Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Line Quality

The temperature rose on Tuesday. A quick 50 miles through dappled sunlight and changing surface conditions took the edge of a week loaded with deadlines and pressure.

As I become more familiar with my abilities and the bike, the ride is turning into something much different than it was in the fall. I’m hitting the corners with more confidence—pushing through, leaning hard, and twisting the throttle. There is a heightened sense of purpose. It’s exhilarating.

The challenges for me at this point are to find the best line in a curve, and when to shift in order to accelerate smoothly out of the other side. Then there’s the timing— when to lean, and when to shift my weight to the other side as I move through an ess curve.

So far I’ve been sticking to familiar roads—the ones that I know well in a car. I don’t want any surprises. I’m surprised to say that I haven’t been tempted to over do it on the speed. I like the thrill, but right now mastering the basics and understanding how the bike reacts are my biggest priorities. I'm looking for that perfect line.


irondad said...

Here's a tip on the timing for setting up for a corner.

SLOW- before the corner
LOOK- to the exit or as far as you
can see. Keep your nose pointed at the target. You look before you roll because you need to see if it's okay to roll and you need a target to roll towards.

ROLL- gently roll on the throttle.
Steady or slightly increasing throttle through the curve. Too much throttle can be a problem.

Notice that you haven't leaned the bike yet. All this happens before you lean.

PRESS- After everything else is done and the bike is stable, then press to initiate a lean.

Get this sequence down and the timing of the slowing so that you can roll before you lean, then work on more subtle things. You'll porbably find you need to start slowing much before you'd think.

Sorry if I'm telling you what you already know but you seemed to be asking for input!

Jonathan Ziegler said...


Thanks for the tip. I'm still new a this, and advice is always welcome.

I've managed to his this sequence just right a couple of times, but it hasn't become automatic yet. When it all goes right, it's a perfect feeling.


Steve Williams said...

Always good to ready those tips. Especially from a trusted master like Irondad. I try and practice those steps whenever I ride and they are more and more becoming automatic.

Unless I see a picture. Then all bets are off...