Hyperformance riding


Hayabusa Immortal
Donating Member
Questions gang....

How many are puttin their knee down & butt hanging off? How did you learn, scared at first...? Also when in the twisties what speed & RPM are you carrying?

I don't have twisties worth crap where I am, but here goes... Think of it as your body wrapping around the bike not actually coming off the seat. The purpose of knee dragging is to move the center of gravity and decrease the lean angle at any speed. In other words, say you take a turn at 70 mph, if you knee-drag, your angle will be less. Smaller angle = more grip. More grip = faster cornering.

Start out with the bike on its stand in your garage. Move off the seat so that your non-dragging leg is gripping the bike. You should be able to do this without touching the handle bars and without falling off. Remember that you are pivoting, so your ass should move forward as well as to the side, not just to the side. Shift your weight around and try to feel the balance.

On the road, you want to set your position before you enter a curve. Before or after braking, I really can't tell you. Anyway, move to the side and be sure to shift your weight forward as well. Keeping weight up front not only helps the busa dig into corners, it will also let you change your direction much, much faster. One leg will grip, holding you on the bike. I can't really 'tell' you more as this is a 'hands-on' type of thing.

As far as speed, second should be your gear of choice. Only on very tight, slower stuff, would I use first, although you won't be dragging on those anyway and downshifting can give you powerslides, which can be un-nerving if you have never done one. For the most part, I would get used to familiar corners in the straight position and maximize your speed and then start dragging. This will let you compare your speeds and available traction. You should be able to go much faster with a knee out on the same corners. If not, try to see if you're doing something wrong in your position.

One last tip, try to relax (both your muscles and your mind). If you tense your muscles you will find cornering much more difficult. You should find yourself literally diving into corners... and that will get quite addictive.

I have lost my old links, but someone had written a very nice and detailed article on knee-dragging techniques (a magazine wrote it, I believe). If anyone remembers and has that link, please post it.
All of that is right on the money! I do all those things and still it doesn't get down. I am about 2 inches away from it getting on the ground. I know it has to do with where the tank is catching my non knee dragging leg. I will get there. I have had lean angles to the tire edge regularly and hell I have on been at this since Feb. It will come.. At least that is what all my friends tell me!

Marc "Howlin Mad"
Thanx guys, I've been hanging my butt off for about 6 months now, at first seemed kinda scarey but very comfortable now and makes me wanna power out of the turn even more. But I'm still about 1/4 inch from the edge of the tire, I havent slid at all yet but seems like bike would slide out. Also have set up a camera on the side of the road and the camera doesnt lie! haha. When I think I'm really layin it over I'm still 6 or more inches off the ground. I think probly in the back of my mind is I remember hitting pedels on the ground as a kid riding bicycle thats makes you hop when you catch one and lose control... maybe same fear.
As for speed and RPM - I have busa in 2-4th gear in the twisties speed is 60-90 or more, rpm's about 5-8. From my street racing days ( car ) & scca runs... the higher rpms in a turn would give you more control over all, however a little to much on the throttle and you spin out! When you guys are in the turns are you running 8k rpms or more? and are you sliding around like SBK & Mach 2? For me sliding around on a dirt bike with foot down at 25-30mph is no prob but on a turn once on my old CBR I did that and right foot went down ... about ripped my foot off and calf hit the rear turn signal.

I know Kieth Code tells ya sliding is ok ... but was just wondering what you guys are doing on the busa... thanx for the replys.- Aloha


The nice thing about hanging off on the street is that you don't have to use maximum lean angles through the corners so if something should occur and you need more lean angle to get through the corner you have the available traction and more lean angle to get the bike through without running wide on the turn. Riding the pace on the street is very important I never push myself to 100 percent on the street I always leave room to compensate should something occur. Knebnr.
90% of my riding (weekends only) is tight twisty mountain range stuff "an more often than not, chasing a couple of mates on R1's or similar" and to be perfectly honest I can get more from the Busa with lower RPM than I can with higher revs and I don't move around to much. I have found with RPM's above 9,000 I get wheel spin powering out of corners and I normally have to work much harder to "get set" for the next corner I.E the bike jumps to hard which impedes smooth motion, (unless of course I have the desire to tear up some road and throw it at one of my mates who is attempting to pass), anyway dragging knees on public roads is OK now-and-again....but always remeber to calculate "safe separation" (between you and everything else on the road [moving and not moving]) besides if your dragging something your not cornering fast enough (joking).....Safe Riding

Hanging off the side since day one. Love it . As far as speed and rpm depends how I'm riding that day. Some times 3rd gear low rpm, some times 2nd gear high rpm leaving black marks out of corners. tires are worn to the edge within a couple hundred miles of their short lives, scraped first peg at 4 thousand miles.Burned four rears and one one front. Using pirelli dragons right now and they work greeeeeaaaaat. Haven't slid an inch.Liked it so much i just mounted the second pirelli yestreday. Gonna try Metzelers new one next. Ride hard it's more fun.

Why does shifting the center of gravity forward help complete the turn sooner? Not sure I fully understand that.

Is it simply to get more weight on the front tire to keep traction?
More weight on the front tire helps give you feed back on what the front tire is doing so you can feel when the tire is approaching the limit of traction. Most riders like to have a good feel for what the front tire is doing it allows you to push harder because you know exactly what is happening with the front end you can loose the rear end an save it mostly all the time but if you slide the front your more than likely goin on your ass....................................