After his active career, the passionate motorcyclist has made a name for himself at the ÖAMTC as a riding instructor.
The former World Cup pilot and 19-time state champion Erwin Machtlinger takes things easier after the end of career 2004. Since then, he has been doing his professional rounds in the Upper Austrian ÖAMTC driving safety center Marchtrenk – but no less passionately. From his active time he has over 40 broken bones, now it is his job to show the customer how to avoid accidents and to gain safety on the motorcycle. BikerSOS met the “gasoline brother” for a conversation.
When did you catch the motocross fever?
Originally I was a passionate football player! I startetd with motocross relatively late, at the age of 18. Today, the first world champions are at that age.
A schoolmate gave me a taste on motocross. With saved money, I then bought the first “Gatschhupfer” (= slang for ‘dirtbike’ ) to try around and I slowly grew into the matter.
After extremely successful years, you finished your career in 2004. Do you still motocross riding privately today?
Barely! Last autumn it has tickeld me again, but then I figured that I have no mx-boots any more. Meanwhile I almost prefer to ride on the road now. It’s fun to try out the ÖAMTC vehicle fleet. We are really well positioned.
Fascination Motorcycling. What do you think matters?
Pure freedom! You are completely free and can totally switch off. Motorcycling is like mountain hiking for me. At the climbing route you have to be clear and focused and have to push aside all other thoughts. That’s exactly how it is on a motorcycle – you are fully in the game and totally by yourself.
Are there any sticky situations for you?
In my active time, I was always extremely lucky despite numerous injuries. Unfortunately, I know some colleagues who are now sitting in a wheelchair. They were not more risk-averse than me, but just fell stupid. In 2002, I had broken my fifth cervical vertebra – fortunately, no more happened. I’m sure my guardian angels hat burn-out sometimes.
Privately I ride a little more comfortable, so I have never had an accident. But of course I’m not immune to anything.
You are coaching motorcyclists of all levels. Is there anything that everyone struggles with?
Viewing technique is the alpha and omega and really only a few private riders are good in that. With the right way to look you can make life on the bike for yourself a lot easier. Often nuances of headposition improve riding allready. Basically everyone knows what he’s doing, but especially at the stressful moment, the rider tends to focus on the problem rather than looking past them. Wherever you look, there you are riding!
Often easier said than done!
Motorcycling one can start easy, but controlling the bike needs really a long period of training. Agility on the bike is important, that you just have to train it hard. The new electronics are great, but it is no insurance. The systems are very good, but they can not do magic either.
Finally a question about BikerSOS. You find the app useful, because …
… it can save lives in case of emergency. Especially if you are traveling alone and possibly come to lie somewhere after an accident, where you cannot be seen immediately. A friend of mine had an accident last year. He fell over a bank aside the road and was lucky that the bike got stuck at the top of the road, otherwise nobody would have found him. BikerSOS is a great guardian angel, I think! The rescue chain works faster with BikerSOS, saving valuable time.
For even more safety: Always activate the BikerSOS App!