When it comes to paying for coaching, it still concerns me that some people may initially think that personal tuition is an unnecessary expense. Whether it be to improve racing, track day, or simply road riding skills, if they paid to tutor themselves, to assess and improve their riding, then this ‘personal performance tuning’ would lasts them a lifetime.
The world of motorcycle racing is getting more competitive, and top riders know that success takes more than natural talent and a great bike. If you’re not getting better, you’re falling behind.
To elevate your game, get yourself a coach as getting round particular obstacles, mental or physical – on your own can be very time consuming, difficult and expensive. Coaching can provide you with an advantage over the rest of the field; it can help you fast track through to a skill level that you could take all season to achieve on your own.
On track coaching is essential, it allows real time assessment. Observed riding is invaluable, when building a strategy; where the coach can provide the fresh viewpoint of an experienced outsider.
With a little effort now through coaching, you will build a solid base of knowledge, giving you purpose and goals that will pay off in race results for the rest of your career. If you use your mind as much as you use your body and there is no telling how far you will go.
Coaches are not for the meek though, they’re for riders who value unambiguous feedback. All sport coaches have one thing in common; it’s that they are excited by results. Coaching is not therapy. Coaching is product development, with you the rider as the product.
Motorcycle racing is one of the most complex and exacting of motorsports; yet it has no tradition of rider instruction or coaching. Footballers, golfers, swimmers and athletes all have personal coaches who play a large part in their success, but motorcycle racers are generally assumed – often wrongly – to have an inbuilt talent which needs no nurturing. Consequently, many riders are unable to make full use of their natural ability, and their supporting teams struggle inadvertently to come to terms with the rider’s “personal style”
Some teams and riders find it difficult to allocate finance for coaching, and yet spending thousands on bike modifications. Unlike so many other approaches – engine tuning, chassis alterations or bolt on accessories – coaching is a unique, ongoing, one to one, life skill improvement. Mechanical mods are fine and good, but any advantage tends to be lost over a race season.
With coaching, you work to improve and build on your own skills over a period of time, to ensure that the learning is relevant, and you actually learn it. You’ll notice the changes in your riding immediately; and the improvement will stay with you for as long as you continue to apply suggestions.
The relationship with your coach is different from relationships you have with your mechanic, team manager, family or friends. Those relationships follow a more conventional structure, whereas a coach is usually closer to your level, he knows first hand what you are experiencing, on track he works equally with you toward a common goal. You will feel more comfortable discussing problems and issues with your coach.
In almost all cases, my race coaching will focus on two main areas – the line chosen round a corner, and the technique required to allow the rider to take that line as smoothly and quickly as possible. These aspects are very closely related, as it is of no help to know the best line round a corner if the wrong riding techniques are then used. Attention is also paid to correct braking technique; this can greatly improve lap times and is also most useful for ‘psyching -out’ your opposition!
Errors in any of these aspects can prove to be expensive in terms of lap time, lapping consistency and tyre wear.
Fortunately, I can spot these scenarios easily, and then with a down to earth explanations, I can help you to work round them.
…however, prior to this happening (first lap on the second session) I was having my best day ever. After studying your how I ride Silverstone DVD and armed with my notes I was a billion times better than before. The lads I go with were amazed at the difference) I hired a r6 after the incident and finished the day on that (which I actually liked riding). I wasn’t overtaken once and loved the massive boost the DVD gave me. I’m more than looking forward to our day their now) Ps I’m booked at Donnington for the end of the month……..you’ll note my order for how I ride Donnington DVD.
Ps I could not believe I was passing bikes in short sections with ease like Maggotts & Becketts round to Chapel, Village to the loop and between Brooklands and Luffeild. I think I could have sold 300 copy’s of your DVD – love you man xxx
I wanted to thank you both as well. Having never had any ‘real’ coaching I was a bit concerned that I might be asked to completely deconstruct my riding and be overloaded with information. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Everything you told me was easy to understand, logical and easy to put into practice so I was soon making improvements to my riding. Now I’m in a position to move forward with the confidence to experiment with different techniques, rather than a rigid framework which I might not be comfortable with.
Jennifer, thanks for generally looking after me with a constant supply of tea on what was a pretty chilly day, the nutritional advice with regard to isotonic drinks 😉 and your general helpfulness through the day.
In saying that, the Iranian restaurant / bazaar had to be the highlight, I’ll recommend it to everyone.
Once again, thanks for all your help and I look forward to next time.
Be back in touch early next year for some coaching sessions it did sink in eventually and really helped.
Had a cracking day at Donny on Monday and really managed to put your advice to good use. I felt so much more confident on the bike after our day at Oulton and what with the more flowing nature of Donington it didn’t feel quite so savage exiting corners! I spent the first couple of sessions really trying to sort out my body position and by the third I was hanging off the bike well which in turn made cornering much easier and allowed me to get on the gas much harder and earlier.
