Author 20201115 - American SuperCamp  (Read 709 times)

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  • Offline aardvark9   us

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    Offline aardvark9

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    • Bike: D765 (US) & STRS
    • City / Town: Petaluma, California
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    • Country: us
    20201115 - American SuperCamp
    on: November 15, 2020, 09:04:49 pm
    November 15, 2020, 09:04:49 pm
    As many of you who follow racing may already know, flat track training is very popular with road racers.  Rossi has a permanent track just outside his house, Kenny Roberts (Sr.) came from flat track riding, and a slew of current top ranking national and world level riders train that way.

    American SuperCamp is a traveling 2-day camp with different levels of riding (racer and non-racer) and the price is very reasonable and the event in my region was about 20 minutes from my home so I thought I'd give it a try.  My track coach has also recommended it as well.  Upon arrival I was very pleasantly surprised to learn who the attending coaches would be:  Cameron Petersen (MotoAmerica Super Stock 1000 winner 2020), Jake Gagne (MotoAmerica 2020 Superbike 2nd place championship, behind Cameron Baubier), and Jayson Uribe, multiple regional racing champ many times over.  All 3 raced in the last round of MotoAmerica at Laguna Seca.  I got to spend a good amount of time chatting with all 3 of them and they are all super nice and supportive as well as demonstrating levels of bike control that I can only dream of!  The camp provides dirt bike riding gear if you don't have it as well as prepped Yamaha TTR-125s with a dirt front and road rear tires.  We were broken into 3 groups, mostly based on dirt experience.  Since I've not ridden dirt in 15+ years, they put me in the intermediate group.  Even while riding dirt, I'd never done deliberate flat-track type of sliding before so this was very new to me.  My buddy who came along actually got the most-improved award for the day resulting in a free Dunlop tire and was gifted a steel toe for the end of the riding sessions on the 2nd day.

    I'm still trying to piece together just how flat track riding improves road riding but I am starting to come up with a few thoughts.  Probably the biggest thing is building a comfort level with the bike being loose beneath you and realizing that doesn't have to result in a crash.  When the coaches ride, it really illustrates just how critical respecting the slow point of the corner is.  For those who ride track, you've probably heard of this.  The more you can slow the bike, the easier it is to get it turned so you can drive harder out of the corner; to see the coaches do this it's startling just how slow they are at the slow point.  For those of us looking to improve, that slow point seems interminably long and it's natural to get back to the throttle too soon which causes you to run wide.  Respecting the slow point and demonstrating patience is key!  BTW, this is a skill that will get you a long way on street riding with any type of bike.  The flat track training also helps you to build a feel for when the bike is going to get loose and being on dirt at 15 - 25 mph if you get it wrong, it's not going to destroy you.  It's also interesting to see just how much you can control a bike with the rear brake.  The biggest thing though, at this point, is that it's a ton of fun.  I can attest to the fact that it's a lot more fun to ride a slow bike fast than a fast bike slow.  If you have the chance, I highly recommend checking it out.

    Cam Petersen, Jayson Uribe, Jake Gagne, myself, and one of my regular track buddies who also does a lot of dirt riding.

    Day 1, Demo 1: - Cam demonstrates a nice stoppie at the end
    Day 1, Demo 2:
    Day 2, Group 1 (the faster group) toward the end of the day:
    Last Edit: November 15, 2020, 09:07:24 pm by aardvark9