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track day tips (sort of)

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15 January 2013

Average rating: rating is 5

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I managed to do this to my scapula and collarbone at Snetterton this autumn. Luckily for me it healed well and I am back on a bike, although slightly tentative on right hand turns if truth be told. What happened was a guy two in front of me lost the front exiting montreal, the guy behind him went down, and i was the third and final domino. "What did we learn Palmer" says the CIA guy in Destroy After Reading. "I guess we learned not to do it again" he answers himself. Since I've had months to think about it I also came up with this, comments very appreciated. (i) Following too close is not a good idea on the road, nor is it a good idea on a track if you have no idea about the guy/gal in front nor the mechanical condition of their bike. You are not stalking Lorenzo around Aragon. (ii) Learn how to look. It's easy to avoid target fixation when everything is fine, but it's when the sh*t hits the fan that it actually matters. There is a reason the Californian Superbike School spends their entire level 2 on vision. In my case if I'd ignored the bikes in front and held my line I probably would have been fine. Instead I sat the bike up, braked hard, and stared at the carnage right up until hitting it. (iii) In most cases it's probably better to fall whilst holding on to the handlebars than not. I bailed out when i hit the bike in front, and all i manged to do was spear myself onto an outstretched arm and my shoulder took all the shock. Not really sure how you train yourself to fall to be honest.

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