I did find Redgate a bit of a struggle to get right as I found myself running wide a lot of the time even though I felt I was hitting the apex ok. By the last session I was turning in much later and that made all the difference. I got a great drive out of the turn. The only trouble was that I shit myself going down over craner at a much higher speed than I’d been travelling all day!! I did manage to get the bike through the old hairpin……..Just!!
I’m there again on May 28th for a Ducati trackday which should be fun!
Thanks again for your coaching and advice Mike. It’s made so much difference to my riding on and off track.
Cheers, Dan Phillips.
Hi Mike, Hope all’s good with you.
A quick message to say your hard work with me in April has helped massively. Just done a day at Llandow (about 6th time there) and there was a HUGE difference from the last time I was there and yesterday. I felt so much better braking into the bus stop and others who I’d been to that circuit with on a number of occasions before commented on the difference. Thank you again! Hopefully see you next year for a second day 🙂
Cheers, Sam Rowland
sorry for the late reply but I don’t use this account much now.
For me, the day has been very helpful for my riding style generally as I have seen over the last few times I’ve been on track, but also the bike set up help as well, raising the seat thickness has made the bike far more comfortable to ride, and also easier to move around on. I was just a little unfortunate with the weather towards the end, but I did have fun pushing the bike in the wet :).
As for improvements to the day generally, tbh there’s not a lot I can think of, as everyone is different it just takes finding the best method they understand. although I do think some riders would find it easier to understand if they had some on bike footage, I’m saying this as I’ve just got a bike cam set up, and after reviewing the footage I can see very clearly where I’m going wrong, regarding braking/lines/power on etc…..
the only other thing I can think of really is regarding the price of the day, maybe in some way on your website try to show some kind of comparison of the day, what you get/learn etc. against what it costs for full system, or having engine work done. I’m not saying your days are expensive by any means and in comparison to the above and what they give you (bike mods) it’s by far the best money you’ll spend, but not everyone can or appreciate that.
so that’s about it I think, I’ve no doubt I’ll be contacting you in the new year to arrange another day as there’s still plenty of work to do 🙂
Just wanted to say thank you greatly for sending the Snetterton DVD so quickly. It arrived in double quick time.
I’ve been off sick today, so have already watched it twice. one word describes it. ‘brilliant’. it’s really insightful and massively helpful to get that insight from such a seasoned professional. I’m racing at Snett at round 1 of Hottrax endurance for my very first visit to Snett 300, and it’s already helped me build out my planned for RP’s lines.
I have to say, if I can turn a hot lap, like that in a few weeks time, I’ll be made. poetry to watch that was fella. really smooth and flowing, barely looked like an effort. I’ll let you know how we go, but I’ll be back getting Oulton & Cadwell DVD’s, even though I know Oulton really well, I’m in no doubt any input is good input.
thanks again fella,
Over all very happy indeed! I really feel like a winner!! My aim was to get to 2mins flat and I did better than that!!! 🙂
There is still plenty of work to be done to improve my technique to become competitive but I feel VERY positive after this weekend!! I am a learner who needs to practice!! 😉 and I proved it!!
Well, thank you again for showing me the way to go and giving me the ideas how to improve!!!
Another great DVD Mike. First time at Oulton since watching the DVD. Not been to this track much so it was interesting to spot loads of RP’s highlighted on DVD that I’d never noticed before. I may even improve if I can pay attention for long enough.
Hi Mike, Rode Oulton park on Tues 19th June having studied your DVD for a good few days before the event. I just want to say how helpful and ‘cock on’ all of your advice is on the DVD. It was my first time there but when i went out on the sighting laps it seemed so familiar. By the 3rd session I was completely relaxed around the track and after a mate of mine followed me and told me that I was trailing the brake to far into the corner and could work on carrying a little more corner speed i was flying!! What was so nice about having the track knowledge from the DVD was that I didn’t have to spend the majority of the day learning the track and or getting things too wrong and given that the day costs ￡150 you probably saved me that and much more as I wouldn’t have learnt the track in three days let alone 3 sessions!!
