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mugget

How To Approach Fast Corners - Maintaining Throttle/accelerating Throu

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mugget    3

Hi all,

 

At a track day recently I was watching some of the riders in fast group enter a particular turn, one of them was riding at tyre-blistering pace and what really made me take notice was the fact that he was entering this fast sweeping turn still on the throttle! :blink: I have never noticed anyone do that before, so I kept watching and sure enough lap after lap it was the same thing. He would just roll off the throttle at or after the apex. I meant to go and talk to him but didn't get a chance...

 

Here's the track I'm talking about, this particular corner is called "The Kink", first corner after the straight:

Brisbane_Race_track.png

 

It's pretty fast through there, for me it's 5th gear easily 200km/h+ (125mph+). Previously I have always been rolling off the throttle and turning in, then back on the throttle to accelerate to the Karusel. But when I saw this other rider using throttle into the Kink I started thinking hey, why not? There's plenty of room and I accelerate out of it anyway so obviously I'm not going into it as fast as I can?

 

Well here is the reason for "why not", summed up by Hotfoot in this previous thread:

 

 

If you know that (1) leaning the bike over compromises traction (because the suspension has to work harder at higher lean angles), and (2) getting on the gas increases the load on the rear tire... does it seem like a good idea to do both simultaneously?

Add to that the fact that I have thought about it before, but have always been worried about inadvertent throttle input while making steering inputs...

 

But I thought I would just start out giving it a try anyway... after seeing someone else do it... well it must be possible! Since it's such a fast corner, quick flick isn't really doable (or at least not possible to the same extent as slower corners) so I didn't feel that using throttle would compromise the steering input. I started out just adding some throttle to reduce deceleration, still rolling off before the apex. And gradually kept adding more throttle, but still not accelerating into the turn and still rolling off before/at the apex and accelerating out. This was towards the end of the day so I didn't get much time to keep experimenting with that, but was pretty chuffed with it so far considering that previously I wouldn't have even thought about it, let alone have been game enough to try it. I should be back next month and will keep working on this.

 

So I just wanted to ask how others have handled similar turns? And what other tracks have the same kind of setup? First one that comes to mind is the big left hand kink in the straight at Laguna Seca?

 

I have read that when races were held at this track back in the day, racers on 600's would be able to hold it open through the Kink in 6th gear on a really good lap with fresh tyres. But that same article mentioned that lots of people kidded themselves that they held the throttle flat through there as well... :P

 

My thoughts at the moment are that I should be able to work up to accelerating into the turn, tapering off to more of a neutral/maintenance throttle nearing the apex just to reduce engine braking. Next step would be to see how the tyres and bike are handling that, if the bike is stable then trying to maintain some light acceleration all the way through the turn.

 

Trying to think of anything from the Twist books/DVD that would apply to this type of situation, but I've leant of my copy of the Twist 2 book & DVD to a friend. Help a guy out!

 

Cheers!

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csmith12    0

As a ninja 250 racer, we are at WOT on entry and throughout many kinks and some full corners. Sometimes the lean is not anything to even worry about, other times the lean is already at pretty steep but not anywhere near the edge of the tire. Nearly every track I race has a kink in the straight or some turn made at WOT;

 

Nelson Ledges OH - right kink in the back straight at WOT, it has a dip in the pavement there as well for added fun!!!

Mid-Ohio OH - right kink in the back staight at WOT on just about every bike on the track - smaller cc's up to 1000's

JenningsGP FL - left kink near the start of the back straight at WOT, on a 600-750's pin it on the exit of turn 1 all the way to turn 3.

JenningsGP FL - turn 12 (left), most riders are at WOT on entry and throughout, minimal lean here

Pitrace PA - 2 kinks (1 left and 1 right) in the back straight at WOT on just about everything 750 cc's or less, both kinks are with enough lean to drag a knee at race pace

Thompson CT - turn 10, hard right hander at WOT all the way to turn 1, at the exit of turn 10 is a huge crest, 600's can catch 2 wheeled air with a bit of lean if the rider is brave enough to keep it pinned

 

Sometimes the bike will give a bit of negative feedback, but it's normally not a traction problem either. It takes a very hard countersteer to get the bike to turn while hard on the throttle, especially on the bigger bikes. After that steering input, you better get back to being loose and no input on the bars or the bike may start to chatter a bit.

