Topic: Where can I practice cornering?  (Read 2641 times)

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Offline slipgatecentral

Where can I practice cornering?
« on: 10/15/15 11:55AM »
Hey guys, need advice on this.

I want to learn how far I can lean on my bike, and what my traction limit is. I've been riding very moderately so far.

Really don't want to do this on Ortega, or Live Oak Cyn (those two roads hat are closest to me). And generally I don't like the idea of pushing my limits on public roads.

What are my options? I commute on this bike (Z1000), would it be smart to 'Take it to the track'? I know it involves some prep work and even getting there is a big deal, closest one I think is two hours away.

Any opinions are appreciated, thnx.

Offline OOTV

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #1 on: 10/15/15 12:08PM »
IMO, the track is the only appropriate place to did what you are looking to do. An empty lot is also a good alternative but doing this on public roads really isn't the best place for this. Yes, I'm guilty of riding "fast" on public roads, but I am riding well within my limits, not trying to expand them or testing the limits, so to speak. Lately, I have been considering going to the track as I really want to push a little more but do not want to risk doing this on public roads. YMMV
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Rogue

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #2 on: 10/15/15 12:26PM »
How far YOU can lean your bike and how far YOUR BIKE can lean are independent of each other.  How much traction you have will differ due to road and weather conditions.

You don't have to go fast to lean your bike a lot if you find a set of tight, decreasing radius corners.  Plenty of those around.  Palomar mountain, Malibu, Little Tujunga, GMR are what comes to mind that's close enough to the OC.

But if you mean to ask, how FAST can you ride or how far can you push your bike, then OOTV has the right idea:  the track. 

Offline Throttle Chopper

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #3 on: 10/15/15 01:10PM »
Agreed that testing limits is best saved for the track.  However riding your own bike means putting it at risk, you can prep all you like, but there is a possibility you may do more damage than sliders/covers can minimize, because physics.

There is a really close option, SoCal Supermoto that for $40 more than a comparable track day (currently $239), they throw in a bike for you to flog.  Another bonus, it's only 30-45 minutes away in picturesque Riverside.  They also have a promo to win a free session on FaceBook.  This beats the traditional track day route of bike prep, hauling your bike to the track, and hoping you don't lowside it or worse.  I plan on entering, or caving, and hitting SoCal soon!
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Offline M Gymkhaner

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #4 on: 10/15/15 01:25PM »
You can always come to a M Gymkhana day!  Not only will you have a freakin great time, but you will learn a ton about your own skill level!



Offline Snapshot

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #5 on: 10/17/15 09:39AM »
Those are good goals, Vadim.  You have a number of options.  I used to practice regularly on GMR, but stayed within the limits of lean and traction.

You won't be able to safely learn the limits at speed at anything but a track.  The Supermoto school is a great way to get your feet wet.  The instructors are good there.

If you can find a cheap dirtbike and put street tires on it, you'll have the option of going to Adams in Riverside and Grange' in Apple Valley.  Both are really cheap to do compared to other track days.

Another way to go would be to pick up a mini or 150 and race with M1GP.  They have a good school as well.  I learned a lot from racing with CMRRA.  It wasn't exactly cheap, but it saved my life on the street after I learned that a slide isn't a crash.

M-Gymkhana is another way to go, but I'd use something easier to control than the 1000.

Luck,

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Offline thepretender

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #6 on: 10/17/15 10:02AM »
It's safe to say that on clean dry roads your limited by your brain and skill level more than traction. As others have said a track with instructors is the best option but fund can be hard to find for this.

You will have to do it the old fashioned read some books and watch some films on riding and techniques and go out a practice what you have learned.

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Scott

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #7 on: 10/17/15 11:10AM »
My advice is to watch that ^ then go hit a low crowd volume, very long canyon or mountain road. My suggestion would be to ride from the base of the 38 (E Lugonia Rd) all the way across and down the 18 (if it's open). Rarely do you see guys on motorcycles pushing the limits like on ACH and it's not nearly the death trap that Ortega is. You'll get a good varying degree of corners (tight stuff to big and fast), miles and miles so you can get into a good groove, areas where you'll have to check-up in a little town were you can take that little mental break and analys your body position and tactics, then back at it after the town. Or, do the same thing on the 33 out of Venture. It's a great road with "predictable" corners (meaning it doesn't have to many blind decreasing radius corners sneaking up on you) that offer great visability through the full corner.

