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Posts posted by Hotfoot

  1. Here is a good summary of the difference between MotoGP and WSBK:


    One major difference is WSBK machines are based on production motorcycles and MotoGP bikes are purpose built race machines or prototypes.

    MotoAmerica is the organization that promotes the premier North American racing series, and part of its purpose is to develop riders from North America to compete on the world level in WSBK and AMA, and uses production motorcycles. MotoAmerica is sanctioned by AMA and FIM. What we used to call "AMA racing" is now MotoAmerica.

    CCS (Championship Cup Series) and WERA (Western Eastern Racing Association) are two separate nationwide racing series sanctioning bodies. They would both be considered feeder series for MotoAmerica, offering a wider array of race classes than MotoAmerica and offering Novice classes and race schools to help attract and develop racers. Their events are more affordable and easier to qualify for than MotoAmerica events, and they run a lot of local and regional events, and regional championships so that racers do not have to travel all the way across the country to compete in a series.  There are quite a few racers that race MotoAmerica and CCS or WERA.

    There is also AHRMA, American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association, which runs events around the country for vintage motorcycles, and is reputed to be a very friendly and very competitive race organization.

    A new racer riding progression might start with mini-moto racing and minimoto clubs (especially for kids who are too young to race larger bikes) then progress to a local race club at a local track (which would typically begin with a new racer school), then progress to a regional competition with an organization like WERA or CCS. The national organizations generally have Novice and Expert levels, with requirements to advance to Expert (based on points or race wins) and do have minimum qualifying laptimes. Racers doing well in these national clubs might - if they have the resources - move up to MotoAmerica, and MotoAmerica stars might move on to the world stage.

    Does that help? :)

  2. On ‎12‎/‎2‎/‎2019 at 10:09 AM, Christopher Hayes said:

    I've always been in the habit of holding 2 fingers on the front brake for the purpose of revving while throwing mean down shifts and braking hard.

    Otherwise the rear tire, having little weight on it, would lock up!

    This is what we generally recommend at the school, as well, although of course on the S1000rrs it does the rev-matching for you so you don't have to mess with blipping the throttle. It does "mean downshifts" with just a click of the shift lever. :) 

  3. I see a second steering input also. Could be that the roll on was already starting as you leaned it that extra bit, or maybe you were already near the limit (for those tires) and the extra bit of lean was enough to break it loose. I can't hear it well enough on the video to tell for sure but that extra lean combined with some throttle application could definitely have caused the rear to slide without warning.

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  4. I asked about the mileage on the tire because it looks like it has a lot of road miles, the center looks flattened. That can affect  handling, and overall age can affect grip, the rubber can get dried out and less pliable. I do think, especially after seeing your pace and leam angle on the video, that age of the tire contributed, and possibly the tire type as well- I don't know much about those tires but looks to me like you need to be on track day tires, something more like Q3s or Q4s.

    When you watch the video, do you see one precise and definite  steering input, or do you see more than one change in lean angle? 

  5. 20 hours ago, Lnewqban said:

    Great find, that is a REALLY good perspective on a very late apex turn. It really illustrates how long you have to wait to get on the gas, and how too low and entry speed would BEG you to roll on too early.

    It's also VERRRY interesting to observe the differences in the accuracy of the throttle timing (and consequently accuracy of the line) of the front runners versus some of the later riders.

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  6. If you really are pushing on only the  external handlebar, the bike will countersteer up out of the corner. If it does NOT do that, it means you must be pushing ALSO on the inside bar. 

    You said in an earlier post that if you relax and stop pushing on the outside bar, the bike leans in more. That means that EITHER:

    1) you are also pushing the inside bar, and having to use your outside arm to balance out the effect, so you need to relax BOTH arms, or

    2) your bike has a significant handling problem that is causing to pull to the inside, maybe a badly profiled tire

    Does this only happen on lefts or rights, or in both directions?  

    I'd definitely recommend riding something else to see if the problem continues - if you have the same issue training on a small pit  bike, try gradually working up to steeper lean angles while maintaining relaxed arms. If it doesn't happen on other bikes, have someone take a look at your track bike and see if it has a bad tire, an alignment problem of some sort, twisted or bound forks, etc.

  7. For sure this is difficult to judge, for anyone. Laptimes are a measurement, and being able to achieve very CONSISTENT laptimes is a good indicator that a rider is well in control of their lines and speed and that the error rate is low, all of which indicates good riding skills. Seeing one's own laptimes come down on a given day at a given track is a good indicator that the rider is figuring out the track and making improvements. Being able to stay relaxed and ride without errors and without exhaustion is a great improvement, and something the rider can observe relatively easily for themselves.

