Mar 2020

The holy grail of speed competitions. Races are won at the finish line, but are often lost in a corner. Words that we have heard countless times when we are about to take a few laps in a track. In this post we will discuss some aspects of braking that can be used in everyday use on the road or in the city, so that everyone knows how to take advantage of it.

One of the key principles in a track is to brake as late as possible. What does it mean? It is necessary to give the motorcycle the opportunity to achieve its maximum speed in a straight so when we enter the corner we lose as little time as possible.

Negotiating the curve is a compromise between stability (grip) and speed. Therefore, it is essential to take advantage of the engine brake, brakes and suspension.

If you use well the engine brake you will allow the motorcycle to squeeze every second from your speed and brake at the last moment.

To make the most of it you have to brake hard. This must be trained: you have to start on the straights and when you are prepared do it when facing the corner, as late as possible.

The kinetics explains it very well: if you are braking, you are not accelerating. Therefore, try to go through it as quickly as possible.

A detail to consider is the action/reaction of the suspension fork. Touch and sensitivity when braking is a skill that you have to work in. Think in the physics of this moment. When you use the front brake, the motorcycle presses towards the ground by the compression action of the fork. If you keep it too long, you are likely to lose the front wheel as you are leading inside while the wheel is pointing outside. In addition, the rear wheel comes with little or null grip (sometimes in the air) ant he inertia of the system keeps pushing with all its mass. If you do the opposite, a shy brake without conviction, you will not have enough track to run. You will take long in the corner with low speed, as you will stop giving gas to adjust the path. 

Riders brake as late as possible with the full potential without releasing the front brake. The rear brake is used to accommodate the motorcycle and if you add the engine brake,  you contribute to lower the back of the motorcycle and as a result, to keep the stability in the corner.

If you are a rookie in the racetrack there are two details that you should take in mind to be able to express yourself and take the most advantage to your bike.

To begin with, remember that you are in a closed one-way road with safe emergency exits. Relax because nobody comes head on to you, adopt a comfortable posture and stay focused, take advantage of the track in its entire width and do not worry about being slower than others.

Second, look and worry about what happens in front of you, forget about what is behind. If someone wants to overtake you, they will take the proper steps and precautions looking forward. Just do not unexpected maneuvers.

Enjoy safely, conveniently check the state of your braking system, liquids, levers, hoses, calipers, pads and above all, good and efficient discs.