Jump to content


  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Previous Fields

  • Have you attended a California Superbike School school?

tweek's Achievements

Cornering Expert

Cornering Expert (4/5)

  • First Post
  • Collaborator
  • Week One Done
  • One Month Later
  • One Year In

Recent Badges



  1. I'll be down to NOLA as soon as possible. Bit busy this summer though. I have big changes in my life I'm about to make so budgets are being adjusted accordingly. And yeah $500 is steep, but it's just money and there is always another client with an emergency that'll pay what I charge to fix it.
  2. The RideSmart event was nearly flawless. Hopefully this will lead to COTA unclinching their sphincter and allow other orgs to hold amatuer events like this. We'll find out soon. I've ridden Mid Ohio, Barber, Oak Hill, Motorsports Ranch and Eagles Canyon. I've also been to Mugello. As a facility COTA is in a league of its own, 4 star all the way. I'll be taking the family to an event there as soon as I see something worth the drive down. The track layout compared to the tracks I've riden is really different. I couldnt make it flow for me and I never got comfortable or went 'fast'. Turn 1 goes up steeply and then flattens as you apex and then you fall off a cliff down in to 2. Once you start picking up the bike though you can just roll on the throttle the whole way down the hill and through 2 without worrying about the brakes. But then you enter 3 which starts the esses. My eyes simply could not track this mess. I couldnt find reference points so it was all very kinestic for me. You don't really turn, just 'jog' the bike side to side, but after 5 you want to push for a wide entrance to 6 because if tightens at the end and again I had trouble finding reference points. coming out of 6 you want to be on the inside to make it up and in to 7 where you want make it back to the inside for 8 where once you are leaned in to you can just roll on and get flat out (10 barely registers). Now you have some speed and you need to get ready for 11 which the CMRA guys were taking in 1st! Even at my leaisurely pace I was in to 4th and going down to 2nd. 11 absolutely sucked for me. It's like riding around a parking lot trying to find a place to land. After 11 you have a long straight (2/3 of a mile?), I topped out around 100 letting the faster riders go around, I could haev comfortably topped 6th gear on my 848 and still have plently of time to gently brake in to 12. 12 again sucks just like 11. For the real riders it was time to get on to the breaks hard and work the shifter back to 1st. 13 is another 817ch of a turn with its decreasing radius entrace, but once you got in you could let the bike drift out to the paint building speed through 14 and going deep in to 15 which is another 7urd that just slams shut on you. But once you're through 15 you can just build throttle again and enjoy 16, 17 and 18. With a little speed you can spend an hour or so going around this set with your knee down the whole time. Very fun turn, I think everybody enjoyed it. Coming out of 18 you can get even faster and barely slow through 19. 19 is a lot faster than it looks, but then you come up on 20 which again is like 11, 12, and 15: just give it up because it's not ever going to be fast. Now go fast down the start finish straight because everybody is watching. From 20 you can see just how much you're going to climb in order to get in to 1. Like I said: I never got comfortable. I could make all sorts of lame excuses, but none of it matters. I had a great time and got to ride what is probably the best race track in the world. I wish Eagles Canyon could be resurfaced this nicely. Part of the issue is that I'm used to the rough ECR surface which actually provides a lot of my reference points. There are dips and bumps at ECR that tell you when to throw the bike in to the turn and stuff. COTA has none of that. No tar snakes, not ripples, patches, just perfect clean grippy surface. If I had relaxed and ridden properly my Duc would have absolutely flown around this place. I can honestly careless about the politics. Schwantz got screwed. I hate that for the guy. If not for him this place probably wouldnt exist. That said: given the opportunity to ride COTA don't miss it. Now, I want to see if I can figure out a way to do a trackday at Mugello.
  3. All good points about the reasons not to go to COTA. RideSmart charged me $500+ a day for the opportunity and I bought both days without hesitation. They sold out the entire allotment in 30 minutes. I would have happily paid $1000 a day for CSS instruction and track day and CSS would probably have sold out in 20 minutes. How often do you get the opportunity to ride on a track like COTA? Also consider all the drama that followed after w/ the dooshbags canceling all events that didn't have deposits already paid. I recently received the email from COTA about the $50K/day track rental for like 36 riders/drivers. So with that ###### going on I doubt there will be too many opportunity for mere squids to get out on COTA for a while. Hopefully the economic reality of running the facility will help them create a more realistic pricing structure. On the other hand: I’d like to ride NOLA too.
  4. I searched and didn't see anything so I had to ask: when?????? I get to ride COTA the first weekend of June with RideSmart so I'm really looking forward to that. But I'd love to get to work with Keith and crew again. Based on what I've seen COTA would be a great place to teach. Maybe 2014?
  5. This stinks... I'm all setup to go to the track tomorrow but the temps are going to be in the 40s (F). Last week they had forecasted 60s. Oh well. Looking forward to getting back to this: and this:
