Welcome!! Gotta Question??

Forums Champ U Champ U General Discussion Welcome!! Gotta Question??

  • This topic has 84 replies, 44 voices, and was last updated 1 month ago by Paul Bennett.
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    Rachel T

      Hi Neils

      Thank you for reminding me about this.
      The videos I have watched so far have made a lasting
      impression on my memory and I do practice my emergency braking
      More or less everytime I start riding. I also remind myself of the
      100 points of grip theory when taking sharp corners but I don’t get have the confidence to increase my speed.
      Great to hear so many perspectives on street riding. 🙂
      BTW Happy Thanksgiving to everybody !:)

      Robert Fell

        Is there anything wrong with downshifting twice with a single clutch disengagement instead of only once, as long as you can smoothly rev match?

        Nick Ienatsch

          Hello Robert…”Wrong” is a tough one! Some could argue that anything that works is right, but we would push you toward single downshifts per clutch engagement for a couple of reasons:
          -Bike transmission gears like to be reloaded during downshifts…we know this if we’ve stopped in a higher gear and notice that the transmission doesn’t just click, click, click down through the gears. Let the clutch engage just a bit between clicks and the bike downshifts beautifully, even at a stop.
          -We want to minimize coasting. Pulling the clutch in to go down two gears is more coasting, and refer to the point above if you think “I’ll just rush two shifts”. A well-performed downshift is a quick movement through the friction point, meaning almost no coasting.
          -A long downshift, like going down two gears, allows the rpm to fall longer and lower, requiring a bigger blip.
          -The faster you go, the quicker you traverse the braking/downshifting zone. We teach what will hold up at speed…cruising along well below the limit allows many sloppy habits to work, and in this case gives you plenty of time. Increase the speed, shorten the time to get things done, and suddenly you go down an extra gear by mistake, don’t get the blip in, coast farther than expected…

          Good topic, fun to think about. Thanks for supporting Champ U…Nick I.

          Ruud Brand

            I ‘finished’ the ChampU course, which means I have worked through all the modules. And now I am going back and forth over my notes and the clips.

            I practice while I commute on my Kawasaki 1400 GTR. It does build confidence in the wet, cold roads in the Netherlands. But I am really looking forward to getting on track next month in Spain with my Triumph 765RS.

            The whole idea of ‘lighter, longer’ is going to be new. I am used to braking quite late and hard, thinking that a little bit of fish-tailing and lifting the rear wheel was part of ‘going fast’. That is going to be different from now on.

            Really love the content, just watched the ChampBody clips and I would really like a training program geared towards track riding.

            Nick Ienatsch

              Hello Ruud…Thanks for your notes on Champ U, and your support.

              Here is something interesting to consider: Inde Motorsports Ranch (where we shot Champ U Core) is a 2.8 mile track. Chris Peris and Kyle Wyman have traded the track record back and forth, Chris owns it currently. On data, we see that these two racers are at maximum braking…front bottomed, rear lifting…for only about 30 feet!!! That’s it. Everywhere else, these track-record-holders are below maximum braking (I write “maximum braking” to mean that the bike/tire is at its limit). That means an “earlier/lighter/longer” approach…not “later, harder”.

              Good food for thought as you plan this year’s track approach…let us know how it goes…please help spread the word about Champ U….Nick I.

              Ruud Brand

                I have had a great weekend in Spain at the Alcarras circuit. The weather was not typical, so I had the ‘opportunity’ to ride half a day on full wets, which was a first for me. It made very apparent how smooth or not smooth I was, especially with the throttle; spinning the rear at low lean angles isn’t that unnerving, so it was a fun way to learn.
                I continued to focus on the 0-5% for throttle and brakes when the track dried, filling my report card with fails/passes. Alcarras is a beautiful flowing track, no long straights or hard braking zones, and being smooth and connecting the dots worked really great. At the end of the weekend I rode very close to the fast group times.

                I am very happy with the technical basis from the ChampU course, because it gives my stuff to try to improve. Much better than instruction like: “take more speed into Turn 8”.

                Alex Hatfield

                  Ruud, that sounds like blast of a time! Very glad you’re out practicing the techniques and taking your improvement seriously. Love the enthusiasm and dedication!

                  Lyle Ausk

                    I wanted to first thank you for the quality instruction I received at ChampStreet yesterday (4/15) with Steve and Mark. They were knowledgeable and Mark pushed me further knowing I was a more experienced rider who has some limited track experience (mostly supermoto) too. I had alot of fun on the last session of the day riding on Streets of Willow (bucketlist check-off complete). I didn’t have the best motorcycle for the job, and being on 50/50 ADV tires meant feedback wasn’t really felt. Short of replacing the tires, what are some other techniques for improving that feedback sensation? Adjust the tire pressures, play with suspension settings? Along the same lines, both pairs of my full gauntlet gloves are thick and may also be contributing ot the problem (heck, I have a difficult time feeling my heated grips and my bike has BarkBusters): Do you have any recommendations for good quality gloves that offer better tactile feedback in the palms?

