Motorcycling is a consequence producing activity, that is both dangerous and beautiful at the same time. Something I'll never be good enough at, never fast enough, a constant challenge that rewards mastery. Better on the brakes, get the throttle open faster, the ultimate challenge for the driven. Riding a motorcycle has become my passion. The constant companion of my thoughts. The pursuit of the perfect execution of the fundamentals under stress.
My Grandfather started as a motorcycle mechanic in Italy before immigrating to the US in search of a better life for his family. I like to believe it's in my blood. At 18, I had a $500 car and worked my butt off to make the payments on a new GSXR-750. It wasn't until over a decade later when I stopped deploying that I actually found myself back on a bike. Older and wiser I sought out the experts, I wanted to be fast. With a basic understanding, I hit the track and had the opportunity to see what riding really looked like. I found an activity, a sport, a passion, that required all my focus. One where I couldn't let my mind drift to the struggles of the day, the challenges of the moment. It requires predictability, precision, audacity and heart. The consequences for getting it wrong can be catastrophic. I found that my will to excel, to go faster, were what allowed me to overcome the feelings of self preservation that taunt me to sit up on the brakes early.
I know what riding has meant to me in my post military life. A chance to revisit similar feelings from combat, a chance to challenge myself internally, to push my personal limits. It has brought me great friends and who share my passion, others who are walking the path to mastery. The CounterSteer™ program aims to give us the opportunity to work with and around motorcycles and other Veterans. We realize the problems with PTSD and TBI are real, self medication as a coping mechanism is real. We have a place to ride and thrive for those who are struggling or those who just want to spin some laps with their brothers and sisters in arms.