Whip it good!

Anyone who rides motocross loves a good whip.  Whether you’re watching one take place or you are doing it, they seem to never get old.  However, once you master the whip or “the bubba scrub”, you can cut your lap times and set yourself up for corners better.  This is something that beginners should not try, but if you have been riding for a while and managed to “soak” up jumps well, you should be ready for this next step. 

The pioneer....Scrubs or whips, are meant to keep you lower to the ground and get your wheels on the ground faster.  When your wheels are on the ground, you’re accelerating forward.  So it is important to keep in mind that it does have a purpose.  The approach to the jump face is critical.  You should be pointed slightly off the track.  This is because when you are on the face of the jump, you lean the opposite way you are pointed, allowing you to stay on the track.  Don’t try to turn on the face of the jump; this will just throw the back end out.  You want to lean over so that the wheels come out to the side.  Some pros like to be seated, while others stand.  It’s really a personal preference that you have to find for yourself, like how far to lean back or forward.  After a bit of practice, you’ll find the sweet spot where you can throw the bike anywhere.

Once you feel you are off the face, turn the front wheel in the same direction as your lean.  This gets things going.  However, don’t forget to grip with your legs and use your lower body as well, not just your upper body.  As you feel the bike start to tilt, you can feel the gyration of the wheels; everything should flow and you just go with it.  You can feel the breaking point, where the whip needs to come back.  If you feel that the whip is about to break, just give it gas, as this will accelerate the rear wheel.  When it is accelerated, the bike will naturally want to be upright and in the normal position.  Most of the time, when you scrub, the front end will be lower than the rear; be ready to lean back a little and keep on the gas, slightly.

All of this should be a fluid motion, just like cornering.  You can feel how hard to scrub, when to bring it back and where you want to land.  As I said before, you can point yourself on the face of the jump and scrub in a direction that will set you up better for a corner.  It is such a beneficial technique that can help you be so much faster.  Start out on small table tops, and then progress to bigger jumps.  Just play around with it and you will be whipping like Bubba!

Posted on Aug 02 2009, under Riding Techniques | No Comments »

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