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Old 08-09-2014, 02:40 PM   #1
cottonwood OP
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Track Day Schools - Moto Skills

I've had the chance over the last 12 months to do three race schools & thought I'd share my thoughts. All three had value & depending on your style of learning any one could be very well worth the investment. One thing is for sure - I rode for 40 years with a poor understanding (unknowingly) of bike dynamics, braking, suspension, tire loading and other factors that would have improved my safety margin (a LOT) and my ability to ride faster in all weather conditions. I can't recommend enough making the time to advance your riding skills.

First was the California Superbike School. They have a well designed program which adheres to focused "chapters" to maximize retention. It's a good investment and much has already been written about it and available online. It is a well-oiled program; I felt more like "student 22" than I did at Ken Hill but the amount of information they pass is impressive.

Second was a Reg Pridmore event. He's a legend, nice guy and has great stories. The main focus of the classroom was line selection. He shared track and street examples which was nice.

Yesterday I did a one day event with Ken Hill & his crew at Miller. By far this was the most powerful learning day of my riding life. As compared to the "teacher centered" approach I experienced with the other programs this was "student centered": flexible, accountable for results and all with a great deal of enthusiasm. It turned out a half-day of braking techniques was exactly what I needed to improve my racing. I would have never signed up for a half-day braking class - but I sure am glad that's what they gave me. It allowed me to set up better for turns and control my speed better through the turn which made body position, throttle control and overall speed far better. Ken, and my coach George, asked great questions and gave me space to really absorb the information.

I've already signed up for another day with Ken Hill and will be telling anyone who'll listen about my great experience.

Be safe and go fast.
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Old 08-09-2014, 09:31 PM   #2
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Do you feel like the Ken Hill class was so valuable to you because you had previously taken the other two, or do you think you'd have gotten as much out of it had you taken the class with no prior instruction?
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Old 08-10-2014, 01:40 AM   #3
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A few years ago I had a class with Reg Pridmore at Miller as well, that was my first track day. I have my second the last week of this month with keigwins@thetrack at Sonoma Raceway. I hope its as enlightening as the Pridmore class, that one was worth its weight in gold. Even if you never ride a track, the skills are indispensable. [ass all the way off the seat, body craned over"you can lean more"] taught me how much you can really lean a bike. Now theres no excuse to run wide on a corner. That was my biggest hang up, now if I come in too hot (Perceived) I know it'l stick.
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Old 08-10-2014, 09:18 AM   #4
cottonwood OP
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Originally Posted by Benduro View Post
Do you feel like the Ken Hill class was so valuable to you because you had previously taken the other two, or do you think you'd have gotten as much out of it had you taken the class with no prior instruction?
Benduro - great question. The CSS school certainly has a robust marketing program and a ton of calendar/location choices. Prior to attending I had concerns about the concept of trail braking which seems a big part of the Ken Hill experience; alternating between braking and throttle in a turn seemed counter to suspension loading and high-side prevention. This was ignorance on my part & I'm very glad Ken & his team took the time needed to get me to a better spot.

It's a competitive space. Maybe it was because I was so humbled by the CSS experience that I was open to future coaching? Whatever the cause there's a 675R going faster around the track with a happier and safer rider on board. Now I have to figure out how to do a TT lap...
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Old 08-11-2014, 08:54 AM   #5
ZiaThunder
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Ken really is a fantastic instructor. I've been wanting to go ride with the Ridiculous group for a long time now. Not to mention Miller is my all time favorite place.
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:16 AM   #6
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Ken really is a fantastic instructor. I've been wanting to go ride with the Ridiculous group for a long time now. Not to mention Miller is my all time favorite place.
Yeah its up there for me too.

Just the issue of work schedule and class lining up.
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Old 08-11-2014, 08:52 PM   #7
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Ken and the rickdiculous crew are top notch
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