Road riding tips: California Superbike School CEO, Steve Brouggy talks about location on the road when entering a turn.
This post is part 2 of 2.
In the last post we talked about location influencing turn-in point, as well as common mistakes riders make and why they make them. Now we look at fixing these mistakes and draw upon general concepts to assist us with our location on the road!
It really is as simple as realizing that if it is true that if you go in early to a corner, you end up wide…then the opposite of that must also be true. Meaning, that if you go in later (or closer to the corner), you will exit tighter. Make sense?
How late that turn entry is and what is required from you at that point is something that will vary from corner to corner and rider to rider, but as with all things motorcycling, there are some general concepts we can draw upon. Which is a good thing, because if you think about it, there are almost limitless possibilities of where you could start a corner from and each one will have a different result in terms of what line you end up on.
Firstly, let us decide what we will call the location of where you enter the corner from. Using Mr Code’s vernacular, the best terminology is to refer to this as your “Turn Point” (or TP).
Your TP will ultimately govern what line you end up on and is therefore critical to get right if you want the rest of the corner to work out. So how do you measure it?
How do you know you’ve used a good TP and you are on a good line?
A successful TP can be measured how it allows you to do the following three things:
1. Get back on the throttle ASAP.
2. Steer the bike once.
3. Straighten out the corner as much as possible.
If you can do the above, then your chosen TP is a good place to enter a turn from, and the resultant line can be considered a good one. Although you may not get all three perfect, the chances are that if one of them is really not good, the other two will also be less than ideal.
So, going back to our experience of when you entered the turn too early…
Let’s measure that against the 3 attributes of a good TP.
– When you entered too early, did you get back on the throttle early, or did you find you were off the gas for a very long time?
– Were you able to steer it just the once, or did you have to make corrections as you went through the turn to keep the bike on its line?
– Was the corner as straight as possible (meaning the bike was upright for a longer period of time) or did you find you had to carry a lot of lean angle late in the turn?
OK. So now you’ve recognized that. Good. Now what would you have to do to get a better line around that corner? Perhaps move your TP a little later?
Is that worth a try? I think it is…
One last thing before I send you off to try this. I’m sure some of you will be wondering what happens if you turn in too late. If you turn in too late, you will not be able to get back to the inside of the turn (your apex) and will run a wide line throughout the entirecorner.
Whilst this is not what you might want, it is better to have this result than to go in too early and find yourself heading toward the scenery on the wrong line completely. Somewhere between what you got when you turned in too early and when you turned in too late…allowing you to get the three things listed above…is the right place for you to turn.
Get the idea? Now, do not read another word. Do not speak to another person. Do not do anything else. Just go and get on your motorcycle and try entering the same corner from a different TP and see what you get. You might be pleasantly surprised with the results…
Good luck with your riding.
-Steve Brouggy, California Superbike School CEO.