Learning to Lean!

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LadyRider600rr
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Learning to Lean!

#1 Post by LadyRider600rr » Wed Nov 23, 2011 4:40 pm

I am so excited!!!!

When I first started learning to ride about 3 years ago, my biggest problem was turning and leaning. I did not trust my bike in conjunction with throttle and gravity. I could not get the hang of the concept that throttle+lean in a corner= staying on two wheels. So I could not make a turn without being wobbly and scared. At some point about a year ago, I finally think I realized that (for me anyway) it is about trust.

I needed to trust what my bike was capable of. I needed to learn that as long as I stayed on the throttle and trusted that the bike would stay on its wheels through the corner, that it was capable of going much lower than what I was allowing it to do. So in the last year I have been getting much lower in corners (although I have found right turns are still much harder for me than the left)....

In Ripon, there is a sweeping turn on Doak st that I take on my way home and to work every day and as long as there are no cars I get some speed and momentum and I feel like a racer everytime. Everyday i get a little lower. Today, I even scraped my footpegs! Which almost made me crash because i didn't know i was that low but the point is, I am getting lower so I had Dan take pictures of me and I am putting them on face book. I am pretty proud of myself. I never would have been able to get this low a year ago. (I know that i have nothing on your racer chicks) But for me this is big progress. This makes me decide that when (and i do mean 'when') I rebuild another streetbike. Roxie is going to be turned into a track bike and I am going to try to start racing. Now that I know i can get lower than I have before. I know i need a lot more practice. anyway. I am really excited. I had to post and tell someone. This was a big learning experience for me. And for those of you who still have trouble. Learn to trust that your machine is capable of things you wouldn't imagine!
Jessica Haverty


"Four wheels move the body, two wheels move the soul."

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NinjaMama
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#2 Post by NinjaMama » Wed Nov 23, 2011 7:03 pm

I know you probably know this but, there's a big difference in doing "Trackdays" and "Racing". It takes years to move up from C-group to A-group doing trackdays. (Even if you hit up every trackday you can in a year, it's unlikely. But most people have to work for a living.) Once you've hit that class, then you can consider actually moving up to "Racing".
Congratulations on getting low on your bike though. It does take a ton of trust that your bike (and gravity) can do it and allow yourself to keep pouring on the throttle through a corner. There's nothing like the feeling of sweeping through a nice curve and feeling the "G's" pushing you onto the saddle. But it does take confidence.
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LadyRider600rr
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#3 Post by LadyRider600rr » Wed Nov 23, 2011 7:17 pm

Yes you are right. THere is a big difference. I do know. But I do want to race. I know I need to start with track days but i have always wanted to race. When I first started riding, I was always taken with Leslie Porterfield. I just thought she was something else. And I saw that really young 16 year old win a race at Infineon last year I think and I just would really love to race someday. But I realize I really need to do track days and a lot of them before I even think about racing. It would be cool though, I dont know if i will ever get there but it is a little dream I have.
Jessica Haverty


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NinjaTurtle
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#4 Post by NinjaTurtle » Wed Nov 23, 2011 9:33 pm

I think it would be fun to go on some track days. That is if I can get a bike that runs. But then again I might need an excuse for you going faster than me.

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Re: Learning to Lean!

#5 Post by LadyRider600rr » Wed Nov 23, 2011 9:56 pm

I like Donatella the NinjaTurtle. I also like you not being able to catch up with me. So I say, keep her and do a track day with me. Good for my confidence. Especially when you bought her and said "I can't wait to show you how my old ZX7 can make your 600rr eat dust."
Jessica Haverty


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CrashDummy
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#6 Post by CrashDummy » Thu Nov 24, 2011 3:22 pm

LadyRider600rr wrote: I just thought she was something else. And I saw that really young 16 year old win a race at Infineon last year I think and I just would really love to race someday. But I realize I really need to do track days and a lot of them before I even think about racing. It would be cool though, I dont know if i will ever get there but it is a little dream I have.
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Next year she plans to move up to the Daytona SportBike class.
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#7 Post by Motomom » Sun Nov 27, 2011 8:06 pm

LadyRider600rr wrote:I am so excited!!!!.... Everyday i get a little lower. Today, I even scraped my footpegs!
Congrats Jessica!!! I can hear the excitement as I read your post and must say that I wish I had that confidence to have achieved what you have. You are my hero!! :-)
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#8 Post by Fanny Fligurl » Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:56 am

Glad you're feeling comfortable, as we all need to maintain a special relationship with our machines.