 

I normally don't start the day riding through these turns at WOT, I let the track "come in" a bit and feel out the traction available before pushing through at WOT. If I feel it, I go there. If I don't feel it, I roll off/flatten the throttle a little to compensate for the available traction (wet/dry) or just to keep me in 100% control.

 

Imho, this is where your visual skills will shine very brightly. Many kinks look much sharper of a turn than they really are and open up wide on exit. If your reference points are far enough out (relative to your speed), a rider can see a WOT line. That line normally takes me from edge to edge of the track (the candy on the inside apex to the candy on the outside exit).

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Hotfoot    48

Mugget - regarding adding throttle and lean angle - don't take it as the kiss of death. Just think of it a something to be aware of, in that if you add both at the same time, especially rapidly, you are quickly adding load on the rear tire and you don't have a lot of time to feel out the traction. However, if you are nowhere near the lean angle limit, and you are rolling on slowly or not leaning the bike sharply, you may very well be able to do both and have enough feedback from the bike to know if you are approaching a traction limit.

 

It is absolutely possible to have a kink or series of corners where the second one is faster than the first so you never roll off.

 

If the kink you are dealing with seems like it could be done without a roll off, just work up to it gradually - make your roll-off less and less, bit by bit, as it sounds like you are already doing. Oftentimes in a high speed kink the limitation becomes whether you can get the bike TURNED enough, as you go through it faster and with less (or no) roll off. The bike becomes harder to turn when you don't roll off, plus the faster you are going the more effort it takes to get it steered.

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benhamf15    2

Another point to add to what Hotfoot said is that it can be very easy to get a headshake when steering in this situation (forks extended, little weight on the front). It is really important to ensure you have a very stable base/lock-on BEFORE you steer (i.e. pivot steer). If you have any unwanted pressure on the bars you are much more likely to get head-shake which can run you wide. That unwanted pressure can be caused by pulling yourself up/forward with the bars under acceleration, moving your body while steering (not locked-on), or having to re-adjust your lower body again when trying to steer because the force required to push the bar moved you away from the bars (poor lock-on). It takes a tremendous amount of force to steer a bike at high speed and even more if you are on the throttle while doing so. Moving your lower body and locking on to the tank with your outside knee BEFORE you steer, then using a good pivot steering technique is key to keeping the bike stable while you steer. Then don't forget to completely relax on the bars as soon as your lean angle is set to keep it stable. Good luck in your trials!

 

Cheers,

Benny

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tmckeen    1

Just a thoughts to add,

 

Remember that WOT differs considerable between bikes and even gears. In 2nd gear on my R6, WOT will dance the front tire along on its tippy toes, and I certainly wouldn't consider making and sudden steering inputs or attempting a quick turn with essentially no weight on the front tire, but in 4th WOT leaves enough weight on the front tire I can turn in to the first part of the kink at SoW without rolling off at all. It did however take me many many MANY laps before I worked up the courage to blitz through the kink at high speed.

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mugget    3

Thanks for the replies everyone. Gives me a bit more faith in myself to know that I'm pretty spot on with my approach. Still, it's good to be able to have it confirmed & talk it through since it's all new territory for me.

 

How far are you leaned over for that 'kink'? From the diagram it seems like it wouldn't be very much...

 

How far leaned over... me, doesn't feel like really high lean. Definitely other slower corners on the track where I use more lean angle. But it also depends how fast you're taking the corner... I would expect my lean angle to increase as I get faster through there. The fastest riders would be going through there with knee slider on the ground - so plenty of lean for them!

 

Interesting points csmith12. Times like this have me rethinking life decisions, thinking I should have started on a 250 instead of a 600 and relatively quickly moving to a 1000. :unsure: But not to worry, I'm still having massive amounts of fun! :D

 

Thanks Hotfoot! *phew* No kiss of death! I'm relieved! :D:P

Definitely lots of factors to consider though... actually just reading through all of this makes me think that this type of riding might even be more challenging than trail braking? It seemed like I "naturally" started to try out a bit of trail braking much much earlier compared to when I thought about using throttle through a turn. Then again, maybe I did have the wrong idea about it and think of it as the kiss of death... who knows.