    However - trying to compare laptimes to other riders may not be very meaningful unless you are racing . At track days and especially at schools, riders ARE, by definition, working on making changes and sorting things out so their laptimes can vary considerably from actual go-for-it race pace times. At CSS riders are asked to ride at around 75% pace so that they have enough free attention to make observations and changes in their riding, plus there are formats and drills and sometimes different track configurations (compared to how other organizations run their day) so a school day laptime may not mean much when compared to a race laptime, or even open track day times. So if you are looking at a CSS laptime and trying to decide if you could race at that track, it may not really translate. Going out and doing a new racer's school at that track (unless you already have a race license?) would allow you to get a sense of whether you can be competitive, and most of them do a mock race at the end of the day, which is fun and instructive, and most schools will be able to tell you if your laptime is acceptable for you to race there. Racing creates a whole new set of challenges - the track pace is fast and that will immediately push you to find places where you can go faster, and likely make you push yourself enough to reveal next areas of improvement in your riding.

    I think most of all you will need to decide your personal priorities for improvement, THEN figure out how to measure. What are your goals as a rider? Are you interested in being calmer on the track? Safer? More accurate? More consistent? More comfortable?  Do you want to be able to learn new tracks faster? Do you want quicker laptimes? Do you want to ride in A group at your local track? Do you want to start club racing?

    Once you have your own goals set, finding ways to measure that should be easier.

    Interesting question about whether it changes based on the track... I guess my answer would be that there are certain skills that identify a skilled rider. Consistent entry speeds, good control of the bike (accurate, effective steering with steering rate appropriate to the turn), secure, locked-on body position, relaxed upper body, and good visual skills come to mind. One can watch a skilled rider on a new track, and they may be riding slow and figuring out lines but you can see the skills are there and know that once they get the lines figured out they will be able to ride consistently and quickly. You can also go to an open track day and see someone getting good laptimes (by pushing really hard) but leaning the bike over too far on the gas, exiting corners at the ragged edge of the track, making steering corrections, stabbing the brake, hanging off too far and steering ineffectively, making rough downshifts, etc. and see that they may be going pretty fast but they are lacking some really important basics and although they know the track well, they are hitting some big barriers that will hold them back and/or cause them to crash if they try to go any quicker. 

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  8. 46 minutes ago, Jaybird180 said:

    I tried to crack the gas as soon as my lean angle is set. Then I tried to wait until I had assured a tight line exit. It gave me the desired trajectory but it felt weird to wait so long to get on the gas. Trailbraking until I was on line didn’t seem to help much either. See...all over the place.

    It would be a rare 180 degree turn where you could roll on the gas as soon as you have your lean angle set (at the beginning of the turn) and be able to roll on continuously for the whole rest of the turn. If the turn was large, and U shaped (as an example) you would most often have to roll off (or at least go flat) on the gas in the middle of the turn, more or less treating it as TWO turns, the first part with one turn point and apex and the second part with its own turn point and apex. Depending on the shape of the turn, you may or may not need to make another steering input to change your lean angle at the second turn point (ie if the turn tightens up in the second part, you will likely have to make a steering input to change the lean angle for the second part of the turn).

    Alternatively, you could consider that your "real" turn point is somewhere in the middle of the 180 degree turn, a turn point that will line you up for the apex and exit you want. Everything before that would really just be pre-positioning to get to that turn point and you might very well be slowing down (off the gas and trail braking) ALL the way to the turn point which could be located near the middle of the 180 degree turn, or even later if it tightens up a lot at the end.

    You could try working backwards from the exit (if exit speed is the priority) to find the exit line you want, then find the apex and turn point (in the second half of the turn) that will line you up for that without any additional change in lean angle . That will be your "second turn point" (or real turn point if you are thinking of it as one turn) then work backwards from THERE to find an entry line from the first part of the turn that will get you top that second turn point. Does that make sense?

    If the turn is at the end of a fast straight and whatever comes after the 180 degree turn is slower, you may want to prioritize carrying the straightaway speed as long as possible and in that case you might choose a line that allows maximum trail braking as long and late as possible before you reach the second turn point, potentially sacrificing some speed in the latter part of the turn with a less optimum exit but a wide fast entry.

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  9. 2 hours ago, Jaybird180 said:

    Looking for thought-line suggestions for taking 180 degree turns as I seem to be inconsistent in doing it. I have them at a several tracks I attend.

    I know that the basic rule is to find a line that allow for application of Throttle Control Rule 1 - Great. But it still doesn't explain why I feel like I'm trying so many different things and getting results that are lackluster and at extremes; I'd like to reduce the variations so I can properly evaluate.

