From street bikes to two-strokes, 600cc sportsbikes to supermotos, different bikes require different techniques. Whatever you ride, get the best from your bike with the help of the finest riders on the planet
Master a 600cc supersport bike
By James Whitham
How to wring every last drop from a wailing 600
Following an early career dominated by big-bore superbikes, Whitham made the move to the World Supersport championship in 2000 and promptly won his first race. Despite the lower peak power figures, Whitham remains a massive fan of the 600cc class.
"I went from a 750 with 160bhp to a 600 with 130bhp and there was a big difference," he says. "Generally the smaller the capacity the higher the revs and the harder you have to rev it to get the power. The other big difference was treaded tyres instead of slicks. This meant the bike punished you more for every little mistake. You had to be spot on with everything; carrying speed into, through and out of the corner. There's more movement from the tyres and that too forces you to be accurate – you lose time with every little slide and every little mistake. On a more powerful superbike you can be a bit lazier."
If a 600’s harder to ride well, does that make it the more effective go-faster learning tool? "I do track instructing and you get lads on 1000s who want to be quicker," says Whitham. "The answer is to get rid of the 1000 and change it for a 600. On a 1000 they’re not using any corner speed, then they’re opening it up and braking way too early because they're shitting themselves. If you want a 1000, buy one, but on a 600 you have to ride it properly. Ride a 1000 hard on the road and you’ll either lose your licence or hit something hard."
Posted: 17/03/2012 at 22:11
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