Divots right before the lip of a jump kicking my A-- (rear end)

So I'm a fair bit new to Motocross. i've been riding trails for about a year and a half, and have been riding Motocross tracks for about six months. I'm not a rockstar, but I'm clearing a bunch of doubles and definitely getting in there and moving.

Anyways, I've run into the situation in which right before the lip of the take off there is a big old DIVOT. I'm not sure of exactly what happens as I go over it, but I suspect my suspension is unloading into the hole, and then the rear wheel is hitting the other side of the divot, and it kicks the rear suspension upwards. This in turn sends me heavy nose first, and even at WOT I have no clue how I don't nose dive beyond recovery.

So... I know enough to change my lines to avoid these, but what's the best thing to do when you suddenly find yourself coming up on one? Lately I've been riding in less than ideal visibility (drizzle/misting) and these divots just wind up sneaking up on me.

Shift your weight back.

Yea, they are created from people throttling up the face of the jump usually, or a face that hasn't been built properly.

Honestly, avoiding them is by far the best thing to do.

If you do hit them, you need to keep on the throttle and move back, in order to keep the nose up. It will lead to a sketchy landing, but sometimes ya just gotta be prepared for those. I have tried a few other techniques like not preloading and staying over the back of the bike when taking off, nothing really seems to help enough. Obviously if you do preload or seat bounce, it will exacerbate the problem, so I'd be careful about doing that.

Yea, they are created from people throttling up the face of the jump usually, or a face that hasn't been built properly.

Honestly, avoiding them is by far the best thing to do.

If you do hit them, you need to keep on the throttle and move back, in order to keep the nose up. It will lead to a sketchy landing, but sometimes ya just gotta be prepared for those. I have tried a few other techniques like not preloading and staying over the back of the bike when taking off, nothing really seems to help enough. Obviously if you do preload or seat bounce, it will exacerbate the problem, so I'd be careful about doing that.

That's all good to know. I would be concerned about getting my weight back making it worse though, as the rear suspension boots up in a fairly harsh fashion and would literally kick my ass forward... a lot like sitting down on take off and not carrying the front!

Squeeze the tank with your knees and be prepared to react to whatever attitude the bike will take. Learn to brake tap if you end up nose high such as found when the track groomer accidentally leaves a kicker at the top of the jump. Likewise be prepared to panic rev. the bike if you encounter those hump, bumps, and divots that buck you like a bronco. A big fast outdoor track with good loam will always rut up and as a rider you need to develop skills to handle whatever gets thrown at you. You cant always avoid ruts and divots especially racing. You have to learn to develop a sixth sense and kinda know what to expect. Finally if you want to really improve as a rider, visit as many tracks as possible and develop the data base in your brain to counter act jump face mayhem.

That's all good to know. I would be concerned about getting my weight back making it worse though, as the rear suspension boots up in a fairly harsh fashion and would literally kick my ass forward... a lot like sitting down on take off and not carrying the front!

Forgot to include....yes that would be basically seatbouncing by accident which usually ends in...:busted:

Finally if you want to really improve as a rider, visit as many tracks as possible and develop the data base in your brain to counter act jump face mayhem.

Or be a fair-weather rider! heh :busted:

I know way too many of those guys. :busted:

what bike are you riding? how is your suspension set up? try going 2-3 clicks in on rebound damping. don't go in too far or it will cause your shock to pack up.

I'm just thinking out loud here, but what if you try unweighting the bike over the pot hole then get back in to ''attack'' position up the face of the jump?

what bike are you riding? how is your suspension set up? try going 2-3 clicks in on rebound damping. don't go in too far or it will cause your shock to pack up.

I'm just thinking out loud here, but what if you try unweighting the bike over the pot hole then get back in to ''attack'' position up the face of the jump?

This is a divot right at the top of the lip. Not at the bottom, where I can recover on the rest of the jump, literally right at the top of the takeoff.

I definitely panic rev like crazy.

Suspension is possibly questionable. I need to get my suspension resprung for my weight, serviced, and possibly have the shim stack altered to work better for my weight. I'll start with a re-spring and service though.

Suspension is possibly questionable. I need to get my suspension resprung for my weight, serviced, and possibly have the shim stack altered to work better for my weight. I'll start with a re-spring and service though.

Yea thats kinda the first thing ya gotta do before commenting on issues. Its critical to have good, working suspension and dial it in properly. You might find a lot of issues disappear if you do. :busted:

I've run into the issue on both my WR400 and my YZ250, but one is a very trail specific suspension setup, and the YZ250 is just in rough shape overall.

video or pictures would be helpful. I'm not sure how big the divot is but you could try smacking the front wheel into it to try to get it to pop up too, or hit the base slower and accelerating over it more, or hitting the base faster and accelerating over it less.

Sit by it and see what other riders do if they hit it.

What track are you riding in this beautiful liquid sunshine we have been having? Woodland mx? If so it always develops some gnarly kickers on the faces. Sometimes you have no choice but to hit them but usually its best to try and find a clean line.

What track are you riding in this beautiful liquid sunshine we have been having? Woodland mx? If so it always develops some gnarly kickers on the faces. Sometimes you have no choice but to hit them but usually its best to try and find a clean line.

I'm riding Riverdale actually. I want to be at woodland since it's WAY closer, but their timing has yet to work for me at all.

If the bike is coming up and kicking you your should look into suspension,

But as far as technique goes the general rule for large pot holes on the faces is to stand, lean back, and power up the whole face to ensure the back doesn't come up.

Double lipped jump.

Your clickers may be off so play with those settings. If the jump is big enough, stay on the gas the whole way up. If you're carrying alot of track speed and just "float" over it, keep your weight back and panic rev in the air to straighten out.

The situation you are describing is called a kicker. It does just that, kick you. The suspension quickly extends, contracts, and extends. Your body position and ability will dictate what happens next.

Interesting, the term kicker in snowboarding is for a jump with a TON of lip so it boots you REALLY higher and in the back seat. Good to know the difference.

Dirt bikers use that terminology also. If you are around free stylers the word kicker usually means the type of jump like snowboarding. When your at the mx track it means there is a whole in the lip of the jump. Either one tends to add more energy into your suspension and therefore requiring a different technique than if the kicker wasn't there.

Basic example: You go out for practice first thing in the morning and all the faces are smooth (no holes or kickers). On a specific jump (that you normally would shut the throttle off half way up the face, keep your body neutral, and allow the engine braking to finalize your lift off speed) now for the 1st moto that same jump has deteriorated with ruts and kickers. Now it will require slightly less approach speed so you can use the throttle all the way across the kicker to end up with the same lift off speed. With the throttle on it allows the energy from the kicker to be dissipated over a greater distance and stiffens up the rear suspension. In most cases you will need to row backwards much further than normal to counteract the violent upward motion of the rear of the bike.

You need to use your body to absorb the extra energy. Push back just as it starts to kick (rebound), not before or later or you make it worse, and absorb the upward thrust with your legs and let the bike smack you in the ass if it does.....then get back over the bike again. Have you ever jumped on a trampoline and instead of landing stiff and then bending your knees to help you go higher you adjust your timing and bend your knees a little sooner (at the apex) and absorb the upward thrust to stop yourself from bouncing up again all or to make another person fly up higher. Same thing.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now