Then, take a class with Snapshot or someone else that will give you small corrections in your body position or technique here or there. Then, repeat step one a few dozen more times (including watching the video). Then step two again, step one a few dozen times.... Just keep doing that for the rest of your life basically.

I promise you, you will get better at a surprisingly quick rate.

Oh... Just re-read your OG post... Ya... Test those limits at a track unless you have a death wish.
« Last Edit: 10/17/15 11:14AM by Scott »

Offline HeyNow

Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #8 on: 10/17/15 12:29PM »
You don't really learn what your exact traction limit is unless you exceed it, so I'd be careful w/that goal ;) j/k

Just my 2c, but I don't think going to the track is the best way to do it. Too many distractions there for just practicing coming from 'moderate riding'.  I would just pick a clean canyon road and ride it there (GMR on weekday or 'off peak hrs' is probably a good choice) focusing on technique rather than speed. It's probably best if you have a really good rider leading at a moderate speed so you can observe what lines they take, body positioning, etc. Once your technique gets better you can pick up a little more speed. Rinse and repeat. I could totally benefit from something like that too ;)

If you do go to the track I would recommend going to a riding school (like California Superbike) and not just a track day.


Offline M Gymkhaner

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #9 on: 10/19/15 09:24AM »
As much as you can learn on a track day or with superbike school is great!  But I will say this.....

Riding on a race track is an entirely different type of riding and 80-90% of it is only geared towards riding ON A RACETRACK. 

you've got to ride everything and in every type of riding in order to be a complete rider.  But as it relates to the post topic.  Finding the limits of lean angle on your bike can be found in any parking lot near you with a couple of hours.  At speed greater than 40mph, at a racetrack is the only other place that you should attempt to find the limit of lean. 

DO NOT DO it in the canyons......  Again..... DO NOT DO it in the canyons.

Offline cooligan

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #10 on: 10/19/15 12:51PM »
+1000 for learning how to corner on a supermoto. You say you want to "learn how far I can lean on my bike, and what my traction limit is". Start at supermoto.

I got my first motorcycle 3 years ago and it was a supermoto (and still is). Six months after riding on the street, I got bored with taking corners on the streets. So I started going to the kart track, and I was scraping pegs on my first lap. Talk about lean angle and traction limit!

Supermoto at Adams track requires no tech inspection, so long as you ride a maintained-well bike that doesnt leak or fall apart on the tarmac.

Additionally, supermoto can be as fast or as slow as you want it to be, obviously depending on how you progress. Plus you get the advantage of veteran riders onsite to give you tips & tricks to better cornering. I owe a great deal of my improved riding to a few guys here on OCMOTO (hansking, jeff/snapshot, kenneth, breakdirt, et al). They push hard on the track and make it look good, so it only made me wanna ride as well as they do, though I'm still not there.

Practicing corners on the street or in a parking lot is a no-no for me. I learned early on that surface temperature, surface smoothness/roughness and tire temperature all play a role in the level of tire traction you want to experience. I couldnt learn to safely corner at any parking lot or highway.

Lastly, it's addicting. I mean ADDICTING. I rarely ride on the street anymore; 3 times this whole year (maybe).

All that and you get to unintentionally discover how to "back-it-in" like i did   :17:


Offline slipgatecentral

Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #11 on: 10/19/15 02:12PM »
Awesome, so much great input, thanks everybody!

I've been at adams motorsports twice, both for supermoto and sportbike fundamentials, loved it, would probably go again. But there's so much difference between canyon riding and supermoto track, besides, cornering technique on sumo bikes somewhat backwards, all that counterweighting and foot down, I was very confused with it first time I tried.


Reading all the answers, looks like the best option would be going to one of these empty highways west of LA, with good visibility and clean pavement.