  6. I'm not certain that you have to be at 45 degrees in order to pull 1G. I know that I can get the bike to 45 degrees going pretty slowly and not pulling anywhere near 1G. I do it all the time on turn 11 going in to the pits. Just one last knee drag to say good bye. I wonder: given a really huge skid pad, say 5 miles in radius, if you went really fast, pretend we're on a light cycle, but were turning in an arc that was really wide if you could go fast enough to pull 1G with only 15 degrees of lean angle.
  7. We'll see. Most of the CSS coaches could probably easily qualify midpack of an AMA superbike race. I'm sure I'll be real entertaining. But....I just cut 2 seconds off my best time around ECR (2:10 now - lap record is 1:45 & front CMRA racers are in the high 1:50s). Building off of the 'Drive Plan' from soft science, I've changed the way I enter several of the turn by taking a wider entrance. I use less lean angle and carry more speed and the engine stays right in its sweet spot to blast back out. Not as much knee dragging, but easily several seconds faster without doing anything 'scary'. The next 10 seconds will come from better transitioning from throttle to braking. Right now I spend a 'lot' of time coasting between full throttle and then brakes. I know that I have plenty of braking left becuase I'm rarely causing the back tire to skip around. Anyway, pretty cool not being the slowest guy on track anymore. Especially when you're passing guys with number plates on their bikes. Novice plates, but still plates. And I still have head lights.
  8. I've never noticed that it takes that much effort to turn the bike. It isnt a brute force afair. In fact I'd say that if you try to brute force the bike it will toss you on your butt for the trouble. After a really good track day its my brain and thighs that are tired. My wrists are usually sore too because I use them too much to hold myself up under braking (having one pinned and glued together doesnt help). But the big deal is the brain, after a full day of riding (usually get 6 30 minutes sessions) in 90+ heat, I'm more zombie than human. Luckily the trailer is easy to load, the drive home is short (I live about 35 minutes from the track) and then I can put on a swim suit and get in the pool to vegitate.
  9. I'm not really too concerned with how much effort I have to put in to turning the bike. Good body position puts you in position so that you are pushing perpendicular to the bars so all the effort acts to turn the wheel. If you are still on the brakes when you start your turn then absolutely it will require a little more strength which makes perfect sense: At that point in time there is more weight on the front tire than the back. You'll also perceive more weight because you are having to hold yourself up against the forces trying to send you over the handle bars. Good fun. To address the effort required: I do 100 push ups every morning.
  10. I skimmed through a lot of this discussion and didnt notice anybody mention the suspension's affect on the radius of your turn. If you roll on the throttle the forks changes the bikes geometry. Longer forks tubes mean slower turning for a given lean angle. Conversly the brakes compress the front increasing the rate at which the bike turns for a given lean angle. All of which comes together somehow to explain what Keith is trying to teach us. For instance, on the way in to a turn you are deaccelerating so the forks are compressed helping you tighten the line without adding lean angle. On the way out you are hard on the throttle causing the tubes to extend and widen the line. If the line is too wide you can slide yourself up on the seat and lean your chest a bit lower to put more weight up on the front to tighten the line back up without adding lean angle. But I'm pretty confident the CSS guys can explain it better than I have.
  11. Guess I need to keep that in mind going forward. As I said before: I'm having a great time right now. Everything is just working. I'm planning on doing another weekend with you guys next summer. Think I'd like to visit a different track this time. Probably come out to Willow springs. Maybe I can make the coaches actually earn their money chasing me around the track by then.
  12. Make sense on that point? like this: only without the million dollar contract, super doctors and the photographer to get the awesome picture.
  13. Tweek; I see that there hasn't been any commentary on your post so far so I thought I would kick it off with an unqualified perspective; mainly with questions. ---snipped: you can read it above---- Tweek I think its great that you took the time to edit and post this video and I hope we can facilitate some additional dialogue about its contents because as I opened with this post - I am NOT qualified to offer an opinion on what I saw but maybe we can get some folks who are qualified to chime in. After all, that's what this Forum is all about isn't it? Rainman Always with the socrates stuff. You can see the layout of ECR here: http://www.eaglescanyon.com/2008/facilities.php 1. Have you attended a CSS event Yes. I have attended 4 days of CSS (1-4). First time ever on a race track was at Mid-Ohio. Great track. Level 3 & 4 were at Barber where I'll be doing 2 track days in August. One thing to keep in mind going forward from here: I've been getting private instruction from Ty Howard whose philosphy is a touch different than CSS's. I'm not going to debate the merits of either. I think both are right. We just don't have a grand unified theory of riding yet to explain it. 2. Do you know why your lines are messed up? Partial reason: I'm holding tighter lines than I should to keep my knee down. The rest is that riding in 100+F heat wears your butt out. I usually do my best time during the 3rd session around 10am. I know where I'm supposed to be. But most of the time I'm just enjoying the fact that I ride at a respectable intermediate pace without worrying about anything. Just having fun. I'll break the 2:00 ECR barrier this year. I've been stedily dropping 1 second off my average and narrowing the variance with each member day I attend. 