We were told that riding a motorcyle through Tehran was absolute madness, that the drivers there are merciless and we would all end up hospitalised. So we practised a technique to get through the city’s famously congested streets and survive the antics of its equall famous suidcidal drivers. We have called it the “Silkrider Wedgie”. It works like this.
The 6 bikes form two wedges of three – the job of the front wedge ( lead bike followed by two covers, each with their front wheel axle parallel on respective sides of the rear axle of the lead rider) is to maintain the direction we’re heading – off roundabouts and through intersections. This affords the front rider the effective width of a car so that they cannot be squeezed by cars or other bikes pushing in from behind. In Iran all drivers push into any gap whatsoever – even if its in the lane of the opposing traffic.
At most we can hope to keep 3 bikes together in this fashion in stop/start heavy traffic and the second wedge simply has to do its best to keep the front wedge in sight so as we don’t get separated and riders lost.
I’m pleased to report that we have negotiated Venice, Dubrovnic, Sophia, Istanbul and now Tehran using the Silkriders Wedgie and have not been separated or lost a rider once. The locals actually marvel at it and all the other bikes try to split it (just for fun you’ll understand) but to date have failed.
It is though, very hard on the clutch and brakes of all bikes and we have had one case of overheating, putting a bike under so much pressure. Result? The bike stalled in an unlit tunnel – not much fun when it wouldn’t restart easily. We have also had several instances where the cover bikes have used their hard panniers to bump other riders off their steeds as they have got a little too agressive with us. Seems to be working.