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  1. 3 points
    MotoGP riders are typically trying to dial up as much engine braking as possible. They can also dial it in or out for specific turns by GPS. If you are riding a track that is very "stop and go" with a lot of braking zones, I would dial it up. If it is a flowing track with transitions, I would use less engine braking so the bike does not pitch forward if you feather out of the throttle in a transition.
  2. 3 points
    Hi JP, Your questions are good. There are a number of factors that come into play, and one answer won't work for all turns/situation. The one that will give the most problems is increasing throttle and lean angle together, that's usually a big no-no. Have you read any of Twist of the Wrist 2, or seen the video? That will give you some great guidelines. Best, Cobie
  3. 3 points
    Some riders, when learning about quick turn, think a rapid steering change is accomplished with a quick jab at the bars. Sometimes that quick jab does not have enough force to turn the bike quickly at speed, sometimes it is too roughly applied and upsets the bike, sometimes the rider does not (when trying to "punch" the bar") hold the pressure long enough to achieve the desired lean angle. Bear with me, I am just asking some questions to explore your understanding of various techniques, to see if anything comes to light that will solve your challenges through the turns you describe. You mentioned a "fear or inability to lean the bike far enough when going fast(er)". I'm going to fire some questions at you and let's see what comes up: Do you have a concern about traction? Are you concerned about ground clearance? Are you comfortable that you know how much you want/need to lean the bike to get to the apex in T1, for example? Do you know how to stop the bike from leaning over any farther once you get the desired lean angle? How much visual information do you have before you turn the bike? Do you have an apex chosen, and do you look at it early enough before you steer the bike to have certainty in your steering input? If you roll off the gas or go flat on it, are you finished steering the bike before you roll back on? I am not discounting the idea that there could be things that could be done, mechanically, to the bike to make steering it through those turns easier, however you asked about techniques that could improve things so that is why I am exploring to figure out what you are doing now, and if there are things that could be changed to help you get to the apex on these turns... without having to slow down too much.
  4. 3 points
    I have almost no experience with V twins, but there are some things that can help with that problem in general, that might apply to your bike. Have you tried turning up the idle? This is a common thing to do on a track/race bike so the rpms don't fall as much when off the gas and it can really help make the roll on smoother. It does have the effect of taking you into the corner a little quicker so be cautious when you first start riding it that way. On an inline 4 I believe typical advice is to turn it up 500 - 1,000 RPM, but you should Google recommendations for your bike. What gear are you using entering the turns, are you a gear lower than you need to be? Sometimes just entering a corner in a higher gear makes enough difference in smoothness to be worth it, especially on a bike with a lot of torque that can handle coming out at a lower RPM. I assume you have checked for play in the throttle and cable, to eliminate any jerk or effort from just taking out the slack. An aftermarket tune is, in my opinion, a great idea. The other suggestions above don't cost anything, and this does, but you can get a really nice improvement in throttle response from working with a tuner and a dyno. Tunes that I have done on my bikes have yielded performance in power but MUCH more benefit in the area of getting better throttle response. (Better meaning, working how I wanted it to work!)
  5. 3 points
    Yes, it could be that you are at your desired lean angle (steering action complete) but not yet pointed in the direction you want the bike to go. Sometimes there is a pause as you wait for the bike to come around onto the desired line. Turn 2 at Laguna is a GREAT example of a turn where it is VERY easy to get on the gas a little too early in the second part of the turn and miss the apex - which is punished immediately upon the exit because it is tight and forces the rider to make a correction to avoid going off track. It is also really easy to come on the throttle a little bit too early when chasing a faster rider, trying to catch up, or keep up.
  6. 2 points
  7. 2 points
    The book that you have mentioned has the answer to your original question: "What makes the bike turn the same as it was leaned more without hanging off? It is explained in Chapter 3: Less lean angle requires more effective steering angle in order to keep the same radius of turn (please, see figure 3.18 of page 3-13): "Increasing lean angle tends to increase the effective steering angle." It is a simple geometrical problem, there is no need to complicate it with camber thrust, slip angles, etc., because the magnitudes of the forces of cornering and the dynamic lean angle remain the same, either or not you hang-off. The chassis reduces its lean angle when the rider hangs-off while cornering, which changes the relative geometry among the three planes: the ones containing the rear tire, the steered front tire and the curve (track surface).  You may want to do the following experiment: Fill up a wide recipient with water (the surface of the water will work like the plane of the curve). Make a central 10-degree bend in a small rectangular piece of cardboard (one side will work like the plane containing the rear tire and the other side like the plane of the front tire). Keeping the bent edge and both sides vertical, deep the piece of cardboard into the water. Looking from above, turn the cardboard just like a bike would lean over to turn and note how the angle formed between both lines that intersect the surface of the water and each side of the cardboard gets bigger as the lean angle increases. That angle is the effective (or kinetic) steering angle, which would force the bike to turn tighter (reduced radius of turn) if the rider would not compensate for this phenomena by steering a little less. If that experiment still does not convince you, we could use the following well stablished formula: Radius of turn = [Wheelbase x Cosine of chassis lean angle] / [Steer angle x Cosine of caster angle] As wheelbase gets a little bit smaller and caster angle remains constant, when the rider hangs off while cornering, the cosine of the chassis lean angle increases (example: cos 45=0.707 and cos 40=0.766). That change would increase the radius of turn some, making the bike run wide respect to the desired trajectory. In order to avoid that from happening, the rider must compensate by increasing the steer angle a little. Another geometrical way to analize that: Imagine a perfectly vertical line running underground by the center of the circular trajectory of the motorcycle. Disregarding slip and camber thrust, the extended axis of both wheels must intersect with that vertical line. As those wheels are leaned more, the point of intersection moves deeper into the ground, which reduces the angle formed between the extended axis of both wheels. Hence, the steering angle must be reduced some in order for the bike to keep tracing the same circular trajectory.  