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supercross On Sale: Starts - 50% Off

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PayPal is accepted.  Someone let Tomac know.

Throughout supercross history, there have been guys who have the starts down (Scott Burnworth back in the day, Donnie Hansen, McGrath, Andrew Short, etc.) and there have been guys that seem to always struggle with them.  Guys like Mike LaRocco and Eli Tomac stand out to me.

No, all joking aside, just curious from those who have raced at a higher levels if you feel starts are something that you either are blessed with or is it a learned skill.  I understand that anything you work at should get better if you have good technique (practice doesn't make perfect, practice makes permanent.  Perfect practice makes perfect.).  Obviously, he knows he needs to get better and practices them, but for one reason or another he's a notoriously mediocre starter and his good starts are the exception and not the norm. 

I raced a lot in high school, a few times in the Army and a little bit in college, but I was poor as hell and during high school and had to rent a U-Haul trailer every week and pull it behind my mom's sweet Mustang II just to get to the track to race.  I couldn't afford clutches, much less top end parts when I needed them, so didn't really practice starts.  I was always a crappy starter, but it was definitely because I didn't put in the time.  For those that do, curious if it's something that is more reaction time than a learned skill.

Carry on.

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These kids don’t know how good they have it! It puzzles my because a guy like ET obviously has fast reflexes to be a top rider in the sport, but I’ll be damned the kid can’t start worth a 💩!

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1 hour ago, DesertCR said:

These kids don’t know how good they have it! It puzzles my because a guy like ET obviously has fast reflexes to be a top rider in the sport, but I’ll be damned the kid can’t start worth a 💩!

Looks like he jumps all right but is to cautious  going into the first turn 

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15 hours ago, MANIAC998 said:

The few times ET3 has gotten a good start, he would have clutch slippage for the remainder of his moto (Unadilla). Perhaps he’s forgoing a good start to preserve his clutch???:excuseme:

Maybe hes just got slow as &%$#@! reaction time. In the military we used this hand held device to squeeze when you seen a light it was suppose to help increase reaction time.  I was surprised in how slow some people were. 

Edited by 777654321
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3 hours ago, 777654321 said:

Maybe hes just got slow as &%$#@! reaction time. In the military we used this hand held divide to squeeze when you seen a light it was suppose to help increase reaction time.  I was surprised in how slow some people were. 

Too reasonable. It's got to be something like aliens or the deep state remotely messing with his mapping. 

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59 minutes ago, indy rider said:

Too reasonable. It's got to be something like aliens or the deep state remotely messing with his mapping. 

They need to bring the ship back and fix his ass. His starts are terrible. 

On the other hand the PUNISHER Bam Bam is looking good. ADAMS choked in each race so far.

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"practice doesn't make perfect, practice makes permanent.  Perfect practice makes perfect.). "

Excellent, many would do well to take this to heart. Slow down and practice fundamentals and WAIT for speed to come naturally.

 

I was always a bad starter. Always had to accept mid pack and then run them down. Made for some exciting races but a lotta work and often dealing with the mid pack pile up

A few years back I decided thats enough. Went through  a case of clutch plates that season just practicing starts. Also decided to try and get all science on it during the "testing".  This is where I landed...

1- reaction time (within reason)  is not that big an issue. The reasoning goes like this, in the first 1/10 or so seconds of a launch we dont have much speed built up so we dont cover much ground in that time period. This means that guys with quicker reaction times (again within reason) dont get all that much distance on ya, . The math says that 1 or 2 tenths of a second at low velocity simply doesn't cover enough ground to make or break a start. Of course if you are super slow reaction time then yes it will matter BUT most are within a tenth  everyone else.

2- A clean, smooth, straight, hooked up launch is critical AND these moves fly in the face of your typical amped up mind set at a start. I would say 50% of what I had to learn was to simply calm down, wayyy down!  There were times I would experiment by not even trying to do it ALL just right , just concentrate on launching with NO EMOTION AT ALL, and I started constantly getting better starts. Its much easier to stay hooked up and straight if ya stay calm and that proved so important that as I said not even trying hard and just doing that made a surprising difference. 

3-Once you get the launch down theirs  one more hurdle. You have to stay committed . I found that I would unconsciously let off just a bit somewhere around mid straight when the speed is high and everyone starts funneling in. Fear, plain and simple. AND I watched and see that a LOT of people do the same. Once everyone is up to speed, if ya let off even a tiny bit or for even a split second you can easily loose a bike length or two. This is the scary part and if your not willing to stay in it here then all the launch skills wont help ya .

As a side note a trick that works for me is to NOT stair and focus eyes directly on the gate or pin or whatever. I did better when I looked in the gates direction BUT not directly at it. Not sure why that seemed to help. 

I now consistently get Holeshots. Often getting 4-5 in a row. This is on a local level in the expert class against guys less than 1/2 my age. I occasionally race a local "pro" race and consistently get top 3 starts there. Different world with a bunch of pros all around ya. You dont hear anyone's bike letting off anywhere. The first turn is like being in a blizzard of dirt chunks ha.

I dont know why ET doesnt get better starts, It really confuses me. 

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As De Coster stated during his Motocross Files interview, “It’s all in the mind.” I’m certainly not a pro, but have always gotten good starts. There are definitely techniques which improve one’s launch, but obviously every pro rider knows and practices these. Beyond that, my personal experience is to not think about it. When a rider is in the right mindset and confident, things just happen intuitively. Cliche, but things are happening so fast in that moto school of fish that conscious thought only impedes. I think it’s firmly in Tomac’s own mind that he sucks at starts. It’s the same with Ferrandis and also impacted LaRocco. I believe it becomes a self fulfilling prophesy. Tomac is much more relaxed about starting outdoors, primarily because it’s not as critically important. Ironically, his outdoor starts are much better which feeds into Roger’s theory in a backward sort of manner.

 

Again, I think Tomac’s poor starts make the racing much more interesting. Last week he wicked up the speed with nobody watching and moved past AC and others into fourth. Methodically, with impressive bursts of speed before running into another road block. If he got holeshots, this could get boring.

 

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Comes down to lack of practice and lack of confidence they usually go hand in hand..

Id say starts are 60% of the game even if he rides great still loses because the part of his game that matters the most is complete shit

He needs to change something... creep or do something different instead of repeatedly getting his bunghole plundered 

Edited by Assy man
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6 minutes ago, Assy man said:

Comes down to lack of practice and lack of confidence they usually go hand in hand..

Id say starts are 60% of the game even if he rides great still loses because the part of his game that matters the most is complete shit

He needs to change something... creep or do something different instead of repeatedly getting his bunghole plundered 

He needs to grow a set in crowds. Dudes wicked on a bike but always backs off in crowds. 

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22 minutes ago, Assy man said:

He needs to change something... creep or do something different instead of repeatedly getting his bunghole plundered 

I call repeatedly getting one's bunghole plundered as getting @Chaconne'd.

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16 minutes ago, 777654321 said:

He needs to grow a set in crowds. Dudes wicked on a bike but always backs off in crowds. 

Zack osborne chaconned him real bad last time

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