Well…around 2.5 seconds faster as a fastest lap, realistically 3-4 seconds faster in general and racing people I don’t normally race. Including (in the cold on Sunday morning) someone who was 5 seconds faster than me round the national circuit in June. Obviously some of that is the fact I was at a race not a TD but still, sizeable improvement. So, money very well spent indeed. Also in places (specifically on approach to the Old Hairpin) going so much faster I’m making a mess of the corner, so there’s more to come with practice and I never came near crashing (except for in the last very wet race as I tried nicking a bit of time back on the guy in front of me into Coppice, it just let go mid corner and I had to run off) which is either good or bad depending on your point of view. What I’m saying is my lines were so much better I was considerably faster and failing to actually go fast enough to take account of that. Obviously when you’re in my position (basically a rubbish club racer) you daydream someone will tell you something, flick some switch that will give you an instant 10 seconds a lap, but in the real world we all know that’s just being silly and chipping away, 0.2 here, 0.5 there is the way forward so all in very happy indeed.
Cheers Mike, I owe you a beer (if you drink)
I got the DVD yesterday and have watched t a couple of times so far. It will certainly help me when I go for my track day on August 6th. I am hoping to get something a little better for the track than my current Blackbird although i am sure it will do fine if needs be. The last time i was at Cadwell was on a steeley CBR. I’ll certainly be reporting back once I have been there but hopefully in between times too.
Hi Mike , great DVD nice to see you showing the lines and braking markers , I like the way you explain as you ride the track. I myself only just started doing track days later in life but can see the buzz it gives people . Hope to see you out their and good luck for the season (no1bloke ) yours Martin.
Hi Mike, Thanks for the Brands DVD. I found it very useful. I’d not ridden Brands before, but after numerous watches of the DVD it felt familiar and I soon settled into it. Paddock Hill wasn’t as bad as I thought, but I guess a wrong line, or too much entry speed and it would be a very different matter. Druids was a different matter. The apex is so far round that I just couldn’t get to grips with it. Got close once or twice, but more often than not I apexed way too early. Still, practice makes perfect and it’s a track I will certainly ride again and again. Thanks again for the DVD. They’re more than worth the cost.
Cheers Mike, as always there’s a little nugget in there, I’d never thought about the corner as being such a large part of the lap time. The video clip helped also. I’d be interested in the DVD.
Hi Mike, Just wanted to post some really positive feedback on your Brands DVD. I rode the GP circuit last week having not been there before and, having studied your “How I Ride” DVD for a couple of weeks before going, I couldn’t believe how at home I felt on the track. Every turn was made so much easier by your easy to understand approach. The amount of times I witnessed people getting it properly wrong on numerous corners and nearly coming to grief which, in most cases, looked like they were struggling with the correct line was unbelievable. ‘Surtees’ really caught a lot of people out with its luring curve on entry, making them apex way too early and then spitting them out on to the grass on exit or just sitting them up mid corner making the rider continue into the Indy chicane. Your knowledge is invaluable Mike and we’re all so lucky to have guys like you who are willing to share what you’ve grafted for all these years to make our riding more enjoyable. If only the GP circuit was available more often!!
thank you so much for yesterday, it was a wonderfully relaxed day of fun and some very useful insights.
Many thanks again and will let you know how I got on in Silverstone
all the best Joe
– Thank you for a great session on track yesterday. I really felt major improvement on getting out of the corner.
I just wish there were more races left in the season to practice it. As per your advice I’m going to spread myself around a few more clubs for next year and I look forward to seeing you on the P&H 848 again next year.
Just a line to be able to say many thanks for a wonderful day at Donington Park. Before my days coaching, I really felt my track riding, had hit a plateau and was getting generally getting frustrated with my ability to go faster on track. With your vast knowledge and experience and your excellent communication skills, being able to put your points across gave me the ability to improve throughout the day and I came away feeling that I had achieved a lot in both my confidence and handling skills on the bike had vastly improved, Once again Thank you and I hope to be able to book another day in 2013.
Cheers Mike. I’m really impressed with that. Give yourself a pat on the back. Knocking three and a half to four seconds off my Lap times in such a short space of time. Amazing result. WISH I’d used your services sooner.
You’re the man mike!!
Fastest lap by over a second and a half. 1.34 dead. I owe you a beer.
Hi Mike just a txt to say thanks again for your help at the beginning of the season. I’ve managed to get a 5th and 6th at Donington today with NG on the national track and did a best lap of 1:13.4. Thanks again bud.
Just a quick message to say all went well today managed a 3rd in class and got my lap time down to 1.21.48 so really chuffed thanks a lot for yesterday again
Thank you to you mike and your wife for a great day. The weather didn’t spoil it for me as it has given me loads more confidence to ride in the wet. Thank you very much for your tuition, I couldn’t have spent the day with nicer people. All the best with your future racing I will be looking out for you!;)
Just got 2 seconds off my lap time at a cold cadwell and 2 x 1st in the Lansdowne!
Hi Mike just a txt to say thanks again for your help and advice at the tuition day we had.
Managed to set a new PB at Donny yesterday using the techniques you taught me. Hope to see you in the paddock if your at Thruxton bsb, I’m racing in the stocks again. Thanks again
It was great to meet you both Mike, I’ve had a great day and picked up so much that I hope to keep utilising.
