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Discussion Starter #1
This is one I have never heard of, but it sounds like a good idea. This was posted tot the Ducati mail list in light of Steve Rapp's crash

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>its a no no to leave fingers in between the brake lever and throttle when break and entering a corner , I do it and 95% of other racers probably do too but every race has heard a story or know somebody who crashed and the lever either separated the finger(s), chopped it off or kept them trapped on the bar in a right hand low side <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Any comments on this? Any other tips like this?

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- Dan
 

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Well, it is a good point, but there's a problem. It is almost impossible to blip the throttle when downshifting and braking simulaneously, unless you have a couple of fingers on the bar. When braking, I use my first 2 fingers on the lever, and keep my other 2 fingers on the throttle so I can blip it when I downshift. However, as soon as I finish braking, I take my fingers off the lever and put them back on the throttle. This greatly reduces hand fatigue, and prevents the possibility of inadvertently dragging the front brake in a corner. I believe that most pro racers use this same technique. I have never seen a GP racer use more than 2 fingers on the brake lever, and they are arguably the best riders in the world.

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I agree, I also use two fingers on the front lever while braking. I could not imagine using all four fingers and then having to keep them there the entire ride.


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Robert Basil
It ain't easy being green - Kermit the frog
But it sure is fun! - Robert Basil

[This message has been edited by Sportbikeworld (edited June 15, 2000).]
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I guess I didn't interpet his comments that way. I also keep two fingers on the brake lever and two on the throttle - its good form. I thought what he was trying to imply was that you should hold those other two throttle fingers farther back so they aren't between the brake lever and the throttle. I couldn't figure out how that would work. If what he meant was to put all 4 on the brake, yea, I agree, he's full of it. Any racing school would say the same. Kieth Code specifically tells you not to, that you succumb to the human reaction to grab to hard with the pinky and ring fingers.

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- Dan
 

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i saw the rapp crash and wondered about his fingers. the four finger thing just seems like bad form, but i don't know.

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Tony

00 GSX-R750-yellow & black
88 FZR400-krylon black
94 CBR600F2--sold
 

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That is simply ridiculous. 99% of the time if you lowside while turning right your hands leave the bike well before the bars hit the tarmac. It's true there are many finger injuries but how many are caused by getting the fingers stuck between the brake and the throttle? To ride any other way would be a no-no IMO.

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I just had a high-speed low-side the other day at Mid Ohio (turn 7), and I'm glad to report I can still count to ten with my fingers. I don't use more than two fingers per lever.

The first priority in racing is to win. Maintaining finger count is a distant second, at best.

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--2000 VTR1000F Super Hawk
 

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Hope the bikes fine Diablo. I put death and injury in the back seat, and I don't care for it whatsoever until it happens. I think the only way to screw yourself up in such a wreck is by keeping hold of grip after you go down, because you don't want bike to flip; otherwise, like CBR said, you instantly become two with the bike.

Trevor

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[This message has been edited by Mr.TrevorClever (edited July 09, 2000).]
 

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Discussion Starter #9
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by cbr600f4gd:
99% of the time if you lowside while turning right your hands leave the bike well before the bars hit the tarmac.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I'm no expert. Lets get that out of the way. But my observations are these. I've had one low-speed lowside and seen many lowsides on TV.

In my one lowside, the time from "everything is ok" to "Oh, I'm on the pavement now" was practically instantaneous. I've noticed this from watching lowside on TV as well. The entire transaction is in a few hundred milliseconds. I was on the pavement before I had any reaction to move my hand. Was my lowside particulaly "fast"? Is it different when going faster?


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- Dan
 

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My low-side happened PRETTY DAMN FAST. The front wheel bounced twice mid-turn; it landed from the second bounce in the grass, and before I knew it, I was watching the pretty sky/green grass/pretty sky/green grass/pretty sky/green grass/,etc,... Despite the VERY small amount of time separating "worried rider watching the grass draw closer" and "bouncing sausage wondering when would be the best time to get up," I'm pretty sure my left hand was clear of the grip before initial touchdown.

btw, the best time to try to get up is NOT while tumbling. I got a few really good bounces from that mistake.

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--2000 VTR1000F Super Hawk
 

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I am writing this message and wearing a cast on my right ankle as a result of a lowside I had about 5 weeks ago. In my case, I lost the rear, and as it came around, the footpeg lifted it off the ground. Thank God for that, cuz I would have gone flying if the rear tire caught again.

It seemed to take forever for this crash to happen, but I'm sure it was a fraction of a second. The bar hit the ground, but my hands were unhurt. As soon as I hit the ground with my hip, I let go. Then I slid for about 3 feet and started tumbling on the pavement. I was praying to get into the grass, but never made it. During one of several head-over-heels flips, I twisted my right foot badly and it broke the bottom 5mm of my fibula off. Hurt like hell for about 5 minutes, but no big deal after that. Hopefully I will get the cast off this Friday and be able to race next weekend :)

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Discussion Starter #12
Maybe its "how" you lowside. In the instances I am thinking of, its a front end washout. The end of the grip is already 12 inches from the pavement (or so it seems anyway), and the bike just suddendely "falls over". With 500 lbs hovering less than 2 feet off the ground, it doesn't take it long to travel that distance.

Now if the lowside is a back end loss, there's a bit more time involved, possibly. You can travel through the corner for a short distance with no traction in the back end. Luckily I've never done this, but I've seen a number of pros do it. In this case I can easily see there being some time to think about options and plan for minimal injury.

I know in my case, my clutch lever (left lowside) snapped off, and my grip grounded. The oblique impact possibly snapped off the lever and saved my hand. I walked away with absolutely no injury, but again it was really slow - I'm guessing under 30 mph, and I didn't tumble, just slid.

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- Dan
 

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As this thread is in the "Club racing and track days" forum, I'm assuming this thread pertains to racing and not street riding.

Since one maintains a greater amount of control by using one or two fingers at the levers, I would never advise one to keep the fingers away from between the grip and the lever while turning. Turning is not the situation that I'd be willing to compromise the amount of control I maintain over the bike. The moment I no longer have fingers wrapped around the grips, I have effectively lost control of the bike. This is not an option for me, especially during situations calling for high performance.

btw, my lowside occured with the bike leaned over at near peg-scraping angle at the uphill turn 7, and it happened literally faster than the blink of an eye. I'm fairly certain my body reacted instinctively to release the grips and stick out the palms, bracing for impact. The kevlar buttons at the base of the palm of both my gloves still have grass and dirt imbedded at the button joints from that initial hand-to-grassy-field impact. I'm often surprised by what the human body is capable of doing in the absence of conscious thought and effort. Food for thought: Wrist fractures are a very common injury among skiers and motorcyclists, as the human instinct to catch a fall with the hands is very strong. I, for example, broke my left wrist twice, and had bone graft surgery to join the scaphoid. ~~True story. Sad, but true.


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--2000 VTR1000F Super Hawk
 
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There are those riders who have lost fingers, and those that will. :D

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Pete
"Ultimately, most problems can be solved by applying a large brick to the correct skull. Difficulties arise when you don't have a brick or can't find the the right skull. The Devil is always in the details."
 

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The instinct to stop yourself with your hands also leads to a lot of broken collarbones, or so I hear. Wrists, ankles, and collarbones are the most common racing injuries, next to road rash ;)

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