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Road Racing: Pro Motorcycle Tips


You’ve mastered the basics: long rides, weekend bike trips, and grasp of terrain and weather conditions. You love your motorcycle, so what’s next? Speed. But before you race off into the sunset, skim our list of considerations to ride like a pro.

Improve Your Stance

Many riders don’t bend enough at the waist. Lower your center of gravity by dropping your upper body toward the fuel tank. This provides your front. Test your bend by tying a shoelace from your jacket zipper to the ignition key and take a ride. After, measure how far your jacket has unzipped, and adjust position accordingly.

Crouching improves aerodynamics. Practice shorter distances first, lengthening your rides as comfort and flexibility improve.

Cornering

Even for the pros, tight corners are difficult. Honing this tactic will provide a distinct racing advantage, but there’s an art to taking the curve. It’s called the “Give and Take.” Give up a little speed on the bend, to take control of the turn. Rushing corners increases the chance of toppling over and fishtailing. Instead, save your speed, accelerating out of the turn instead of into it.

Hack: Gear Shift

You’ve missed a gear shift. What do you do? Most riders downshift, thinking this will correct the problem. Instead, shift up. Trading short-term speed for greater control sets you up for better race positioning.

Suspension Adjustments

Bike suspension has a direct impact on your speed. To gain an edge, explore chassis and suspension adjustments. Your size and build will factor into fit and comfort. What's right for someone else likely isn't right for you, so test various settings.

As always, observe traffic laws, and ride within your skill level. Practice in controlled environments before taking it to the road. Be safe, and enjoy your ride.

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