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Driving force for women

Driving over narrow bridges and parallel parking in their motor homes will no longer be a problem for a group of ladies, thanks to one plucky city woman. NZ Motor Caravan Association member Jeannie Barnes realised some women would like to drive their motor homes but didn’t quite have enough courage. “And sometimes their partners weren’t necessarily the best people to teach them,” she said. Studying towards her heavy traffic class 2 licence herself, she decided to organise a course to help other women get the confidence to work towards getting their HT licences. Five women drivers from throughout New Zealand, plus helpers, turned up to the Sexy Seniors RV course held at Drivetech over three days this month. “Drivetech were very kind and offered us their premises,” she said.

Jeannie organised a confidence course of sorts, with 10 challenges using borrowed plastic drums and road cones. “It was like S bends and reverse parking and parallel parking and narrow bridges, which were a real worry for us ladies.” The women drove through the course with their chosen driving buddies – people with an HT licence who were not necessarily their husbands, she said. As well as the serious driving business, Jeannie also organised plenty of fun things to do in the evenings, she said. “It went down really well.” She was keen to hold a similar event but, while it was free for NZMCA members this time, Jeannie said she’d have to cover her costs next time. Interested? Email [email protected]

This was published in THE EYE – Thursday, April 28, 2011



Training to Survive

Motorbike riders have been encouraged to brush up on their riding skills in the past few months

Drivetech, along with ACC and Road Safety Southland, have been running motorcycle courses, which started in February.

ACC Injury Prevention Consultant Nic Miller said that even for the most seasoned motorbike rider, training increases the likelihood of survival when faced with an out of the ordinary situation on the road.

“Even if you’ve been riding for years, other vehicles and bad or changeable weather conditions can mean that riders are faced with sudden and life-threatening hazards out on the road,” Nic said. “Taking a training course ensures that you’re prepared for anything that either another vehicle or Mother Nature throws at you.”

Brian Frew, Drivetech Manager and instructor, said any rider who has not had some kind of training – and doesn’t have the right skills – is a crash waiting to happen.

“Many motorcyclists in New Zealand only have the basic skills required to sit their licence without really learning to ride properly,” Mr Frew said. “Training is about getting the technical knowledge, along with the pracical skills, to confidently control a motorcycle and understand the way this sophisticated piece of machinery works. Both are critical to having the best possible chance of surviving unexpected situations on the road, as well as improving things like confidence and cornering to get more fun out of your two wheels.”

The full-day courses cover a range of topics and features both theoretical and practical elements. Courses will be run by qualified trainers that offer vast experience ranging from dirt and road riding to racing.

“Some of the things we focus on include a motorcyclist’s road position, protective gear essentials, motorcycle control, counter steering, cornering and braking exercises, all of which are critical for motorcyclists to master,” Mr Frew said.

“Not only does training help keep riders safer on the roads, it also makes riding more fun. Many of our participants, even the most experienced riders, say that after a day’s training they have learnt a lot, feel more relaxed and confident on the road so they can have a great time out there.”


To find out more about training courses, you can contact Drivetech Ltd, at 156 Longbush South Road, No 1 RD, Invercargill or phoning 0508 2 37483 or 2304 326. For more information on keeping safe on your motorbike visit


This was published in the Southland District Council Newsletter- 1st Edition – April 2011


Champions 2011

Drivetech players – Jordan Todd, Ricky Harding, Jamie Wilson, Gareth Scott, Andrew Miekle, Glen Frew and Scott Hall celebrate winning the recent Southland Indoor Cricket Competition. Drivetech were unbeaten in the Monday night competition, beating SBS in the final before taking Thursday night champions the Tigers to decide the best of the best. Drivetech took out the match off the last ball, and also picked up a number of other trophies; highest partnership between Gareth Scott and Glen Frew of 97, highest team total of 182, Frew won Most Valuable Player and Ricky Harding best bowling figures for Monday night competition.

This was published in the Southland Express – Thursday, August 25th, 2011


Soccer Stars

Drivetech indoor football players – Todd Findlater, Amba Laking, Casey Lyons, Jamie Wilson, Andrew Crawford, Gareth and Jessica Scott, celebrate winning the Southland Cricket indoor football tournament recently. Drivetech won the final in the penalty shootout against Placebo.

This was published in the Southland Express – Thursday, August 11th, 2011