After rain had forced us to postpone this session by a few days my Taranaki crew were gifted with the kind of ruts typical of a Taupo raceday. The slush had parted and now we needed to show them the best way through.
As something of a bonus we were treated to the visual treat of watching one of the worlds best riders show us how it is done, a man who happens to hail from South Taranaki himself. Daryl Hurley showed the boys how it was done, and I just pointed out a few things.
The big bursts of power from Daryl’s bike on other parts of the track sounded like something out a war zone, but through this rut the sound from his bike was more like the purring of a big cat.
He also had his pointing finger on the front brake through most of the rut. Any reservations about which finger to use on that lever were hopefully quieted by watching yet another example of a top rider not using their middle finger.
The Best Seat In The House
Consistency is key, which includes the moment you choose to sit. We tend to sit when we are most vulnerable. It might be the sharpest point of the turn or a hole- but no matter what excuse you might use, the fact remains that it is always better to sit after the worst part.
Daryl was standing past that tricky point in this corner, which meant that his suspension had nothing else to deal with when he did sit. No doubt it is so natural to him now that he doesn’t even realise he is doing it, but it takes courage for most everyone else to do.
Foot On The Pedal
I moved to the outside of the rut for one of Daryl’s passes, and stayed there while my crew had their turn. I was watching their outside foot, making sure that they had the ball of their foot on the peg, tucked right in against the bike. Any time that someone’s outside foot came off the peg they were risking push up’s from me because I know how important it is to keep that foot on the peg.
Young Lucas was truly railing that rut, and it was good to see Reef being able to cut out of the rut early for a short line out of the corner. Most importantly they were all getting through it consistently, and I am looking forward to seeing if I can do the same at the Battle of the Clubs.