Ride Along With Dr. Ray

In this twelve-part series, you can get inside the mind of MSF’s Dr. Ray Ochs as he rides along a variety of Southern California roads and deals with situations that motorcyclists face every day. As you listen to his stream-of-consciousness narration, you’ll see how he applies decades’ worth of MSF’s collective wisdom to make his rides safer and more fun.

As Vice President of Training Systems, Ray is MSF’s primary curriculum developer and is vitally interested in arming riders with the best strategies and techniques to enhance their safety. The courses he has developed range from the iconic Basic RiderCourse for novices, conducted on parking lots, to the Street RiderCourse for licensed riders, conducted on city streets and highways. Integral to all MSF RiderCourses is the concept that judgment and perceptual acuity are as important as precise maneuvering skills. In fact, by refining and using mental skills properly through a strategy called Search/Evaluate/Execute (“SEE”), riders can avoid relying on their extraordinary physical skills to safely navigate traffic.

MSF created the “Ride Along with Dr. Ray” videos to supplement the hands-on courses and to better illustrate the SEE strategy. With SEE, you have your brain direct the eyes what to look for, then consider the visual input and decide if and how you need to maneuver your motorcycle to avoid potential hazards. Once this strategy becomes second nature, you can spend your saddle time having a fun commute or weekend adventure, sharing the joy of motorcycling with friends and family. Suburban roads, narrow rural roads, curvy mountain roads, construction zones, multi-lane highways, carpool lanes, complex intersections, passing maneuvers: these locations and scenarios help viewers examine Dr. Ray’s safety-first approach to enjoying the world on two wheels. The twelve videos range from five-and-a-half to 16 minutes long.

According to Ray, “Although we filmed the series in Southern California, the lessons apply nationwide, wherever traffic and infrastructure present challenges to your rides. MSF wants riders to approach motorcycling as ‘serious fun’ and challenge themselves to improve both their physical and perceptual skills. We hope all riders, from novice to seasoned, enjoy and benefit from the series.”

So, pull up a chair, dim the lights, and have fun as you Ride Along With Dr. Ray!

Episode 1: MSF Office to Laguna Beach

This ride will take us from the MSF offices in Irvine, CA to beautiful Laguna Beach. It includes several intersections and stretches of rural highways, both one- and two-lane roadways.

Episode 2: Laguna Beach to Top-of-the-World

In this segment, we’ll be riding from a congested business/residential area to a scenic view above Laguna Beach called Top-of-the-World.

Episode 3: Top-of-the-World to Dana Point

In this ride, we will be experiencing steeper grades and suburban roadways with lots of scenic places that could be cause for distraction, both for us and for others.

Episode 4: Dana Point to San Juan Capistrano

In this ride, we will be experiencing several situations related to light suburban riding and multiple lane roadways. We’ll be interacting with a variety of other highway users.

Episode 5: San Juan Capistrano to Ortega Lookout, Part 1

In this ride, we’ll be enjoying Ortega highway, a rural two-lane highway in the mountains of the Cleveland National Forest. This smooth, curvy road is itself one of the most popular motorcyclist destinations in Southern California.

Episode 6: San Juan Capistrano to Ortega Lookout, Part 2

In this ride, we’ll be experiencing more of the Ortega highway, especially mountainous areas with lots of curves and changing elevations. This fun ride ends at the Lookout Roadhouse, which has an overlook toward Palm Springs and Lake Elsinore.

Episode 7: Ortega Lookout Roadhouse to San Juan Capistrano

In this ride, we’ll be returning to San Juan Capistrano on Ortega highway, but this time traveling mostly downhill with lots of side roads, intersections and oncoming traffic.

Episode 8: San Juan Capistrano to MSF Office

In this ride, we will be returning to the MSF offices via Interstate 5. We’ll experience a lot of freeway riding and end with suburban-type riding

Episode 9: MSF Office to Oso Parkway

This ride will take us from the MSF offices to Oso Parkway via suburban and residential areas, with both two-lane and multiple-lane roadways.

Episode 10: Oso Parkway to Cook’s Corner

This ride will take us to a popular motorcyclist hangout called Cook’s Corner. The roadways are mostly curvy and rural with two lanes and narrow shoulders. Lots of constant, strategic planning in this one.

Episode 11: Cook’s Corner to Chapman Avenue

This shorter ride will provide further experiences in rural settings as well as suburban business areas. Also, some time will be spent riding through a construction area.

Episode 12: Staged Collision Traps

This ride features a few staged situations that are common collision traps for riders. Included are intersection conflicts, a tricky intersection turn, a car drifting into our lane, and a passing procedure.