 

Cheers Benny, definitely no problems here with lock on. Actually I've always seemed to be really comfortable and the most stable in high speed turns.

 

Points noted T-McKeen. Definitely no sudden steering inputs happening in this fast turn, and at that speed the front end hasn't shown any signs of instability so far. But it will definitely take quite a few more laps before I manage to neutralise deceleration using throttle, then next step is to see if I can actually accelerate through. I have always been a very cautious rider, zero crashes on track and I aim to keep it that way. B)

 

Interesting that you mention courage though... personally I feel like that has much less to do with my riding now that I'm looking at things objectively - it seems more like a simple equation of the result I want to achieve and what I need to do to make it happen. I guess I take a more rational approach to my riding now, much less emotional involvement. That kind of outlook kind of takes away the fun when I go to a themepark and go on the big "scary" rides, but if that's the price for being a safe, fast rider I'm okay with it. :P

 

 

Next question - I was just thinking about how acceleration out of a turn can be described as similar to the acceleration if you roll-on 6th gear at 100km/h or 60mph on the highway. Is there a similar description for acceleration through a turn, can the same apply? Or maybe it's quite a different feeling because there's more cornering forces involved and lots of different factors like the speed, lean angle etc.?

 

 

 

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benhamf15    2

Next question - I was just thinking about how acceleration out of a turn can be described as similar to the acceleration if you roll-on 6th gear at 100km/h or 60mph on the highway. Is there a similar description for acceleration through a turn, can the same apply? Or maybe it's quite a different feeling because there's more cornering forces involved and lots of different factors like the speed, lean angle etc.?

Mugget,

 

I detect a mis-understanding here... the "6th gear" acceleration that Keith describes in TOTW2 is the acceleration necessary THROUGH the turn to shift the weight backwards enough to stabilize the bike and maximize traction. Once you start to pick the bike up as you begin to exit the turn, you can add more throttle than that (and should). How much depends on how upright the bike is. The more upright it is, the more throttle you can apply. Make sense?

 

Also, I want to check your understanding on this...

1) Exactly WHEN should you begin that "6th gear" throttle roll on?

2) What is throttle control rule #1?

 

Cheers,

Benny

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mugget    3

Hmm... I've gotta get my hands on my book again and re-read that section...

 

But I've always taken that 6th gear roll-on as the type of acceleration that would happen when the throttle is re-applied on corner exit (or mid-corner or whenever the throttle is re-applied). With that "6th gear" roll-on being almost a base level acceleration that increases from there.

 

1) I would begin the "6th gear" roll-on basically as soon as I re-apply throttle in a turn. And as a general rule I only apply throttle once I'm sure that I will make my intended exit line and not run wide etc. For instance when I "crack on" the throttle I would aim to go straight into that 6th gear roll-on feel (generally speaking).

2) Once the throttle is applied it should be rolled on smoothly throughout the remainder of the turn.

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benhamf15    2

Hmm... I've gotta get my hands on my book again and re-read that section...

 

But I've always taken that 6th gear roll-on as the type of acceleration that would happen when the throttle is re-applied on corner exit (or mid-corner or whenever the throttle is re-applied). With that "6th gear" roll-on being almost a base level acceleration that increases from there.

 

1) I would begin the "6th gear" roll-on basically as soon as I re-apply throttle in a turn. And as a general rule I only apply throttle once I'm sure that I will make my intended exit line and not run wide etc. For instance when I "crack on" the throttle I would aim to go straight into that 6th gear roll-on feel (generally speaking).

2) Once the throttle is applied it should be rolled on smoothly throughout the remainder of the turn.

 

Your are correct in that the "6th gear" roll on is the baseline (minimum/initial) acceleration, but it is at the beginning of the turn, not at the exit. The "exit" technically begins as you start to pick up the bike and begin your "drive" throttle as you bring the bike more and more upright (more and more throttle).

