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Slowing down early on approach to junctions and hazards is vital. With regards to braking and gear changes, you should aim to be in the correct position, at the correct speed and in the correct gear at all times. This takes practice to perfect, you will make mistakes initially but by keeping your speed down you will reduce the volume of mistakes. This creates more planning and thinking time for you, resulting in safer decisions, greater enjoyment and less stress.
On approach to the hazard, close the power early to use some engine braking. From a higher speed apply both brakes to slow down and to show a brake light to the vehicles behind. During this important phase change down the gears one at a time to help reduce speed with further engine braking. At about 10-15 mph, the motorcycle should be in second gear. When you are about 2-3 car lengths from the junction transfer to the rear brake only. This method ensures the motorcycle is stable, you will have maximum control and be ready to stop or go when you make your decision. Using the rear brake will give you the ability to stop smoothly and safely, with some steering input if required. However, using the front brake to stop will make the bike dip, causing the bike to be unstable.
Motorcycle Riders Hub is an online eLearning training and guidance platform for all riders. It helps riders at different stages in their training to understand how to improve, operate and control their motorcycle.
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