The day flew by but certainly loved every second of it. Really appreciate your time, hope to catch you again at some stage. Safe journey
Just wanted to let you know that this weekend, despite all the crashes I made jump from the back of the grid to the back of the mid pack. I have gone from being a minimum of 7 secs a lap off the fastest lap to 4 – 5 secs.
It has all come from better corner entry and braking. I can see I still have another ‘easy’ second to come from the same area but I think I need to ‘settle in’ at my new pace and get some consistency. Next big area to work on is my starting technique as I’m getting swallowed up at the start.
Thanks for all the help. I’ll be back again for some more, hopefully on a sunny day!
I received the DVD from Tuesday and spent many hours boring my girlfriend watching it. Just like to say thank you again to you and your wife for a truly great day and i can say i have learnt a lot and feel faster and more confident. I’m looking to hire you again maybe in July at Cadwell Park but will email closer to the time.
Thank you once again.
Thank you for the DVD which turned up today. It was a pleasure to meet you and your lovely Mrs on Tuesday.
I have been meaning to email you every day but I have been really struggling to put into words how much I fantastic the day was, I have not stopped thinking about it. For me, without doubt it was the best day on track I have ever had. I learnt so much about my riding that I never would have done in a 100 years of going round a track on my own. I can’t emphasize enough how my confidence has improved after the day and I was very sad that it ended just I was getting the hang of putting what you had taught me into practice. I barely thought about my crash from last year and it is really just a distant memory.
After the first session, my legs were shaking, my hands were shaking and if you’d have said let’s call it a day I would have been very relieved! But having just watched the DVD over again, I cannot believe the progression I made. The last session was so different to the first it’s amazing! Yet I can still see so much more room for improvement, my lines still need a lot of work but that will come with practice.
If I can keep improving like that with some more days with you I will be very happy. I found your teaching style brilliant, not just telling me what I should be doing but also what I am doing wrong. Giving me a couple of things to work on each session really helped and I could see the benefit straight away of putting your advice into practice. I have also written down what you have said to help me remember and to get help get rid of the bad habits…
…So once again thank you, thank you, thank you Mike for an absolutely fantastic day.
Thanks again for a brilliant day, I was riding the circuit in my sleep with a new found appreciation of its charms and can’t wait to get back there now.
I have run out of cheques so will bring you the rest of the cash I owe you to Silverstone on Friday. ￡65 if I remember rightly. See you then. Will try to get into Garage 7 as that is our allocated slot for the Saturday race.
All the best
Got the CD through today – was it really that wet?
Weather was a bit of a pisser but we do live in the UK. It may not have seemed like it but I do think I got a lot from the day, which I’m sure I can develop at Cadwell and elsewhere both in the wet and the dry. One advantage of the wet may have been to give my rebuilt engine a bit of a run-in
Thanks to you and Jennifer for your hospitality and efforts, it’s not easy for you in those conditions.
A very big thank you for Friday. I like to think I progressed leaps and bounds from first to last session. I learnt more in that day than all the previous tuition put together. My confidence is now being rebuilt and the object now is to build on your training over the next track days and will re book you so you can monitor my progress (or regression!!).
My braking improved 100% as did my Full Throttle till you brake! Again many thanks to you both for a great day.
I look forward to watching the DVD (Video) to see the progress through the day.
Thank you so much for Kevs day out at Cadwell, he had the best ever time!!! The only problem is he has this age thing where he keeps repeating himself, I think I could write a book for you, and if he squeezes my arm once more to demonstrate how hard he should be braking I am going to deck him lol!!! We just have to watch the dvd now over and over and over again!
Thank you both so much, Hope to see you soon, Kind regards
I can highly recommend a day with Mike
Rather than spend 1,000’s on the bike anymore I decided to spend the money on the nut on the saddle. At a very wet and gloomy Cadwell Park in August Mike gave me insights into my riding techniques – he knew what I was thinking and my attitude to corners before I could even elucidate them, which showed me he really knew what he was talking about.
We worked through a lot including; lines, body position, suspension set up, attitude to overtaking, mechanics of weight transfer. This was all fantastically backed-up by Mike’s video analysis, there were no excuses then, and it all became crystal clear what I was doing wrong. Mike also nobly mucked in and helped fix my bike on more than one occasion.
His tuition style is excellent, he speaks in plain English, he realises the day is about the rider and focuses completely on you, not once did I hear an old war story, he has the patience of a saint, is enthusiastic and never once gave the impression he didn’t want to get out on track even in the grimmest of weather conditions (I would have been very interested in his old war stories though).
