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Welcome to Motorcycle Riding Concepts

advanced motorcycle training

Riding Season is Here!

It's time to knock off that winter rust and get back in the saddle. What better way to get back into shape than a one day riding clinic developed just for experienced, seasoned riders. Read about our Advanced Skills Course or if you have six minutes to spare watch our highlight reels video.

We offer Novice, Intermediate and Advanced Motorcycle Rider Training - ALL YEAR LONG. You may also choose an Individual ("Private") session at any level as well.

Need your Virginia Class "M2" Endorsement?
Take our
Basic RiderCourseSM

Want to learn to ride a Scooter? MRC now has Scooters! Take our Basic RiderCourse if you need a license. You may also request a Scooter for our Headstart and Seat Time courses or any Individual lesson.

The fall issue of MRC News is here! This informative newsletter contains articles written by MRC staff for our students and friends. It's just one more way we give you the tools to make you a better rider. 

WE STAND OUT…

Whatever level you are, our years of experience and proven techniques are not about getting you to pass the course. Much more importantly, it's a passion and mission to give you the tools to evolve into a better and more skillful rider. We are not about the easy way. We are about the right way-the safe way. People are talking about our skills, our curriculum, our high standards, and how we stand out. We stand out because of HOW we teach, that comes from who we are.

WHO WE ARE…

We are motorcycle police officers, military and professional instructors with a wealth of motorcycle training experience. We have competed professionally and taught motorcycling skills across the country and abroad. We are passionate and committed to riding excellence!

“They delivered 100% from start to finish. They were upbeat and energetic and made it a fun experience. I was so impressed with how truly invested they were in our success; our achievements were their achievements. I was equally impressed with their commitment to motorcycle safety, not only with us, but in their daily life. I knew I was in good hands.”

Audrey W.

Meet Our Team

Motorcycle Riding Concepts is committed to rider education and motorcycling excellence. Our training cadre is top-notch - the cream of the crop. Each of these training professionals has successfully completed rigorous training courses to achieve qualification and certification as a RiderCoach/Instructor and each must be re-certified every year.

Below are brief bios and photos of our cadre. We invite (encourage) you to read through these posts to discover the depth and breadth of knowledge and expertise represented.

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Harry Avila is a lifelong motorcyclist having bought his first motorcycle (a surplus Harley-Davidson from the California Highway Patrol) at age 17 and has been riding ever since. Prior to becoming a RiderCoach, he was a Certified Flight Instructor and believes that learning proper riding skills is even more important than learning how to fly. Harry is a U.S. Army veteran and year round rider who enjoys long distance motorcycle trips. He brings years of teaching experience to those just learning to ride or veteran riders who want to improve their skills.


Email Harry


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Chris Beard has served as a United States Marine for the past 20 years and has served in many diverse billets and assignments. Having the opportunity to train and instruct many different types of learners has given Chris the experience to capture the learning potential of a wide student base. Chris purchased his first motorcycle in 2006 and attended the MSF Basic Rider Course (BRC) two months later. Chris attributes many of his advanced skills to the fundamentals he learned while in the BRC, referring to those skills as the, "building blocks" of rider education. One year later, Chris completed the MSF Experienced Riders Course which further advanced his rider skill set. In April of 2010, Chris was selected to attend the MSF Rider Coach Prep Course and upon completion became a MSF Certified Rider Coach. Chris is an "all season" rider and enjoys the challenges associated with riding in cold and inclement weather. Chris believes riding year round has helped him become a more well-rounded instructor. Chris is starting his second year with MRC and takes great satisfaction from the opportunity to pass on his knowledge to new and experienced riders as well.

Chris also enjoys the outdoors and spending time camping and fishing with his son


Email Chris


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Ron Bennett has been a rider coach since 2001 in Pennsylvania until he and his wife Yolanda, moved to Virginia in 2012 where he continues coaching. Ron is a retired officer from University of Pittsburgh Police Department after 32 years. Duties included plainclothes, investigations, motor officer, SERT, and community relations. Ron received many awards during this time including Officer of the Year, and Medal of Bravery for First Responder of critical incident. Ron enjoys family events, rollerskating (4 wheels), fishing, jazz, and old school music. Also a member of "Buffalo Soldiers M/C of Pittsburgh" where he is known as "Zoom".


