SCRC Loudoun VA Featured Member - August, 2009

Name:   Jerry Amacker

Nickname:   Commando

Marital Status:  Single never married (unfortunately)

Location:  Ashburn, VA

Hometown:  Baton Rouge, LA

Children:  None.

Age:  47

Occupation:  Buyer at SAIC

Current motorcycle(s):  2006 Honda VTX R

How did you hear about the SCRC and when did you join?
I heard about SCRC through the open house at Loudoun County Motorsports this past spring. I was looking for a good group to ride with and found a good fit. I think I joined in April of this year.

How long have you been riding?
Since November 2006.

Have you ever taken a motorcycle safety course?
Yes, I have taken the MSF beginner's course twice. When I went to purchase my first bike at Manassas Honda, the sales person told me he was not selling me a bike unless I took the MSF course and got the endorsement on my license. I took the class in November 2006 and passed. I got the endorsement on my license and went back and purchased my VTX. By then it was late November and I only got to ride about three or four times before it got too cold. In the spring I took the course again as a refresher for the upcoming riding season. I plan on taking the advanced course maybe next year and I may take the Motor Officer course coming to Winchester in August. I will probably take the MSF rider coach training next year and start teaching on the weekends to earn some extra cash.

What was your first bike?
My 2006 Honda VTX R

How many bikes have you owned?
This is my first.

Why do you ride?
Because it is a lot of fun!

Have you ridden with an organized group before?
Yes and no. In 2007 I took my first motorcycle vacation down to the Honda Hoot in Knoxville, TN. There they have group rides that meet up in the mornings. I had bought a magnetic map case that attaches to your tank. When I showed up at the meet up location, I was the only one with a map on his bike. Everyone else carried the map in their pocket. I was a rookie rider with less than nine months riding experience and a group of about 30 bikes chose me to lead the ride because I had a map. I said no, they said yes so off we went. I wasn't as good as our group leaders but I used common sense and did not exceed the speed limit by more than five miles an hour and I waited for traffic to clear before making turns. I slowed up if everyone did not make a traffic signal so that everyone could catch up. Everyone arrived in a group at the lunch locations. The following day the same thing happened again. I have also ridden with a group up at the Gettysburg Bike Rally. They had a ride leader who knew the route but no tail gunner.

What modifications have you done to your bike?
I have had the original pipes modified to sound a little louder. Other changes include: air cleaner cover, highway pegs, license plate holder, radiator cover, oil plug and some custom paint on the gas tank.

What accessories do you want to add to your bike?
I would like some smaller sized pipes but replacements are expensive. My butt is hurting after the July overnighter and I was using the gel pad that I bought down at the Honda Hoot after being sore. I'm debating a new seat but they are expensive and I'm not sure a new seat will remedy the problem.

What is your dream bike?
My dream bike was to purchase a Victory Vegas Jackpot but they are too expensive. I settled for the VTX at about half the price with a similar look. I really like the new Honda Fury Chopper that is coming out but I doubt they would be very good on extended trips. After a couple of years of riding, I have realized that I'm most likely a tourer type rider. When I ride, it is usually for a few hours or more. Thus I'm thinking about a sport tourer possibly the BMW R1200 RT or a comparable model in a Honda or Yamaha. Yes and the price gets back to the Victory range.

What kind of riding do you like to do — straight-aways or twisties?
prefer twisties out in the country. I hate the super slab and seldom take it. I like scenery and like discovering the back roads of America.

If you have a nickname, how did you get it? Tell the truth!
I don't have any nicknames at this time. When I was in the 9th grade, my best friend's mom gave me a nickname. She has passed now but she told us a story one evening as to why she was giving me a new name. She was at the JC Penney doing some shopping. She was in the men's department and back then people didn't yell out in the store and carry on. She said a woman had lost her son in there and started yelling "Junior-Junior get your ass over here so that I can whoop your ass for running off!" My friend’s mom stated she laughed so hard that the first thing that came to her mind was that she was going to name me "Junior." So my nickname was Junior for years until her and her husband passed. Me and her oldest son are still best friends but he doesn't call me Junior. His younger brother still calls me Junior.

What is your favorite riding route?
My favorite route would thus far would have to be Skyline Drive and the Blue Ridge Parkway. I have ridden that twice from start to finish. My weekend riding is out in the Middleburg area all the way out to Luray.

Do you ride your bike to work?
No, I work in Tyson’s and the stop and go traffic on Route 7 drives me nuts even in my vehicle. I ride the bus to work. I fill my vehicle up about once a month and have been doing that the last four years. Remember those very high gas prices? ;)

What is the fastest you’ve ridden?
The ride following Tweaker up to the Carlisle bike fest a couple of weekends ago. I looked down and we were going 80 mph.

What is your favorite time of year to ride?
The Fall is my favorite riding time. The colors are awesome!

Have you ever been down? If so, how were you hurt and what did you learn from the incident?
I haven't crashed my bike yet. I did drop it in a drive way at a friend's house the morning of Rolling Thunder a couple of years ago. I attempted a U-turn in his drive way and dropped it. I jumped off landing on me feet. I had the bike up in two seconds out of sheer embarrassment. My friend was standing out in the drive way. I learned that you have to keep your head up looking where you want to go and give it a little more gas. If you are afraid you will give it too much gas in a small turning area, apply the back brake while giving it the gas and the bike wants to stand up. This technique is taught in the "Ride Like a Pro" DVDs.

Have you ever done an "Iron Butt" ride?
No not yet but my two rides to the Honda Hoot were pretty long. I spread the ride out over two days though. I was in no hurry.

If not, what is the furthest you’ve ridden?
My furthest ride would be down to the Honda Hoot taking Skyline Dr. continuing on the Blueridge parkway until it ended in Cherokee, North Carolina then up to Knoxville, TN.

What was the worst weather in which you’ve ridden?
When I passed through Gatlinburg, TN on the way to the Honda Hoot the sky opened up and it rained super hard. The streets in Gatlinburg were flooding and my motel was on the outskirts of Gatlinburg. I had to put my feet down in about 6 inches of water and was surprised that my boots really were waterproof. In this down pour just before reaching Gatlinburg I had to travel on two uphill cross backs and surprised myself by "handling it."

Do you know how to work on your bike?
A little. I don't have a garage and they don't allow vehicle repairs at my condo complex.

What is your favorite road song?
Too many to name but a favorite is "Hotel California" by the Eagles.

What was your most adventurous ride?
I would say my first Honda Hoot trip. I saw deer, snakes, elk, ground hogs, and a bear. I lead two group rides with over 30 bikes each as a riding rookie.

What rallies or events do you like to attend?
Honda Hoot is a favorite so far and have been to the Gettysburg Bike Rally.

Is there someone who rides "two-up" with you?
No not yet, I keep looking for her.

Off the cuff from...Commando
I'm an avid college football fan and pull for the L.S.U. Tigers. The university is in my hometown. I watch a little pro football and hockey. I have two older sisters. My dad is still living and hates that I have a motorcycle. I enjoy reading especially horror, mystery and action novels. I played baseball for years and now I usually play on the company softball team. I play golf about once or twice a year. I use to mountain bike but have basically retired to motorcycling.

I got started in motorcycling through my ex-girlfriend. She had a Harley Road King and took me for a ride one weekend and I loved it. Yes before all of you start laughing, yes at the time I didn't know I was riding bitch! I didn't know about any of that at the time. Go ahead laugh it up now; those two large handles that I held on to sure were nice! ;)