I live in Southern California and our weather is near perfect year round. What always makes me laugh is if it’s 65 or less it’s too cold to ride & over 85 it’s too hot. So spoiled.
As the summer months approach I thought I’d give a few riding tips for the heat. At STAR I always talk about becoming the most efficient rider that you can be, nowhere is this truer than on a scorching summer day. Being able to pace yourself on hot days is the key. If you find yourself so tired at 2pm on your Trackdays you’ve over exerted yourself early. But why?? In my opinion it could be one of 3 reasons.
- You’re riding over your limits and making to many mistakes. One of the worst things you can do is wear yourself out to the point that your mind constantly reminds you of how tired you are. It’s so important early in the day to ride at a percentage that won’t over tax your body. 70-80% are perfect numbers and will ensure that your track time won’t get cut short because of fatigue or worse, an accident because of fatigue.
- The current state of talks regarding body position are something most of you know how I feel about. Creating a rider who can learn how to stay efficient on a motorcycle is key in the heat. Imagine if you cut all your movements in half? How would that help you make it through the day? If you have a series of S’s, climbing all over your bike to look “Moto GP” isn’t going to help your energy levels. Remember, we are riding street based motorcycles not prototype bikes. Other than tires, chassis & lean angles it’s all the same. 😉
- Set an amount of laps that you want to do per session & see how your body reacts. For example, if you’re doing two days in a row set a limit of 8 laps per session (depending on track length). No matter what, stay true to that number. If it is too many then slow your pace and finish your laps. If it’s not enough wait till day 2 and reassess your laps per session again. Obviously if the original number you set is to high then drop those laps during your day. Better to be safe.
As you do more days you will be able to see how your body reacts in extreme conditions. Set a pace early that you can attain most of your day & you will find that you’ll do more laps & be more consistent.
Ride safe, Jason Pridmore