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Discussion Starter #1
I should be going to the track for the first time, as long as I can get Friday off that is :sing

It is an endurance day form what I've been told? I guess each session is going to be 30 minutes long. I'm sure my ass will be thoroughly kicked and probably won't even ride the whole session.

A couple questions I had though about entering and exiting corners. I feel completly stable and confident while in the corner, and actually feel I have good posture while in the corner while comparing myself to a couple other write ups. But I am a little shaky on mostly exiting the corner.

I got a steering damper because usually exiting a corner I would get a horrible wobble. That problem went away, but it still doesnt feel right. What I am doing is pulling the outer bar towards me and layin into the gas to wide open just about the time I start to bring the bike back to vertical. Should I not be pulling the bars either way while exiting a turn? Should I bring the bike back up with my body? I'm not sure.

Also, I have never entered a corner going balls out full on the brakes before, usually lightly brake and enter and build speed through the corner. How should you enter? On the brakes hard while stating to lean in or just letting off as you lean in?

Thanks for any help, and please feel free to giving me any other pointers, as this will be my first track day.

Nick
 

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I feel completly stable and confident while in the corner, and actually feel I have good posture while in the corner while comparing myself to a couple other write ups. But I am a little shaky on mostly exiting the corner.
couple thoughts here. First of all, if you are wobbling on exit, than your line through the corner is all wrong.
If your line is right, your exit will be very close to a straight line.
Track day will teach you this.
But I guess your question is about straightening after lean.
First off, forget about pulling anything.
(imho) consider everything a push so when you go to straighten for exit, right your body up and then push on the outter (don't pull the inner) as you straighten.
I should feel so smooth that its no more exciting than simple acceleration.

As you go into your first track day I can explain EVERYTHING in one word

SMOOTH !

Smooth should be your theme for the day. Not speed, or lean or anything.
You goal should be smooth!
Smooth braking
Smooth line through corner
Smooth acceleration

Gotta admit I'm not there but I know its right cuz the guys who blow by me are all about this.
SMOOTH
Everything else will follow
 

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Major thing I have not heard is suspension set up.

I would be more concerned about how my suspension was set up before I worried about speed, leaning, cornering, breaking or just ridding on the track!!!!
If your suspension is not set up correctly for not only your weight but the type of track all the best ridding in the world will not produce an enjoyable day.

Do a sag weight set up first dial in your settings do some test runs, try to feel how your suspension is traveling. Look at how it's traveling.

I keep two zip ties around the silver part of my front forks to see how far down it's moving, it's a good way to see if your moving too much or not enough.

Look though the suspension thread in the forum home page.

Trust me you are going to want your suspension right on especily if you're going for an endurance race!

Suspension can have a lot to do with your wobble too.

Hope I helped!

:)
 

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you're probably going to be slower on he track than you are on the street. It is completely different and that fact the it's so much wider than the one lane you have to work with on the street, gives you many different lines to choose from. I wouldn't worry about braking into corners in the beginning. Just get out there, ride safe, have fun and get to know the track. You don't want to hold onto the handle bars tight if you're doing that. It will cause you to wobble out of the corner, hold on to the bike with your legs/body. Maybe I don't think about it, but I usually straighten out of a turn using just the throttle. If it's a very technical turn then maybe you'll need steering input. always push the side you're turning instead of pulling the opposite side. Hope that helps. good luck, and be sure to have fun out there.
 

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+1 on the suspension. If you don't understand it too much, they might be able to set up your bike at the track for a nominal fee. It's definitely worth it. You'll get more out of it than a $2000 exhaust system in terms of speed through turns. feeling properly planted in turns is a priceless feeling.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yea I am definatly wishing I knew how to tune it, that's the one thing I hear over and over again, but never touch. I checked out the baseline adjustments at sportrider, and will do that then fine tune it thru the day, or like you said, find somebody that will do it/help me with it at the track.

