Don’t “Chase,” Ride Your Own Ride

 

A general group riding tip, as well as track days (not racing… they get their own set of guidelines) is to not chase people. When you get passed or somehow end up behind a faster rider, don’t chase them unless you’re ready to pick your bike up off the ground.

For street rides, I’ve had to pull enough bikes out of fields and bushes that I make it a point to remind people in my groups before rides. The problem is that the faster rider has more of a picture of what’s happening, their own plan for managing traction and line, and so on. If you’re chasing, you’re at the mercy of the combination of their choices and your ability. If they make a bad choice, you’re now stuck dealing with it. Even if you’re qualified to get through the corner at their speed, you now have their bike to dodge if they’re not.

If they’re truly faster, and you’re hanging on to them, they’re pulling you along at speeds and lean angles you may not be prepared for. Even if you just do the exact same thing as them, you may end up in a situation where their tires are better, their bike is lighter, their throttle control is smoother, or any other factor that lets them get through a corner but causes you to crash.

Especially when you get passed, the “red mist” may cause you to start chasing instead of thinking for yourself. Keep that in mind and if you notice it, force yourself to ease off and do your own thing. That red mist is your competitive nature making you want to “win”. There are no winners on a street ride or at a trackday though, there are only those who stay upright and those who lose.

If you think you’re keeping up, back off, it won’t work out well.

 



Older Post Newer Post