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Speed & The Line

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I learned something about myself this weekend that I would like to change. The thing that I would like to change is my understanding about how speed influences the line.

According to my soon-to-be-former understanding, the line can be taken at a certain speed that we will call X.  I know that X works because I see other riders taking the turn at that pace.  In my process of determining reference points I slow quite a bit and take that turn at a speed below X, referred to as Y [ X - n = Y ].

Once I've found my line and associated reference points, I find it emotionally difficult to move my speed much above Y + 15%, which can still be as much as 65% below X.

I need something to chew on to help me understand how a line can work at Y, Y+15% and also X.

BTW, the numbers given above aren't arbitrary but are approximate.



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My entry speed is where I spot the biggest delta. I could probably roll on harder as well. I think better confidence in my turning may help with entry.

I don't think I've ever actually run wide in any well executed turn but I have had the experience of blowing through a turn, being late turning or feeling unable to turn and then SRs fire up to get on the binders when I should just turn the darned thing.

To share a success, I have once decided to go in deeper from full throttle, got on the brakes, still wasn't slow enough (or so I thought), got off the brakes and turned the bike. That was before I knew there was a such thing as Quick Turn or before I had the "courage" to try trail braking from those speeds. Considering I'd just seen Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad and I didn't want to see them on a motorcycle again, so I had resolved to not do that again. Those series of decisions, misunderstood has now become a barrier.

What are the steps to make a new decision about turn entry speed?

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Let's focus on a single corner to work on. Pick the one that seems the most off to you on entry speed. Recall your approach to the turn - what are you looking at, and for how long? Were you able to do the wide view drill at your school, and were you able to maintain your wide view consistently for that particular turn? 

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Okay here's a related question: I have some attention on it but I think the solution lies in learning to QT. Should I still bring it up?

Biggest thing from today is finding a happy place with back pain. The last session I found myself doing some funkiness with my upper body to make small adjustment which brought the pain. I found that I had a misunderstanding about which peg to press on during hang off. Sorting that out paid dividends.

Although I'm not ripping at race pace, I dropped 13s with steady drops in each session and I thought I was already moving pretty well in the first and thought I wasn't doing so well in 2-4. Session 5 I felt free to try to apply Levels 1-3 skills. I think however I can figure out what can best be applied in which corners.

I look forward to tomorrow, well rested and ready.

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Well, don't' know if you will see this in time, but I'd say focus on the RESULT you want (quicker lap time, or better entry speed, whatever) and communicate THAT and let the coach and consultant worry about helping you figure out which technique(s) to use to achieve that.

Dropping 13s with steady drops in each session sounds AWESOME, really glad to hear you are getting good results, sounds like great fun and I wish I was there riding today too!!

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I turn my phone off when school starts, so I didn't see your message. Very likely I have too much input to the coach but sometimes I manage to surprise myself and give the info without suggesting a solution and when I did that today Stef gave me a change to try that I don't think I would have come up with as soon,  Screwdriver.

The biggest barrier I'm working through is back pain that starts about 3/4ths or more through the session. Stef said that I'm now in a weird place in my riding that I'm fast enough to need to hang off but not yet fast enough to benefit from the g-forces in helping keep me in the saddle without requiring the body strength  and muscle fatigue is probably playing a factor. I gave her that bit of data about thinking I need to get more g-force and it yielded that confirmation. So it's a dance of knowing how to communicate with my coach.

As a band-aid until I get back to the school I will work on core strength improvement, which will not only benefit the back pain - I have a herniated disc and I very probably have been guarding it, but will be beneficial in my Taekwondo which in turn helps my back pain.

Sorry for the staccato writing, I'm a bit tired and my wife is driving back. I need to analyze my laptimes but they (again) didn't seem to follow my intuition. I'm going to get a GPS based timer with a display so I can instantly confirm what I think is faster and also analyze later by sector.

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Just to begin to bring this thread to close, one of the things I was given to do with my L4 consultant, Pete was an off-track exercise using my bike and him showing me the pressure to use for Quick Turning. and then being given an on-track drill of bracketing QTs. My confidence picked up in my ability to go in on entry without going to my crutch (brake) lever or turning early. As I did that, we then found I was clipping the apexes too deep, which revealed that I wasn't 2-stepping properly. The next session I was given a 2-step bracket to work on and purposely staring at the TP too long was immediate DON'T DO THAT AGAIN feedback and I then found it easier to look earlier. I found that if I had to, it's preferable to do it too early, than too late; too late fires off my SRs.

That drill helped remind me to use WVT and occasionally my QTs feel off again but I could then get them back-in.

Soon thereafter is when my pace picked up. I noticed that I was grabbing more gas, holding a faster entry through 1 and 2 and then the realization that I was going faster caused me to back it down for a few turns. Then my speed came back on for about a lap or 2. I began to feel what it was like to keep the bike "on song" and it felt great! My coach happened to be behind me watching and pulled ahead to lead me on a lap using that new pace through 1 & 2...and it felt too slow! A good thumbs up from her was a big confidence booster (whodathunkit?) and the lap continued. Too bad, my back pains began to crash the party as I was now having a lot of fun and had seen something on my bike that I'd never before seen - The shift light!. I was steaming down the front straight in 3rd gear and it caught my eye and so I grabbed 4th and then 5th. Too bad, overbraking for T1 wouldn't let me carry it but I now know what that feels like!

While I may have the sequence of events mis-ordered, it's not as important to me as acknowledging that the 5th session of my L4 has now supplanted my emotional memory as my best ride ever! And that's worth the price of admission. Addressing the back pains shall open the doors to substantial improvement.

I can't wait to get back out there again!

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