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I think I have an inferiority complex about my riding skills. I've been riding for about 8 years and gradually worked my way up to a Street Triple. However, my tires are about shot and I'd say there's a strip about an inch wide on each side of the Pirelli Rosso Corsas that has not touched the road. Is this is sign that I'm not leaning far enough or is this difficult to achieve when only riding on the streets? I see my dad's sport touring tires are used completely side to side and I always feel like I'm keeping up when I ride with him. I seek out some pretty curvy roads and I just have this feeling that I'm not pushing the bike into curves as far as I could/should.

In case you're wondering, I've never done a track day (nor do I plan on it) and I've never taken a class. I want to get better or at least feel more confident but it's tough when I ride mostly on my own.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Read proficient motorcycling by david hough.
Thanks for the suggestion, that looks right along the lines of what I need. I get Motorcyclist magazine and they have a pretty good column every month, but once a month isn't enough and sometimes they're too technical.
 

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Chicken strips (or lack of) are overrated. I have seen some people with no chicken strips who ride slower round corners than other riders whose tyres don't always wear that far.

I personally think being safe, competent with good judgement and confidence are what make a good rider, not lack of chicken strips.

Riders who lean away from the bike and push it down dirt bike style may have no chicken strips but aren't riding well.

If you want to be good at sports you get a good coach and train.

If you want to be good at riding, do practical training with people who know their stuff.

(Also as Geo suggested, read books on riding like Hough's. Or Nick Inetsch or Lee Parks etc.)

Doing an advanced riding or track course, you will learn heaps, grow in confidence and judgement and have a lot of fun too.

Think of an advanced training course like you think of a helmet - it is a safety device that makes a lot of sense and so you spend money on getting a decent one.
 

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If you've been riding for about 8 years, and are still here, then I'd say you are doing just fine. Ride to enjoy it, not to prove something. If you're in competition riding (racing) then sure, you've got something to prove. But recreational riders like me should stay well within our personal comfort zones. Do that, stay safe, and enjoy riding for years to come.

Oh, and I too recommend Hough's book, and its sequel, "Mastering The Ride."
 

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I agree with what was said before. Chicken strips don't necessarily mean anything. It could be that you aren't going fast enough to need the lean to reach the edge. It could also mean that your style means you don't need to lean as much for a given turn (good). Reading is great and I've read and continue to re read ALL the books referenced above. But, I highly HIGHLY recommend going to the track. I've taken classes from Reg Pridmore and Jason Pridmire. Both were ok. But, I got the most out of Keith Code. They have 4 levels offered one at a time. The first 3 address specific skills. The last one addresses anything you want. It worked for me because I didnt have to worry about debris, cops, drunk drivers, wrong way cars, etc. During each session, you get on track instruction, such as being followed and then " follow me". You get feedback after every session. There are different bikes that Code has developed to help you understand concepts. It's awesome.
Whether its Code or someone else, riding on the track (it's not a race) is the best way to gain confidence and learn new skills.
 

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Two of the fastest riders I have ever tried to keep up with (I failed miserably) have chicken strips on their tires. It's meaningless.

Enjoy the ride!
 

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As others have posted, don't obsess over the width of your strips. If you want to take turns faster, do so in small increments. Don't ride over your head or confidence level, especially on the street. The only ones who care about how narrow your strips are, are others looking at them. Who cares what others may think or assume about your riding style or abilities. You may want to spoon on a set of sport touring tires instead of supersport tires to save some money. If you really want to remove those strips, go to an empty parking lot and ride in circles of decreasing diameter, slowly. You can even drag a knee while doing them at a much slower safer speed. Having strips means you have more tire to use when needed and you're not riding 100% in terms of a safety cushion.
 

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I think I have an inferiority complex about my riding skills. I've been riding for about 8 years and gradually worked my way up to a Street Triple. However, my tires are about shot and I'd say there's a strip about an inch wide on each side of the Pirelli Rosso Corsas that has not touched the road. Is this is sign that I'm not leaning far enough or is this difficult to achieve when only riding on the streets? I see my dad's sport touring tires are used completely side to side and I always feel like I'm keeping up when I ride with him. I seek out some pretty curvy roads and I just have this feeling that I'm not pushing the bike into curves as far as I could/should.

In case you're wondering, I've never done a track day (nor do I plan on it) and I've never taken a class. I want to get better or at least feel more confident but it's tough when I ride mostly on my own.
Sounds to me like you're doing just fine.
Here's why~
1. You live in Ohio. That means you get to repeat you first year of riding every Spring. You don't progress very much when 90% of your riding is "review from last year."

2. DO NOT compare your riding to anyone else's. No, not even your dad's.

2a. Ride your own ride!

3. Get some training. Since you have ridden a few thousand miles, (please tell me this is so.) There's no reason you shouldn't take an ARC. (Advanced Rider Course.)

4. Over the Winter, you've got some homework to do.

You've already been made aware of Hough's "Proficient Motorcycling" book.

Try this~

Hough's "More Proficient Motorcycling"

Ken Condon (anything by him.)

