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Hats off to off-road racers

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I raced my first harescramble in 9 years on a private course and all i can say is i had my butt handed to me. I was going easy trying to break my bike in after a topend rebuild and thought a harescramble would be a good way to do it. 1.5 or 2 hours later (I dont know which i didnt care at that point) i was frustrated and just plain beat up but I did finish. My conditioning was good just certain muscles like my butt from getting hit with the seat while finding hidden bumps were not good. Another surprise was getting hit at a good speed with brush or sticks or anything u might find in the woods. I think my only good things that saved me were my mx handshields and my skidplate. I should have looked at this section of the forum but i thought i could wing it. Man was i wrong. Mx/Sx style setup trying to haul threw the wood was not a good combo. On the track i was money but in the wood it would get ugly real quick. There were only about 10 of us(suppose to be on the 1st but bad weather in forcast). I should have known better when 6 of 10 rolled up with barkbuster and steering stabilizers with narrowed bars. I am not going to give up just modify, adapt, and overcome. I see a 2stroke in my future for pure off track racing. So to all people who love to race off road my hat is off to you.

328

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Hats off to you for getting out there! Aint it the truth, I too come from a mx background and know just what you mean, woods racing is a whole new ballgame.

Fortunately a lot of top x/c riders were or are very good mx riders so I know your skills will serve you well. Bike setup, technique,and proper practice are the secrets to speed, all of which can be found here at this forum.

Read Dwight's sticky, much good stuff in there and he walks the talk...you have to respect his accomplishments(plus he's a pretty nice guy, I was a fellow team member of Team Hodaka at the '05 ISDT reunion ride)

Have fun on your journey.

A fellow woods racer, Jeff

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:confused: Sounds like you had a blast none-the-less huh?!

Now... come on out to Cali... and we'll get you wide open in our deserts. :eek:

But very true, I have a couple guy friends who race closed course MX and have real trouble in the open desert. They are used to a rhythm and can't look far enough ahead to go at speed. Let alone the desert whoops aren't spaced evenly apart or are deep, shallow, deep, deeper...etc and aren't anything like MX styled course environmentals.

Sometimes it's the opposite as well... put a desert guy on a MX track and watch him blow through all the berms! :crazy: ....or have the best of both worlds and dominate across the board.

... there's a great picture in the latest issue of dirt rider with a guy giving advice on how to get through trees the fastest.... Shows him in the air and changing bar angle to miss the two near trees. Gotta love Woods racing... as I hate it. :( I'm no good at those damn obstacles. :lol:

:confused:

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it felt like more of a challenge then mx. i reviewed the events of the race to see where i could improve. I think setup and a couple parts would help alot. A steering stabilizer, some solid handguards and a completely different suspension set-up and i think it would be alot closer. i have ridden desert about 10 years ago when i was 14. I loved the desert its fun but i hated how hard it was on the bike. All in all it was a learning experience and i think if i keep doing it the pay offs on the mx track will be worth it. Not to mention line selection is crucial in the woods. Its good to branch out and do other things.

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The best quote I ever heard about woods racing was from a AMA mag. It was an enduro steward trying to explain to the press what it was like riding through the trees at speed..I'll paraphrase.."ya know the part in Star Wars where they dive into that canyon on the death star and everything is just flying by..it's just like that, only faster!" No better way to get the heart rate up and the clearing all the cobwebs out of the old brain. :lol:

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Now go try and ride the long course at an Enduro....Find out what riding in the woods is really about....

2 hour Harescrambles are for sissies:p :lol:

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Welcome to Off-raod racing! Its a hoot but not for those who don't like to hurt. With a MX background you might want to look into GPs.

Have fun!

Whoop!

Paul

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I started with a woods backround originally but took a break and when i came back my only riding buddies only liked track so i adapted. I am thinking of switching to full time offroad in about a year, that was another reason to experience a race again to see if it was a good direction. I love mx and sx but with my family starting i think its time to find something a little less dare devil than mx. No offense but 3rd or 4th gear tapped in the woods doesnt really scare me like a 90+ foot jump. In all actuallity its the overall difficulty of off-road that is calling me. Its really hard to pick good lines in off-road and the length is nothing short of brutal in bad conditions and even in good its not a cake walk. A stabilizer seems to be my first priority before i try again. I tried a buddies bike and found alot of the sections that were giving me troubles went quite smooth with a stabilizer not to mention not getting the bars ripped out of my hands was a plus. I have been reading thread after thread of setup advice, ridding tip, etc. Its like relearning to ride. Not too mention fun again.

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No offense but 3rd or 4th gear tapped in the woods doesnt really scare me like a 90+ foot jump.
None taken...and I'm with you. I love to fly through the woods inches from trees, rail through blind corners, and hammer it down steep loose rocky hills. But I have no desire to ever clear a 90' triple, heck, 40' doubles freak me out.

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I'd swap out your springs at the least before you get the steering stabilizer.

Since your still riding mx, maybe just get a set of springs and swap them back and forth whenever you go woods racing.

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Gotta love:racing...:confused:

Enduro,Slowww poke race!!:confused: National Hare & Hound /www.district37ama.org:eek: :lol:

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... there's a great picture in the latest issue of dirt rider with a guy giving advice on how to get through trees the fastest.... Shows him in the air and changing bar angle to miss the two near trees. Gotta love Woods racing... as I hate it. :confused: I'm no good at those damn obstacles. :lol:

:confused:

That's Shane Watts. He just raced an end of the year 5 hr team race in our HS series, which I participated in also. I thought our local pros were fast till I watched him go thru the woods. A pure artist, he is. BTW, I love the woods.

http://www.shanewatts.com

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Well I'm not much into the offroad stuff yet... but I'm would have to say that I am more woods than open land by far... and well... MX... Isn't touched... I find the beatings that the woods will give you for 1 minor wrong turn are a hell of a fun time... Makes you look WAYYYY Ahead... And where you are at all at the same time....

I really can't wait to get into some woods stuff out here in Cali...

Glad you had a great time and you know what to do to improve!!!!

DM

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... there's a great picture in the latest issue of dirt rider with a guy giving advice on how to get through trees the fastest.... Shows him in the air and changing bar angle to miss the two near trees. Gotta love Woods racing... as I hate it. :crazy: I'm no good at those damn obstacles. :lol:

:confused:

Shane is a stud. When I do stuff like that I usually end up wanging my shoulder into a tree :confused: There was a hare scramble this past summer in which I clipped the same three trees in a row every lap with my bark busters, rightleftright, just like that but it never caused a problem.

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Yea, i've gone threw tress in like a mid 3rd (6 speed) and felt like warp factor 10 because any and all refrence points are extreamly close to your head. I think it's hard to really call one (MX or woods) harder. They're really diffrent.

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I'd swap out your springs at the least before you get the steering stabilizer.

Since your still riding mx, maybe just get a set of springs and swap them back and forth whenever you go woods racing.

Depending on his weight he may not need springs, but I agree, before you worry about the stabilizer, get a suspension revalve.:lol:

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Suspension is the name of the game. If you don't have set up and dialed in, you are behind the curve. Period, no if's and's or but's. Stabilizer is secondary.

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