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Aug 5th 2016, 08:50 PM   #1
  Feb 2016

Supermoto Class at Road America

This is not a local opportunity, but posted for those who might coincidentally find themselves in the area near Road America (Elkhart Lake, WI) or those who might be interested in traveling.

This is the kart track at Road America used for supermoto (the higher elevation is the end near the dirt track):


This is the RA facility map. The Motorplex kart track is the (relatively) tiny blue track. That's how huge the rest of Road America is.


This is a Suzuki DR-Z400 (I was told the bikes used for the class were the 2006 model.):


This is an example of dirt style cornering body position:


This is an example of why stretching before riding is a good idea:


This is clockwise on the track:

This is counter-clockwise at the beginning and then around 2:44 switches direction:

Class info to follow.
beansbaxter likes this.

Edited by metricHalfPint on Aug 27th 2016 at 10:37 AM
Aug 5th 2016, 08:50 PM   #2
  Feb 2016

Elkhart Lake's Road America, Inc.

Last 2016 supermoto class listed on their website: Sept. 17
Price: $350 including bike rental
Prerequisites: see website
It looks like their maximum class size is 8. We had 6.
Track direction for our class day was clockwise.

In the morning there was a brief classroom session going over some historical facts (the term motard originated in France after the sport reached Europe), differences in body position (dirt style versus road racing style), and other things that were not saved in memory due to the anticipation of actually riding.

Morning practices included emergency braking in a straight line, emergency braking initiated while in a curve, and the two types of body position. After lunch the class alternated 20-25 minute sessions on the track with the supermoto trackday held in the afternoon. During these class open sessions all six participants could ride at the same time (compared to the one rider at a time format of the morning's exercises) with the opportunity for lead and/or follow with the instructor to work on your lines. We were encouraged to practice both styles of body position, which was convenient, because each one favors a different leg's muscles. I can't remember if we did the dirt session before or after lunch.

The dirt section of the track is sometimes incorporated into the flow of a whole lap of the track (riding from the track onto the dirt and then continuing on the track for every lap you go around), but for our class we just spent one session working on dirt alone. Riding downhill on grass was followed by a portion of the dirt track with some mellower bumps/jumps and a small uphill incline. I don't think anyone in our class was catching much air on the jumps, but it wasn't prohibited either. (The bikes do not have knobby tires.)

There is a food pavilion with mostly burgers & brats towards the center of the main track. Car races were going on the same day, and during lunch it was possible to view some of it from the picnic tables outside. With all of the trees it reminds me of pictures I've seen of the Nuerburgring. It would definitely be interesting to go back to watch motorcycle racing on the big track someday.

For the inseam-challenged with small feet (big feet give you additional inches, too) wondering about bike size:
I found the DRZ to be "about the same" as an R6, but slightly taller and somewhat lighter.
Starting and stopping was on the toes of one foot only. If I wanted to be completely flatfooted while waiting in line during the practice sessions, the leg thrown over the bike was not touching the other footpeg and made for a more crooked back position, often making it easier to just remain on my toes - so stretching the Achilles tendons beforehand would make sense. Also need to be careful of the spikey footpegs that like to grab textile pants when putting a foot down to stop.

Note: Pictures and videos above were found on the web and not taken of this class.

Edited by metricHalfPint on Aug 6th 2016 at 07:48 AM
Aug 5th 2016, 09:56 PM   #3
 beansbaxter's Avatar
  Jan 2016
  Seattle, WA

  Ducati + KTM
Wow. Very cool!

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