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Interesting Point Made By Nick I.


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The only thing in there that we don't already teach at the school is putting your feet past the end of the footpeg. I disagree with this as a technique because it will make your chances of dragging your toes on the pavement much greater. His reasoning is that you get more leverage on the pegs when your put your feet way out on the edge and I think this benefit is negligible. You can jump around on the pegs pretty hard and it doesn't affect a sportbike at speed very much, I don't think moving your feet a few inches further out is going to make much difference.

 

As for the never stay in the middle of the seat thing, we have used this as a coaching tool for as long as I have been coaching. We also have a drill we use in level 4 often called Body Position Early, we use this to get a rider to shift his weight to the side well before he starts braking.

 

 

I think that once you get the hang of setting up early for a corner, there is no need to hang off all the way down a long straight.

 

In any case, I didn't see anything in the video (other then the feet thing) that we haven't been talking about for years at our school.

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The only thing in there that we don't already teach at the school is putting your feet past the end of the footpeg. I disagree with this as a technique because it will make your chances of dragging your toes on the pavement much greater. His reasoning is that you get more leverage on the pegs when your put your feet way out on the edge and I think this benefit is negligible. You can jump around on the pegs pretty hard and it doesn't affect a sportbike at speed very much, I don't think moving your feet a few inches further out is going to make much difference.

 

 

Yup. I agree with you on this. Its all a pile of BS. Leverage can be achieve using multiple anchor points not just the inside foot. I have no problem with people following this method, I just dont like it when they push it to people like its the only way. Especially when the big dogs are doing completely different things.

 

Thats why I really like KC comments on taking advice... people need to learn to weed out fluff.

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  • 3 weeks later...

He covers things really well. He mentioned Freddie Spencer toward the end, and a friend of mine who went through the school said Spencer was very hard about people not having their butts in the seat. Studying the races and BP, I started early last MotoGP season shifting my butt before I sat up to brake during trackdays because I noticed Stoner doing it, then Rossi, then Pedrosa, etc, etc. They all do. It's good stuff.

 

You'll also notice the rider getting into cornering position then putting his arms out like a bird. That's something they weren't covering (probably an older drill they were doing), but worth paying attention to and practicing. That's the "locking in" everyone is talking about. You'll see how BP's differ, and how a nice general BP like Rossi and Stoner are usually better for locking in than the riders who exaggerate theirs. Of course there is always the exception, like Spies and Lascorz.

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He covers things really well. He mentioned Freddie Spencer toward the end, and a friend of mine who went through the school said Spencer was very hard about people not having their butts in the seat.

 

Are you saying Spencer wanted people not to hang off?

 

No. He had people running down even the long straights with their behinds off the seat. Never, ever have your butt on the seat is what he taught.

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That seems a bit extreme to say never. But, if it gets people positioned for a turn early, cool. Just don't expect to be at the top of the speed charts at Daytona, Road America, Monza, Mugello, etc... Laguna Seca, sure never having your butt in the center is fine though.

 

Really though it gets interpreted as an authoritative rule that people don't think about or bother with WHY they are doing it. And, if the bike is difficult to turn in or they're getting forearm pump they don't look at the right things to correct because of the, IMO, over emphasis on how your toe is pointed. They're missing the WHY of body position.

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That seems a bit extreme to say never. But, if it gets people positioned for a turn early, cool. Just don't expect to be at the top of the speed charts at Daytona, Road America, Monza, Mugello, etc... Laguna Seca, sure never having your butt in the center is fine though.

 

Really though it gets interpreted as an authoritative rule that people don't think about or bother with WHY they are doing it. And, if the bike is difficult to turn in or they're getting forearm pump they don't look at the right things to correct because of the, IMO, over emphasis on how your toe is pointed. They're missing the WHY of body position.

 

VERY true! I know the "center seat" is just a tidbit and nothing worth actual documentation of this tip for real racers. More of what you said, "early BP".

 

The toe pointing had me thinking though...

 

Such a small part of it has some scientific evidence.

 

Take for instance, you stand shoulder-width with your toes pointed forward, you do a mini-squat as if you were riding on the pegs(light in the saddle) and have no weight on the bars(extra steering input).

 

If you were to open your hips to either your left or right, it "feels" harder than if you jus opened your stance to accomodate for the hips opening. Small pointer, but it goes back to what you said about the WHY of good body position. I think the main emphasis is

 

being comfortable. ;)

 

Not so much a tip for everybody, but might help the ones that can't help but get "crossed-up" or ala closed hips.

20090912a179l.jpg

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I wonder - how much has the "hang-off" style evolved and improved since we first saw it about 40 years ago? Mike Hailwood wasn't convinced that it was any better than "just sitting there" - and he proved it by winning a few races when he came back to the sport in 1978 and '79 on both those days eqv. of superbikes as well as on 500 GP bikes.

 

Since it seems unlikely that anybody could copy that feat today, it must mean that the style has evolved significantly and become more efficient. I'd be grateful if somebody could explain how and why it is performed to a much greater effect now than back when.

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Looking at pictures of Jarno Saarinen and Kenny Roberts shows very similar hang off positions to those used today. Jarno's upper body seems to go with the bike, Kenny tends to counter lean. The main difference I see today is more top riders keeping the upper body lower and to the inside.

 

I think most of the credit goes to bike design. Look at the stretch to the bars on those 60's & 70's GP bikes, yikes! Talk about weight on the bars. The improvements in tires, suspension, brakes and chassis design have greatly increased corner speeds and lean angles and emphasize the benefits of hanging off that would barely be noticeable at slower speeds.

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That seems a bit extreme to say never. But, if it gets people positioned for a turn early, cool.

 

They're missing the WHY of body position.

I think it was just to hit home with it. I'm sure it was explained why. Maybe he was in the army at one point. "Redundance is the best teacher," is a popular saying, and it couldn't be any more true.

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I think the bike upgrades through the years made most of the difference, but improved BP made cornering, transitioning, and coming out of corners smoother, easier, and more stable. You can still go alright with poor BP. Take Matt Mladin and Shaky Byrne. They have ###### BP, and do pretty well.

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