Our Advanced Skills Team's Qualifications
Being a Stayin’ Safe tour leader and advanced skills coach isn’t easy. Coaching riders in an uncontrolled environment requires the ability to continually scan the landscape and predict potential activity while also evaluating a lead rider’s actions, keeping tabs on following riders, demonstrating proper technique and providing continual and constructive radio commentary. All of our coaches have extensive experience teaching both new and experienced riders. Most of them have been long-term MSF RiderCoaches. All of our senior coaches worked closely with Larry Grodsky through the years and now serve as advanced skills coach trainers for the emerging generation of Stayin’ Safe instructors. It’s a special breed of instructor who has the wherewithal and good judgment to conduct on street training. We’d like you to meet our pros …
, Principal/Chief Instructor
Eric has been a continually active motorcyclist since his first solo jaunt on a Honda Z50 behind his grandfather's motorcycle shop in Southwestern Pennsylvania. He spent many years riding off road. When he graduated high school, he graduated to street bikes. Through the years, Eric continued to concentrate on his riding skills - not specifically to become a safer rider, but to become a better rider. He began studying techniques and taking courses and was soon recruited into the Motorcycle Safety Foundation program. After several years as an MSF RiderCoach, Eric began working with Larry Grodsky's on-street Stayin' Safe program. Trow is a highly trained motorcyclist, with accomplishments that include certification in Basic Motor Officer Training. He is the safety editor for Rider magazine for whom he pens the monthly Riding Well
column and occasional rider proficiency-oriented features. Trow was also selected by the AMA Board of Directors as the 2013 recipient of the AMA Outstanding Road Rider Award
. When he is not teaching or writing, Eric enjoys riding and wrenching on his vintage motorcycles or heading for the back roads with his wife Amy. He is also an accomplished marketing professional. Among his accomplishments are multiple award-winning driver safety programs he developed for the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.
Pete Tamblyn, Senior Instructor
As a youngster, Pete honed his estimable riding skills while offroading in the Tennessee hills. So when asphalt was later invented, it was only natural that he apply his craft to the pavement. In the years since, he’s done just about everything on a motorcycle--from flat tracking to dualsporting to long distance touring. He’s also worked extensively as a motorcycle tour guide, leading tours of Mexico for Pancho Villa Moto Tours and showcasing his beloved southern highlands to travelers from Norway to New Zealand.
With Pete’s guidance, we set up our first “Safe in the Smokies” ride back in 1995, and he still delights in leading our guests to hidden nuggets that few visiting motorcyclists ever get to see. Pete’s far more than a tour guide, however. He’s a highly trained and skilled rider with more than a decade of experience delivering on-road radio commentary. Among other training programs in which he has participated, Pete has secured certification in Basic Motor Officer Training. Additionally, Pete is also a stained glass artist, a former Peace Corps volunteer in Africa, and at one time pursued a career in public health administration. At any given time, he may own as many as twenty motorcycles (although he's currently holding at a dozen or so).
, Senior Instructor
Randy began riding in the mid 1970’s, when his father, a Washington DC police officer, brought used bikes home from police auctions. After years of commuting in bumper to footpeg Beltway traffic, Randy decided, in 1992, to take the MSF "Riding and Street Skills" course. Two years later he became an MSF-certified instructor.
After six years "in the trenches" Randy sought to bridge the gap between real world riding and standardized parking lot courses, so, along with teaching buddies Mike Wisniewski and Ray Sundman, he took Larry’s instructor course. The three then put in place an 80-mile long on-street course geared for the novice rider but modular enough that experienced riders also gain valuable information.
You'll find Randy teaching aboard his Honda GL1800 Gold Wing, BMW K75 or the rare Yamaha GTS (the model with the trick "RADD" front end!).
Steve Stone, Instructor
Growing up a military brat in Sacramento, California, Steve's riding life began in the California fields on Honda Trail 50s and 70s. His first street bike, a Honda CL360, was hidden away in his grandmother's basement for months before Steve had the nerve to break the news to his Mom and Dad (the price of Grandma's silence was an occasional ride). In time, he moved up to a Yamaha XS1100 that he and his new bride Barbara rode 2-up America. During the yearlong preparation for the trip, Steve turned to the safety columns and writings of Stayin' Safe founder Larry Grodsky. It would be a key contributor to their safe passage. Since then, Steve has accumulated hundreds of thousands of road miles, including a tour of Wales and the completion of two Iron Butt-sanctioned New England Saddle Sore 1000 rallies. Steve also studied road craft under the tutelage of Ian Shuttler, a certified observer in the UK's Institute of Advanced Motorcyclists (IAM). Steve and Ian have both been trained in the Stayin' Safe method by Stayin' Safe Chief Instructor Eric Trow, earning them the honor of becoming the first instructors other than the core team that worked directly with founder Larry Grodsky to earn the privilege of leading Stayin' Safe training tours. With Ian Shuttler's return to Europe, Steve now is responsible for the the Stayin' Safe program in Connecticut. He is both pleased and excited to have come full circle from those early days of reading Grodsky's works to becoming a rider coach in today's Stayin' Safe program. Mr. Stone is also a Contracts Professional working for a global corporation. Road conditions permitting, Steve can be found riding, year round, on the back roads of New England.
In addition to our core team of lead instructors, we also have a growing list of assistant instructors, each with essential qualifications and each personally trained by one or more of our experts.
Interested in becoming a Stayin’ Safe instructor?
If you have interest and experience teaching motorcycle skills and safety, have strong riding skills, demonstrate good judgment and are able to multitask, we may be interested in learning more about you. The best way to start is to personally participate in a Stayin’ Safe training tour. There’s no better way to get familiar with our program and to see a Stayin’ Safe instructor or two in action. That also gives us a chance to get familiar with you as well. If you’re still interested, let’s talk. Contact us by email or by phone and let’s explore the possibilities.