If I could start my racing career again, I’d get a decent reliable stock bike and go see Mike, before spending any money on the newest gizmos. The greatest gains in lap times are in a brain re-map, not a few more bhp. I’m seriously considering another tuition day to see what I can learn in the dry.
I think the main benefit for me was raising my awareness about how important it is to be on (or near) the correct part of the track (i.e. the racing line) to be able to achieve a fast lap.
Prior to our day together, I actually thought I was always on this racing line, but following you on track and then re-visiting the video footage – both during the day and after on the DVD – made me realise that initially I wasn’t!
I’ve since tried to re-evaluate my track position at every circuit that I have re-visited and this, along with other factors (i.e. growing in confidence, extra track time, learning limits of bike etc.) have culminated in some vast improvements in my riding and most importantly lap times (back marker in my first season with NG and prior to training, now regular top ten and even a podium in 600’s)!
I appreciate that everyone needs help in different areas, and that there is only so much you can do in one day, but looking back on things and for me personally, if we had had more time together (or when I book another session with you), I would have liked to have spent some time going through braking points and braking technique (i.e. trailing brake), gear changes etc.
Obviously, our time together was limited, and the weather wasn’t great, but I have to say it was the best money I’ve spent so far on track time, and will definitely be coming back to you early next year (believe me it would be much sooner if I had more free time and money) for some more training.
I hope you find this helpful and looking forward to working with you again in the near future!
The main thing I needed was a push to get me out of the rut I was in in terms of performance (i.e loss of confidence after some off’s and poor results, just running around at the back with no real drive or expectation to/for improvement). I think what you gave me was a feeling that I could get better and some pointers on how to go about it. Despite the weather I could feel the difference particularly at the end of Park straight but elsewhere too. Although I was still working on the smoothness of the transition from braking to turning and there was (and is) a long way to go, I realised there was something I could do to improve.
You treated me like an adult with good feedback and despite my level of ability worked with me to get the result I wanted.
I’m still working on what we went through and seeing definite continual improvements in lap times, results not changed much but this is due to the makeup of the grid with a lot of people at the level I should be competing against, not entering. Not too concerned about that as if the lap times keep on falling the positions will come.
e.g Brands Indy July 2010 – 1 minute 7 seconds, July 2011 – 1 minute 3 seconds, in similar weather. Still a long way to go but feel this year that I’m still improving and have a real desire to do so.
I’ll definitely be calling on you again when I think the time is right, i.e I’m not progressing as much as I would like or have a particular issue to resolve.
Not sure what you could improve based on our day together (I assume the weather is out of your control !).
Hope this helps
…For me, the day has been very helpful for my riding style generally as I have seen over the last few times I’ve been on track, but also the bike set up help as well, raising the seat thickness has made the bike far more comfortable to ride, and also easier to move around on. I was just a little unfortunate with the weather towards the end, but I did have fun pushing the bike in the wet :).
As for improvements to the day generally, tbh there’s not a lot I can think of, as everyone is different it just takes finding the best method they understand. although I do think some riders would find it easier to understand if they had some on bike footage, I’m saying this as I’ve just got a bike cam set up, and after reviewing the footage I can see very clearly where I’m going wrong, regarding braking/lines/power on etc…..
The only other thing I can think of really is regarding the price of the day, maybe in some way on your website try to show some kind of comparison of the day, what you get/learn etc. against what it costs for full system, or having engine work done. I’m not saying your days are expensive by any means and in comparison to the above and what they give you (bike mods) it’s by far the best money you’ll spend, but not everyone can or appreciate that.
So that’s about it I think, I’ve no doubt I’ll be contacting you in the new year to arrange another day as there’s still plenty of work to do 🙂
Sorry for late reply, if I’m honest Ii think the service you offered was very good and it was me and my preparation that stopped me from gaining more from the day. I’ve since made many changes to my bike body/seating position wise and also sorted the suspension and I’m a lot happier on the bike (and in my mind) and looking back I should have done this before I booked my day with you. Also instead of booking onto a normal No Limits trackday Ii would have gone on either a Focused chrono day or even a Mallory test day/afternoon with you as I feel with normal trackdays due to me being on a small bike and still learning I would always get stuck behind people as I was not confident enough to out corner them so I’d then get wasted on the straight by them like we saw at Cadwell…
I think confidence was what I gained most from our day – as you know I didn’t even want to try riding on wets, but by the end of the day I didn’t want to come in from the track!
The day of coaching I had was excellent, As the day went on I could feel many improvements from myself and even though I’m sure I was getting quicker each time I also felt safer with it. Since then I’ve done a further three trackdays and have gone back to the points you made to me and tried to keeping practicing them. Although moving house had ended this years trackdays for me I’ll be back hopefully next year and will be getting in touch then for another day of tuition for yourself.
