Riding School - BMW K1600 Forum : BMW K1600 GT and GTL Forums
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post #1 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
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Riding School

I've done some searching on this forum about the different riding schools but I haven't come across any posts comparing the classes. I'm not looking for a racing school, but I do want to attend a class where you ride on a track. My question for those of you that have attended a class or classes is which class do you think is the best for teaching you to become a better rider? California Superbike? Class Motorcycle School? Or? 1 day, 2 day? I would love to hear your experiences.
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post #2 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 06:17 PM
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CLASS, ran by Reg Pridmore. Several of us on the forum have attended. I wouldn't go for just one day, do both. Do a search, CLASS.

Duane
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post #3 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 06:26 PM
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Any school is going to improve your skill level. Which one is better is subjective. I went to the 2 day California Superbike school and thought it was terrific. You ride their S1000RR bikes and they supplied the leathers, boots, helmet etc.. Anything you don't already have. It's 20 minutes in the classroom then 40 minutes on the track with an instructor (one instructor for every 2 students) then 20 minutes debrief then back into the classroom. I learned a lot and am a lot more comfortable on the street now. I had ridden a bike for over 40 years so I had to undo a few bad habits. They have large trucks they take everything from track to track all over the country. A little expensive but it's the same as a new exhaust system and you can use it all the rest of your life. Well worth the investment.
It was 2 days of the most fun I've had on a motorcycle.

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post #4 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 06:37 PM
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I've found that focused, professional training from a qualified instructor is always worth your time and effort. Having a skilled professional trainer watch you from outside and critique your style is invaluable in reaching that next skill level, and in building confidence.

Even after 4 decades and around 600,000 miles on two wheels, I still take regular training courses and track days, still read up on riding skills and accident avoidance, and still "practice" on every single ride. It's what keeps you safe out there.

The MSF offers their Basic Rider Course and Advanced Rider Course, which are well worth the small time and money commitments. Most riders here are likely already at that point or beyond, so they'd be looking towards developing more advanced riding skills as mentioned below.

Riders of any skill level can start with reading things like Twist of the Wrist I & II by Keith Code, Smooth Riding - the Pridmore Way by Reg Pridmore, and Proficient Motorcycling: The Ultimate Guide to Riding Well, More Proficient Motorcycling: Mastering the Ride, & Street Rider's Guide: Street Strategies for Motorcyclists by David Hough.

Many of the ideas and techniques explained above can be practiced locally. Just find a large empty parking lot if you're in the city, or a lonely side road if you're out in the country, and try to recreate what the books are telling you.

And if you're interested in doing much longer rides, you should read Don Arthur's excellent Fatigue and Motorcycle Touring, which I re-read before every extended multi-day ride.

Then continue with the Twist of the Wrist I & II videos (can also be found on YouTube).

And don't forget some helpful websites, such as The Pace, Pace Yourself, The Fine Art of Braking, and TrackDoD Novice Group Orientation.

That will set you up for a skills-based track day such as Ride Smart, Reg Pridmore's CLASS, and California Superbike School. The point of a skills-based track day isn't to "win" or to "put a knee down", but rather to expand your riding skill set by practicing all the above ideas in a safe and controlled environment, with immediate feedback from qualified instructors.

You can also look at instructor-based training, such as Lee Parks Total Control program. And there are a few other places that offer one-on-one training as well.

Skills-based track days and private training can be found all over the country, if only you search for such things.

And remember to enjoy the ride...
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Some people see the gas tank as half empty. Some see it as half full.
All I care is that I know where the next tankful is coming from...

Last edited by Meese; 03-07-2018 at 06:45 PM.
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post #5 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 08:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bomberoman View Post
I've done some searching on this forum about the different riding schools but I haven't come across any posts comparing the classes. I'm not looking for a racing school, but I do want to attend a class where you ride on a track. My question for those of you that have attended a class or classes is which class do you think is the best for teaching you to become a better rider? California Superbike? Class Motorcycle School? Or? 1 day, 2 day? I would love to hear your experiences.
To follow up on what Duane said - I haven't done CSS, but I have taken several MSF courses (military required), Total Control Level I, and CLASS at VIR twice. First time was in Oct 16 (rode my K16GT) and learned so much, I went back this past Oct on my S1000R - and I WILL go back this coming Oct. After my first time, I posted the review linked here: https://www.k1600forum.com/forum/bmw-...dmore-vir.html

As far as the one vs two day question, I would definitely recommend a TWO day session. In my experience, I worked on learning new techniques, and then the second day solidifying those techniques through repetition. Apparently Reg agrees, as this past year they stopped allowing one-day registrations at VIR.

I DO plan to attend CSS at some point as I know several folks who have completed all four levels and every single one has recommended the course fully. I don't think I'll ever race, but I say that I've learned a TON at CLASS and substantially improved my on-street riding.
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 08:23 PM
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on the track

...and if going fast and faster isn't what you really want then check out: Streetmasters Motorcycle Training Workshops - The Precision Cornering Workshop

This is on a mile track at Willow Springs but it isn't about racing.

BTW - do some research on the BMWMOA site and look at the Foundation link - you may qualify for a PaulB Scholarship.

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post #7 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 09:24 PM
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Lee Parks Total Control is a great starting place. Do the first level before going to the Reg Pridmore or Superbike programs. Get the basics in a non racecourse setting done and the track oriented programs will take you to a level that you couldn’t get to without the first level of training.
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post #8 of 13 Old 03-07-2018, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by GTLen View Post
Lee Parks Total Control is a great starting place. Do the first level before going to the Reg Pridmore or Superbike programs. Get the basics in a non racecourse setting done and the track oriented programs will take you to a level that you couldn’t get to without the first level of training.
I agree with Len and think this is a great sequence.

I took Total Control in Aug, and my first CLASS session a couple months later. I spent much less time on the "basics" at CLASS and was able to start working on other techniques earlier. At CLASS the instruction is completely tailored to you as there's as much one-on-one instruction as you ask for, so don't be afraid you'll waste time with techniques you're already comfortable with.
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post #9 of 13 Old 03-08-2018, 11:50 AM
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I have attended CLASS and CA Superbike and for me CA Superbike, 2 day was a better program. The off track sessions were the most informative I have ever sat through.
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post #10 of 13 Old 03-08-2018, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTLen View Post
Lee Parks Total Control is a great starting place. Do the first level before going to the Reg Pridmore or Superbike programs. Get the basics in a non racecourse setting done and the track oriented programs will take you to a level that you couldn’t get to without the first level of training.
Len, this is that path I took about 10 years ago; TC followed by CLASS. My knock on the Superbike programs is you don't ride "your" motorcycle; big difference in handling the K1600 compared to a 1 liter bike...

Duane
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