Email Ron


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Trish Blomquist rode her first motorcycle, a Suzuki 50 Trailhopper, when she was 10 years old. Her enthusiasm for motorcycles has continued through the years. With a husband and four children who ride, Trish is dedicated to modeling and coaching motorcycle safety. Trish is originally from Pittsburgh but has lived in Washington D.C. for the past 23 years. When she's not on two wheels, Trish teaches art in a DC elementary school. Trish never gets tired of riding her dual sport bike with her husband through Rock Creek Park and around the monuments or trailing her bike for a day of off-road riding.  She loves the Washington D.C. area because it has so many scenic rides for motorcyclists to safely experience and enjoy.


Email Trish


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Chad Burrow is the Senior Instructor for MRC. He has been a member of law enforcement since 1998 and with the motor squad since 2006. Chad has competed in and won many Police motorcycle safety and skills competitions throughout the US. Along with riding for his profession, training keeps his sharp, clean cut riding mechanics fresh. Chad has been riding since 2004 and enjoys his Screamin Eagle motorcycle in his time off. Chad has a strong desire to teach people who want to learn to ride. His precise techniques and "safety first"mentality enable him to be a strong rider and coach.


Email Chad


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Beth Carman took her first Basic Rider Course in 2002; immediately became hooked on motorcycling and hasn't looked back since. She loves the freedom that x number of cc’s provides as she rolls along down the road. There is a feeling of “can’t touch this” as any built-up stress rolls off her back - it doesn't matter if it is a 500-mile ride to nowhere, or a five-mile ride to Old Town Alexandria to see and be seen. Beth was approached in 2009 and asked if she was interested in attending the MSF RiderCoach Preparation Course. After this training, she again became hooked. This time on helping novice riders overcome any fears and misconceptions about motorcycles, and then seeing someone’s face light up and confidence levels increase when a student masters a skill. What Beth likes most about coaching is “seeing someone that has never ridden before smiling as s/he walks out of class”.


Email Beth


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Wayne Donahue has been riding since he was a teenager. He loves to ride and tinker on machines of all kinds. He is a U.S. Air Force veteran, family man and friend to many. He is also a sports enthusiast of all kinds and spent 14 years as a member of a stock car racing team. Wayne has been a RiderCoach since 2010 and enjoys sharing his knowledge with new riders.


Email Wayne


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Julie Goble is a 10-year veteran of a Northern Virginia suburban law enforcement agency. She has spent the last three years as a detective with that force. Her background involves attention to detail and passion for all that she does, to include motorcycling. She spent her youth riding dirt bikes on country dirt trails by a lake in her rural hometown suburb of Richmond, Virginia. As an adult, she sought basic and advanced training to safely hit the open road on a motorcycle. Ever since doing so, she decided to take what she had learned, combined with her passion for riding and her attention to detail to train others to ride safely. Julie rides year-round and wants others to join her. She enjoys training those who wish to join the family of riders who focus on safe riding and sharing the passion of motorcycling.


Email Julie


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John Harris is a Partner for Motorcycle Riding Concepts. John is a Police Sergeant with a large suburban police agency. He has over 15 years on the Police Motor Squad, serving twelve years as one of the lead motorcycle instructors for the Motor Squad and now the training Supervisor. John regularly competes in police motorcycle safety and skills competitions and consistently places in the top 10. He has over 25 years riding experience and enjoys recreational riding with family and friends. John is the energy and enthusiasm behind MRC.

Not only does John Harris love to teach folks how to ride a motorcycle, he also loves to play corn hole. As you can see, he is playing the game on his Bahama cruise in 2012. John and his brother in law beat everyone and won the first prize, "The Ship on a Stick". Only folks who cruise on Carnival Cruise lines know what he's talking about. Maybe on the range and during a break, you can get some pointers from him on how to master the game of corn hole and maybe, if you ask nicely, he will show you the 'Ship on a Stick 1st prize". John and his family love to go on cruises and enjoy meeting new people from all over the world.


