Although there is no known motorcycle racing track in Bangladesh (yet!), the sight of bikers racing through random highways and streets, and very recently through the beautifully lit roads and bridges of Hatirjheel is not rare at all. Yes. Bikers love to race. But do we all know the basics of safe racing? Are we even properly educated about the skills needed to master the art of racing?
The three fundamental skills that are needed to be a spontaneous racer are:
2. Counter- steering
1. Braking: You might know how to brake, and when to brake, but it is the emergency brake that is required if you are to race flawlessly through the asphalt tracks. This is very important in racing since you may need to apply brakes very suddenly while on the track. This skill develops with plenty of practice. Brakes are applied most of the time by instinct, but when you are racing, you have to donate all your attention, that is, you have to apply the brakes by using your mind. Do not get distracted; concentrate on where you’re going. Emergency brakes can be mastered with complete focus. Not only does this help on the racing tracks, but also on the roads – emergency brakes may even save your life.
2. Counter-steering: You might be asking yourself at this point, what is counter-steering? Well, you probably know how to do it, and maybe you even do it every day. Counter-steering is the process of making a turn in a given direction by leaning towards that direction while on your bike.
So now you must be thinking, hey, I counter-steer every day! Yes and no. Counter-steering on a racing track may be a lot more difficult than you think, since the turns may be more frequent and of higher angles. You need to know how to use your brakes and your body in order to master this. The common advice with leaning is, lean on the right if you’re turning right, and lean on your left if you’re turning left.
3. Cornering: On a road this maybe very easy to master (or not!), but on the race track this technique must be mastered. You need to get used to the angle and the speed with which you should turn a corner, and feel comfortable with it. Should you counter-steer when turning a corner, or simply steer? Well you get the answer to all this only with practice. But remember, you must apply the brakes before you turn the corner.
The above are only a short description on the basic abilities you should possess in order to get running on those roads to call yourself a racer. More specific techniques on racing will be posted quite soon. Until then, keep practicing and don’t forget to gear up before you do motorcycle racing !