2:15s right now are just plain fun. The scary part is that doing a 2:12 doesnt really seem that fast. The more relaxed I get the faster I go with less effort. 2:20s were freaking scary. 3. Do you think that you consistently apply throttle control rule No. 1? consistently is vegue. But for our purposes here: no. First, ECRs layout is mostly double apex turn, many with elevation changes, trail braking through the first apex cone has been working really well. The problem is transitioning over to the throttle. The pause between the last of the brake and the first crack of the throttle is too long. My plan on Friday is to actually change the line in to three. Basically, I start turning too late and too sharply to get close to the first apex which doesnt leave me any room so I end up just staying down on my arc all the way to the 2nd apex where I can start my drive out. I think turning in sooner and slower, getting to the back of the turn sooner will allow more speed in, allow me to run along the outside of the turn, arcing past the 2nd apex with a good driver out. More along the lines of the drive plan described in soft science. We'll see if the hurricane doesnt spoil it. 4. Would you say that you follow the CSS training about steering inputs in a corner? Fairly well actually. I usually don't have to make corrections to my line once I've turned in. 5. Do you know what you are doing to get your knee down A couple of things: decent body position, tighened line and way too much lean angle for the speed I'm actually hodling. I could probably getbetter times than I am now without ever touching my knee. Just hold a truer line. But what fun would that be? I wouldnt have those awesome pictures to show off to the squids at Starbucks. 6. How do you attach yourself to the bike(riding position) first: loose on the bars. I like my outside forearm touching the tank. My outside knee is dug in to the tank (techspec pads) pressing down with my outside foot on the peg to help wedge it in better. The inside toe is pointed in the direction of the turn. The peg degs in between my middle toe and foot (you can see the bottom of my boots). My feet are pretty big and dragging toes isnt as cool as you'd think. I try to stay only half off the seat but as mentioned I occasionally fail. Upper body is to the inside of the tank so that I can drop my shoulder to the tank when I start to roll on the throttle hard (its rolling on the whole time, but there is rolling on and then Rolling On). Can't really think of anything else. 7. How are you transitioning across? Depends upon how tired I am. When I'm fresh and warmed up I use my hips and knees to pull myself across. But once I'm worn out my legs get more involved and that is where I can end up going too far. If you are watching the video you can watch my tail light to see how far I'm braking in to turns. The interesting piece to it is that just a fraction of brake has the same affect on the suspension as doing a hook turn (and we wonder why my lines end up too tight). I've learned to to brake really hard (back wheel should float and skip a bit) and then trail the brakes off, by the time I'm at the turn point I probably only have 10% brake pressure going, just enough to keep the front end from coming up. By the time I'm at max lean angle I'm off the brakes and starting on the throttle again, but all the stuff going on keeps the front compressed and keeps the bike from running wide. Then as I roll the throttle on hard I push myself forward to keep the front down and holding the line without having to lean in more. The bike will end up running wide a little, but it is the line you want anyway. Which actually brings to mind another area I'd like to improve: returning to seat. I don't think anybody caught it on video but I gave myself a nice bit of headshake once by pulling on the bars to get back in the seat. Luckily I didnt do anything and the bike took care of it. Also: I don't run with a stearing damper. Except for one stupid mistake, that I won't repeat, I have never needed one. Anyway: thanks for the questions. I look forward to the response.
  14. Just a quick thank you to the folks at CSS that got me off to a great start: Over that past 6 months I've been doing a lot of track days and I'm finally to a point where I'm comfortable with the bike and carry a decent pace. Right now is probably the most fun I've ever had, I know what the bike is doing and have a good feel for what it wants. The big problem is that now that I can easily get my knee down through any corner on the track, I do. Not only do I put my knee down I end up holding tighter lines to keep my knee down. Even worse, I'll use more lean angle that turns really call for. But hay - it looks cool! One of my friends videod me for a lap or so. I went ahead and marked it up showing all the mess ups I make: One thing that has been commented on is that I get too enthusiastic throwing myself across the seat and end up hanging off too much and being twisted up. So I'm working on that and pushing my lines out more. Anyway - thought I'd show off my progress. Rossi better watch out.
  15. Yeah, I'm very aware of that and learning to do both has been an interesting excercise, one that I'll discuss elsewhere
  • Create New...