Email John


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Julie Hersey is a 27 year veteran of a large Northern Virginia police department and has served as a certified instructor with her department's police academy. She has completed numerous  motorcycle safety riding courses and wants to pass these skills on to new riders.  Julie looks forward to welcoming  more women into the motorcycling community. She enjoys riding her 2008 Street Glide in her spare time.


Email Julie


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Mark Lewis is a Partner for Motorcycle Riding Concepts.  Mark served 12 years in the United States Marine Corps with his last 6 years with the Presidential Helicopter Squadron (HMX-1).   Mark joined a large suburban police agency in 1997and joined the Police Motor Squad in 2001.  In 2007, he earned the police instructor certification and is currently the lead motorcycle instructor.  He regularly competes in police motorcycle safety and skills competition and is serious about teaching proper riding skills.  In his off time, he enjoys spending time with his family and friends and enjoys going to sporting events.


Email Mark


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As a professional in Health Care, IT and Management Consulting and a straight up meddler in Systems Biology – Steven Longstreet rounds out the team with his zero experience in Law Enforcement.  Which isn’t to say he lacks plenty of experiences with Law Enforcement… from his time as an EMT, of course.  With the combined motto of “I think I can” and “If it’s not fun- let’s do something else” Steven brings a certain je ne sais quoi to the MRC Team.

Outside of riding, Steven is an avid adventure sport enthusiast. You can often find him throwing  jumping off cliffs (hang gliding), peddling down trails, jumping out of perfectly good airplanes, paddling through white water, carving tracks through snow and the most extreme sport of all — being a father.  

In the riding world, Steven brings a rich motorcycle experience of dirt, trials, track and street riding to the range. He models MSF’s approach to Life Long Learning by taking at least one motorcycle course a year and always picking up another certificate in… well something. With over 500,000 miles of safe, crash free, street riding experience he maintains the belief great training and constant vigilance will lead to a long and safe riding career. Students will benefit from his happy go lucky attitude, willingness to find your way into riding, and the gullibility of a two year old.


Email Steven


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Originally from Upstate New York, Rick Mattison began riding motorcycles at a very young age.  He started with a 50 cc dirt bike, and progressed through several types and sizes of on and off road motorcycles. After serving in the United States Marine Corps, Rick joined a large suburban police agency. In 2008, he earned a position with the Motor Squad which enabled him to hone his skills as a rider. Rick welcomed the opportunity to pass these skills on to students with Motor Cycle Riding Concepts. Rick enjoys teaching, having begun as a Fire Arms Instructor during his time in the USMC and continuing with a variety of training certifications during his time in Law Enforcement.


Email Rick


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Mike Nicholson (Nick) is a Partner and the current President for Motorcycle Riding Concepts. Nick is currently a police officer of 23 years, having served seven years on the Police Motor Squad. Nick has engaged in nearly all motocycle disciplines. Students will benefit from his experience and perspectives on sport, touring, standard and custom motorcycles. Off road racing in motocross, enduro and observed trials round out his motorcycling resume. Nick has also taught public safety teams riding skills for trail search and rescue operations.  When not riding, Nick enjoys fishing, competition shooting and playing ice hockey.


Email Mike


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 Mark was a Founding Partner of MRC and served as its President. It is with great sadness that we announced the sudden death of Mark Payton on January 27th, 2011. Mark had a passion not only for riding but for safety and he was one of the lead instructors with MRC. We continue to emphasize his passions in our teaching as a legacy that Mark has left with MRC. The prestigious "MTG" (Mark the Good) award is given to our standout riders in each class in his honor. 



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Mike Row has been riding motorcycles, recreationally, for over 25 years. He bought his first motorcycle while serving in the US Army in 1984. He has served the Northern Virginia law enforcement community for over 18 years and was an instructor with his agency's Criminal Justice Academy. Mike is a certified Police off-road motorcycle operator and enjoys his "08" Street Glide in his off duty time. He likes teaching new riders to have fun without compromising safety.


