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Before doing a track day, I highly recommend having someone that knows what they are doing look at your suspension. Two nearly identical crashes going wide followed by adjustment and tighter lines in proof


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Ditchard the High Maintenance Squirrel
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Eh. Could have also been technique, poor throttle input, letting off the brakes too soon, etc etc etc. I have probably done 20-30 track days on various bikes with bone stock suspension that wasn't touched by anybody...with no issues.
 

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Eh. Could have also been technique, poor throttle input, letting off the brakes too soon, etc etc etc. I have probably done 20-30 track days on various bikes with bone stock suspension that wasn't touched by anybody...with no issues.

My initial guess was the nut behind the throttle, but after two crashes followed by some balancing of the suspension I was able to hold those lines much better and safer. The suspension was stock but out of whack. I truly think there is something to this and not just mind or lack thereof over matter



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My initial guess was the nut behind the throttle, but after two crashes followed by some balancing of the suspension I was able to hold those lines much better and safer. The suspension was stock but out of whack. I truly think there is something to this and not just mind or lack thereof over matter
When was the last time you had the forks and shock serviced? Looks like you have Superman era bike...
 

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Suspension has little to do with it.

As an example, thanks to a shitty suspension guy and me not knowing enough, I did 4 race weekends with no fork oil in one leg of my forks. I was chasing suspension problems every weekend, yet still managed to turn some of the fastest amateur lap times every weekend, didn't crash once, and won two championships. Once I got my suspension issues sorted, which unfortunately happened to be my last weekend I actually raced, I started turning expert times as an amateur.

Suspension issues can be ridden around until you get to the sharp end of the expert grip, and rarely cause a crash, unless a suspension component breaks or something.
 

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Ditchard the High Maintenance Squirrel
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Suspension has little to do with it.

As an example, thanks to a shitty suspension guy and me not knowing enough, I did 4 race weekends with no fork oil in one leg of my forks. I was chasing suspension problems every weekend, yet still managed to turn some of the fastest amateur lap times every weekend, didn't crash once, and won two championships. Once I got my suspension issues sorted, which unfortunately happened to be my last weekend I actually raced, I started turning expert times as an amateur.

Suspension issues can be ridden around until you get to the sharp end of the expert grip, and rarely cause a crash, unless a suspension component breaks or something.
:stupid

I landed on 3 Expert Podiums (out of 4 races) riding the 675 with 0.85 springs in it (it was sprung for somebody who weighed over 100lbs less than I did).

Suspension issues rarely, rarely, rarely ever actually result in a crash. With the exception being a catastrophic failure like a shock coming unbolted or linkage breaking or something.
 

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Chubby Chaser
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Forks recently. Shocks never. That might have something to do with to the unbalanced nature of the suspension. Adjusting helped. A lot


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Not likely. Old oil doesn't necessarily do that. Old old fades faster when it gets heated up, mind you we are talking a much higher pace than beginning trackday speeds. I'm assuming based on what you said in your first post this is your first start riding on track.

As others have said, and you mentioned earlier the crash was most likely caused by an error in your inputs on the bike. As bad as you think your suspension was, you could have pulled off track, had an expert racer hop on the bike who has never been on it before and cut laps much faster than you were going.

Having the suspension setup properly is absolutely important, but more importantly is don't immediately start pointing to the bike as the scapegoat of the crash you had unless something obviously failed/broke on it causing you to go down.
 

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Ditchard the High Maintenance Squirrel
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Not likely. Old oil doesn't necessarily do that. Old old fades faster when it gets heated up, mind you we are talking a much higher pace than beginning trackday speeds. I'm assuming based on what you said in your first post this is your first start riding on track.

As others have said, and you mentioned earlier the crash was most likely caused by an error in your inputs on the bike. As bad as you think your suspension was, you could have pulled off track, had an expert racer hop on the bike who has never been on it before and cut laps much faster than you were going.

Having the suspension setup properly is absolutely important, but more importantly is don't immediately start pointing to the bike as the scapegoat of the crash you had unless something obviously failed/broke on it causing you to go down.
:cheers
 

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I must respectfully disagree with you, Mr. Chris Broom. (Who by the way has coached me to some of my best lap times around Barber and holds hero status in my book.)
Mr. Broome, you have forgotten yourself. Yeah, you are one of the better club racers in the country and if given a top spec MotoAmerica bike, might be able to put it on the box at the pro level. BUT.... You weren't born that way. Maybe NOW you can go fast on whatever crap is thrown under you but that's only because you've developed the ability to feel the bike, the tires and the track, then ride within the limits of the equation. A newbie hasn't got all that experience. If his bike is on two different gameplans front to rear, it will probably try to kill him. The less experience a rider has, the harder it is to ride around setup issues. Bad stuff is happening down there but the rider doesn't know why, or what will happen next. So with all due respect, Coach Broome, I think you're wrong. Newbies can really benefit from a proper suspension setup, done by a tuner who knows his business.
 