    I think my entry speeds are ball-park consistent, which retrospectively are lower than I want; I think I can change that next time I go out by improving on my Quick Flick overall.

    At one track the hairpin is at the end of the longest straight and if done correctly, I can get to the turnpoint for T2. I don't attend this track as often.

    At the other track it's mid-circuit and what precedes it is a sweeping left. What I feel is amiss, is the exit of the sweeper can become a compromise of getting the right attack angle for the hairpin which exits onto a chicane that can be straightened if using an inside tight line. When I get the hairpin "wrong" on this track, I'm ALWAYS too low in RPM and downshifting on corner entry there is tricky because my line removes the straight, I have been going from the sweeping left to a hard right in a single motion - staying on the left side of the tire too long (hmmm...that's  probably a clue?)

    How are you choosing when to BEGIN your throttle roll-on?

  10. I guess the first item would be to identify what is important to you in terms of "skill level". If your lines are more consistent, your apexes are tighter, you are using lines that allow for better throttle control, you are relaxed, you are in control of the bike (i.e. it is going where you want and expect it to go), etc., your skill level is improving, based on those indicators.


    However, if what you mean is: "can I get around the track FASTER than other riders?" you probably need to start racing! :)

  11. On ‎10‎/‎2‎/‎2019 at 8:20 PM, asic_ridah said:

    What you are saying is “impossible” if the lean angle is static!! It’s simple impossible to increase or decrease a radius without changing the diameter of the circle, the ONLY way to change the diameter of the circle on a bike is to change the lean angle! 

    NO OTHER WAY!!!!

    When you are leaned over the front wheel DOES NOT STEER THE BIKE.  Only the rear wheel can do that!  The front only controls lean, the rear steers the bike, and if you increase throttle (and there is sufficient traction) the rear wheel will pull/push the bike upward, you have to counter steer after releasing throttle to lean the bike further to to turn tighter.


    Well, it IS true that it is impossible to decrease a radius without changing the diameter of the circle. :)

    Above, you said that "when you are leaned over the front wheel does not steer the bike". So, when you ride through a left-right chicane, you lean the bike left, and then when you need to turn the bike back to the right, how do you accomplish that? Are you saying you use the throttle ALONE to change the bike's direction of travel?

  12. On ‎10‎/‎1‎/‎2019 at 7:28 AM, asic_ridah said:

    Hi All

    1. What action causes the bike to stand up braking or acceleration.

    2. Is accelerating while adding lean angle a good thing?

    3.  Does accelerating make the bike harder to lean?

    4. Does brakin or coming off throttle make the bike easier to lean?


    1) Braking, while leaned over, can cause the bike to stand up, see my more detailed answer above. On a properly set up sport bike, accelerating does NOT cause the bike to stand up. Accelerating WILL increase the radius of a circle but WITHOUT changing lean angle. A rider who thinks the bike stands up because of the throttle is unconsciously steering it up with the bars. Note - a bike with a more extreme, non-neutral setup - like a chopper with a stretched out front end, or a bike with a serious suspension problem - may act differently.

    2) No. You are adding load to the rear tire in two different ways at once and that can easily overload it and lead to a rear tire slide, without a lot of warning to the rider or time to correct it. Doing one at a time is a much safer approach.

    3) Yes, the front forks are more extended which makes it more difficult to steer the bike and there is less weight on the front tire which affects traction - the most extreme example would be accelerating so hard that the front tire is off the ground, obviously at that point there is no traction at all on the front tire.

    4) Coming off the throttle makes it easier to lean the bike. It compresses the front end which steepens the steering angle and makes the bike easier to steer. Braking lightly can do the same, however on many bikes braking REALLY HARD can make the bike harder to steer; I'm not sure all of the reasons for that but I think it has to do with overloading the front tire (deforming it) and suspension, not to mention the difficulty for the rider of keeping enough pressure off the bars to steer effectively under hard braking. 


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  13. On ‎10‎/‎1‎/‎2019 at 7:28 AM, asic_ridah said:

    Hi All

       I have a group of riders who actually believe that the act of braking causes the bike to stand up!   

    PLEASE HELP!!!  I need a forum moderator or an accredited expert to respond.  Please explain away this myth!