A leaned motorcycle will always have an effective steering angle that is smaller than the one for a 4-wheel vehicle describing the same curve.  The exercise of Motorcycle Gymkhana is a different solution to a problem that is different: make the tightest quick turn around a cone. The maximum speed at maximum lean angle will make you slower in this particular case, try that experiment as well. Since speed must be much smaller than during normal Superbike track cornering, the smallest radius of turn of the rear tire is the key to turn the bike 180 degrees as quickly as possible. For the same reason explained above, the Gymkhana rider wants the chassis to be as leaned as possible during the slowest section of the tight turn. At full stop lock of the steering, the radius of turn (and the circular trajectory of both tires) will be smaller as the chassis lean angle increases: there is a greater effective steering angle. Lock the steering of a bicycle at a pronounced angle and push it while at different sustained lean angles for each completed circle and you will see that the smallest circle corresponds with the biggest lean angle. For the above formula and description of angles, please see "Steering angle" here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bicycle_and_motorcycle_dynamics
  8. 2 points
    Good observation on your part on the no-brakes format. Riders mostly over-brake when they start to add more/harder braking, and loose entry speed. Your overall goal if good, nothing wrong there; the other steps that go in that direction are smaller bites one would take to achieving that. As for braking and then realizing you could have gone faster...that's a not uncommon situation that occurs. Front brakes are the most powerful thing on the motorcycle, consider that a much smaller single rear brake can stop the engine. How about approaching the braking with the idea its a fine adjuster, capable of great force, but in the end, getting the entry speed correct for you (no too slow or too fast) is the key. There are a few pieces to this, we can work on them for sure. Best, Cobie
  9. 2 points
    Speed and Direction When riders say they would like to increase their confidence and control, what do they mean? Aside from pleasing the eye and entertaining discussions about them, all motorcycles have the same six controls–throttle, front brake, rear brake, clutch, gear lever and handle bars. Those six controls are how we change or maintain the speed and the direction of the bike. And, that is all they do and it is all you do while riding. Good control amounts to correctly choosing where and how much you change the speed and direction of the bike. Likewise, any and all decisions you make are based on changing or maintaining speed and direction. The bike is more than likely capable of performing well but in those moments of confidence shattering doubt, the rider isn’t. All dramatic situations on any motorcycle have been and always will be based on the rider's inability to correctly change or maintain its speed or direction. Aside from mechanical failures there are no other "situations". Someone could argue that point: “What about hitting an on or off ramp diesel spill; that doesn’t fit the maxim above?” I’d have to agree. However, the majority of motorcycle accidents these days are single vehicle, loss of control in a corner, crashes–not ones which no one can control. Speed and direction changes can be limited by the individual machine's controllability factors. Its handling of the road's surface and potential for stability are based on its suspension and frame configuration; its throttle response; gearing and braking characteristics and the tires' compatibility with all of the above plus electronic intervention that can alter your direct control over them such as ABS and traction control. Problems in controllability aren't bad. They are the road signs which have lead designers and engineers towards machine improvement from the beginning. For example, it hardly matters whether suspension was first conceived to achieve better traction on bumpy roads or to provide a smoother ride to eliminate the need for kidney belts. Both were situations that caused problems. Suspension did result in a whole new range of potentials for controlling speed and direction and a significantly more hospitable machine for rider comfort. Any rider's true skill level can only be measured by his ability to determine exactly WHERE to change or maintain speed and direction and execute the right AMOUNT of each. There are no other components to skill. While riding, the combinations of speed and direction inputs result in arriving somewhere: for example staying in your lane or using a late apex to handle a decreasing radius corner. Confidence is achieved when the rider is certain that the machine is going in the right direction and will arrive at a predictable location, at the right speed. You might need to be stopped or to swerve before hitting a car which pulled out, or it could be exiting the banking at Daytona wide open at the top of 6th gear doing 175 mph pointed down the straight––not at the wall. It makes no difference, both are determined by where and how much the rider changed or maintained their speed and direction. The ability of a rider to determine speed and direction changes relies solely on the amount of space they have to work with. This is the determining factor for where to change and how much to change them. Judgment could be defined as: fitting the right degree of speed and/or direction change into the amount of available space in order to arrive or not arrive (like missing a pot hole) somewhere. This leads us into the area of the rider’s visual aptitude. On a practical level, always having a destination plotted out in front is wise. The five faults that stand in your way are target fixating on something, compulsive over-scanning, tunneled vision, looking too close or too far ahead. Your visual skill is based on how many of those five are absent– anytime and anywhere you ride. Becoming aware of the five and gaining control over them WILL lead to improvement.
