Jill Winn

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Current Bike(s): BMW X1000SR

Fantasy Bike: Very happy with my current choice.

Preferred road/area to ride in the UK and Overseas: I’ve not ridden as far as I would like in the UK but Wales never disappoints. Overseas; Not been far but hoping to over the next few years.

Age when you first rode a bike and what bike was it: I was 15; it was a Yamaha RD350 and belonged to my boyfriend. He taught me to ride and I often took him pillion. None of this on public roads of course!

Each bike I owned was my favourite at the time. The FS1-E, then Suzuki TS250 I passed my test on the day before my 18th birthday, maybe not the Honda CB550K3 though. My favourite by far was ‘Humphrey’ my beloved Yamaha XS850 which I had to sell when I needed to get to work in the snow; that was back in the early 80’s. Move on 20+ years and my ‘back to biking’ choice was a CBF1000, have to love that bike ‘Roxy’, she looked after me in many uncomfortable moments! Then ‘Bob’ the Tiger 1000 and ‘Wilf’ the Versys1000, recently ‘Roxy 2’ my BMW X1000SR.

When and why did you develop an interest in riding a bike: I first became interested in bikes when a group of lads hung around at the bottom of the school field when I was 15 yrs old. I was more interested in the bikes than the boys!

When you’re on a bike you feel the road, the bends, the weather…isolated but in a group; part of an elite club where every other biker, whatever you ride, respects that you are a biker.

Aside family members, who would you like as a riding companion: I don’t have anyone in particular, but I have made some great friends through EAMG. I guess the most important thing is that they know where they are going because my navigation skills are rubbish!

Reasons behind becoming an EAMG Observer: I returned to biking in 2008 after a break of over 20 years. In my enthusiasm and against all advice, I bought a CBF 1000 and realized, very quickly, I couldn’t ride it safely or well! The EAMG training was great and I passed my IAM 6 months later.  After a couple of years riding with Full Members, I asked if I could train to be an Observer. It’s incredibly rewarding passing on the advice and skills and I am proud to be part of probably the most highly skilled, charity run, advanced Group.

Scariest or most embarrassing moment on your bike: On a Full Member ride, I found myself separated from the rest of the group. I was riding a spirited ride on a long straight when the car coming towards me turned right across my path. Time slowed almost to a stop, I remember thinking, ‘If I avoid the car and head for the ditch, no one will know why and there will be no one to blame’. I had an argument with myself as to where to aim, because if I was going to have an accident, that car was not driving away from the scene…over the bonnet? But the wheel and engine are hard – or the softer option of the passenger door but having the roof to contend with? Luckily the car stopped suddenly leaving me just enough room to swerve round the front of it and ride on…

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