Think about raising your bike back up to stock height, as scraping hard parts is not necessarily a good way to gauge your lean angle. Then start yourself a "track season piggy bank" so you're ready to dice it up come Spring!

Be safe out there girlie.
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#9 Post by HoneyBadger » Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:41 am

Jess,

It's always great to find yourself making progress, and figuring out something that had been evading you in your riding! Learning to trust the machine can make a huge difference in what you will feel comfortable (or not) doing on two.

Now that you're trusting your bike more, it's probably time to work on getting that bike back up to height. Scraping hard bits can be a bit exciting, but it's also a very easy way to crash, especially when body positioning isn't there to recoup the bike when the hard bits start to hold the bike up and then your traction is reduced as your contact patch is shrunk.

Racing is a cool goal - I know I also intend to at least manage some local club level racing (AFM) at some point. That is going to take a lot of time, effort, and money since the only way to get racing skills is to make it to trackdays and build those skills. Racing and track riding are VERY different than riding on the street - while some things may cross over, many of the skills required for each type of riding are very different. I would caution you now to not put the two together, and don't compare street anything to track riding.

But now that you're having even more fun on the bike, you can join me in saving up a few pennies at a time for trackdays this summer!! Keep working on that confidence, sounds like you've made a connection with Roxie!
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LadyRider600rr
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Re: Learning to Lean!

#10 Post by LadyRider600rr » Tue Nov 29, 2011 12:31 pm

motomom7 wrote:
LadyRider600rr wrote:I am so excited!!!!.... Everyday i get a little lower. Today, I even scraped my footpegs!
Congrats Jessica!!! I can hear the excitement as I read your post and must say that I wish I had that confidence to have achieved what you have. You are my hero!! :-)
Thanks!!! I wouldn't call myself a hero, I still have a LOT of room for improvement! lol. But I love how it feels. confidence is really important and so is (i have found) understanding how the throttle is your friend in a corner and lean. I used to get so scared going around turns and thought I needed to lay off the throttle, but now I understand how it works, and keep steady through the curve on my throttle and i dont wobble up and down anymore. I love it now....but my problem is I am not as good at right curves.

Amy,

I have finally decided its time to lift it back up. After brain surgery my bike is coming apart. I am replacing the head bearings, and also installing a turnbuckle lowering link. Then I am taking it to one of Dan's friend's to have the sag and suspension worked on so that I can still touch the ground. The turnbuckle will let me choose a height just below stock where I can still touch. I decided its time when i scraped my footpegs because I realized that I can lean more I just cant with how low i am. But I still need to keep my confidence by being able to touch the ground. So I think the turnbuckle is the best bet. What do you think?

AJ,

yes when I scraped my footpeg It startled me and I got a little wobbly and that was the moment I decided its time to raise it back up. I am actually excited to have it lifted back up and see how much better it handles. I jsut really am nervous about how it will effect my confidence.

I agree with what you're saying about not comparing the street and the track, etc. I have always wanted to get into racing since i started riding....and I always wanted to do a track day but never felt comfortable with it until now. And now I cant until I get it raised back up and everything. But I do plan on doing a lot of track days before I even think about trying to race. It is just something I have always really been interested in doing...but I realize its a romantic goal. lol. But now that I feel like I am so much more comfortable with my bike and my skills than I used to be, I think I am ready to start trying track days.


And yes! I am definitely down for some track days this summer!!!!!! Im hoping by then I will have my new bike and have roxie converted into a track by only so that I don't worry about wrecking my only bike. and my only mode of transportation. lol. I am terrified I will wreck and then not have a bike!!!!!!!!

Anyway. Thanks for all your responses ladies!
Jessica Haverty


"Four wheels move the body, two wheels move the soul."

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Re: Learning to Lean!

#11 Post by sexy_raiderette » Sat Dec 17, 2011 10:35 am

Very cool Jessica! Just keep the rubber side down ;-)
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