  10. 2 points
    Rider Improvement What There Is to Learn I’d like to point out some things about riders and rider training. Below is a list of six categories of riders and how they regard the idea of training and rider improvement. The next section covers the results; the kinds of things we look for and you should expect from rider training. The Six Categories of Riders 1. Ones that have tried to improve, failed at it and lost interest. They're basically locked-up on the whole subject of rider improvement–they don't want to know about it. 2. Riders that say there is nothing to learn. This category of rider often says that seat time will handle it. They'll change the subject or politely dismiss what you have to say about training. 3. Those that actively speak against training. ‘Hey, you just get on the bike and do it. I don't crash, what is there to learn...don't waste your money on a school buy a nice pipe instead. Schools suck.’ These guys are foolishly antagonistic. 4. Those that have a vague desire to improve but lack information about how to. They have a want but it goes unfulfilled. For one reason or another, this rider just doesn't take the next step. They HOPE it will get better. 5. Those that become interested in learning more. They will talk about improvement. They will listen to advice but still remain passive. This might be the most dangerous of all the categories because this rider will listen to just about anything. They might hear, ‘you don't know how fast you can go until you crash’, and actually try it! 6. Riders who do something to improve. Here you find the rider who reads articles, goes to track days in search of answers or comes to a school. They make a commitment to improve and take definite steps to do it. Most riders are in one of the above categories on the subject of rider improvement. What There is to Learn It's no secret that I am in the business of training riders. I do it because I know it works and over the past 39 years of doing it I've noticed a few things about riders who take the plunge to improve. The following is what we have observed in our students. Once a rider is trained, they begin to handle cornering problems and situations on their own. They understand and make sensible corrections that actually correct. Riders who are trained can read the feedback the bike is giving them easier than those who are not trained. They can identify and communicate to someone what the bike is doing. Trained riders can spot what is wrong in their riding and tend to not make the same mistakes over and over. Also, training brings about control over the "knee jerk" reactions that cause riders to make dangerous errors. Riders who are trained have a solid foundation of skills and the knowledge and certainty that their riding won't get worse. They can still make mistakes but it doesn't defeat them. Additionally, trained riders can actually offer constructive help to others who want to improve. If a rider is turning in too early or too late, has poor throttle control or is rushing the corners and making it worse, the trained rider can spot it. Riders who look uncomfortable are uncomfortable. Trained riders look as though they are more a part of the bike. And as a bonus, racing fans gain an appreciation and an even greater respect for what professional riders can do because they can see what the pro is doing and why. My riding instructors are trained to observe these points and the really amazing thing is we see changes like these in every student. What we Know Confidence comes from knowing that the bike will do what you want it to do when you want it to do it. Once a rider improves, and knows why and what they have improved, it opens the door to virtually unlimited improvement. Knee-jerk reactions only happen to riders when they don't have the right skill or technique for the situation at hand. Training strips away confusions and complexities. When riding feels simple, control is simple. When control is simple any rider has confidence. Effort or Training Truly enthusiastic riders do have the urge to improve. Unfortunately, a great many of them waste their riding time and their money hoping that seat time will handle it. That doesn't mean they aren't going to improve, it means that it will take longer, cost more and the results will be sketchy. Most likely there will be a lot of misguided effort involved. Which is likely to be most effective, rider training or simply trying harder? Will experience alone sweep away those uncertainties? Will more emotional effort get you the level of control you want? Training and expert coaching are what we offer and it works. Keith Code PS: Our 2019 schedule is at <www.superbikeschool.com>, log on, sign up and I'll see you at the track. © CSS, Inc., 2018, all rights reserved
  11. 2 points
    I did a 2 up ride with a pro racer when I was still a brand-new track rider. It scared the hell out of me! I got on, he told me to put one hand on his chest and the other on the tank (no handholds on the tank back then) and took off. He was moving all over the place, hanging off for the corners, and accelerating and braking hard - I was sure I would fall off. After about 3/4 of a lap I started to think I'd be OK - then as we started the 2nd lap he yelled over his shoulder, "Ok, I'm going to go faster this lap!" and I yelled "No!" but he obviously didn't hear me because he DID go faster. What did I learn from it? Well, I got a new perspective on how fast one COULD (potentially) enter a corner, and how close a pro rider really does get to the inside edge of the track, and how HARD you can brake. I was, at the time, such a new rider that it all seemed somewhat unreal; I probably would have gotten more out of it if I had done it later when I had more experience. But, I'll be honest, I have no desire to do it again. I haven't done much riding (or fast paced driving in a car) as a passenger - I would much rather be driving! Going at race pace with someone else in control is definitely a scary experience, I am always amazed and impressed by those people that ride in rally cars as the navigator.