Email Mike


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Jeffrey Thompson is the CEO/General Manager and a Partner for Motorcycle Riding Concepts. Jeff is a retired Police Sergeant from a large suburban Washington DC police department. Jeff  has owned, built, and operated motorcycles both on and off-road for over 45 years, of which 30 years was with the police department. Jeff rode as a Motor Officer and Supervisor for 12 years and has been a certified Motorcycle Instructor since 1988. Jeff incorporates his 12 years as a Crash Reconstruction Detective and Supervisor in his overall approach to dynamic motorcycle training. Jeff has won many competition honors both locally and nationally. Additionally, Jeff has had the opportunity to instruct students from across the USA and abroad. Jeff is passionate and dedicated to the pursuit of riding excellence for all riders. 


Email Jeff


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Karl Thompson has fond memories of growing up around motorcycles and riding passenger with his father. He now takes opportunities to ride along side his father, other family members and friends, creating new memories.  Karl is enthusiastic about riding and teaching. His goal is to impart the skills to be good riders but more importantly, the passion to celebrate the lifestyle. 


Email Karl


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Tim Touzinsky retired from the US Army after 30 years of service.  Tim first became a RiderCoach in 2009 while serving overseas, working with Soldiers to help them develop and improve their riding skills. Tim has a wealth of experience both as a rider and instructor.  He has been riding since 1983 and is passionate about motorcycling and loves the satisfaction you get when you are able to work with new riders.


Email Tim


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Denny Vorbau is a 24-year veteran of a large suburban law enforcement agency.  Having  spent a good portion of his career as a Police Academy Instructor as well as a Field Training Instructor, Denny brings with him a vast amount of teaching experience. He is an avid motorcyclist and knows the importance of being a competent rider. He takes pride in helping others  to develop the skills and knowledge to become safe motorcyclists.


Email Denny


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Tom Williams has been riding on and off since about 1970 when he first learned how to ride on a trail bike as a kid.  He didn't take his first motorcycle class until shortly after he bought his first Harley in early 2000.  He remembers being amazed at how much more fun riding was after taking that class simply because he knew so much more about what he was doing.  His favorite line from one of our training videos is "The more you know, the better it gets".  Tom is passionate about riding, motorcycle training and helping people become safer, more proficient riders.  

Tom initially became an MSF-certified RiderCoach in early 2004.  Since then, he has earned a wide range of motorcycle training certifications and has taught more than 150 courses across all levels of motorcycle safety training.  Tom was also recently a senior member of the VA DMV's Virginia Rider Training Program Quality Assurance Department.  In this capacity, Tom was part of a team that developed and conducted a variety of state-wide motorcycle training activities for RiderCoaches and Instructors, including quality assurance reviews, professional development workshops and training new RiderCoaches. 


Email Tom


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Don Withrow is the Chief Operating Officer and a Partner for Motorcycle Riding Concepts. Don rode a motorcycle for the first time when he was just 12 years-old. He bought his first motorcycle (a 125cc Allstate) at age 14 with the money he earned mowing lawns and doing odd jobs. Don proudly served his country in the U.S. Army for 20 years spending six years in overseas assignments including two years in Vietnam. Working with riders, young and old, to develop and hone their riding skills is a passion for Don. He has been teaching students to ride motorcycles safely since 2001 including both novice and experienced riders. Don brings with him a wealth of information and expertise having been the administrator for the rider program at a large Northern Virginia Community College. 

Don's passion outside of riding motorcycles and teach students to ride motorcycles is Washington Redskins football. Although he has been mostly disappointed with the team since 1993, he's still an avid fan and goes to as many games as he can.


Email Don


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Richard Yuras started riding over 40 years ago on a Honda CS65 Sport. His passion for riding has grown and so has the size of his motorcycles. He enjoys riding year round on his 2012 Heritage Softail.  Richard enjoyed a 38 year career in the fire and rescue service.  He was member of an international urban search and rescue task force that deployed to Haiti and Japan to assist with earthquake rescue operations. The opportunity to introduce others to the fun and excitement of riding and riding safely is all part of his motorcycling passion.  Being a rider coach is a privilege and a responsibility that he takes very seriously.  


Email Rich