewens_IAM_Pass_Certificate_sm

11 August 2021

Ewen's IAM motorcycling training and test

After 21 years of motorcycling and 175000 miles under his belt, Ewen Stewart takes on the challenge of the IAM Advanced motoring training and test.

Read More >

04728039

20 January 2021

Secondary Victim Claims

Secondary victim claim apply to an individual who has suffered psychological injury due to witnessing an event. In order to recover damages, strict criterion has to be met.

Read More >

BMW_K1600_sm

22 June 2020

Ewen's Bikes

Ewen Stewart, Legal Assistant, talks us through the different motorcycles he has owned and then describes his current bike, BMW K1600 in some detail

Read More >

Int_Ride_to_Work_Day

15 June 2020

International Ride to Work Day

Advocating and supporting the use of motorcycles and scooters for transportation.

Read More >

SWG_sm

12 June 2020

Stuarts Top 5 Tips for Motorcyclists

Stuart West-Gray from Edinburgh motorcycle dealership, Two Wheels, provides his Top 5 tips for motorcyclists returning to riding post lockdown.

Read More >

BPM_Video

28 May 2020

Post Lockdown Riding

Brenda Mitchell sets the scene and provides some guidance for motorcyclists as we move towards post lockdown riding once again.

Read More >

Johnny_Mac

28 May 2020

Johnny Mac's Top 5 Tips

John Macdonald's top 5 Tips for motorcyclists post lockdown. Junctions, roundabouts,overtaking,filtering,road surfaces.

Read More >

Honda_SS50_sm

20 April 2020

Motorcycling life

Ewen's first bike was a Honda SS50 back in the summer of 1975. Over the years, many bikes have come and gone, but the friends made back then who also roe motorcycles are still good friends today.

Read More >

IMG_2873_sm2

10 March 2020

Panel Solicitor Horror Stories

Don't let your insurer refer you to their panel solicitor. We have assembled a selection of case studies which highlight the experiences of injured motorcyclists who were fortunate enough to move over to Motorcycle Law Scotland. 

Read More >

Tipping_the_Balance_sm

30 December 2019

Tipping the balance in favour of the vulnerable

Causative potency is a relevant consideration for lawyers when acting on behalf of vulnerable road users who may have contributed to their injury through negligence as it can tip the balance back in favour of the more vulnerable road user.

Read More >

Colin_and_Maureen_Rutherford_sm2

18 December 2019

Colin Rutherford 1957 - 2018

Maureen wanted to share the circumstances, charges and sentencing for causing the death of her husband due to careless driving. Her message to all drivers and motorcyclists is watch out for each other at all times but especially at junctions.

Read More >

Brenda_on_Yamaha_Tracer

9 July 2019

Rolling back the years

Specialist motorcycle Lawyer, Brenda Mitchell rolls back the years and takes her husband, Rod on a 2 day trip to the West Highlands of Scotland on their new motorcycles.

Read More >

Hope_Michael_Lynnette_Thomas_Cloy_200

24 April 2019

Call for lengthier driving bans

Jodi Gordon, Partner, argues it is perhaps time to radically increase the length of driving bans and consider life-time bans. 

Read More >

Rod_and_VFR_200

13 March 2019

You don't know what you don't know

Why is it that so few motorcyclists out there feel the need to improve their riding skills when one day they might just save their life?

Read More >

Beware_of_leaves_on_the_road_200

8 October 2018

Beware of Autumn Leaves

Recognising a potential hazard like leaves on the road and taking the appropriate actions should keep you rubber side down and allow you to continue to enjoy your Autumn riding.

Read More >

Rod_on_his_motorcycle_200

18 May 2018

One down, one to go

Motorcyclists can never stop learning how to be better motorcyclists. IAM RoadSmart support advanced riding courses via local groups. Consider getting involved.It will make you a better, safer rider and may one day just safe your life.

Read More >

Motorcyclist2FDriver

27 April 2018

Motorcycling Campaigns

Improved riding and safety for motorcyclists must go hand in hand with motorcycle awareness for car drivers.

Read More >

Brenda_on_motorcycle_200_150

2 March 2018

It matters that your Solicitor is a Motorcyclist.

If you're injured in a road traffic collision on your motorcycle, you will need a Lawyer. However, you must choose your Lawyer carefully and wisely. Always remember, it’s your choice, not your Insurers'.

Read More >

Richard_and_GSXR_200

24 August 2017

Motorcyclists warned think twice about accepting insurer's appointed solicitor

Motorcyclists are being advised to think twice before ticking the box marked “legal expense insurance” when next arranging bike cover.

Read More >

20mph

12 July 2017

The perils of surface dressing for those on 2 wheels

Loose chippings on a road following surface dressing treatment are a motorcyclist's worst nightmare. 

Read More >

Naked_Motorcyclist_thumbnail

28 November 2016

Always be in the right gear!

Being in the right gear is not just about gear selection when riding, it can mean something far more important for your protection and safety

Read More >