Victoria Supermoto’s 2017 season is “only” 5 months away, so it’s on my mind a lot.
I only really have one and a half seasons under my belt, so I am still working on things, and remember very clearly what it’s like to be completely new to supermoto.
You can learn a lot on the track, and as an added bonus, you can do lots of things that would get your bike taken away on the road.
If you’re thinking about getting out to the track, I highly recommend that you just go out and do it. Victoria Supermoto is probably the easiest and most cost effective way to get started on track days and racing.
New to Victoria Supermoto?
Advice from a riding instructor who remembers being new*
1)Don’t bother trying to back it in on the turns.
Start by just focusing on getting around the track smoothly, speed will come, and backing it in is something that will take plenty of time if you want to do it right.
Most people riding with us don’t back it in, and the ones that do, only do it occasionally.
2)The front brake is your friend.
Smooth, but firm application of the front brake with get you slowed down for the turns. The rear brake does have some value, but for the most part can be ignored. I recommend not using the rear brake at all to start off with.
3)Look where you want to go.
This is constantly repeated no matter what kind of motorcycling you are doing, because it is easily the most important rule of riding.
Don’t look at the turn, look through the turn, look to where you want to be at the end of the turn, and keep your eyes up.
Don’t stare down at the pavement in the turns. You won’t have balance, confidence, or fun.
Don’t focus on the person in front of you, you will find yourself feeling stuck behind them, and if they make a mistake, so will you. Look past them and around them. This will open up your passing opportunities.
4)Be aware of your surroundings.
Not everyone on the track is going to be predictable, especially new riders. Don’t follow too closely, and try to pick a line and stick to it. Sometimes riders will pick different, converging lines through a turn. This has been a cause of several crashes for me. Be aware of this, and try to adjust your lines accordingly for the next turn.
None of us are perfect, so do your best and keep on your toes.
5)Track nights aren’t races.
In the beginning, you won’t be the fastest one on the track, and you will probably be holding some people up. Don’t worry about it, just hold your line, and let them pass you.
It is possible for someone to keep faster riders behind them simply by being at the front of the line in a turn and being able to get on the throttle first.
If you find that you are fighting to hold your place, or that you’re creating a bit of a log jam, I recommend continuing to hold your line, only don’t accelerate as hard out of the a turn. This allows the faster people to pass you without getting frustrated, so that you can follow them and figure out why they are faster.
6)If you have questions, just ask.
Most people at the track are really friendly, and not afraid to share tips and advice.
Jeremy Friesen #555
Vancouver Island Motorcycle School
* This is my personal advice as a rider, not Victoria Supermoto rules, or policy.
Good ,solid point Jeremy . I was wondering when someone would do this. I think some of the faster riders should even run a SUMO school. Why not ?! It would be a benefit all round .