  12. 2 points
    While riding on the mountains you should not be pushing your tires to the limit; that just means excess of danger with little reward or improvement of skills. Please, note that I mention the limit of physical pavement-rubber traction and not lean angle of the chassis. Lean angle is a natural consequence of the centripetal forces of turning and it mainly depends on the square of the speed of the bike and on the inverse of the radius of the turn: meaning in simpler terms that double the entry speed (but same radius) puts four times more lateral stress on the contact patches of the tires and that half the radius of turn (but same speed) puts double stress on those patches. The manufacturer of your sport bike tries to provide a lean clearance that matches the maximum traction capability of your tires in good pavement conditions. The resulting angle of lean must be there to compensate for those cornering lateral forces in such a way that the bike keeps its lateral balance (not crashing over towards the outside of the turn). What is happening at the same time? Both tires "feel" an increased weight of your body and the bike, as much as double (2g) around 60-degree lean; hence their sections become less pliable and have to work harder to keep grip. The suspension is now compressed by the added weight and its work to follow the surface and keep the rubber in contact with it is more difficult because the direction of the strokes is inclined while the irregularities of the track keep pushing it vertically. All the above works as described if, and only if, you have the luxury of clean dry pavement. Otherwise, your tires will have less capacity to resist the action of those lateral forces (assuming good conditions of tires, inflation and suspension, as well as good riding techniques and per-tire-weight distribution). How much less traction will you have? That is something impossible to predict on public roads, where you could suddenly find spills of oil, Diesel, anti-freezing coolant, or sand or street markings or steel manholes or animal carcasses. If you ride on the edge of available traction, you will not have available traction to use in the event of an emergency or evasive maneuver, like braking or swerving. You always choose entry speed to negotiate certain radius of a fixed corner, lean angle follows that decision adjusting itself to keep balance, and both tires and suspensions are loaded with extra forces, which should never grow beyond the limits of traction for the specific conditions of the road. Please, read some more about this: https://www.motorcyclistonline.com/riding-tips-traction-science-tires-keith-code-break https://www.motorcyclistonline.com/blogs/tread-envy-code-break https://www.motorcyclistonline.com/blogs/dragging-your-knees-code-break https://www.motorcyclistonline.com/leaning-bike-code-break http://forums.superbikeschool.com/topic/3331-have-you-ever-slid-the-front-without/
  13. 2 points
    Spaghetti has given good info above, and I will add that a good way to get experience with using more lean is to get a small bike (50cc, or 150cc, for example) that you can take to a go-kart track. Easier to get your knee down, safer environment, and you can lean way over at much lower speeds to get "used to what it feels like" and develop a sense of traction and feeling the feedback from the tires.
  14. 2 points
    I think this topic is simple enough to where someone can just go out and try it. In my experience I have seen every combination of rider with regard to preference on bar pressure but it does make sense that using both a push and a pull will give the most control.
  15. 2 points
    Hello, I read positive content about California Bike School. Definitely a must do. I have been riding on and off since college when motorcycle endorsement never existed. I started very young with the Big-Wheel (my 3 wheeler as a toddler). Upgraded to the 2014 Triumph 675 Daytona. Of course I now have an endorsement. My most challenging and fun ride has been in Thailand on the Honda 600 CBR, a whopping 762 turns from Chiang Mai to Pai. Like anyone who seeks safety and proficiency as I practice in the cockpit for my airline, it begins and ends with training. The training does not stop. And that being said, I am certain I am carrying some good habits or techniques, but likely I have more bad ones than good ones. It’s my intention to be better through training and hope to get the support and advice through California Superbike School and the forum group who appears to have this common goal. I hope to also make friends along the way who may consider joining my group on adventurous motorbike tours, and I participate with other groups as well.
  16. 2 points
    Introducing more trail braking will absolutely increase your front tire wear, and on a lightweight, relatively low horsepower bike like yours it is certainly possible to have the front tire wear out first (compared to the rear) just from this change in riding style/habits. It makes sense, of course; by trail braking you are considerably increasing the load on the front tire in the corners, and instead of the braking forces being applied primarily with the bike upright, you are now putting braking forces on the tire while leaned over. So now the front tire has to handle steering/cornering load AND braking load on the sides of the tires, and that is where the wear is showing in your photo above. Additionally, that change in style could affect when and how hard you are applying the throttle in the corner, and how much you are, or are not, leaned over when driving out of the corners, which would change the wear on the rear tire - potentially decreasing it if the trail braking is causing you to delay your roll-on. There is not a lot of wear on the sides of the rear tire in your photo which would imply that the gas is not being rolled on very much while leaned over. I have a 250cc bike and at one point I tried doing a lot of trail braking on the track; I was racing other riders that were doing it a lot (in nearly every corner), so I decided to try that and see how it worked for me. I was very surprised at the change in my tire wear; as you just experienced, my front tire wore out first, and much more quickly than expected, where in the past the rear would wear out first. After that little experiment I changed back to using trail braking in the corners where it was appropriate but NOT in the ones where it wasn't needed, and I went faster and was a lot less worried about crashing. Most of the other riders I was seeing on track were WAY overusing trail braking, braking too long and too much for most corners.
  17. 2 points
    Here is some info from Dylan that you might find interesting: Dunlop just released a new sportbike tire, the Q4. This tire is different from what many think it is. It is NOT an improved Q3+ but rather a whole new category of tire. Its purpose is to provide a street legal tire with excellent grip, no need for warmers, that is at home on the track or on your favorite twisty road. Essentially it fills the gap between the Q3+ and the street legal race tire, the GPA Pro. So the progression looks like this: Q3+. Best all purpose tire. Harder center band for commuting, with sides well suited for cornering. Q4. Best for trackdays and canyons/twisty roads. Warms fast, less sensitive to pressure settings. Single compound across entire tread. Any loss in overall mileage is gained in grip compared to Q3+. GPA Pro. Essentially a race slick with grooves. Warmers strongly recommended particularly when cool and pressures checked and set before riding. Street legal. Poor choice for commuting but good for twisty roads and very much at home on the track. Slicks. Pure track only tire. Warmers strongly recommended with pressures checked and set before riding.
  18. 2 points
    I can see why that would be confusing, especially if there was not a exact explanation of specifically WHEN to roll on the throttle and WHY. What, exactly, was the stated purpose of that before turn roll-on you describe in that mantra you mentioned? "Maintenance throttle" is s term that is thrown around a lot but different people seem to have different ideas of what it is supposed to mean. I personally have heard at least three different definitions. Twist of the Wrist II gives a detailed and straightforward explanation of good throttle control, might want to have another look at that if you haven't in a while.