                    Keith Culver


                      Keith here. Glad to hear you had a good time and hope it sticks with you.

                      I ride a Tenere 700 on the street (and gravel roads) and I find when I run the lower pressure recommended for the dirt it feels squirrely on the pavement. So I’m playing with pressures now that mimic my full street tires (in the 30s) but my bike is not too heavy so hard to say for sure on yours. Try bumping pressures a few lbs at a time to see how it feels. Also, if you are truly riding 50/50 then stick with those tires. If your 80% pavement and only gravel roads in between pavement, move towards more of an 80/20 tire.

                      As for gloves, I would steer you towards the D-Store in Costa Mesa. They are really stepping up in the ADV world and I will be getting all new gear for my trip to Italy this summer. I haven’t picked my favorite gloves yet but plan to go there and spend some time trying them all on to see what I like.

                      Hope this helps a bit,



                      Lyle Ausk

                        Hey Keith,

                        I ride a Tiger 900 Rally Pro so just a little bit heavier than your T700, I ran the OEM pressures on the track (36/42) and was riding on a new and different brand AX-41 front tire so that was also part of my reservation at entry speed in/”giving it the beans” out of corners (I was using TrailMax Missions previously). I really don’t mess with pressures off-road unless I feel the bike losing traction. With WFH my commuting is much less these days, so trails are more in the mix of my weekend rides. I will likely upgrade to Anakee Wilds once they are back in stock.
                        For off-road rides, I either wear motocross gloves in warmer weather or A* SM-X Air gloves. I’m glad to see Dainese finally stepping up their ADV collection. I was looking for more of a street/track gauntlet glove recommendation, but I will check out the D-Store since it’s only about 30 minutes from my house. Do you think the Druid 3 gloves might best suit my needs while also offering improved feedback?

                        Thanks again,


                        Jon Francis

                          Hypothetically question. Two riders on identical motorcycles with identical skills. The only difference is their weight. Which rider can carry more speed through a corner?

                          Alwin Krul


                            I have a question regarding the theorie content of ChampU and the motorcycle exam I have to take here in the Netherlands. I think the driving exam here is quite elaborate, how does the theory provided via ChampU relate to the needed skills and knowledge for driving exams, in for example the Netherlands. Would it add just as much new topics/knowledge as for riders in the US? What would be the new/interesting topics for me as rider in the Netherlands?
                            Currently doing motorcycle courses in preparation for my exams (‘vehicle control exam’and ‘trafic participation exam’), have done 5 hours of vehicle control and 1 hour of road riding so far. I hope to pass my exams at around 15 to 20 hours of practice. The mentioned courses and hours are seperate to the theory exam I already passed.

                            Love to hear from you (champschool), but also other riders

                            Alwin Krul

                            Ruud Brand

                              Hi Alwin, a fellow Dutchie here. I got my license some twelve years ago.

                              The ChampU theory will help your understanding about motorcycle riding, but there is no direct link to the riding course and exams in the Netherlands.

                              You might actually experience a perceived conflict between some of the information, so good to discuss with your instructor and here.

                              Ken Goodrich

                                I have a question about working the front tire before loading it, in situations where this isn’t practical with the brakes: Riding at sane speeds on the street, a common situation is not needing to brake at corner entry and working to carry constant speed from prior to entry, though, and out of the corner. I’ll try to enter the corner at a speed that will bring me to the max lean angle I’m comfortable with through the corner (…often above the speed limit already). Obviously, there’s no opportunity to load the tire via the front brake prior to working it in these situations. Other than tipping into the corner smoothly, any thoughts on loading the front tire in these situations?

                                Nick Ienatsch

                                  Hello Ken…One of the factors in this answer is lean angle. If you are entering a corner that requires a lot of lean angle, that is the definition of “working” your front tire…you will be asking it to steer the bike in a “relatively sharp” corner for the speed you are going.

                                  So: to enter a corner that will require significant lean angle without closing your throttle (but with your fingers up on the brake lever, of course) is risking two things: The front tire washes out because it’s never loaded or the rear tire spins as it is overwhelmed with lean angle and throttle points. If you feel the corner does not require braking but will require significant lean angle, simply closing the throttle will transfer weight forward and load the tire…plus it would tighten your steering geometry and drop your speed to help with the radius.

                                  We street ride a lot and there are corners where the throttle doesn’t need to be shut…faster corners that follow a slow corner and we’re still building speed, for instance. The main point is that we must not not prioritize “leaving the throttle open”, we must prioritize getting our bike into the corner and ready for the exit. Whatever that priority needs is dependent upon entry speed, corner radius, lean angle limits of our bike or tires, debris. Thanks for the support of Champ U…Nick I.

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