By Liz Sorrell, The Motorcycle Law Group
In 2007, after obtaining my motorcycle endorsement, I quit my job as a prosecutor and began a new career at Tom McGrath’s Motorcycle Law Group. The ride has been better than I had hoped for. As a member of the Motorcycle Law Group, I have had the opportunity to help other motorcyclists in ways that I had not previously considered.
I travel throughout Virginia and North Carolina to speak to groups of motorcyclists. Being able to share my knowledge with members of the many motorcycle clubs and organizations throughout the Southeast has been one of the best parts of my job. Instead of sitting at my desk, I get to ride out and meet with people to share the knowledge they need to prepare themselves and their families in the event they are injured by the reckless actions of another.
When I began riding, it was on a bike that was chosen for me by someone else. That person was an experienced rider and did their best to select a bike that fit what they thought I needed. It did not take long for me to realize, despite their best intentions, it was not the right motorcycle for me. The baby apes looked cool, but they weren’t functional because I could barely reach the clutch. The same was true for the forward controls, which were designed for a person with longer legs than mine. The seat was too wide, the brakes were stiff; I could go on and on. As cool as that 1998 Harley Davidson Springer may have looked, it was not the right bike for me.
Ladies, why do so many of us end up on motorcycles that are not right for us? Too often we let someone close to us tell us what is right for us. If you have never made that mistake, good for you. I did. Thank God for all of the kind motorcyclists who came to my aid back then, otherwise I would still be sitting on the pavement at one of the numerous stoplights where I dropped my bike.
I have since attended many garage nights where I learned how to lift a downed motorcycle, change my own oil and countless other skills that are so important for riders to know. I have also bought a different bike. Learning those skills has been great, but they did not make my bike any easier to ride.
As a new rider I did not know what I needed in a motorcycle; I do now. Unlike before, I now feel in complete control of my machine. I can stop my bike on a dime, ride in a figure eight, and walk the bike backwards with my head turned without worrying that I will drop it. Now I realize that the right bike is the bike that you are comfortable with. For some ladies that may be a big cruiser. For others, it may be a smaller, more agile sport bike.
The point is that the right bike is the bike that allows you to enjoy your ride. My motorcycle and I cover a lot more territory than I used to, and it is truly a blessing I take a special pride in, especially seeing my other sisters on the road. Ladies, there are a lot of us out there who are not content to simply be a passenger. We want the throttle in our hands.
Purchase a bike that allows you to enjoy your ride!
McGrath, Danielson, Sorrell & Fuller
The Motorcycle Law Group
Liz Sorrell is a partner at the Motorcycle Law Group, a personal injury law firm whose attorneys all ride motorcycles and practice in VA, NC, SC, GA and WV. Liz has successfully represented hundreds of clients in VA, NC and WV. She often lectures with regard to laws affecting motorcyclists, recently worked as an adjunct professor with Saint Leo University and works with motorcycle rights organizations. To learn more about the Motorcycle Law Group, visit MotorcycleLawGroup.com.