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Trying To Find The "zen" With My Alter-ego


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Greetings,

 

Summer's coming and it's time to start thinking about the "zen" again.

 

As a student at California Superbike School I have learned many things. The problem is, the more I learn, the more I seem not to know.

 

A brief riding history-

 

Level 1 - All good...two step...got the knee down...happy chappy!

 

Level 2 - Developed the bad habit of adding lean angle in turns. Didn't wipe out but was told I was close to doing so. Releaxed on bars and made it home.

 

Level 3 - Howling good time...everything clicked...pulled over for braking too heavily...

 

Level 4 - Laguna... howling good time again...(right or wrong) used knee puck to help with the change of the direction of bike through first left and next right after corkscrew... left black lines exiting some corners.

 

Level 4 Redux - crashed adding throttle and lean angle at the same time. (This last issue is something that doesn't seem to be talked about that much by the way... why is that?)

 

 

(My alter-ego's thoughts on the subject)

 

Trying to go faster your technique became rushed and you lost your sense of timing. You must complete the quick turn steering input before you add throttle control. Regarding your early propensity to add lean angle, I would suggest to you the following... you went in too hot, too wide or you're lost in the turn (find better reference points). Don't try and correct your mistake mid corner, it's too late. Use the experience as a new reference point and try something different the next lap. And remember to stay relaxed on the bars once you have made the steering input. Adding a steering input and lean angle mid-turn won't make you go faster through the remainder of said turn.

 

Any input would be welcomed...

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Adding throttle and lean angle at the same time is a sure recipe for disaster. You might get away with it for a while but it WILL bite you sooner or later if you keep it up. This is one of the things we keep a close eye on at the school as it is the cause of many crashes.

 

As for why riders do it? I think that has to do with being off line (running wide) and wanting to correct. If you have to correct and lean the bike over fine, just ease off the throttle a little when you do. Riders are always focused on rolling on through the corner and that is good, except when you combine that with making a correction.

 

One thing that helps is to be comfortable when you are a little off line. Many riders get so focused on riding the perfect line that when they are an inch from where they want to be they correct instead of just riding it out.

 

Not sure if this is your issue or not, but I know I had a problem with it for a while. It is easy to get caught up in the quest for the perfect line :)

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Adding throttle and lean angle at the same time is a sure recipe for disaster. You might get away with it for a while but it WILL bite you sooner or later if you keep it up. This is one of the things we keep a close eye on at the school as it is the cause of many crashes.

 

As for why riders do it? I think that has to do with being off line (running wide) and wanting to correct. If you have to correct and lean the bike over fine, just ease off the throttle a little when you do. Riders are always focused on rolling on through the corner and that is good, except when you combine that with making a correction.

 

One thing that helps is to be comfortable when you are a little off line. Many riders get so focused on riding the perfect line that when they are an inch from where they want to be they correct instead of just riding it out.

 

Not sure if this is your issue or not, but I know I had a problem with it for a while. It is easy to get caught up in the quest for the perfect line :)

 

 

Very helpful...I will ride it out.... or use the "hook turn"....

 

One last question...just so I'm crystal clear in my head... when approaching any turn point... never apply throttle when making the steering input... right? Complete the steering input then gas it... I think in my quest to go faster I may have slipped into this habit which ultimately caused me to crash...I had no warning when it happened...

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Well I hate to say never, but yeah for the most part the bike will be easier to turn if you're off the gas when you turn it. Once you get the lean angle you want you get back to the gas ASAP.

 

I don't say never because there are some corners on some tracks whey you don't have to let off. Usually these are really fast corners and you can stay on the throttle when turning in. This typically makes the bike harder to steer and Pivot Steering can really help in that situation.

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