I will have to get into the hang of pushing the bar rather then pulling, I always have pushed the opposite. I have been trying very hard latly to loosen my grip on the bars and more of use my body

As for being smooth, I completly understand this and will be working on this the most. It applies into everything you do. I golf and snowboard and staying smooth in both of those is key. I will try to have to stay calm out there and flow everything. I'm just worried about getting out there and feelin like a 16 yr old gettin ready to **** for the first time.

As for the bike and myself, what do I need to prepare? I have full gear, so I should be set for that. I plan on wearing soccer shorts and a t underneath the suit. But for the bike what do I need to do? As far as I know the track I'm going to doesn't require safety wire. But don't I have to take mirrors and blinkers off and tape off all lights and pull the fuses for them? Am I missing anything? Do I need to do anything to the bike between runs? lube the chain or anything like that? What pressures should I run at hot/cold? I have the stock qualifiers.

How about for the day itself? I plan on trucking my bike there, Is all I need my insurance card and ID? Then obviously bring food/water, basic tools, and a lawnchair or two? My gf will be coming with me, I assume she just sits around and watches wherever she pleases?

Thank you very much for the pointers, Nick
 

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What organization are you doing your track day with?

There are different levels / groups, I assume you are riding in beginner. Most track day organizations will have control riders, sort of track police, who regulate beginner and intermediate riding groups. Control riders are usually willing to show new riders around the track, pick one and work with him through the day. They can show you corner entry speeds, and best lines around the track.

As far as bike prep, disconnect and tape up headlights (with painters tape), take off mirrors, make sure brakes, tires, etc. are ok.

Remember to take it easy and just have fun, it's not a race, there is no trophy, but crashing will cost you real money and possibly real pain. I've seen way too many people out there get competitive for some reason...

Good luck, I'm looking forward to hearing about your day. Track days are more addictive than crack btw ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I am not sure what org. it is with. My teacher from college invited me to go, so I'm not to sure.

I assume it is set up like when I went dirt biking on the track. They split the groups to fast and slow, then let one group out, make them come off and the next group goes on?

I was excited as hell, and still am but I am definatly starting to get a little nervous now.

Only problem is now the weather. It has been raining all week na dis going to continue till friday. Scattered showerd Friday.......

BTW here is the track I'd be going to www.grattanraceway.com
 

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the_gill said:
What I am doing is pulling the outer bar towards me and layin into the gas to wide open just about the time I start to bring the bike back to vertical. Should I not be pulling the bars either way while exiting a turn? Should I bring the bike back up with my body? I'm not sure.

Also, I have never entered a corner going balls out full on the brakes before, usually lightly brake and enter and build speed through the corner. How should you enter? On the brakes hard while stating to lean in or just letting off as you lean in?

Nick
Nick, ill try to help out a bit... When exiting the corner you shouldn't be pulling the outer bar towards you... If you are truly doing this then you are makign a huge mistake. Pulling the outerbar towards you will actually make you lean over further in the turn ie. countersteering. Please verify that you meant pushing the outer bar away from you before I continue to help out. If you truly are pulling the outer bar and laying on throttle then there is your issue my freind.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
When entering, I will lay the bike over with my body for hte most part with a tiny bit of help from countersteering. When exiting, I will start rolling to full throttle, and more so pull the inner bar to help turn the bike back upright. When exiting I do not use my body to upright the bike to much.
 

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honestly, you shouldn't be pulling or pushing anything coming out of a corner. you should be able to relax and take one of your hands off the bars at that point. the countersteering is only for the initial turn in.
I don't have a steering damper and never get headshake exiting a corner even at full throttle.
my body weight is all on my seat and my arms are 100% relaxed while cornering. if you are hangin off correctly you will not have to hold on with your arms to the bike while on the power. your body position will take care of that. if you are holding on with your arms to the bike at full throttle, lean forward over the tank more.
not that it matters, but here is a pic of me. (the R6).
so you don't think I'm some random idiot on the internet that really can't ride :D
 

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Sorry to break the news to you gill, but you can do very little turning the bike with your body or with anything other than counter steering. I know it feels like you are, but you arent. THe track will teach you this first thing and if it is your first time i hope they require a class for you.
 

