Glad to hear you are okay Joe, bikes can always be repaired or replaced.
I have a 1980 Kawasaki KZ750 Ltd. I bought new. I recently managed to get it out of my garage after 28 years and put it on the road again (2010). I feel like a kid all over again. Since I have acquired 3 78 KZ1000 Ltd, 1 1981 KZ1000 Ltd, and another 1980 KZ750 Ltd. Love the LTD's.
As I see it the guy in front of you wasn't watching what was behind him and the kid was going too fast. In any event him rear ending the bike in front and taking you out at the same time was his fault. You did nothing wrong.
Back around 1980 a lot of people saw how much fun we were having and bough bikes, it got very bad for a couple years, lost a few good friends to rookie mistakes .
Drinking played heavily in the mix among other things...
Back in 74 my best friend bought a CB 175 when I still had my CL 350. It was fun riding around together and I showed him my favorite places I would go to chill on the weekends. A stand of pine trees on top of the Santa Monica mountains where we would have to ride through the Manseneta brush trails like tunnels and other cool places.
He got a job where I worked at the wheelchair factory and it looked like he was doing real good. One day he didn't have money for lunch and wanted one of my chili cheese dogs I got from the roach coach. He lived at home and would bring his own lunch so I told him no. He decided to go home for lunch. We only had 1/2 hour, there was no way he could make it back in time. He was angry at me and went anyway.
He never came back. On the way a catering truck turned left in front of him. His handlebars were bent into a V. He landed face first, busted both arms and a leg. Of course it was my fault he had the accident and lost his job.
From that time on I don't recommend ANYONE buy a bike and I have no interest in having a "riding buddy". It's enough to be responsible for myself without having to worry about others.
When you're on a bike you only have one person to take care of and that's YOU.
Cold sounding I know but it's the truth.
Glad to hear you're injuries are minor. I'm not sure how you guys were situated, but some guys I occasionally ride with insist on riding side by side. That always makes me nervous and I avoid it. The staggered procession gives you more outs.
When I got my first bike we always rode in formation, it was a tight nit group of about a dozen guys and we never had any problems
Later on when everyone and their brother started riding that fell apart.
My wife and I will ride like that on occasion but mostly staggered
Always staggered with other riders and I either like to lead or be the tail guy.
Looked like the bike in front lane-right is an old BMW with drum brakes? Guessing that BMW(?) operator was maybe braking early out of an abundance of caution, knowing the old BMW brakes are relatively weak. Still, he dropped too far back from the group for no obvious reason earlier in the vid.
The motorcycle operator behind you lane-right that hit the BMW from behind was generally following too close to you and, therefore, the BMW in front of him.
He was likely not scanning far enough ahead to see what was developing.
It looks like there was plenty of room on the shoulder for the motorcycle operator behind you lane-right to avoid the BMW by veering to the right. Lack of attention and/or target fixation might have led him to try to thread the needle between you and the BMW.
If the motorcycle operator behind you lane-right had veered right instead of left between you and the BMW most or none of this would have happened.
Admittedly it's easy to dissect & armchair quarterback an incident after the fact; we weren't there, and cannot say with certainty how we would have reacted. This vid does, however, offer lessons that can make us all safer, more experienced Riders.
The very basic basics of what we've read re: group riding in various publications over the years have much in common:
Two seconds +2/-0 following distance behind the bike directly in front of you.
One second +2/-0 behind the bike diagonally across the lane from you.
No Bluetooth cell calls. It can wait. That's what voice mail is for.
Don't let pride or testosterone weigh down the throttle hand.
Scan as far ahead as you can see.
Ride your own ride. Don't follow the bike ahead of you into trouble. In other words, if I make a mistake and you blindly follow me into trouble & land on top of me, I'm gonna be pissed!
slmjim & Z1BEBE
A biker looks at your engine and chrome.
A Rider looks at your odometer and tags.
Joe, saw your post over on XJ forum too. Sorry to hear this but glad you and the others are mostly okay. Bikes can be fixed. I got hit in the rear by another member on a group ride, similar scenario he was following too close and I braked to make a right and he hit me hard in the rear. I managed to keep it up but he high sided pretty hard. Tim and I got his bike functional while he took some Tylenol and recovered for about an hour but we all got home.