I'm also seriously considering gymhkhana but not before I install some decent protection on the bike.

Offline ViciousCycle

Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #12 on: 10/19/15 06:56PM »
I want to learn how far I can lean on my bike, and what my traction limit is.

Forget about achieving max lean angle anywhere but the track. On the street (including canyons), practice body positioning -- hanging off -- which decreases lean angle. Which is what you want to maximize the tire's contact patch on the streets. Don't let a patch of dirt put you in an early grave.

I'm betting you can drag knee without reaching the lean limit on a Z1000. First get some frame sliders, then practice getting a knee down in a grippy parking lot, where you are going at a relatively safe speed.

You don't really learn what your exact traction limit is unless you exceed it, so I'd be careful w/that goal ;) j/k

DO NOT DO it in the canyons......  Again..... DO NOT DO it in the canyons.

« Last Edit: 10/19/15 07:00PM by ViciousCycle »

Offline luciano136

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #13 on: 10/19/15 09:47PM »

I want to take the level 1 at CA superbike school.  Wanna go :) ?  All my friends are too boring to do it LOL

Hey guys, need advice on this.

I want to learn how far I can lean on my bike, and what my traction limit is. I've been riding very moderately so far.

Really don't want to do this on Ortega, or Live Oak Cyn (those two roads hat are closest to me). And generally I don't like the idea of pushing my limits on public roads.

What are my options? I commute on this bike (Z1000), would it be smart to 'Take it to the track'? I know it involves some prep work and even getting there is a big deal, closest one I think is two hours away.

Any opinions are appreciated, thnx.

Offline M Gymkhaner

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #14 on: 10/20/15 08:40AM »
I'm also seriously considering gymhkhana but not before I install some decent protection on the bike.

Don't be afraid of gymkhana, people always assume they're gonna dump their bikes and destroy everything, but think about it.... You're going slower (generally) then you would be on the street, and if you ever feel like you're gonna fall over..... just stand the bike up and hit a cone or two.  lol  I really think the problem people have with motogymkhana is that they'll look like they can't ride a bike well, (which in truth, most people cannot) but they feel like they'll get exposed. lol :5:

Both these are from M Gymkhana days

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Offline slipgatecentral

Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #15 on: 10/20/15 10:18AM »
I'm also seriously considering gymhkhana but not before I install some decent protection on the bike.

Don't be afraid of gymkhana, people always assume they're gonna dump their bikes and destroy everything, but think about it.... You're going slower (generally) then you would be on the street, and if you ever feel like you're gonna fall over..... just stand the bike up and hit a cone or two.  lol  I really think the problem people have with motogymkhana is that they'll look like they can't ride a bike well, (which in truth, most people cannot) but they feel like they'll get exposed. lol :5:

Both these are from M Gymkhana days

https://instagram.com/p/7Wtg4BGQOH/

https://instagram.com/p/6yoEyImQOO/

Not really afraid of it, I actually wanted to get deeper into it, but my previous bikes weren't really good for this kind of riding (adv style bikes). Now since I have a much more manageable street bike, I want to try this again. Also, lack of empty parking lots around Irvine doesn't help. Heard you guys use Fullerton DMV parking lot on weekends?

Offline r0ckrat

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #16 on: 10/20/15 11:37AM »
The BRC course is set up in Costa Mesa off Merrimac at Orange Coast College...

Offline slipgatecentral

Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #17 on: 10/20/15 02:12PM »
The BRC course is set up in Costa Mesa off Merrimac at Orange Coast College...

This here? I think I can even see the layout :D
I'll check it out, thanks.


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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #18 on: 10/20/15 02:32PM »
Yes, and yes you can. I've gone by a few times and seen them holding classes.

Offline 1fastrider

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Re: Where can I practice cornering?
« Reply #19 on: 10/20/15 03:19PM »
I want to take the level 1 at CA superbike school.  Wanna go :) ?  All my friends are too boring to do it LOL
I took it a million years ago and wasn't impressed even as beginner at the time. I did like (and plan to go back to) Jason Pridmore's STAR school. Hopefully in the spring.
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