  19. 2 points
    MaxMcAllister in his suspension clinic (can be found on YouTube) provides the info that all geometry changes have a side effect for every intended effect. He said it’s about 3:1 ratio of effect to side effect and many people chase setup issues because of missing information of knowing which end of the motorcycle to change. The cliff notes: he provides that front end changes effect corner entry to mid turn and rear end height changes effect mid turn to corner exit; being mindful of the side effect issue. My concern with prescribing a geometry change at this point is introducing another variable into the equation when rider input, vision, timing and throttle control haven’t been sorted, nor do we know if static sag and chassis balance have been baselined. My $.03 is aligned with the OP and Hotfoot’s process to establish what the rider is doing and how the bike is responding.
  20. 2 points
    Basically, the same two processes happen simultaneously, only that in a shorter period of time than for a lazy turn. The front suspension and tire are loaded because deceleration, then that load caused by deceleration gradually yields as the load caused by the circular trajectory of quick-flick and tracing the curve rapidly increases (up to lower or similar value). You can find additional discussion about the quick-flick technique here: http://forums.superbikeschool.com/topic/4101-can-quick-turn-be-overdone/
  21. 2 points
    Most likely the coach at the track day was trying to help riders avoid the common error of braking (which compresses the forks) then releasing the brakes (which allows them to extend again) then turning the bike (which compresses them again). This bouncing up and down is, as you can imagine, counterproductive to accurate and predictable steering. In a simple corner the ideal scene is to be coming off the brakes as you are turning the bike, so the forces transfer from the deceleration forces to the cornering forces and keep the forks compressed instead of popping up and back down again. As far as telling you how exactly how much effect that is going to have, it is not realistic to think anyone can do that for you, there are far too many variables (suspension setup, rider and bike weight, braking style, steering input rate, surface traction, shape of turn, and so forth). You will have to experiment with it yourself, on your own bike and observe it. Almost certainly YES you can improve it with riding technique (have you been to school and had the Hook Turn material yet? Or the slow brake release classroom session?), unless your front suspension is extremely stiff in compression or has rebound damping set excessively low. Definitely you can sharpen up the steering on a bike by lowering the front a bit, but if taken too far this can compromise stability and you can get headshake, or twitchiness in the steering. Not sure the GSXR750 would need much changing on geometry, though, my impression of those were that they had nice handling. In the specific turns you describe (T1 and T3), are you trying to turn the bike while still on the gas? For sure that will make it harder to steer. Are you ABLE to steer it now and just noticing the amount of effort required, or are you running wider than you want in those turns?
  22. 2 points
    Ha, I think most of the local organizations would kick you out if you tried some of the passes I have seen on TV.
  23. 2 points
    Greetings to all, just wanted to take a quick moment to introduce myself. I have been riding for over 20 years and I figured it was finally time I got my but to school. I will be attending the 2 day school at VIR on August 8th and 9th and I could not be more excited. I have read Keith's books several times over the years and have always wanted to take it to the next level i.e. racetrack. Thanks to a friend at work who has attended multiple California Superbike Schools I finally took the plunge. I know it will be awesome. Best Regards, Catfish
  24. 2 points
    I can't tell if you are serious or joking with this post. Tensing your gut to steer the motorcycle? Turning your head to steer it? Pull the inside bar outwards? Regarding you comment about the No BS bike, the further you are from the center of mass of an object, the more leverage one has on it. The No BS bars are quite high, therefore have more leverage and still can't get the bike steered with any efficiency.
  25. 2 points
    A skill I learned as a young rider, is best explained by an anthropology text discussing the relationship between research and imagination. It spoke of “soft vision, hard focus”. Ones hard focus is on the road well ahead, this is maintained while also allowing oneself soft vision out in the periphery of ones vision. on your bike this means that one remains actively aware of what’s going on outside the focus of ones attention. Thus although my focus is often ( on rural roads) two corners ahead watching for oncoming vehicles, landslides and road debris. In my soft vision is placing me on the road, alert to surface and random animals walking out in my immediate viscinity. In terms of cornering it is my soft vision that marks my arrival at the turn in point already. I can tell by three or four inches whether I hit my mark. When navigating blind corners. The hard focus varies between 2000-300 metres ahead to the next corners, right down to 30 metres on those nasty closing radius blind corners. On those corners the eye follows the vanishing point alert to the need to radically change my chosen line. But.soft focus deals with all the little details of road placement. It is all very active and meditative, especially when I’m fully in the groove. Dodging unexpected sheep, and oncoming trucks that cut corners is handled almost entirely by the soft vision aspect. The hard focus in those instances looks to those avenues of escape that I spotted previously: hunting and tracking the gap. Hard focus turns my head. Soft vision looks everywhere else. another comparison is player of ping pong, or boxers neither focuses on the ball, or the fist, they look hard at the opposing player, and rely on soft vision to hit the ball or block the fist. hope this helps those who get lost vision wise.
  26. 2 points
    My coach at Laguna Seca noticed I was getting on the throttle too early in the second part of turn 2. I told him the same thing, I begin a smooth, even, continuous roll on after steering is complete. He advised me that because a throttle roll-on tends to make a bike hold its line, I should begin roll-on when steering is complete and the bike is pointed where I want it to go. The little bit of extra time off the throttle did help me get a better line and drive out of the corner.
  27. 2 points
    Speaking of timing... something else to take a look at is exactly WHEN you crack the throttle on. If a rider is running a little bit wide a little before the apex (not able to make it to the desired apex) what could that tell you about the rider's throttle timing? Next time you ride pay attention to when the throttle comes on - is the bike on its line (fully leaned and pointed in the direction you want it to go) before you start to roll on the gas?
