Here’s a question I get quite often. “Will these three motor officer techniques you show on your Ride Like a Pro videos work on a Sport Bike?” Then there’s the same questions except instead of a Sport Bike, the question refers to Scooters.
Before I go any further and not to keep you in suspense, the answer, of course, is YES. As I state in both my videos and in my Ride Like a Pro Book, the three motor officer techniques work on all two-wheeled vehicles.
In case you happen to be a new reader to the column, the three motor officer techniques I’m speaking of are; the proper use of your head and eyes, the proper use of the friction zone and the proper use of the rear brake. Once these techniques are mastered, and they can be mastered in as little as four hours, any rider, male or female, big or small, can handle even the heaviest motorcycle with the ease of a child’s toy.
While most of the demonstrations I show in my video and book are performed on big touring cruisers, I also show the exercises being performed on a few Sport Bikes as well. The reason I use heavyweight cruisers is because that type of bike is 70% of the market here in the USA…plus, due to the weight of the cruiser style motorcycle, a low speed tip over is more likely to occur. Of course a Sport Bike can tip over at low speeds just as quickly as a cruiser, but because they weigh less than half of what a cruiser weighs, most Sport Bike riders can hold the bike up should it start to go down.
I’ve had quite a few people tell me they’ve mastered the techniques on their cruisers but recently purchased a Sport Bike as a second motorcycle and are now having a difficult time with U-turns, etc. Here’s the reason for that situation. First, whenever a person gets on a new motorcycle, they tend to revert to their instincts. What that means is looking down and or at the very thing you don’t want to hit. While attempting a U-turn, if you look at the opposite curb, your hands follow your eyes and you will steer right towards the curb. If you don’t realize your mistake, you tend to think the new Sport Bike has a much bigger turning radius than the cruiser.
Another thing to consider is the handlebars on most Sport Bikes don’t turn as far as the cruiser handlebars. The good news is the Sport Bike has a superior lean angle to the cruiser. Remember, the further you lean the bike, the tighter the turn you can make. In addition, Sport Bikes also have a much lighter fly wheel. That causes the throttle to be much more sensitive than the typical throttle response of a V-twin cruiser. To overcome that sensitive throttle, use 2nd gear when making tight, low speed turns. Using 2nd gear will allow you to slip the clutch with much more control.
The bottom line, the three techniques work just as well on a Sport Bike as a cruiser. We had a Ducati rider and a Kawasaki Z1000 rider at our last Ride Like a Pro class and we took some video of them going through the most difficult exercises. If there’s any doubt in your mind about the techniques working just as well on Sport Bikes, go to YouTube and type in Ride Like a Pro Ducati_Rider_Sal or Kawasaki_Tony_intersection and put your doubts to rest.
While I don’t have video of motor scooters running through my course, take my word for it, the techniques work just as well on the Scooter. Believe me when I say the size and strength of the rider means nothing, nor does the type of bike you ride. It’s all technique. Learn the three techniques and you can ride anything with two-wheels like a PRO.