Navigating Flat Corners

One of the great things about riding on soil is that the riders have the ability to shape the race course.  Sure, this means that the track can get rough, but berms can definitely help us out.  However, when we don’t have the convenience of a rut or berm, things tend to get tricky.  With nothing to help catch the weight of you and your bike, a steady right hand and a little balancing act is required to get through flat corners effectively.

Because you don’t have anything to help you lean, your approach needs to be a little different.  A good idea is to take a wider approach than you normally would.  If you have ever watched road racing, their lines through corners are usually wide arcs.  When you are still upright before the turn, this is the point where your braking should be done; your weight is vertical and your tires have the most available traction.  You want to stand through the braking bumps so you ensure that your entrance into the corner is nice and smooth.

So, when you get your braking done and sit down, you want to sit right up on the gas cap.  That way, you put as much weight on the front wheel as possible for optimal traction. The way in which you lean the bike over is crucial here, as well.  The best way is to sit on the outside edge of the seat.  This keeps your weight centered and straight down, rather than out and away.

Like always, keep weight on the outside foot peg and the outside elbow up put additional weight on the front wheel.  As I mentioned earlier, a steady throttle hand is the biggest part.  Slipping the clutch and getting the rear wheel rotating too quickly will just spin you out.  So, you want a steady roll on of the throttle to make sure the rear has plenty of traction

Drifting out too wide can leave the door open for a pass.  Keeping your elbow up and weight on the outside peg gives you the traction to power through the turn and avoid drifting out.  Unlike riding through a wide arc, squaring up flat turns robs momentum and drive.  It is time consuming and a waste of energy.  Once you find that balance between leaning and twisting the throttle, these corners become excellent passing opportunities.

Posted on Jul 06 2010, under Riding Techniques | No Comments »

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