  28. 2 points
    Yesterday I received in my email, a Keith Code article, Speed and Direction and I think the article struck a chord with regard to what I’m trying to solve. The article isn’t yet posted in the articles section, so it must be new. From it, this particular section seemed relevant and as I slept overnight I awoke with a different idea on how it applies to my current barrier ”Any rider's true skill level can only be measured by his ability to determine exactly WHERE to change or maintain speed and direction and execute the right AMOUNT of each. There are no other components to skill.“
  29. 2 points
    It could be that you are not following two fundamental rules of cornering: 1) Looking deep into the turn: You can only know that your trajectory is one foot off if you are looking close in front of your bike. 2) One steering for the whole turn: You may be adjusting your steering along the turn in order to achieve your goal trajectory. Think of the unintended consequences that you are creating if you are doing so, like diversion of attention, disorientation, over-stressing the front tire, etc. The way I visualize cornering trajectory: to me it is like shooting a ball into the basketball hood from a distance, you feel the cross-wind, you estimate the distance and the angle, you gut-calculate the whole flight of the ball and then you impart your best directed push hoping for the best. Sometimes you miss for little and sometimes you nail it. The hard mental, visual and calculation work in cornering happens prior the turn-in point, which is equivalent to the moment of actually pushing the ball. Let the bike "fly" describing that natural arc, free of unnecessary minute steering inputs and lean angle adjustments. Missing an apex for 12 inches may add a few feet to the corner's total trajectory, which is not a big difference for a bike that moves 88 feet per second (60 mph). Distracting your attention from proper throttle control and from reference points and from spatial location may slow your bike much more.
  30. 2 points
  31. 1 point
    Ranked. I think visual skills and quick reflexes are the most important for street riding. Riders need to be able to absorb and react to information from the road in order to avoid hazards. Quick reflexes are important, especially with regards to braking and steering inputs. I don't cover the brakes on track, but I definitely do on the street. 1. Visual skill, lack of target fixation 2. Quick reflexes 3. Ability to steer quickly 4. Physical condition, strength 5. Brave
  32. 1 point
    That came through in your original post and I just paraphrased it poorly. Thank again for all your (and Cobie's) insights on this! Wes
  33. 1 point
    While using both arms certainly could be a workable solution, it does seem excessive to have to use that much force to steer the bike. Have you looked at the suspension and geometry of the bike? It sounds like the front end might either be too high, or too stiff. Here are some thoughts in that area: 1) If the bike is properly set up for you but the suspension could be due for service, consider getting that done, maybe the forks are not traveling freely; check fork travel, fork alignment (are they twisted?), and make sure the steering head moves freely and is in good condition. 2) If you have never had the suspension set up properly for your weight (correct spring rates, setting the sag properly), that would be a great thing to do that may drastically improve the bike's handling 3) If the above are all done, check the compression settings and see if the front end is too stiff - you can put a zip tie on the fork to see how much the fork travels, if the zip tie is never pushed down more than halfway it probably indicates there is too much compression damping, the front is too stiff and doesn't compress enough during cornering to allow easy mid-corner steering adjustments 4) You could try to take out some preload in the front to soften the front and lower it. Take a look at your tires as well - actually this should probably be done before all of the above: check tire geometry - are your tires profiled, causing them to handle differently than when they were new? Are the tires you use designed to be extremely stable in a straight line and possibly therefore not so easy to turn mid-corner? Is the front tire you are using taller than the one the bike was originally set up for? Is your tire pressure within suggested range for that tire and bike? A 600 supersport would be a terrific track weapon, but before spending a few thousand (or more) on that, I would get your current bike to a suspension expert and see if a few hundred dollars spent in that area would get your current bike working better for you, since it sounds like you like that bike pretty well.
  34. 1 point
    Well one new, one an oldie. This is a question for Keith and Dylan. Any thoughts on going back to Mid-Ohio for a school date? Also, have you considered doing any at PIR (Pittsburgh International Raceway)? Dave Hamblin (class of 1986 2016)
  35. 1 point
    Hello. I'm a rider from the Bay Area. I commute to work on a K1300s. I carve canyons on an s1000rr on the weekends, and I ride track on another s1000rr. I just love riding.
  36. 1 point
    To directly answer your question: more handlebar turn. Same radius and speed, but less lean angle would be more turn of the handlebar into the turn.
  37. 1 point
    Level 4 is still an individual, customized program. However, there are many, many new, specific Level 4 drills that address a variety of problems riders encounter. So the basic format is the same but the array of tools and drills that are available (there are over 100 level 4 drills) has been expanded considerably, along with some other nice improvements in AV tools and video capabilities. You mentioned you've been asking yourself what skills you need to work on - come on out to a school and your coach will work with you on your goals and closely observe your riding to create a custom program to address this. In other words, you don't have to have it all figured out before you get here, your coach and your level 4 consultant will work with you personally to identify what skills need improvement.
