So you arrived the racetrack, unloaded your motorcycle, attended a riders meeting, jumped on the bike, and rode out onto to the track. And then, before you knew it, you were sitting in your pit reflecting on a day that feels like it flew by in an instant.
More than likely, somewhere near the front of all the thoughts and emotions working through your mind, is one question: “How do I go faster?”
One option is spend a bunch of time at the track and try to mimic the “fast” guys, but that's only good if they actually know what they are doing; otherwise, you are just learning a bunch of bad habits.
If you are serious about exploring your full potential on the racetrack, a more practical and proven approach is to check out schools in your area. For me this involved a visit to the On Track Performance Riding School in Edmonton. Owned and operated by multi-time EMRA and Western Canadian Superbike Champion Justin Knapik, the school offers multiple classes including two levels of performance riding. On Track Performance also runs a dedicated race school designed to assist you in attaining the licence required to complete at events held by the EMRA and other road racing organizations.
A goal of racing in 2016 led me to sign up for the race school, and I could not be more pleased that I did. During the classroom session Justin’s natural and effective teaching style delivered concisely laid-out information in a manner that conveyed his passion for racing, learning and safety. The following day the classroom gave way to on-track lessons where a ratio of only 2 students per instructor, all expert level racers themselves, provided the perfect learning environment. As the course drew to a close, not only did I feel prepared to race, but my overall riding skills had taken a quantum leap forward.
So what did I learn? Over a two-day period Justin and his team covered so much information that it would be impossible to summarize it in this blog entry. What I can say is that after learning about items like throttle control, braking, visual cues, proper body position, and how to develop effective lines, my number one takeaway was the fact that before you can be fast, you first need to learn how to be smooth. Anyone with decent riding skills and no fear of crashing can hammer their way around the track, but if you want to be truly fast, you first need to master the fundamentals. Accomplishing this involves making the investment into proper training and then practicing everything you’ve learnt until it becomes second nature. During this time you will need to accept that the focus on skills will take precedence over being fast, but as you progress, the speed will materialize and you will realize your goals. While it may take longer and cost more than just thrashing your way around the track, the end result will definitely be worth it.
I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to thank Justin Knapik for inviting me to participate in the 2016 On Track Performance Race Licensing School. It was an incredible experience, which I highly recommend.
Wednesday, 24 August 2016 13:26 Published in From Street to Track with Patrick Lambie
LIMITED SPOTS AVAILABLE! Off-road training sensation Barry Morris coming to Trail Tours this week, July 19-21!
Trail Tours is pleased to announce that Australian Barry Morris of YouTube fame will be coming to Trail Tours this Tuesday to Thursday, July 19-21! Book now and receive $10 off!
Sunday, 17 July 2016 15:16 Published in News
We know that riding smoothly is one aspect of quicker lap times at the track and being safe on the street: Gentle, precise throttle inputs, fluid body movements and steady lean angles mid-turn are just some of the characteristics of what you'd consider a smooth rider. Jorge Lorenzo is a perfect example, with a glass-smooth riding style that looks like he is going much slower than he actually is.
Friday, 11 December 2015 12:16 Published in Andrew Trevitt
200 Female Riders to Decsend on Kananaskis, AB for 'Women Riding into the Future' conference and ride
"Women Riding into the Future" is the theme of a weekend of motorcycle riding, workshops, shopping and socializing that 200 female riders will participate in at the Stoney Nakoda Casino and Resort in Kananaskis, 45 minutes west of Calgary on the weekend of August 16 through 18. The event will also include a trade show, show and shine, plus there will be manufacturers there with motorcycles to test ride.
Tuesday, 21 May 2013 09:49 Published in Industry News
The Atlantic Roadracing League (ARL) is excited to announce its continued partnerships for the 2013 season. This past weekend saw the first High Performance Riding Academy take place on Saturday and Sunday brought to you by Honda Canada in conjunction with Pro Cycle. This marks the third year in which Honda Canada has supported the High Performance Riding Academy in association with Pro Cycle, which brings students from all over the Atlantic Provinces to the Atlantic Motorsport Park in Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia for the two day event.
Thursday, 16 May 2013 13:33 Published in Reports, Results & Points