We pride ourselves on being able to train specifically on a riders level, but this day in Drury was taking it to the extreme.
Helping someone accomplish their first ever ride on a motorbike is one of my favorite things to do, mainly because I remember how scary it can be, and saw the consequences of average teaching so many times in my youth. Getting it right from the start can make a huge difference when they don’t have the memory of an out of control bike slamming them into a building, fence or vehicle when they panicked with the throttle stuck on open.
Normally I would coach these newbies in a session all by themselves, but not this time. There were two quite adept “beginner” riders also booked in, which made my life a bit hectic to start with, as level 0 is different to what you would normally class as beginner.
Before teaching Cory how to stand and sit properly, he needed to be sure what to do with his right arm when life got a bit out of control, not to mention using the slipping point of the clutch to get up to speed before letting it all the way out. Seem obvious? It is not something that most people spend even a full five minutes to do with even their own kids, let alone two hours.
On the other hand, Kurtis Lilly is a MX1 rider that was near the top of his game during his Junior career and is now well up there in the senior ranks, yet he was plenty keen to do a full two hours one on one with us in an effort to master the big four strokes. You would think that a top rider like this might be hard to coach, but the session was far from difficult.
Starting with the extensive use of our lap timer system we were able to compare his style of riding the rear brake through turns with one that used front brake instead when the traction was good, and leaning into the turns further instead. His feedback was excellent which made my life much easier, letting me know how the new style felt slower because there was less happening, and yet his lap times were just as fast with the new style. And it wasn’t long before his lap times started dropping significantly as well.
In between those two extremes was a solid group of four riders who also made the most of the laptimers, along with a new rider named Ashleigh who kicked the day off in style. And considering the early start to get there on time, I was one tired boy on the way home. It was a good drive though, the grin on Cory’s face still stuck in my minds eye.