  38. 1 point
    Hi Cobie, You read my mind! Please, yes - section on riding gear, boots/leathers, etc would be good. How about a section on track riding for novices wanting to get into track riding - recommended bikes, pitfalls, set-up? New to forums and do find it awkward searching here, although the information is top quality when I find it. Cheers, Victor
  39. 1 point
    I don't think we will ever see a motorcycle pull 1.96 lateral G's on flat ground this lifetime. For comparison a Superkart on the skidpad did 1.39g in one test. In the same test a Williams F1 car with 0.5G downforce was able to do 2.0G on a track in a fast, banked corner aided by the wings for road holding. An Ariel Atom, known for its cornering, can only mange 1.12G, a Ferrari LaFerrari comes in a 1.16G. I think your calculations may be based off of some assumptions regarding the contact patch and it's location for the effective lean angle figure vs frame lean angle. I'm looking at a datalog of a moto2 bike at Aragon ridden by a world level rider, fastest lap, banked turn, and coming up with a max lateral acceleration of 1.42G as a momentary peak. The key point being that it's a banked turn.
  40. 1 point
    I've made a lot of progress at different parts of Thunderhill East. I've gotten my corner speed up in 1, 2, 5b, 8, 14, 15. I am wanting to start getting my speed up in 3 but it's off camber and I am not sure I know how to attack it safely. I've heard approach off camber like a decreasing radius but I'm not sure what that means. I'd rather ask now than after a crash and then get those "Oh, you have to ______ in off camber corners." I realize the basic premise of having less grip but I also know I'm not on the limit. I'm looking for specific techniques that you have to use on this kind of corner. Thanks.
  41. 1 point
    Generally speaking you would want to apex it where it is the most off-camber.
  42. 1 point
    That filled in information that was missing for me when trying to understand why I had so much difficulty adapting to the early braking-before-turning way of riding after always trail-braking more or less to the apex. In the end, I wound up with a compromise just the way you described it above, but thought it was just me not being able to properly adapt to the "proper way" of turning in. Now I feel much better - thanks ☺️
  43. 1 point
    There are several reasons why you would want to apply throttle before the apex, but the very important point before considering any of this is that adding lean angle while accelerating put a lot of stress on the tire. In this situation the tire can react unpredictably, losing and regaining grip uncontrollably and shaking the rider out of the bike. At any rate, when giving gas in a turn we transfer the bike weight to the rear making the front easier to handle. In a chicane, peaking up the throttle in the middle of the turns helps with the fast direction changes (but definitely not while giving the first strong lean input). Also when riding on bumps ideally you want to open the throttle, for the same weight transfer reasons. Another reason is engaging traction sooner. Racers tend to give some gas before the apex to start engaging traction and power up immediately after the apex. This is a lot more obvious in flat track or dirt riding when riding through the turns with a smaller displacement bike. Finally in very long turns we have no choice unless we want to park the bike somewhere in the middle of the turn. I prefer the expression "picking up the throttle" to "maintenance throttle", because it the former gives better the idea of a minimal input.
  44. 1 point
    Worddddd. I just see the highlights on instagram. I do not have BeIn Sports anymore. I just like to watch the passing and how to get better at it.
  45. 1 point
    Thank you. I think Hotfoot was getting at that same idea. I'll have a go at it. Question: Are we saying that steering can be complete but yet the bike is not pointed in the desired direction?...there's a time delay between relaxing the steering input and bike on line???
  46. 1 point
    Higher RPM in a corner does make a difference in motorcycle handling. Take a look at this article: https://www.msgroup.org/forums/mtt/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=2182 There is also the effect of greater engine braking approaching the turn, which may have allowed you to shorten your braking distance, or use less brake and get a more accurate entry speed.
  47. 1 point
    At least two are steering, and the third could be also, since being able to carry more entry speed has a lot to do with being able to steer the bike quickly! You mentioned earlier that you had the idea that you needed to be on the brakes to compress the forks to steer the bike - did (or does) that misconception create the entry speed problem and the mid-corner adjustment problem you are trying to fix? Can you (personally) steer the bike more quickly (and carry more entry speed) if you are not also trying to brake hard enough to compress the forks? It is certainly less to worry about, easier to gauge entry speed, and easier to control the steering action, if you are not trying to brake hard at the same time. To be clear, compressing the forks CAN tighten up the steering by compressing the forks (this steepening the steering angle) but it can also make the bike harder to steer (more effort) and I have been in at least one back-and-forth debate with Cobie about which is the greater effect. Personally I almost never use the front brake for the sole purpose of compressing the front end - if I don't need the brakes to slow down, I don't use them. One exception that I can think of is a VERY fast chicane where I have difficulty getting the bike steered fast enough (only at my max pace), and I am driving going into the chicane. In that one case I do SOMETIMES us the front brake a little to help me get the quick direction change, because otherwise the forks are extended coming into it, because I am accelerating coming into it, and the combination of speed, momentum, and fork extension makes the direction change difficult in that tight chicane. A touch on the brakes helps to get it flicked over from one side to the other, but it is a bit tricky to do and I need a lot of free attention to get it right.
