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Racing Starts


Guest Neville Cragg
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Guest Neville Cragg

I see a lot of discussions on cornering, speed and braking...I have read Keiths book, but have no idea on proper starting technique.

All I can use is knowlege from other racers but everyone has their own ideas. I know it's personal at the end of the day but a good starting point would be great.

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  • 4 months later...
Guest Neville

Thanks for the reply - just one problem - I live in South Africa and it's a bit of a long way to go to get to the R.A.C.E school - I just need to know a couple of pointers?

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  • 3 months later...

One pointer is simply to practice. Even practice on a dirt bike helps and does good. Smooth transition between clutch lever release and increase of throttle. Also, watch the starter BEFORE your race-see how quickly or slowly they go with the flag.

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The single most important lesson I ever leanred to get perfect starts is to make sure the throttle is wide open the moment before you let out the clutch and leave it there, all adjusment are done with the clutch lever to keep the front end on the ground and get a great launch.

 

Keith

 

Will Eikenberry taught me that.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Come around on your sight-in lap. Toe the bike into neutral at the last corner and let the clutch out to cool the clutch as you coast to your spot.

 

Stop at your spot. Do not pull in the clutch or toe it into gear until you see the hand move to change the 2 board to the 1 board.

 

1 board is flipping up (from 2 board), pull in the clutch, toe the bike into 1st, start revving it up.

1 board goes sideways, significant amount of gas, start feeding the clutch out until you're holding the bike back with your legs.

green flag flies, throttle is pinned, clutch is fed out and modulated to keep the front end down if necessary.

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  • 1 month later...
The single most important lesson I ever leanred to get perfect starts is to make sure the throttle is wide open the moment before you let out the clutch and leave it there, all adjusment are done with the clutch lever to keep the front end on the ground and get a great launch.

 

Wow! I never tried that one out. I thought that would be certain death! I shall endevour to do this every time.

 

Here in the UK, it is very rare to be able to practice this art. You can't do it on track days, they don't like it very much. When it comes to race day, they'll only let you practice at the start of the race itself! As for the road, aherm, sorry officer!

 

The first time I tried a full race start was during my first ever race. Once we were focused on the starting lights I began revving the bike, a little bit at a time with the rev's gradually building. I had seen this so many tims on DVD's of British and World Superbikes. When the lights went out I started feeding the clutch out and giving it more gas. The start went ok, now one came past. Ok, I didn't overtake either, but I was supprised. I though I'd be going backwards through the pack!

 

I guess I never really thought about holding the gas wide open and using clutch only. Mostly for fear or letting too much clutch out (Ouch!) or killing the engine by bouncing a valve.

 

I guess too much power is better than not enough!

 

Still, only one way to discover if it works for me! I'll let you know how I get on! ;)

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  • 2 months later...

Keith has given away the big secret. :angry:

 

Well, half the secret...to the perfect launch.

 

I have used this exact technique to holeshot the field from the third row more times than I can count.

 

Of course, what to do just before going WFO is still a subject of great debate...

 

(You could have sent him an email.) <_<

 

Cheers ;)

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  • 3 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

jesus is just alright with me.

 

funny, i never had to repalce a clutch. no matter how many times i took em apart cause i was SURE it was gonna start slipping soon, i never had one that didn't go a full season. is that strange? guardian clutch angels...? ;)

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  • 10 months later...

Bugger! I tried 3 practice starts on the TZ and cooked the clutch!

 

I've learned more about them since, never had the balls to hold it wide open at the starts though, but am gonna try next time, hell, I need all the launch I can get against those damned superbikes! ;)

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Bugger! I tried 3 practice starts on the TZ and cooked the clutch!

 

I've learned more about them since, never had the balls to hold it wide open at the starts though, but am gonna try next time, hell, I need all the launch I can get against those damned superbikes! ;)

 

I'll see if Will has a suggestion on this. Don't know enough about the 250 clutches to be honest.

 

CF

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Bugger! I tried 3 practice starts on the TZ and cooked the clutch!

 

I've learned more about them since, never had the balls to hold it wide open at the starts though, but am gonna try next time, hell, I need all the launch I can get against those damned superbikes! ;)

 

I'll see if Will has a suggestion on this. Don't know enough about the 250 clutches to be honest.

 

CF

 

 

Dry clutchs are very sensitive to heat as they have no oil to carry the heat away. I have seen new clutchs in Superbikes burn the first time they were launched.

You can slip the clutch too much. I always try and find an RPM that I can launch the bike and get the clutch out ASAP without bogging the engine. On a 250 I would think 8,000 or 9,000 would be about it.

Will

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