Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Auburn, WA 98401
How do you deal with the fear ?
The answer to me anyway is you embrace that feeling of fear. The more you do that the easier you will deal with it at the next turn.
Part of it is accepting that you can crash and that you may become injured (or you may not). Most of the time you will slide, and if you are on the pavement, just count to 10 after you think you have stopped sliding, just to make sure you really have stopped sliding.
Fear is a good thing, but on the race course, you have to gauge your own level of fear and respond to it accordingly. For example, you may grip the bars harder, which will stiffen your arms and cause more twitching of the bike in the turn, which will make you feel less in control (even though you grip hard to control more). You will be way smoother by focusing on relaxing your grip when you go into every turn. This should gradually increase your confidence and attenuate your fear level.
The other thing is what Apeximax. said about the tires and trusting them. More time on the track, leaning over more, it takes time, you have to be patient!
Run the race at YOUR pace, not someone elses! Push yourself when you feel you can, not because a bunch of people just lapped you. Nobody cares, just get out there, run as fast as you can and always work on improving your corner speeds a little at a time.
The only way to convince yourself you are not taking a turn too fast is to have previously gone through the turn as fast or faster. Not grinding the pegs yet is not going to keep you from tweaking on a turn. If you are not willing to risk wadding up your bike, just take your time and your speeds should increase each lap, just maybe slower than the guy who is willing to wad his bike.
Another thing that works is to pick the brains of other racers who are experienced at the track you are racing. Go around the pit area and ask. Everybody will help you out with tips on lines to take, etc. That will help reduce any intimidation of the turns.
"...If you can meet with triumph and disaster, and treat those two imposters the same....you'll be a Man, my Son!"
- Rudyard Kipling