California Superbike School at The Ridge, review and Pics!

Discussion in 'Track Time' started by Avboden, Jul 16, 2012.


  1. Avboden

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    from Wa, living on Grenada (island)
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    1991 XR250L, 2007 BMW F800S, 1999 ATK 605 ESDS/SM
    Okay day 1 complete. Back at the hotel (who's internet I just fixed...easy $20, just needed a router firmware reset and the modem powercycled, lol)


    Started the day at 7am, checkin till 7:30. They had some breakfast, LOTS of food actually, quite good. Anyways, they started by dividing us into our various groups. Level 1 riders (anyone who hasn't been to their course before) were divided up into a white group and a yellow group, each around 15 riders. We alternated class time and track time. Everyone was assigned a bike so you shared it with one person in the opposite group, kept the tires nice and warm all day.

    During every track session there was an instructor for every 2 students. He would follow us, then pass and have us follow him (individually, we spread out nicely on the track. )

    Surprisingly, passing was allowed pretty much the entire time except the first 2 times out. No rules on passing other than don't violate a 6 foot bubble of whoever you're passing.

    Started with a wet track but it had almost completely dried by the first session. Moved to sunny weather all day!

    To begin the day our first exercise was throttle control, after the class room session our on track practice was incredible, very interesting. We were instructed to ride the ENTIRE track in 4th gear and never once touch the brakes. For myself, this was absolutely perfect to get to know the unique and unfamiliar track. Bike left in rain mode.

    2nd exercise was line, class time then out on the track, same thing 4th gear no brakes, rain mode.

    3rd exercise was turn in point, after class time track was 3rd and 4th gear and some brakes used. Rain mode.

    4th exercise was 2 step, 2 steps being spot your turn in point, 2nd look through the curve. After class track time was now picking up the pace, pretty much do what ever you want. I upped to sport mode in this one. However I still took the entire track minus the front straight in 3rd gear.

    5th exercise was relax, working on arm relaxation, etc. Track time was all gears, go for it. I got much faster here but still did the entire track in 3rd gear

    after that we had 2 more track sessions to just work on what ever we wanted. I'm getting faster and faster on the track, but today I stayed entirely in 3rd gear except on the front straight. I just didn't see any need to shift as every single turn on the whole track had ample power in 3rd. I would only really have needed to shift had I been pinning it for a much higher speed in some of the back straights, but I was working on my cornering, not going fast on the straights. Hopefully tomorrow I'll use the gears a bit more.


    pics!

    The bikes! These were the level 4 bikes and instructor bikes, race slicks.

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    These were the bikes the rest of us used. Started the day on BRAND NEW Q2 tires.

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    and this was my trusty steed for the day. And a fine lady she was!

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    #1 Avboden, Jul 16, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2012
  2. I want to know about the schooling, and how you feel they influenced your performance development.

    Was day 1 worth the $1300?
     
  3. Avboden

    14,514
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    Location:
    from Wa, living on Grenada (island)
    I Ride:
    1991 XR250L, 2007 BMW F800S, 1999 ATK 605 ESDS/SM
    The schooling is phenomenal. The one on one attention with the instructor is really nice. they get you thinking about ONE thing at a time, and give you plenty of time on the track to try it out.

    as for the price, you have to realize that it's not all about the education, it's also about a 2 day track rental with an insured S1000RR. If I wad the thing and total it, my ONLY liability is up to $1200. They cover the rest.

    If you could find an S1000RR to rent for the track insured like that separately, it would probably be about $1000 per day. This course is two days on the bike. So taking that into account, this is very reasonable. Especially compared world wide to other superbike schools.

    There is a reason this school has survived for over 30 years, their methods WORK.

    Really though, how much you learn is how much work you put into it, they are there to teach you but if you just go out there and ride the way you always have, not wanting to change, then you're not going to like the class.
     
  4. Looks pretty rad.
    More photos of the gal in the middle of the last one please.
     
  5. +1

    nice writeup too
     
  6. Good to hear!

    Do they offer any metrics on performance improvement? Like Laptimes, data analysis onsite?

    When I think of Superbike school, I think "Teaching me to become a expert racer." I know I'll probably not ever go AMA, but I'd like to dice it up with some of the best club racers some day... before they disappear into the sunset. :)
     
  7. Which is advantageous unless you already have your own track bike that you've had nearly perfectly set up for your riding. It seems like a large percentage of people who would be willing to do this course would have their own gear. Then you are just wasting money riding somone else's bike not to mention wasting time getting accustomed to a new bike when you should be able to be focused on improving on the track. I was really sad when I saw this on the calendar and found out you HAD to use their bikes. If I could have paid for the course and used my own gear I would have done the school, but I have a hard time getting excited to pay a lot of $ to rent something I already own. I'm glad you had a great time and learned a lot though, that's all that matters!

    -Brandon
     
  8. Thanks for the review. I'm doing this next year for sure!
     
  9. +2
     
  10. Try the Jason Pridmore school.
     
  11. ninjaofdoom

    ninjaofdoom <a href="http://pnwriders.com/motorcycle-talk/8554

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    This is really important to me as well, as I'm 260lbs and my gix6 is sprung just for me. I'd be fearful of pushing it on their bikes as I could very well override the stock suspension due to my size.
     
  12. ZREX MIKE

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  13. TJC

    TJC

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    +1

    For me I'm not trying to turn faster lap times. I'm trying to improve skills for the street. So bringing my own bike would be great. They do offer BYOB options but not many outside of California.

    Thanks for the review. Have you tried other similar schools? I'm curious how this compares to others, particularly STAR. (BTW, STAR is at The Ridge Sept 17 + 18.)
     
  14. +1

    I'm in and paid for that!
     
  15. I think I might be as well.
     
  16. I don't think you should go. I want to get faster than you.
     
  17. I'll be doing this school in august at Heartland Park in Topeka, KS. Can't wait 8)
     
  18. I need to catch up to YOU....
     
  19. Yamacrab

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    Great review, so jealous I can't be there! :*(
     
  20. Nice write up. Do you get to use the bike on the skid pan - the one with the outriggers?
     
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