Motorcycle Consumer News (monthly magazine.) www.mcnews.com

Nick Inietch's(sp) "The Pace"

Fred Rau


I know I'm leaving a bunch out, it's not on purpose.

DVD's?

"Why We Ride"

If you like competition, then all the "On Any Sunday" titles are for you.

Lastly, don't discount the track for "racers only." Although, I recommend riding a bike that you can "walk away from" without too much financial impact.

The more you know, the better it gets.

Next time, you can tell us how Kamm's circle effects tire sidewall temperature! :wink2:
 

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Doing an advanced riding or track course, you will learn heaps, grow in confidence and judgement and have a lot of fun too.

Think of an advanced training course like you think of a helmet - it is a safety device that makes a lot of sense and so you spend money on getting a decent one.
Couldn't agree with this more. It is the ONLY place you should "explore" the limits of your ability or your bikes', until you learn to interpret the feedback you are getting from the bikes/tires/suspension. Then you can feel confident in your abilities on the street... By using proper counter steering, body position etc I can ride with the fastest out there and not come close to reaching the edges of my tires... That's not to say that using all of the tires isn't easier but it can be done. :grin2:
 

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RE; stips

Two of the fastest riders I have ever tried to keep up with (I failed miserably) have chicken strips on their tires. It's meaningless.

Enjoy the ride!
I agree. Unless, like the guy with the H2 Kawasaki I met today, the tyres have shredded layers of rubber right to the edges!:surprise:>:)
 

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I suspect if you are keeping a proper line, and choosing appropriate speeds for the roads/conditions it means you're more likely to have chicken strips. Seems to me it just means you're not having to lean the guts off the bike to stay alive. I don't ride the blazes off my bike, but I don't grandpa-putt either, and I have chicken strips. (Let's do a celebrity ad to combat the shame of chicken strips. Round up some A-listers to be filmed in black and white and look pensive and say "I have chicken strips" ;) ).

I get the feeling you're bothered less by the strips specifically, and more by worrying your tires have them bc of something you're doing wrong. I also recommend Hough. It's good to have things explained and pointed out in terms of finer riding control. It'll also help you care less about the state of your tire wear, and more about the feel of the ride. Not to mention he gives a lot of good safety/common sense advice you might not have thought of. Beefing up your riding knowledge and form will give you the confidence to know whether you're a good rider without tires being your measurement of your skill.

A good ride is marked by how it feels while you're on it, not how the tires look when you're done, imho.
 

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Go do some track days , don't be scared of them ,its the best fun you can have sitting down, and get rid of those chicken strips safely.
Roasted
 

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I too have those chicken strips, most do.

I used to do track quite a bit several years and wore tires down to edge, but that is in a controlled environment and fully suited to protect against any fall, and boy did I fall.

What I had discovered while on the track was that the bike would not lean as much as I would (the rider) , I was taught this by a very experienced racer.

Remember, smooth is your goal equally on track and on the road. I didn’t know what was meant by smooth until someone pointed it out to me that I was. Your focus should be smooth entry, smooth exit, forget the strips.
 

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Good thread, I just bought Hough's book
 

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I think I have an inferiority complex about my riding skills. I've been riding for about 8 years and gradually worked my way up to a Street Triple. However, my tires are about shot and I'd say there's a strip about an inch wide on each side of the Pirelli Rosso Corsas that has not touched the road. Is this is sign that I'm not leaning far enough or is this difficult to achieve when only riding on the streets? I see my dad's sport touring tires are used completely side to side and I always feel like I'm keeping up when I ride with him. I seek out some pretty curvy roads and I just have this feeling that I'm not pushing the bike into curves as far as I could/should.

In case you're wondering, I've never done a track day (nor do I plan on it) and I've never taken a class. I want to get better or at least feel more confident but it's tough when I ride mostly on my own.
I agree with a lot of what others have written here. Chicken strips are no indication of whether someone is a good rider or not.

Others have suggested books/DVD's that may help. I'd like to add Keith Code's Twist of the Wrist II (book and DVD) as great options as well.

Don't compare yourselves to other riders and work on building your own skill level ONE THING AT A TIME.

One of the best ways to improve is to take an advanced riding class so that you know what techniques you need to work on and HOW to improve. I'm a coach with the California Superbike School and we get riders of all ability/experience levels at our schools and are always able to help them improve and gain more confidence to be better, faster, safer riders.

If you have anything specific you want to ask about a technique or a suggestion on what you may want to work on first then please let me know. I like seeing people become more confident and knowledgable riders.

:nerd::grin2:

Is there something specific that you feel you should work on or think is holding you back? What do your dad think?
 

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The worst thing you can do is doubt yourself! You have to go out and own the road, dont mistake this for being overly cocky. Ive had plenty of buddys who got scared going through a bend and brake hard which = faceplant or down the hillside they go, luckily they learned from the mistakes. Your a beast!! Your an awesome rider!!! Now go show that street who the boss is ?
 

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I definitely wouldn't worry about things like chicken strips and all that noise if you're enjoying the ride and being safe. Track days are for pushing it when you're not putting others in danger and getting in over your head. Keep riding the way you're comfortable and ignore the chicken strip haters!
 
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