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I must respectfully disagree with you, Mr. Chris Broom. (Who by the way has coached me to some of my best lap times around Barber and holds hero status in my book.)
Mr. Broome, you have forgotten yourself. Yeah, you are one of the better club racers in the country and if given a top spec MotoAmerica bike, might be able to put it on the box at the pro level. BUT.... You weren't born that way. Maybe NOW you can go fast on whatever crap is thrown under you but that's only because you've developed the ability to feel the bike, the tires and the track, then ride within the limits of the equation. A newbie hasn't got all that experience. If his bike is on two different gameplans front to rear, it will probably try to kill him. The less experience a rider has, the harder it is to ride around setup issues. Bad stuff is happening down there but the rider doesn't know why, or what will happen next. So with all due respect, Coach Broome, I think you're wrong. Newbies can really benefit from a proper suspension setup, done by a tuner who knows his business.
The less experience a rider has, the harder it is to ride around setup issues. The less experience you have, the less you know what you have to ride around, or what the problem is

Bad stuff is happening down there but the rider doesn't know why, or what will happen next. Even with correct suspension setup, do you think that the new rider knows what will happen next or what is happening? Or better yet do you think the new rider knows how to adopt the correct riding technique, lines, etc to the new suspension setup? It is easier said then done.

Are you saying if I secretly tune the suspension for a new track day rider he will not crash due to him pushing over his limits?
How does he know if he has benefited from tuned suspension and that it stopped him from crashing?
Why do other new track day riders with stock suspension that has not been touched since the bike left the showroom not crash?

Camon mate. Seriously, yes suspension should be tuned, but you cannot blame crashes on hardware unless it malfunctions in terms of seizing forks or something like that.

I now deal with a lot of racers, and you have no idea how much suspension setup differes from one rider to another.
Some have suspension hard as f**k and some have a softer setup. They all do similar lap times. Who is to say now that one setup is wrong compared to the other. Suspension is adopted mainly to rider, track, track temperature and motorcycle characteristics I believe. Unless you have done 10-15 track days a year, you really do not get a chance to utalise or learn much about suspension setup.

Another great excuse new riders use is that their tires were not good enough :)
 

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On my old FZR I was following and being followed by my track instructor and he told me the main barrier to my performance were the tires that I had and the loose front suspension on the bike. That was a 26 year old bike, but I could see if you are on the track for the first time to ride your bike with whatever setup you have been riding with and then just compensate for your weight. A big thing is point of reference. If that's all you've ridden, then upgrading the suspension is almost irrelevent. "It's all I know." I suppose there is nothing to lose by updating your suspension but it also isn't going to,just make someone faster

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If you're a first time track rider, you're suspension is the last thing you need to be worried about. Plenty of us here have several racing trophies without even ever touching the suspension clickers. Ride on.
 

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If you're a first time track rider, you're suspension is the last thing you need to be worried about. Plenty of us here have several racing trophies without even ever touching the suspension clickers. Ride on.
+1

I won my rookie race and an Unlimited GTO on stock suspension that was never adjusted.

Not saying that is the way to go, but for the beginner track rider, suspension isn't something that you need to worry about immediately. Pay your trackside vendor a few dollars, and have them set it to your weight, and go ride.

Worry about line and BP first.

Then worry about going faster more consistently.

Then as you begin to outride what you have, worry about upgrading/adjusting.
 

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Two nearly identical crashes going wide followed by adjustment and tighter lines in proof
A lot of guys hating on suspension in this thread. I have two questions:

1) To those of you who are bragging about having won races at the very start of your career without ever addressing suspension adjustment; are you still riding on whatever, or do you now buy and adjust aftermarket suspension on your own bikes?

2) From the clues given in the quote above, can anyone explain why the OP was crashing and what the tuner did to fix it?
 

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A lot of guys hating on suspension in this thread. I have two questions:

1) To those of you who are bragging about having won races at the very start of your career without ever addressing suspension adjustment; are you still riding on whatever, or do you now buy and adjust aftermarket suspension on your own bikes?

2) From the clues given in the quote above, can anyone explain why the OP was crashing and what the tuner did to fix it?
I think you are misunderstanding.

No one is "hating" on suspension. Suspension tuning and upgrading are essential when you get faster. What a lot of us are saying is that too many new riders put emphasis on parts and tuning when the emphasis should be on their riding and analysis of the bike and what it is doing.

Chasing suspension setup will do nothing for a new track rider. Throwing the best Öhlins parts on the bike will do nothing for a new track rider. Putting slicks on the bike for a new track rider will do nothing.

What will do something is asking the new track rider "OK, how did the bike feel that session/lap?" Or "what were you working on in T3?"

What will do something is drilling the race line, and working on good BP over and over until it is second nature. Then, work on corner exit. Get off the corners faster and harder. Then work on corner entry. Brake smoother and later. Begin to trailbrake a bit to get a feel for it.

Once the new rider has done those things, over and over and over, eventually the stock setup will start to show its flaws, and then the rider (who won't be a new track rider at that point) can start chasing suspension setup with the components of their choice.
 

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For the record, I've been coaching for a long, long time. I don't want to start comparing life experience and get int a "who has the bigger ____" contest. But I do know what I'm talking about and I have a valid point to make.

So again I ask:

2) From the clues given in the quote above, can anyone explain why the OP was crashing and what the tuner did to fix it?
 
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