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Sorry I agree, there is only so low you can get with weight! To really get the bike on it's side you must use some counter steering. Being loos on the handle bars is just good riding keep it up tightening up will alter your line!

Also keep your line of sight on where you are going always look toward your line.
In a racing class I took at Robeling Road in Georgia the teacher taught about a tree that was painted orange. Many racers crashed into the tree so they ended up having to clean the tree of paint. It took fixation off the track and to the tree and when your line of sight is altered it will mess up your ridding.

Ever wonder why there is like 20 feet between telephone poles but people always seam to hit them???



+ a little on the side note about counter steering I've had a friend that claimed that in a lowside almost crash he turned the wheel hard toward the ground and straightened the bike back out avoiding the crash..... This is just his word, I was not there nor do I know anyone who witnessed this feat!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ok, I'm trying to compile all 3 of your guys' advice into my head now. Basically it sounds to me like my problem is that my grip is way to tight on the bars and I'm trying to make them do what I want rather then being fluid and smooth with them. I have definatly noticed the tighter I grip the bars the shakier I am in the curve and the more things tend to go wrong. I will have to loosen my grip and stay loose.

As far as target fixation, my msf instructor embedded that in our brains, and have used that bit of info on every ride. I feel WAY better looking to the end of the curve/line rather then looking a cple feet in front of me, whether it's turning onto a street or a curve.
 

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If they have instruction at the track take it, especially if its your first time. Your will learn a ton, if you dont you wont learn that much your first time out and it will be a bit overwhelming without guidance i can imagine.
 

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jrock7896 said:
Nick, ill try to help out a bit... When exiting the corner you shouldn't be pulling the outer bar towards you... If you are truly doing this then you are makign a huge mistake. Pulling the outerbar towards you will actually make you lean over further in the turn ie. countersteering. Please verify that you meant pushing the outer bar away from you before I continue to help out. If you truly are pulling the outer bar and laying on throttle then there is your issue my freind.
Yep, If you need to straighten out with the bars you want to be PUSHING the OUTSIDE bar and/or PULLING the INSIDE BAR.

Personally I don't use very much input at the bars to straighten up comming out of a turn, when you get hard on the throttle the bike should make it's way back up to verticle without much (if any) input at the bars at all.
 

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Also it mite be okay to just use the power of the bike to straighten you out but that WILL NOT work if your going from lefts to rights at a high rate of speed! Mite be okay for the around town quick turn here or there but will not be enough on the track.

Counter streering is the only way to swing that bike back and forth from lefts to rights or rights to lefts.

:)
 

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Am I the only one who does not think about these things when I ride? Your brain learns how to ride by connecting bike inputs with results, push left - go left etc.
It's your first track day, start out by riding the same way you ride on the street, and as the day progresses so will your riding.

Sounds like some of the advice given here goes against your daily routine, if you try to implement new techniques, learn the track, and take advice from control riders (and you are not Rossi :)) your head will blow up by end of day. Go slow, one thing at a time, and listen to instructor feedback over anything you may hear on this board, they can actually see you ride.

P.S. I saw a segment on Speed a while ago where they locked bike's handlebars and tried to control it purely by shifting weight, no counter steering. They were able to make it turn a few degrees at a time, so yes it's all about counter steering.

Oh and I saved a lowside in T4 of PR by sticking my foot out motocross style and pushing the bike up. My Sidi boot got 50% less toe slider to prove it.
 

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You said you ride dirt bikes. There is a big difference in turning a sports bike versus turning a dirt bike. On your dirt bike you will at times "Pull" the outer bar to turn the direction you want to go. There are several reasons why dirt bikes function this way, design, position, dirt, etc. However, sport bikes are completely different in that you should be "Pushing" the bar in the direction you want to turn.
 
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