    Braking, with the front brake, while leaned over in a turn, can definitely cause the bike to stand up noticeably - assuming the braking is hard enough to shift significant weight to the front and NOT so hard that the wheel actually slides, the braking forces cause a friction drag of the contact patch against the pavement that makes the front wheel want to turn to the inside, which creates a countersteering effect and stands the bike up. So when braking while leaned over, the rider has to resist that turn of the front wheel by pushing on the opposite bar to counteract it, to keep the bike on line (i.e., if in a left hand corner the rider would have to push on the left bar to offset the countersteering effect of the braking). This can get tricky to manage, as the rider is restricting movement of the bars, and placing additional load on the front end, so braking TOO hard while leaned over can exceed the limits of traction of the front tire.

    If braking verrrrry gently the counter steering effect is so slight that the rider may not feel any tendency of the bike to stand up, and the fact that the bike is slowing down will eventually decrease the radius of the turn, so a rider who only brakes very gently while leaned over (or uses just rear brake - which can also be tricky) may not ever notice any tendency of the bike to stand up. But braking harder or more abruptly makes it much more noticeable. Or, a rider who has a lot of experience with using the front brake while leaned over may be so accustomed to automatically pressing on the opposite bar to counteract the countersteering effect may not be aware of the bike's tendency to stand up, and a rider like that would have to go out and consciously try to relax the arms and observe what happens if he or she ADDS front brake in a corner while leaned over.


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  14. On ‎10‎/‎2‎/‎2019 at 8:24 AM, asic_ridah said:

    BTW the reason I came here is because Keith’s video on Twist Wrist actually says that dramatic braking while cornering will make the bike straighten up dramatically.  

    Its leading individuals I know to think that braking in corners is the safest way out of jam or a method of picking the bike up if you LOOSE traction!!!

    Thats why I want a Expert here to explain away this misinterpretation of what Keith was saying!



    Hello, I'm glad you found our forum and came here to look for some additional understanding, and you bring up some VERY interesting topics, about which there can be a lot of confusion - as you have seen. I'm happy to help out, as are many other very friendly and very knowledgeable riders here on the forum, but first I respectfully ask that we calm down a little on the caps and exclamation points, this is a friendly and informative forum and discussions can and should be calm and productive. As I'm sure you know, typing in all caps and using a lot of !!!! is the internet version of "shouting" and we can have a very lively and interesting discussion without that. :) 

  15. If you do a forum search you can find other threads asking this same question and can see a variety of answers. Are you looking for a 2-day camp or two single day schools?

    Laguna is a great track but not always the easiest, logistically, for travel and lodging, and it can be cool and damp there. Vegas is one that is easy for travel, lots of flight options, and Streets of Willow is a technical track and its a great one for coaches to maximize their time with you, and it rarely rains there. Barber and VIR are both really beautiful but can be hot and humid. Best to look at the schedule to determine what options would work during your preferred time period, then narrow it down a bit from there. All the tracks are great and there are a lot of choices, if you narrow it down to a few it will be easier for forum members to give you some feedback on the tracks.

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  16. 16 hours ago, Jaybird180 said:

    Ok @faffi. I understand. I think I took a break from the forum around that time but I did see a few posts from you that puzzled me. You filled in the blanks.

    There is good info on this in TOTWII, Chapter 25, Traction, there is a section about "traction riders" and if you read that whole chapter it gives a nice description of how different riders use and perceive traction, and the pros and cons of these different approaches, I think both you and Faffi will find it very interesting.

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  17. 23 hours ago, tzrider said:

    Another factor I haven't seen mentioned is that as you lean over, the final drive ratio changes.  the difference between upright and fully leaned is the equivalent of half a downshift.  This puts the engine in a different part of the powerband and can alter the effect a given amount of roll-on has, seeming to amplify the torque as the lean angle increases.

    Good point, and I made great use of that while racing this weekend. My bike was geared a little too high for a particular corners so my drive out of the corner was suffering, so I tried changing my line to stay leaned over a bit longer - somewhat counter intuitive for getting a good drive, but it worked. Before, I was riding a more squared off line and standing the bike up but then  my RPM was too low; leaving it leaned over a bit longer put me about 500 rpm higher and the bike did not lug on the exit. (To be clear, I wasn't ADDING lean angle - I was just maintaining my lean angle longer instead of doing an earlier pick-up.) On my low horsepower bike it made a difference, and I was very happy I knew how to apply that information!

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  18. On ‎9‎/‎17‎/‎2019 at 3:12 PM, trueblue550 said:

    The very first thing I learned from Keith was from that classroom scene in the TOTW II video: "Once the throttle is cracked open, it is rolled on evenly, smoothly and constantly throughout remainder of turn." In my opinion, when I feel I need maintenance throttle it is because my entry speed was too low. I can't imagine getting on the gas before turn in. In some sections like turns 4/5/6 at SOW, I may not ever close the throttle all the way but just stop rolling on while turning.

    Well said.

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