Flint Man Lands Dream Job Test Riding Motorcycles In Arizona
If you are not happy in your current job, things can get better and this man is proof of that. Former Flint resident James Mancour is living his best life in Arizona right now working as a motorcycle test rider. Yes, it is a real job.
I have known James for many years, and when I saw his announcement on Facebook about the new job and the move, I immediately hit him up about writing this article. I wanted to congratulate him of course, and I also wanted to find out how in the hell a person lands a job test riding motorcycles in Arizona?
James was kind enough to oblige me, and I am so excited to share his story with you.
Take me through your day as a motorcycle test rider, what does your workday consist of?
I test ride motorcycles before they go into production so I can give the engineers my feedback on if anything should be changed or fixed. When I'm at work my day begins with me checking to see what motorcycle I am assigned to that day.
I read the paperwork on that motorcycle to see what specific instructions are given for that motorcycle. Then I inspect the motorcycle. I check stuff like tire pressure, to make sure all the lights work, to make sure there are no leaks of any kind, and to make sure nothing is visibly damaged and that the motorcycle is safe to ride.
I log the miles that are on the motorcycle before I ride it and the temperature outside. I put on all my riding gear and check out a body camera. We wear body cameras to document everything that happens. I head out and ride the route I'm assigned to that day. Each route takes about 7 hours and is between 350-400 miles. We typically ride the routes in groups that consist of a lead rider and between 2-4 other riders. We stop for gas and breaks at assigned gas stations. If we have any problems with the motorcycles we log the issues. When we get back to the shop I log my end miles and the temperature and how the weather conditions were while we were on the ride. I do a final inspection of the motorcycle to make sure nothing broke while we were on the ride. That's what a normal day consists of at my job.
How did you hear about this job opportunity? Did you think the position sounded too good to be true?
I found the job on the website Indeed. I couldn't believe that being a motorcycle test rider was a real job. Yes, it did sound too good to be true.
I applied for the job and I got an email back within a half-hour to set up a phone interview. I set up the phone interview for the next day. During the interview, I was asked about my riding experience and I had to submit a copy of my license and my driving record. I also had to pass a motorcycle skill riding test and a drug test.
Once I made the move to Arizona, I took my motorcycle skills test and drug test there. I had to weave in and out of 15 cones that were 3 feet apart, make tight figure-eight maneuvers, do slow speed balance maneuvers, and high-speed braking maneuvers. After I passed that, I took my drug test (passed) and started work the next day.
How was the reaction from your friends and family when you told them you were taking your dream job in AZ?
My mom was super excited because she moved to Arizona 2 years ago. All my friends and family are supportive because they know its a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Is your company looking for more motorcycle testing personnel?
Easyrider is the company I work for and they are always looking for test riders. I was lucky and got a full-time position. Most of the test rider spots are part-time.
I have known you now for many years, and I know that you have struggled due to the pandemic and a back injury. I think your story will inspire people. Can you share a little about that particular time in your life?
I owned my own business for 8 years until covid forced me to close and my landlord wouldn't work with me. I was in the process of looking for a new location when I broke my back. I was on bed rest for 6 months then the doctor finally did surgery to cement my spine back together. After that, I felt like I needed a change.
Once I found the job in Arizona everything fell into place. My wife and I found a nice house and decided to move. We live in Lake Havasu City now which is a vacation destination. The town even has the real London Bridge from England. It is a growing town with a lot of opportunities. There is lots to do and lots of beautiful scenery and breathtaking views. I feel really fortunate to have this opportunity and I couldn't be happier with how life is going.
I would say things turned out more than okay! I am beyond happy for you and your family. Thank you so much for sharing your story. Take a look at the pictures James shared with me below of his test ride route. Now that is what I call an office with a view.
I don't think I would ever be hired as a motorcycle test rider, but I would make a damn good crash test dummy. Just saying.