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Is There A "quick Turn Line" For Every Corner?

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Maybe it's a bad riding habit...I'm a street rider and haven't done a lot of track time, so maybe it's only taught through experience. But I DO want to get some track time soon, took CSS Level 1 a little while ago, just recently had a get-off, and kinda want to sort out everything I've been learning before I take another crack at it.


Is there a quick-turn line for every corner?


One example...a long sweeper. My tendency for these is to dial the lean in slowly to get a long, arcing line through it. Is this incorrect? If so, what's the correct way to do it? I feel like if I "snap it over", even with a late entry, I'll be off the inside of the road before the corner ends and have to correct. What's the correct solution, technically? Snap it over but not as far? Carry more speed in so a similar line REQUIRES a quicker turn-in?


Another example...a decreasing radius or "hairpin" corner. I try to "run in deep" and take a later turning point on these so I can get a quick turn, but I don't always feel like I have enough road to "hook" the bike...plus I feel like getting that deep into the corner is going to send me on a wide line. Sometimes I'll come into the corner a little slower dial in the lean more gradually. I guess this is just slowing me down?


Should I always be looking for a "quick-turn" line, to "square off" the corner? Or is there ANY place for a smoother bank-in to apex and then bank-out? Does the quick-turn only seem "abrupt" in certain corners because I'm not doing it right? Or because of natural fear/"survival reflexes"?




Honestly...one of the reasons I'm asking is because I feel as though it plays into the "trail-braking" argument...my "get-off", at least from what I can remember had to do with trail-braking a corner pretty hard, losing my place in the corner, and trying to "quick-turn" the bike while completely forgetting to release the front brake. I've never felt a bike just "fall over" like that...I'm guessing the front-end tucked on me.


Anyway...it seems to me from what I've read/experienced that trail-braking (not trying to start that argument here, but...) has little place in a "quick-turn" style of riding. If you're going to reach max-lean quickly, you want to be on the gas as soon as you know you're not going to lean the bike any further for the corner, and a "quick turn" will put you as that max-lean almost immediately. You could still "trail-brake", but it would only be brief, since turning quickly would require an equally quick trail-off of the brake to give traction back to cornering.


If you lean more gradually, though, you wouldn't be at max-lean quickly like you would with a quick-turn...you'd only reach max-lean at about or just before the apex of the corner. So in theory you could trail the brakes, releasing pressure gradually all the way to max-lean (where you'd be off brakes and getting back on the gas).




Am I making sense, or is all this getting jumbled in my mind? :D Anyway, the main thrust of my question is whether I should always be looking for a quick-turn line for EVERY corner?

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Yes you are making sense and I think those are really good questions, squirrels.


And I think Keith answers a lot of what you are asking in the Twist of the Wrist books.


For instance, entering a sweeper vs. a stop and squirt corner.


IMHO, it boils down to throttle control vs braking. Entering a sweeper is more about using the throttle and a sharp turn has a lot of emphasis on braking. But all the basics still apply.


As for quick turning, I think that there is a degree of "relativity" to it. The definition of quick flick at 100 mph (sweeper) is a bit different as it is much harder to turn the bike at that speed, hence, a lot slower.


I think you hit it on the head when you implied that you might not be going fast enough to make it matter and I think that issue comes up frequently for people who are looking for practical information to improve their riding on the street and have little or no experience nor interest in track riding or going as fast as possible. It's just that the extremes are the easiest to illustrate. And necessary as that is like the definition of criticality, eh?


For instance, trailbraking, when you are riding well below the limit, can seem much less of a critical issue because in general, at that speed, it is. Except or until the unexpected happens and suddenly the ability to control the bike at an extreme limit becomes relevant. And it is hard to illustrate that without thinking about the extremes.


Anyway, I am sorry I don't have more time to hang out tonight.




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  • 2 weeks later...

This is a very interesting topic and I'm glad I found it. I too am having a similar issue. I have about 4 trackdays under my belt and I'm finding it tough to kick those street riding habits (trailbraking). My best trackday was when I instructor convinced me to stop trailing and to quick flick the bike. The street has brought that habit back.


Now that I have a new street riding partner (a more advanced rider who's also a track rider) we're working on my cornering confidence which showed how and why trailing has been a limitation for me.


I guess what I'd like to know is: is there something that can be done to accelerate my habit breaking and help reinforce it and to show me WHEN it's appropriate to use the trailing technique (like Squirrels)?

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Hi Guys,


Been away from the forum for a while, I'll chime in on this. There are a few issues, how about we just tackle one at a time.


With trail braking, there are times it for sure is needed---long, late apex decreasing radius type turns is one good example. The tire has only so much load it can handle, cornering or breaking. The more cornering load put on the tire, the less breaking load will be able to be applied. That's pretty straightforward. Lots of novice rider/racer crashes have happened with riders carrying the brakes too hard/too late.


OK, another issue is the slower the bike is leaned over, the more lean angle is used. I won't attempt to explain it as well as Keith does (complete with drawings) in Twist 2, Chapter 15. This chapter, and the drawings will show exactly how slow steering uses more lean angle.


Would there be any reason one wouldn't steer it as quickly as possible for any turn, for any bike, for any condition?




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Would there be any reason one wouldn't steer it as quickly as possible for any turn, for any bike, for any condition?


Well, sure. Like you said... decreasing radius with late apex, double apex or perhaps a combination of turns that aren't really what they seem, ie. setting up for the final apex and exit defines how you get into the combo... if you know what I mean.

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