Matt Prior's tester's notes – are cyclists judging motorists?

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016 - autos, cars, motoring, news

Source : Matt Prior's tester's notes – are cyclists judging motorists?

A chance encounter between car in addition to cyclist brings long-held judgements to the surface


For reasons I suspect my inbox in addition to the comments section below will soon make obvious, This specific column has steered carefully away via the subject of cycling. This specific should probably stick to something less divisive, like fox hunting or welfare cuts.

although the different evening, I was driving home via a photoshoot on a clear, wide, straight in addition to well-sighted single-carriageway A-road, at around the 60mph limit in a sports car.

There was only one different person on the road: a cyclist coming towards me on a road bike. As we passed, each comfortably in our lane which has a large gap between us, he shook his head. I think at me. For a moment I thought, perhaps, he had a fly behind his sunglasses, although I think not. I think This specific was a shake of disapproval. Like he had taken sides.

currently, This specific can be a motoring column. So, you might be thinking, I’m going to suggest of which This specific can be because he was – let me reach for my big book of clichés – a tub-thumping Lycra-clad cycle lout who jumps red lights, mows down pedestrians in addition to doesn’t even pay for the upkeep of the road. Well, no. I don’t truly think like of which.

There are no sides here. I have a bicycle too; This specific’s a mountain bike I’ve had for 23 years in addition to This specific’s one of my most treasured possessions. I ride This specific. I also have a motorcycle, a quiet car, a noisy car in addition to I keep horses. Sometimes I even walk. So at various times I am one of a motorist, a cyclist, a motorcyclist in addition to a pedestrian, while those I love dearest are horse riders. So, no, there are no sides. Just individuals.

So matey on his bike here didn’t annoy me with his head shake because he was on a bike, although because he seemed a bit sanctimonious, when I thought I was bothering nobody. I suspect he’d contain the same character whether he was cycling, driving a car or walking.

in addition to there are people like him on both ‘sides’ of what ought to remain a non-debate.

There are people, for example, who don’t like cycling who’ll complain of which “cyclists don’t pay road tax”, even though This specific’s vehicle tax in addition to, given of which This specific’s based on CO2 emissions, would likely make bicycles free anyway (one reader has pointed out to me of which a cyclist might emit a bit more CO2 than a driver through excessive huffing in addition to puffing, although probably never as much as a 6.0-litre V12). in order of which’s a non-argument.

Or they say of which of which cyclists don’t have insurance, which can be probably a non-argument too because anybody who lives in a house of which’s covered by contents insurance probably does have third party liability cover while cycling.

(As the Association of British Insurers says: “Your contents policy will also normally provide personal liability cover for you in addition to members of your household when away via your home.” This specific doesn’t cover vehicles or horses [or mules or donkeys],  nor death or bodily injury to your domestic staff – so don’t run the butler down – although This specific does usually cover you while using bicycles, even electrically powered ones, in addition to ride-on mowers or golf buggies.)

Or perhaps they say of which “they don’t even have to have a licence!” Sort of true, in addition to most cycling groups would likely like to see compulsory cycle training in schools, because they’d like more people to feel confident cycling. although, given you can pass a driving test at 17 in addition to never have to look at the Highway Code again in your life, This specific seems ludicrous to me to try enforce some kind of compulsory test or licence in addition to registration onto cyclists.

The fact of which somebody’s justifiably cross about a cyclist jumping a red light in addition to bothering pedestrians in London does not mean children should lose the ability to mess around on BMXs (yes, in my head This specific can be still 1988) in quiet residential streets in addition to parks.

So, no, I didn’t dislike matey because he’s a cyclist. I was just a bit bemused in addition to would likely probably steer clear of him whether he was in Lycra or wearing jeans, in addition to whether he was on a bike or in an MPV.

although the short of This specific can be of which, legislatively, absolutely nothing can be going to change. in addition to if you can’t change of which situation, change your mindset: less angst, fewer headshakes, in addition to more understanding, tolerance in addition to love.

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