Blog Posts

The Laptime Challenge

We’ve all seen those crazy consistent laps that Pro riders can dish out, lap after lap. Regardless of the series, MotoGP or MotoAmerica, riders like Lorenzo, Marquez, Stoner, Jake Gagne or JD Beach, running lap after lap within tenths, or even hundredths of a second, is simply mind-blowing. (Think about it from a percentage standpoint. A 90 second lap with a variance of .01 is variance of .0001%!) 

So, how do they do that and what can you do to emulate that?

They do it by using visual and feel references that are connected to each other, literally guiding themselves around the track from reference to reference. Once enough reference points are created, the space between each reference point becomes a segment and when riding in that segment – their brain space stays only in that segment – enabling them to capture only the information within it, which they then use to make that segment more nuanced. From there, they combine and loop the segments, corner after corner and lap after lap. 

How can you work on this? Take the laptime challenge! Normally we look at our lap timer after each lap, or look at our predictive lap in real time to see how we are doing. Remember, those results come after our actions! We ultimately want to be pro-active, adjusting in real time to achieve the results we want. 

The laptime challenge is taping over your lap timer and running laps, using only your visual and feel references and see how consistent your laps are, then reviewing them after your session. As you build and rely more on these references, the laps will get more consistent and closer together. It had been a while since I had done this and I recently was able to try it again, this time at Jennings Florida, riding a stock Ninja 400. My goal was to get up to speed quickly, then run 3-4 laps as cleanly and consistently as I could, then try and reduce the lap time by changing my technique. In this case, releasing the brake quicker after turn in, but not letting it go until the slow point.  

Here are my results and hope you also take the lap time challenge!