Good luck with the rest of your season on the Ducati.
it’s a difficult question to answers, how about loads.
Confidence on the track
Rider position on bike ( seat measurement)
Passing (remember i was a trackday wally)
Cornering into three parts
One to one
O and the hat.
Ps came second in rookie 1000s with bemsee.
For me, I don’t think that you could improve the way my day went,
I was very impressed how quickly you picked up on what I was doing and started to sort me out.
You focused on my weak points and didn’t waste time on anything else
The day was focused 100% on me and my riding
Being able to watch the onboard video (with a brew) between sessions was very good and helped me to see how exactly what I was doing.
You have helped my riding greatly and I am faster now (almost 2 sec a lap at cadwell) and with what you taught me I’m sure I’ll get faster still with time and practice. Thanks.
I think I was a general wandering willy having had no coaching, training or tuition. You have given me the basic tools to be able to improve my riding, speed, safety and therefore gain in confidence.
I think you do a fantastic job with how you approach and conduct the coaching days especially how you explain things, it has completely changed the way I ride mentally as well.
The type of sport it is offers no guidance unless you seek it, which in hindsight is very dangerous, my only regret would be not coming to you earlier.
To sum up, “if its not broken don’t fix it”, I enjoyed my day thoroughly and can’t think of a single thing that would have made the day better.
Hope you and Jennifer are well and hope to speak soon. Cheers.
I have been a couple of times since my day with you and am trying Donington tomorrow for the first time.
I thought our day was fantastic. Being a total novice, your coaching gave me the confidence I needed to pass other riders rather than “follow”.
The sessions were well structured and your delivery style is relaxed and reassuring (just what a student needs). You also give achievable targets.
I am still struggling with hanging off the bike but the “tap & unwrap” tip & braking later for corners has made a massive improvement.
Thanks again for the day and good luck for the future.
Going into a day with you I already knew a lot of it would take me time to put into practice, as you know its hard to change old habits and my slow brain needs to work at things. The main benefit for me was the case of “show me” (as opposed to tell me).
The key benefits were:
When you came past on the brakes showing me what’s possible.
Being in front of me – showing the right line into the chicane (which helped at Mallory)
Pushing me to “just brake later – trailing into the bend (again trail braking worked great for me at Mallory Hairpin).
I did feel that you could coach me on loads of other things which we didn’t get to, and faster riders would get more benefit than I did.
But I am faster (officially) and happier with the bike, so of course it was beneficial.
P.S. check out our website – you might get some work from it…
Skip : )
The day at Cadwell was really beneficial and I think the main benefit for me was learning to get on the gas quicker coming out of corners, also carrying more corner speed instead of shutting off too early. I have watched the DVD time and time again and can see my problems, they are really highlighted when I can see you nearly touching my bike coming out of corners, especially Charlies 2.
I raced at Cadwell on the Sunday after the coaching day and I felt really comfortable, it was absolutely chucking it down in one of the races and I did a 1.42 so was well pleased. I need some dry time now to really try and bring everything together.
I don’t really know what you can do to improve the day, it was what I expected and I felt that you helped me a lot, I know there was a lot to cram into one day and I would like more time with you again soon.
Keep in touch
I’ll let you know after this weekend’s racing at Cadwell ha ha!! J
For me the main benefit was to get more understanding of the areas of my riding that I need to improve. Obviously the weather wasn’t on our side on the day but still what we went through and how I can improve these areas was/will be a great help with my racing in the future.
I’ve done a track day since and felt much more confident riding , to be honest I actually tried to improve my corner approach/entry on the day rather than just riding round.
Great day and certainly money well spent for me.
It would be difficult to define one main benefit I gained from the coaching day, as you covered so many aspects and details of track riding along with bike setup that I have found them all invaluable in my attempt to become a quicker rider! The clearest thing that I gained is now understanding the reasons for my slow pace and being shown on, and off the bike how to correct it with your various teaching methods.
The only thing I could say to improve your service would be to have a card payment facility.
In 30 years of riding bikes, and ticking most of the “to do list” of most riders like trips to the TT/Nurburgring /Irish road races/Euro trackdays the day was one of my most enjoyable!
Sorry Mike, but I will have to put you through it again, I want to use the excuse of not being on the bike for over 12 months for my effort on the day, but know there’s no point in kidding yourself!
Many thanks again to you both, Top Bloke and Top Lass!
