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Can You Go Too Slow?


Toontje
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Hi all!

 

I have the Twist books already for year and I've read them maybe a million times. Now I bought the twist DVD as well and I got enthusiastic applying Keiths technique. Now, I'm not a newbie, I ride all kinds of bikes already for more than 30 years (yes, that's 30, not 3).

Now I started on dirt bikes like many of us. The problem is that I seem to be unable to adapt to the road riding style. Even after so many years I am still charging the turns, breaking in late and hard until way in the turn, turn the bike around like an MX rider and hard on the gas out.

Now, I know that this is slow, unsafe, stupid, etc, but I feel comfortable riding like this.

So I want to learn to do it the proper way.

So turning in late, flicking the bike, finding the apex and roll on the gas throughout the whole turn. That's a lot of things to think about. So what is the solution? Doing it in slow motion.

Going in slow, finding the turning point, tipping the bike (not easy going slow) finding the apex (two-step), gassing it slowly and evenly.

Now, I cannot tell you how difficult this is. I felt insecure, almost dropped the bike, made one huge slide (lucky I gassed it and, for this one only time, not dropped the gas) and all at around 50 km/h. I even started looking at the bike thinking "what's wrong with you? Tires? Suspension?".

Then I recovered my confidence and started riding like an MX again, charging corners, etc and all went well.

 

So analyzing the situation I did everything wrong. Rolling off the gas in mid turn, holding on the bars too tight, not relaxed, excessive rider input, should I go on? I basically had a 100% on the SR achievements!!

 

Now, what to do? There is no CSS here in Spain, at least not this year anymore. Keep practicing and suffer? Keep riding like an MX? Stop watching Supermoto videos?

 

BTW, I ride an sit upright sportsbike, a 690 KTM Duke. But I don't think this should make a difference on the technique to use, no?

 

PLEASE HELP!!

 

Ton.

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Hey there Ton, glad you posted this dilemma up.

 

Are you sure there's no CSS in Spain? I thought the UK guys go there? http://www.superbikeschool.co.uk but bullet will chime in here no doubt.

 

One thing we do at the school is to make sure we dedicate one full session per drill... as you describe above, trying so many different things all in one action can be daunting!

 

Would you feel it more possible to achieve good throttle control if we focused one full session just arriving at the turn at a speed you feel comfortable with such that all that's left to do is steer and get back on the gas? If you just pictured that scenario you might wonder when to get off the brakes?

 

How about you don't use brakes for that session... say you roll off WAY early, such that you approach the turn at a speed you feel comfortable to just turn and feed in the gas.. exactly like in the book - evenly, smoothly and consistently for the remainder of the turn, would that remove a few of those SR's?

 

You can add in exact turn points, quick steer, relax and other Twist 2 technology one session at a time...

 

Does that sound like a more manageable plan?

 

P.s. If you still feel like your bike is unstable then have an expert check your tyres, pressures and suspension. You need to know that is not a problem for you to focus 100% on the task at hand...

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Are you sure there's no CSS in Spain? I thought the UK guys go there? http://www.superbikeschool.co.uk but bullet will chime in here no doubt.

Actually there is, but not this year anymore. Calendar for next season is not known yet.

 

 

Would you feel it more possible to achieve good throttle control if we focused one full session just arriving at the turn at a speed you feel comfortable with such that all that's left to do is steer and get back on the gas? If you just pictured that scenario you might wonder when to get off the brakes?

 

How about you don't use brakes for that session... say you roll off WAY early, such that you approach the turn at a speed you feel comfortable to just turn and feed in the gas.. exactly like in the book - evenly, smoothly and consistently for the remainder of the turn, would that remove a few of those SR's?

 

You can add in exact turn points, quick steer, relax and other Twist 2 technology one session at a time...

 

Does that sound like a more manageable plan?

That certainly sounds like a plan. The issue i see is that i have to practice on public road which makes everything a bit more complicated.

I must say that yesterdays ride was much more relaxed. Same trajectory, same conditions, but more speed and more relaxed. I felt i had more "rhythm".

 

P.s. If you still feel like your bike is unstable then have an expert check your tyres, pressures and suspension. You need to know that is not a problem for you to focus 100% on the task at hand...

I trust that the bike is not the problem. I've ridden many bikes before that we so much worse than the one i have now. Maybe i have to check tire pressure, but that's about it. KTM has the reputation of delivering great bikes out of the box. No, i'm sure the problem is me. ;-)

 

Thanks for the help and i'll keep practising.

 

Cheers,

 

Ton.

 

 

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One approach used by car racers is to get on the racing line first. You know you've got a "good line" when you can tip in once and roll on the throttle without having to change your line or roll off the throttle till you exit the turn. That's going to feel totally different from what you are used to doing. I find it relaxing.

 

PS

Is a trip to CSS in Great Britain really out of the question? It doesn't look that far on a map. :P

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Whole new thought here, Ton:

 

Have you considered practicing the skills from "Twist II" while driving your car? I do this all the time by picking a turn point, setting my speed, looking in, turning the car then "rolling on" the throttle in my cage. I actually started opening the driver's door so I could drag a knee in the tight stuff :blink: (not really).

 

I started driving my car like a bike when I realized I was having a hard time NOT trail braking my bike because I have ALWAYS trail braked in my cars. (I hope that sentence is convoluted enough for ya.) Trail braking still works fine on the bike, just not at the limit, and I figure if I can't do one or the other On Demand, then I don't really have Emotional Control of the throttle.

 

Anyway, just a thought.

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Hi Ton, I think if you find the combination of actions for road cornering a bit of a handful, then yes start by practising slowly. One of the things they tell you at the school is that you can't go at 100% speed because it leaves 0% concentration for learning. Can you go too slow? Only reall ywhen you're getting onto the learning points that help you go fast. for example, learning throttle control, or how to spot a reference point, you can do at any speed. Quick-turning you can do at any speed, but to reallylearn how to use it, you need to get faster (reference points also change whenyou get faster, but you need to be able to find them at any speed). Wide view etc. works all the time. So no, you can't really go too slow until you feel like you have the confidence to speed things up without getting them wrong. Not sure how you managed a big slide at low speed? Maybe you're fighting with the bars a bit. A school would help you out though, the coaches are very good at helping you with your individual problems, and a big part of level 1 is about keeping the bike stable while turning, whicih it sounds like you want to work on.

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Hi Ton,

 

Many good suggestions. One thing with that kind of bike is it takes less bar pressure to steer it. Even a really well done Steering Drill, would make a nice difference for you I think. See if the UK guys are going to be anywhere you will be and you could get one in.

 

Now, if that isn't very realistic (understand if that's the case), make sure not adding lean angle (any) while rolling the gas on. We've caught many doing this, some who knew better and/or didn't think they were adding any, but were in fact.

 

Let us know.

 

CF

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