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Having the best gear is a life saver

There's times where we have all asked ourselves whether we should invest in top quality gear, but when a mistake does happen, having it on can have a massive difference to the outcome of a crash.

Just ask the rider in the video below. Some may have seen the dash-cam footage released by the UK's South Yorkshire Police capturing a terrifying head-on smash between a bike and a car. The car driver drifted onto the wrong side of the road in a corner. The rider was flung 5 metres into the air and ended up 100 metres down the road from the point of impact. Although incurring serious injuries, including a broken back, the rider lived and he puts his survival down to the top-spec airbag suit he was wearing at the time. It just shows how things can go wrong that aren't in your control, and the importance of wearing all the best gear, all the time.

South Yorks Police video footage

Getting top quality gear is now even easier!

Matching the top quality gear of MotoGP riders is now even easier, with a lot of different airbag protection now available in stores.

Alpinestars have been one of the leading manufacturers in the field for some years. Until now, and like most others, their Tech-Air system was only compatible with certain suits and jackets in their range. But the new Tech-Air 5 offers total flexibility to use with any jacket, the only proviso being that 4cm of space is required around the circumference of the rider's chest in leather jackets. At US$699.95 it's not cheap but it still looks like a great step forward in making airbag protection more widespread. And it's doubtful the rider in the above video wished he'd spent less money on his gear.

Alpinestars' Tech-Air 5, available from March 2020.