Mackenzie's top tips for trackday confidence

Niall Mackenzie knows a thing or two about riding on track. Infact he's probably forgotten more than the rest of the Visordown team ever knew...

Posted: 5 November 2010
by Niall Mackenzie

> Take your time to learn an unfamiliar track. Get reference points so you know where you are and what you're doing. If possible, get a top-notch rider who knows the place to show you the correct line and give you tips.

> Get someone you have utter confidence in to ride your bike and tell you whether it is set up properly and how good it is. Any doubts will eat away at your confidence.

> Get that same special rider to point out where you can go faster and tell you that you CAN do it. Simply knowing something is possible works wonders.

> Know your bike. Get to understand how and when the power kicks in, and how the brakes and tyres perform.

> Look and plan far ahead to buy yourself time and smooth out your riding. Relax.

> Stay smooth and nothing should go wrong - and if it does, you'll get plenty of warning and time to react.

> Understand what can cause a crash and take evasive action. To avoid a highside, pick the bike up as early as possible out of a corner and feed the power progressively as you do so. Avoid locking the front by not trailing the brakes into corners, and trail the throttle mid-corner to avoid front-end wash-outs. In Kenny Roberts Snr's words: "You only ever lose the front when you're off the throttle."

> Know where you're strong on the track, and as you approach slower riders plan ahead by lining them up and deciding where you're going to overtake them. Getting tangled up with other riders will break your rhythm and can ruin your concentration.



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