 

Your answer to #2 is essentially correct (smoothly, evenly and constantly is exactly correct). Nice job! However, it appears that your understanding of WHEN that should begin may not be. Let me see if I can lead you there... If rolling on the throttle makes the bike more stable (locks you on the line you're on) and gives it more traction, would you want that to happen as early as possible in the corner or later? Given that it locks you on your line, how early is too early? I'm a little confused about what you mean by "re-apply" the throttle.

 

For the moment, in order to keep things simpler, let's forget this thread started by you asking about going into a corner under wide-open throttle.

 

Benny

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mugget    3

No doubts about corner exit, that is exactly as I would describe it as well. But throttle use at the beginning of a turn... that is how I used to ride, which made it pretty much impossible to be fast or smooth in double apex or decreasing radius turns, or to quick steer and use a late turn point. I think I have misunderstood something or we are not quite on the same page...

 

Ok, putting aside the thread topic for a moment - if rolling on the throttle makes the bike more stable and gives more traction then I want it to happen as early in the corner as possible (stability & traction are good things!). But since it locks you on a line which is an opening/widening line out of the turn then I wouldn't want to apply the throttle too early, before I'm confident that I will be able to reach my exit point (running wide off the track is not so good!).

 

What I mean by "re-apply throttle" is that I enter turns with zero throttle. (With the exception of just starting to experiment with this one fast turn.) Here's how I approach turns at the moment:

  • Spot the turn-in point & look into the turn
  • Roll-off throttle (used brakes if required) to adjust speed
  • Still looking thru the turn, initiate steering input when I reach the turn-in point
  • Spot the exit point/exit line
  • When I reach a point in the turn when I know that throttle application will produce the desired exit line, then I re-apply throttle. I'd say that majority of the time this would be after the apex. Basically whenever I re-apply throttle I'm solidly into the turn exit, not spending much time at all with that 6th gear roll-on feeling. Aiming to apply throttle as smoothly and quickly as possible to get back into some good acceleration & use all available rear traction.

I would also say that there isn't much time mid-turn where I'm just coasting or doing nothing. Steering inputs would last until right up to the apex or just before, so there's a pretty quick transition from steering input to throttle input.

 

Please tell me there isn't a massive flaw in my riding and I've been doing it wrong all this time? Haha :P

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benhamf15    2

Relax!!! None of this is a massive flaw. Not by any stretch. But I'm detecting a few small misunderstandings that are causing some barriers to improvement. It's not going to be possible to cover all of this in this medium (the Forum) but we can get some of it anyway. I normally prefer to lead students to their conclusions through questioning, but that's going to be too cumbersome here so first, let me address the initial subject of throttle control.

 

The throttle should be cracked open as soon as the steering is complete and the bike is on the line you want it to be on. Any earlier would tend to make you run wide. Any later and you have unnecessary instability and less traction for part of the turn.

 

For you, It sounds like you get on the throttle at the correct time relative to completing your steering, but that doesn't generally happen until later in the corner. You say that it prevents you from being fast or smooth in a double apex or decreasing radius corner. Well, could you treat either of those scenarios as two separate corners? For example, you could turn in early to the first part of a decreasing radius corner then run it out a bit wide at the end as the first corner, then steer again into the second part (at an obviously steeper lean angle)? You could even be slowing down through the entire first part (trail braking to the second turn point). A double apex can also be treated as two separate corners. If you treated them as two turns instead of one, do you think you would be able to steer later and quicker for each one, allowing you to get back on the throttle sooner, at least out of the second part?

 

It also sounds like there are some visual issues that are affecting your ability to get on the throttle sooner. Based on what you said above, it sounds like you look too far ahead too early. This can make you feel lost and not confident you're on the line you want, which will keep you from getting on the throttle. Does this sound like something that's happening to you? Think about the 2-step... step one is spot your turn point. What is step two, and most importantly WHEN do you do it?

 

Any chance we can get you to a school? We could easily sort this out in levels 1 & 2.

 

Cheers,

Benny

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as I approach the kink, slight roll off before the turn, get the 40/60 after lean. Power through with smooth roll on as exit kink. Power to next turn. -( Play time is over.)

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