Flowing through Rough Corners

It is that time of year again.  Loretta Lynn Qualifiers are under way and regional races are right around the corner.  More bikes and more riding time can turn a track in a torture chamber during these races as things can get extremely rough.  Down here in Florida, the soil is soft and as Jeff Emig would say, “the track is alive.”  One thing that is always a constant is the violent nature of corners.  Half way through the races, some corners development nasty rollers and conventional techniques need to be modified a little.

When corners become too rough to sit down in, there are 3 things to remember: stance, flow, and correct gearing.  Whenever you stand through turns like this, you want to be in modified attack position.  You still want to keep you elbows up and head up, but have to be able to move on the bike.  If you were locked in the standard attack position, getting the bike to balance under you while turning would be difficult.  This doesn’t mean hang off the side of the bike like a quad rider, but just be ready to row back your front end tucks.

The stance and flow of this really go hand and hand.  When I say flow, you want to stay loose on the bike and relax your upper body.  If you let your arms and chest go with the motion of the rollers, you can almost find a rhythm through the corner and soak up the impact.  As always, you want to grip with your knees to keep the bike from swapping under you.  Another “secret” is to turn the bike with your legs.  Pushing in on the outside shroud can help coax the bike in the right direction.  Most of your control will come from the lower body; the upper body soaks up impact.

Finding the right gear through this section will help tremendously.  If this happens to be a wide sweeper, don’t be afraid to shift up and let the RPMs sink down.  The suspension will thank you.  The forks and shock won’t bind up as hard to cause a harsh ride.  You will have plenty of traction if you keep your momentum up.  Revving the hell out of your bike might sound awesome to you, but shifting up in the rough stuff makes your life much easier.  You will save energy and valves.

Posted on Mar 24 2011, under Riding Techniques | No Comments »

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