I think you helped me improve my confidence in the bike, through focusing on the importance of getting the bike into the right position each and every lap, which is something I always knew but probably didn’t concentrate enough on actually doing. Last weekend I made a determined effort to think about my approach to each corner and to concentrate on where I wanted to be on approach, in the turn and exit. When we were at Cadwell, you told me to turn into Coppice earlier and keep tight to the left, which I found helped get a good run through Charlies 1 and therefore into Charlies 2 and onto Park. I think this helped me to get onto the power earlier and in particular on the Yamaha TZ750, to use its power to get past others before the braking zone into Park. You also said about drifting out on Chris Curve and a more gentle turn into Mansfield, which all seemed to work for me.
I crashed on my Yamaha TZ350 going into the Gooseneck, but I think it was because I had a good sweep into the turn and carried more speed into the corner when another rider in front hesitated, forcing me to roll the throttle and load up the front tyre slightly too much. Fortunately I missed him and skidded down the hill to Mansfield with only bumps and bruises, although the bike needs more work before it will be ready for Snetterton next month!
I found the video footage helped enormously to reinforce the message of the day and I looked through all the clips when I got home from our day – although sadly I didn’t manage to look at it again before the weekend! But I certainly feel more confident and in fact since I saw you last, I have achieved some good results:
Southern 100 Pre-TT Classic = 2nd in the Superbike 1300cc race on my Harris F1 Kawasaki Z1000
CRMC Knockhill = 1st on my Harris F1 Kawasaki Z1000 (this was my first race win!) and 4th on my Yamaha TZ350 in the ACU Post Classic Grand Prix
Spa Classic 4-hour Endurance = 9th out of 70 teams (despite crashing in practice and breaking my collar bone – see this month’s Classic Racer for details!)
CRMC Cadwell Park = 4 wins on my Yamaha TZ750 in the 1300cc Post Classic class and dramatic improvement in lap times – previously around 1’47” – 1’48” and down to 1’44” last weekend, beating established top-drawer riders like Cormac Conroy, Steve Dobbie and Gordon Russell. I also shaved 2 seconds off my TZ350 time (before the crash and after only 1 race).
Hopefully this will help you and I will be pleased to endorse your coaching. Whilst writing, it is probably too short-notice now but I have just this evening booked a Snetterton track day for the 22nd September on the 300 circuit – if you are not free for coaching, do you have any tips for the new circuit? I am due to race there next month with the CRMC on the 200 circuit (although no-one seems to offer track days on the 200 circuit), so I have decided to do the 300 circuit to learn it a bit. It is the final round for CRMC and I have a chance of a podium finish in the Post Classic 1300 class and an outside chance in the TZ350 Grand Prix classes. Any help you can offer would be appreciated,
All the best and thanks again,
I found the day very useful and took away a couple of pointers which definitely reminded me what I had been doing wrong and had gotten into the habit of doing (laziness from track day riding mostly I think).
The chap in our garage slightly irritated me after a while as I was paying for your opinion not his, but I guess that’s quite common?
I did feel that I would have gotten more advancement out of the day if I was still racing as my basic level was a lot higher then but overall I thought the day was great and your teaching approach which is very direct was just what I needed.
I would like to do the day again, put it that way.
As you’re aware I’ve been struggling big time this year compared to last year. I had lost a lot of confidence at the beginning of the year after two crashes at my first round at Brands and a massive high side at the third round at Pembrey. This knocked my confidence to the point where I would always ride with in my comfort zone, almost to the point where I was just cruising around and not enjoying my racing at all.
You covered three main areas with me that day which were focus, braking and trajectory. These three areas alone improved my confidence and I started to enjoy my racing again which in turn allowed me to focus on what was going on with the bike resulting in me working out that the issues with my WP Shock and the changes we had made to the internals of my forks contributed to my loss of confidence. The rear shock has been replaced and the forks have had the KTEC 20mm internals put back in so with this and the momentum you started giving me three areas to focus on has led to my confidence continuing to improve and my performance improving.
The training I received on our day at Silverstone was invaluable. Far better than any performance enhancement I could have installed on the bike!! I would love to have booked another day with you to carry on the momentum you started but alas my budget wouldn’t stretch but I will be seeking another day if not more with you next year. I have no hesitation in recommending you to fellow racers and track day riders. Cheers.
Hi Spike it’s Froggy just a thank you got my first pole and race win last weekend at Anglesea endurance still practising what you taught me you are the man
Hi Mike / Jennifer just wanted to say thanks for your time and efforts on Wednesday last week… I hope I can put into action all the bits and pieces… Am really looking forward to receiving a copy of the onboard footage so I can try and put it in my head… Thanks again Bloke and look forward to seeing you soon
Thanks again for a great day. I’ll be in touch for another day of revelations.
I can’t believe it yesterday I got my 1st podium. I got third… Yeeha. It needs to rain more often. That’s two trophies, third and first rookie.
Woke up this morning to realise I start front row on the grid 1st race…
I can’t wait. I’m just fitting panniers to keep people at bay.