  48. 1 point
    Do you have a copy of Twist of the Wrist II? Chapter 19, Pivot Steering, goes into specific detail about weight distribution on the seat and pegs, explains what to do, how to do it, and why, with specific explanations and examples of the effects on the bike. It's far more complete and informative than what could be typed here. Take a look at that if you can and let us know what you think, or if you have any additional questions! BTW, if you are like me and want answers as fast as possible, Twist of the Wrist II is available as an e-book now, here is a link to it on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Twist-Wrist-II-High-Performance-Motorcycle-ebook/dp/B00F8IN5K6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1461194283&sr=8-1&keywords=twist+of+the+wrist+II+kindle
  49. 1 point
    Body Position The most obvious thing about any rider is their form on the bike. How do they sit and move on it? What’s their posture? Do they look comfortable or awkward, stiff or loose, Moto GP, or nervous-novice? Good body positioning isn’t just about being stylish——you can play dress-up in your older brother's or sister's cool boots but walking will be clumsy——it has a desirable result and we can define 'good body positioning'. Harmony with the bike, freedom of movement on it, precision control over it―with the minimum necessary effort. Survival Reactions Play a Role The bike itself can force poor riding posture. A shift lever positioned a ¼ inch too high or too low manipulates the rider into awkward and uncomfortable poses, limiting his control over it. Even with perfect control positioning, good form on the bike has its difficulties. Achieving it may look and even feel like it’s reserved for the young and flexible. This may be true to a degree but many of its problems are actually brought on by our own Survival Reactions, our SRs. For example, a rider who instinctively levels the horizon by tilting his head in corners, creates unnecessary tension in his body. Basics Apply Good form is difficult for riders who struggle with basics: uncertainty with basics has a physical manifestation. Just as joy or anger are obvious in someone, these uncertainties manifest themselves in awkward and unsuitable body positions. For example: poor throttle control prompts riders to rely on slash and burn hard drives out of the turns. Their 'ready-for-action', rigid body language telegraphs their intention. That tense anticipation of the drive off the turns loses them the handling benefits of being relaxed mid-corner. The Stages of Body Positioning There are three stages to body positioning: Poor form + poor riding = ripple-effect, snowballing errors. Good riding + poor form = good but limited range of control. Good form + good technical riding skills = riding that is both fluid and efficient. Number 3 is the goal of any rider training. The Ingredients Body Positioning has five distinct ingredients. The bike and how it is configured——its controls, seat, pegs and bar positioning. The rider's understanding of body positioning——how to properly position himself on the bike and why. Our Survival Reactions——how they create unwanted and often unconscious tension and positioning problems. Lack of riding basics——has or hasn't mastered the core technical skills needed to ride well. The rider's own physical limitations——height, weight, flexibility, conditioning. With those five points under control, specific techniques can be employed to achieve positive benefits in bike control. Form, Function and Technique GP body position does not address or improve 90% of the most basic and vital components of riding: Our sense of traction, speed, lean angle, braking, and line, to name a few, are not directly dependent upon or necessarily improved by stylish form. Clearly, body positioning isn't the universal panacea some think it is, but it has its place. For example, holding the body upright, counter to the bike’s lean while cornering has several negative effects. Among these, is the fact that it positions the rider so he can’t fully relax. This can be quickly corrected and solves the functional problem of tension from cramped and restrictive joint alignment: a key element in allowing any rider to relax. A bike related example would be too high or too low brake or clutch lever. It puts the rider's wrist into misalignment and restricts fluid movement. The Rules of Technique Here are my guidelines for technique. Any riding technique is only as good as: The validity of the principles it rests on. Example: The benefits of hanging off follow physics and engineering principles. The access it provides to the technology with which the bike is designed and constructed. Are the potentials of chassis, suspension and power able to be utilized as intended? Does the technique embrace them? The consistency with which it can be applied. Does it work in all similar situations? The degree of control it provides for the rider. Can the rider either solve problems or make improvements, or both, by using it? The ease with which it can be understood and coached. Does it take extraordinary experience or skill to apply it, or, can it be broken down into bite sized pieces for any rider to master? Which brings us to my first law of body positioning. Stability Comes in Pairs. Bike and rider stability are always paired―rider instability transfers directly to the bike. Body Positioning has but one overriding guideline: Rider stability. How a rider connects to the bike can bring about harmony and control and fluid movement or turn into an uncoordinated wrestling match. Ideal Stability Having stability AND fluidity of movement sounds conflicting; when something is stable it’s expected to stay put, unmoving, like the foundation of your house or the roots of a tree. But the opposite is true for riding. Comfort And Stability What works well on a paddock-stand doesn't always transfer to real riding. Aftermarket rearsets, which can be adjusted (or which are manufactured) too far up, back, forward or down is an example. In the paddock they feel racy; on the road or track they can fatigue the rider. The fatigue comes from the rider's core not being correctly supported. This causes him to be off balance. Off-balance generates extra effort from muscle tension and poor joint alignment which in turn hampers accurate control manipulations. Awkward looking body position is what you see. Riders often accept or try and work around this, without realizing its negative impact on their riding. Simply Complicated Through research and coaching of tens of thousands of riders of all skill levels, 58 separate elements which influence our body positioning have surfaced. Seemingly simple things such as too tight a pair of gloves or leathers can affect all the other elements. Once the 58 are corrected and integrated, the rider has many more options; opening doors to a wide range of fun, efficient and, you might say, elegant techniques. All of our coaches have been thoroughly drilled on what each of the 58 are and how to correct them. © 2014 Keith Code, all rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced in any form without the author's consent.
  50. 1 point
    Well, clearly the coaches know how to do it either way, since you see them riding around one-handed when giving hand signals to students... On a long street ride on a sportbike my lower back gets tired, and sometimes I ride with my left arm resting on the tank, so I do all my steering with my right hand. I'm not recommending riding one-handed, but it's handy to be comfortable with EITHER a push or pull for steering, if you ever need to. Having said that, I try to use only pushing when riding hard on the track, because I can get a more consistent input using a push with pivot steering. If I try to pull, I am more inclined to yank on the bar and get a bit of a wobble at the end of the input. I agre with another poster that it doesn't take a huge amount of strength to steer the bike - that depends a lot on the bike, of course, but also depends a lot on leverage. If you are pushing DOWN instead of forward on the bar you can push really hard and not get a result!
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