California Superbike School.

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California Superbike School.

Post  ellie on Thu Mar 27 2014, 10:17

First topic message reminder :

Here


Anybody been on one of their training days?  They look awesome but are expensive.
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Re: California Superbike School.

Post  mrfrance on Sat Jul 26 2014, 07:08

Great write up! Sounds like a very informative course and well worth the money.

Glad you found it useful

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Re: California Superbike School.

Post  Eddie990 on Sat Jul 26 2014, 08:42

Cheers, still got a bit to write but it was a great day. Hard work and mentally tiring but wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anybody.

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Re: California Superbike School.

Post  Eddie990 on Sat Jul 26 2014, 12:45

Not much to write about drill #4, it was called 'Wide Vision' and was basically the same as 3 but making a concious effort to use our peripheral vision to tell us where we were on track and in relation to everything/everybody else around us.
Bit of a weird one this, because you're not so tightly focussed on the narrow line that the bike is taking it had the effect of changing your perception of the speed you were doing. Everything seemed to slow down but when the coach pulled me in for the de-brief he said I had been going a lot smoother and quicker than earlier in the day! Result!

However, I'm still steering the bike 'like a f**kin' crosser' and pushing it down into corners, meaning I'm leaning it over far more than I need to and my feet stick too far out on the pegs. Here was me thinking my boots were going down coz I was riding like a hero Laughing 

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Re: California Superbike School.

Post  Eddie990 on Sat Jul 26 2014, 15:10

Was getting a bit knackered by this point but back in the classroom for Drill 5 - 'The Pick Up'.

This started with a demonstration on a static bike in the garages, the correct way to hang off the bike and how to lock your lower body to free up your arms for steering, feel and fine throttle control.
Dead interesting, whether you have both cheeks off the seat, one or none, the principles are the same. When going through a corner all of your body weight should be supported by your outer thigh, and if you are going to hang off, make sure your spine stays parallel to the bike (imagine if viewed from above).
Once we had all tried the positions on the bike and had the coach correct our posture it was back to the classroom to discuss what this ‘locking on’ can do for us. If done correctly it means that there is no weight on your wrists at all and your arms remain loose and free to feel for how much brake you’re using and allows you apply the correct force to turn the bike into the corner. In level 1 we learned the ‘quick turn’ to firmly and quickly steer the bike onto the desired line INTO a bend, in this drill we applied a similar principle to EXIT the bend.

If your body is positioned correctly, we can stay hung of the inside of the bike whilst quickly steering it upright and applying maximum throttle much, much sooner as the bike is now on the fat bit of the tyre earlier when exiting a bend. We were told to only try practising this drill on the 2 corners on track which opened out onto the straights so we were concentrating on the exit of the bend and not the entry to another. There were a few slides of GP riders as extreme examples of this, Pedrosa is the easiest to see using it.
The instructor explained that another benefit of the ‘pick-up/throttle on’ is that most rear wheel slides happen when applying power, using this technique, when these slides happen you are already doing the things needed to correct the slide i.e. steering into the slide and NOT closing the throttle. Sounds good in theory but I thought I would give the ‘practice’ part of controlling slides a miss…..

Immediately before going out on track for the last time we were taken to one side for a separate brief. As it was the end of the day due to tired bodies, tired tyres and some ‘excitable riding’ there had been two crashes during another group’s session. The instructors asked us to make sure they were the last two crashes of the day and ride safely.
So back out of the pits and allowed to use as many gears and as much braking as we liked I spent the first couple of laps just trying the ‘hanging off’ stuff and attempting to put all I had learned during the day together. I was feeling much more confident and the bike really stable compared to the first session this morning, so started to try the pick-up drill. Another leap forward, this is bloody brilliant! Why haven’t I been doing this for years! The corners at the end of both straights suddenly started to approach a whole lot quicker and I had to readjust my braking markers to suit. I was absolutely loving it!
Going round the hairpin corner onto the back straight I push the bike up hard and get a bit too merry with the throttle, the back end starts to slide and I’ve got juuust enough time to think ‘Ooooh S**T! This will not end well...’ before the bike regains grip with almost no fuss and fires me down the straight very, very quickly. I’d given myself a bit of a fright so decided to take the warning and back off a bit for the rest of the session. I heard the coaches Ducati Pantigirdle making a racket behind me, then he blasted past and I waited for the hand signals for pointers and advice. All I received was a big thumbs up before he disappeared after his next student! Brilliant!

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Anybody thinking about doing this course and wondering about the high cost, stop mucking about! Save your pennies, sell your body and eat beans on toast for a few months. It’s by far the highest quality training I’ve ever had, on road, off road or track. The techniques, whilst not all applicable for road riding, give you so many options if situations and potential accidents occur that they WILL rescue you. Just the other day I came round a corner up here in Shetland to find what looked like a dead sheep right on my intended line, no panic, you’ve plenty of space, look further over and push the inside bar a little harder. Safely round with room to spare without braking, closing the throttle or upsetting the bike at all.

My thoughts are if it saves me from crashing just once then it’s paid for itself. The extra enjoyment I get out of my riding now is just an added bonus.

I'll be booking up for level 3 as soon as possible, would be great if we could get a group of us going. I'll pop a thread up on the board when I book.

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