Hi Mike, just want to say thanks for your help on Friday. I had a mixed bag with my races but managed to finish on a high with a PB of 1.01.4 in my last race. I have the love back for racing. Speak soon J. Cheers Chris.
Hey hey for sure it was a great day thank you sir to go back will be a real treat and put that into action and have the track sink in and all that tuition will pay off man I have to say I loved it and that’s what it’s all about!!
Hi mate, we came 5th in the end. Straight into the 48’s in my first session and PB of 48.2. Well chuffed!!! Hard work tho!!! See you soon. Yoda.
Hi Mike, it’s Jamie Thx for Ur help at Oulton we did Snetterton endurance at the weekend and finished 15th out of 42 and got lap times dwn to a 2:03 that’s 5 seconds quicker than I’ve ever gone round there Cheers again.
Mike, thanks again for all your help, advice and tea yesterday. A very constructive and enjoyable day! Hope I wasn’t too much hard work.
Thanks for the disc Mike. Didn’t realise how little track I was using or how steady I was going! Best thing is I can see where u r going and all the reference points I never noticed before. Really useful, thanks a lot mate you’re a star.
been using the bumstop, been modifying it a bit to get the depth correct, but finally settled on what i think will work, so made a permanent one.
after cadwell, we went to pembrey for 2 days, to practice getting on the throttle, and myself and andy both felt we made a major step forward, getting on the gas alot earlier and harder than we used to…. despite it being a track day, we were nokia phone timed in the 1.04’s, but both felt very comfortable at that pace, so we know there is more to come. its not nailed fully yet, but we are getting better. also getting used to using alot more of the track, which takes some getting used to only had chance to do the 2 days at pembrey since our day at cadwell, but we are off the anglesey this weekend, which is one of our favourite places.
i was into the 1.13’s last time there, and using the harder acceleration technique, i’m very confident of getting into the 12’s as i know where i was losing some time by not gassing it hard enough.
will let you know how we get on, and best of luck at dony on the ducati… i’m sure you will go well
Hey Mike, Good to hear from you
Had a track day at snett last Thursday and tried to implement what we were starting to learn on braking points etc.
It was good to watch the DVD, and could quite easily see where I was wrong and what a difference the line choice made.
I really enjoyed the day and really feel we could have made some huge improvements given more dry track time.
Still feel I am struggling with track position a bit and plan on trying a lot more different lines next time out! Any advice on snetterton much appreciated!.
All the best for the weekend.
Hi Mike, the bum stop is making a big difference – I tried it at Pembrey and I found I could just “feel” better what was happening at the back wheel.
I’ve modified it slightly for this weekend so we’ll see.
I read about oulton. Shame but hopefully better this weekend. I will be at Thruxton next weekend so let me know if you plan on being there.
Thanks again for all your help. I know there’s more to come when I sort my braking out. I think we’ve got better at getting out of the corners we now need to be better getting into them and stop over braking for the bends…..
see you soon
…If I didn’t think there were great benefits from your service I certainly wouldn’t use you again.
Simple. (although any repeat business discount would be brill)
You explain really well I thought and I hope that was made a little easier as I have been riding a while. The biggest single point for me was lines. Showing me where I was miles off the apex or tipping in early etc. Sometimes you can ride every lap the same and never improve but I find that’s because you think your lines are ok, it takes being shown to prove the point. I used your lines from Oulton on the steelie when I raced it and did 1,57s and 8s whilst massively underpowered with an overheating bike. My previous best on a 170bhp 08 blade was 1,51 so all things considered I felt big steps were made from our day and its mostly down to lines mate.
Speak soon, Oh and the 750 needs a name, care to give it a lucky one ????…
Thank you very much for yesterday at Cadwell, and for assisting so much with the bike.
I’m now hoping for a wet race in a few weekend’s time. I don’t know if you can use it but I thought I’d write a testimonial that you might want to put up on your website?
Please use it and quote me if you like. I also know of at least one more person who would be interested in a day’s tuition so I’m passing your details on.
Oh, and just so you know, it’s sunny and bright down here today – typical.
Thanks for the voicemail. Got 5th, 5th, 4th and dnf. Apparently highsided out of the chicane, but I have no memory of it. Few bumps and bruises but ok. Times no better, maybe the constant high winds. Much happier with my lines and entry into Park though.
Just wanted to drop you a quick note to say thanks for yesterday. Pity about the weather and the delays, but that’s good old England. I found the day really informative and it gave me plenty to work on, especially that damn “tap and unwrap”, come on brain, tell the right wrist! I know a couple of people who were interested in how it went so I will recommend you to them.
All the best for the coming season.
Pete, errr I mean Paul Whiteman