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Thread: Big Bike Rally Training Ride Report

  1. #1
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    Big Bike Rally Training Ride Report

    So Burt and Moly of this parish set up a weekend of big bike rally training at the Sweet Lamb Rally Complex in Wales, complete with Dakar riders Craig Bounds and Tamsin Jones. The aim of the course is to better prepare you for rallying, rather than trail riding - although many of the techniques are transferable.

    Here are some of photos and videos I took during the weekend.

    This is Burt in a totally natural pose He has a ton of biking experience:



    This is Moly giving some instruction - he rides a custom mongrel of an HP2 megamoto/enduro and he's blisteringly fast, just a shame about his Brummie accent



    This is Craig Bounds - riding God, and all round nice chap:



    And this is Tamsin Jones in one of her more serious moments. A successful finisher of the Dakar who has made me question the phrase: "Riding like a girl"!



    Being a Rally complex, meant we had great facilities for our bikes:



    Rest assured, they weren't going to stay this clean for long!

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  2. #2
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    The first morning had us all working in a big group on the basics like picking up your bike:



    Slow bike slaloms:







    All the while getting useful pointers from the instructors





    What was cool about this was how useful everyone found it, even the really fast riders
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  3. #3
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    Next was breaking - Tamsin demonstrates just how long it takes to stop if you're only going to use your rear break!





    Still going...



    And still going!



    Now imagine that on a 200KG bike! A great demonstration about the importance of the front brake when off-roading. We then spent a good bit of time practicing that.

    Next... it was time to break in to smaller groups and get out on the trails and for us spend some time on high speed cornering!
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  4. #4
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    High speed cornering is crucial to rallying but also really useful for trail riding - learning how to manage your line in relation to the vanishing point, just how much traction you can hold, use of pressure through the pegs and the handle bars. It's also unique to be able to spend some time on one bend, to break it down, and to be able to hit it as fast you can without fear of hitting others users of the lanes such as ramblers or horse riders. Of course, there is still the fear of not making it round!

    First some demonstrations from Moly on 2 of the bends we would be working on:







    And then it was up to us to try... it was getting wet so I didn't get so many photos but here is one good set showing Russ really going for it:

    Starting to go wrong...


    Bringing it back...


    And then losing it again


    In Russ's defence - he was really very fast and was just unlucky that I had the camera out. Here he is in better shape:



    This session was super valuable. To give you an idea of the improvement - I started going in to the bend on tickover in 2nd gear... to being on the power in 3rd and changing in to fourth as I came out of the bend. Probably something like a 20+mph increase in speed and actually feeling more comfortable than when I was coasting through. A great session, despite the pouring rain!
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  5. #5
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    I gotta go do some work now. I'll be back later with more pics and some video from the next day!
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  6. #6
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    ace pics mav

  7. #7
    louisdut Click here to find out how to Subscribe
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    Great pictures thanks for posting

    Looked like a great weekend had by all

    Louis
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  8. #8
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    Thanks Moly

    After the first day's riding, (and once we'd dried out!) it was time to refuel ourselves

    First the pub...


    Then an Indian:


    Funnily enough, everyone was ready to call it a night before 11... I can't imagine why everyone was so tired
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  9. #9
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    The next day, we went straight in to training in our smaller groups but switching instructors. So as we'd done high speed work the day prior, it was on to technical work for us.

    Here is Craig demonstrating riding up a gully:





    You'll notice that his wheels are not touching the ground at this point!



    Craig did a great job of pointing that no matter how fast you are in the corners, you could waste all your energy by screwing up these kinds of obstacles.
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  10. #10
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    So next it was our turn!

    This one gives you an idea of how deep it was:


    Making it look easy:


    It's not about style points...


    Not content with it being kinda interesting to ride, there was a good slope at the end which would test our momentum technique!


    And if you got it wrong, wheel spinning would be required!


    Here's a video of one of the guys demonstrating how to do it right

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  11. #11
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    Big Bike Rally Training

    Awesome pictures and a great little video. A great ride report as well - thanks for this Mav.
    Will speak to you soon about being our official photographer ;-)

    Burt

  12. #12
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    Nice write up, great effort on the hill climb with the HP2

  13. #13
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    Next was to really get to grips with momentum technique - the idea being: you can't simply apply power once you start losing grip or speed... you have to approach the obstacle with enough speed and momentum and then maintain it through the obstacle.

    First up, Tamsin demonstrates the route:

    This was a tight left hander and those rocks are like riding on ice!


    Then, up and over this initial lip, through a water splash and up a sheer rock face!


    The general reaction from us was: "You're having a laugh!"

    Well, we all made it through... twice!


    A better view of the water splash


    And the climb... which you can imagine got a little more interesting as it got wet!


    Some of the others getting through:


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  14. #14
    What Tyre pressure you running
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    That looks the Bollox, where are the details of these courses?

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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by louisdut View Post
    Great pictures thanks for posting

    Looked like a great weekend had by all

    Louis
    Cheers Louis - you would've had a great time there. And it would've been cool to have another HP there... the KTM's outnumbered us!
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyGod View Post
    That looks the Bollox, where are the details of these courses?
    Speak to Burtieboy or Moly for when they'll be organising the next one
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