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Old 07-08-2013, 05:11 AM   #765
Studly Adventurer
Joined: Nov 2008
Oddometer: 820
Originally Posted by Fajita Dave View Post

Every sportbike I've ridden with decent tires on it has been for the most part neutral while leaned over (it doesn't try to stand up or lean further). It does take more effort to counter-steer because of the rake angle and fighting gyroscopic forces but neutral once you let pressure off the bars to hold a lean angle. Its designed this way for racing to let the rider keep their arms relaxed with pressure off the bars right at the traction limits. The reason for this is motorcycles are inherently stable with the geometry thats built into the frame. If there are some meaty fists pushing on the handlebars it prevents the geometry from keeping the motorcycle stable especially at the limits of traction. Relaxed arms also give you a finer feel of the traction limits.

I suppose there are different impressions of neutral, relaxed, effort, pressure, etc. When I watch a flat tracker or GP rider I don't see relaxed. I see constant dynamics, with a rider making adjustments on the fly with his arms, hands, legs, body, brakes, throttle, everything is moving to keep the bike in a stable position relative to the many variable forces of speed, traction, centrifugal forces, etc. I suspect that there are times when meaty fists are needed to keep even a well setup race machine on track. I'm not a racer, so maybe I'm wrong, but I would think that at the limits of traction would be the last place a racer would be relaxed.

My point is, spirited riding requires constant input by the rider, it is a dynamic experience, there is not a neutral lean on a bike. In a turn, even if you release the bars with your hands, the body is applying an equal and opposite pressure, effort, balance, whatever you want to call it, to the natural centrifugal, gyroscopic forces that are trying to either right, or lay down the bike.

The video linked below is a great example of the dynamics of counter steering through a turn. I don't see any relaxed racer's arms.

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