Smoother Corners

Billy Laninovich is famous for always saying, “You jump for show and corner for dough.”  This is the best way to put it for amateurs.  Everyone loves a good whip, if you don’t you aren’t human.  But one thing that separates the pros from the amateurs is cornering.  At the professional level, every jumps the same thing and unless you can scrub harder and lower than everyone else, you need to be quick in the turns.  Normally, people try to brake later and/or get on the gas earlier to improve corner speed.  However, one thing that can have you draggin’ your bars by next week is minimize clutch play.

If you ride consistently at a track, you always hear it.  You approach the corner, downshift, let off the clutch and get back on the gas.  That BRAP! BRAP! before the corner.  This not only kills your clutch plates, but it forms those annoying rollers in turns and slows down your momentum.  Whenever you are slipping the clutch, trying to get the RPMs up, you are not putting power to the ground.  That is the main difference between the pros and amateurs; once the pros are done braking and downshifting, they let off the clutch smoothly and get on the gas.

This habit of revving the motor up before a corner is something I do and everyone else does.  We are all guilty of it.  To get rid of this, you have to really concentrate on letting the clutch out once and just getting on the gas.  It helps a lot if you come in with a bit more speed and momentum so you don’t have a chance to hold the clutch in and rev out.  A good place to start is on a faster, wide corner where clutch play is minimal.

Once you have that part smoothed out, move on to tighter, inside ruts.  This is where most people hold in the clutch and roll towards the corner. This is where you form the braking bumps because you slow down too much and get anxious to get back on the throttle.  Again, come in with a bit more speed (don’t just bomb through the corner), get the braking down and get off of the clutch and back on the gas in one, fluid motion.  You will be able to carry a hell of a lot more speed through turns and cut your lap times down significantly.

Posted on Jan 25 2010, under Riding Techniques | No Comments »

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