Superbike-coach Knee Down (10-17-20) & Wheelie Classes (10-18-20)
This past weekend, October 17th & 18th, Superbike-coach held their Knee Down & Wheelie Classes. They had students from all over, including North Carolina to take these classes, and they’ve been booked up for almost a year, so THAT should tell you something about what Coach Can Akkaya can do. These classes are only held a few times a year, only ONCE due to the shelter in place caused by COVID-19, and they ALWAYS fill up way ahead of time so don’t wait if you want to get into either or both of these classes. The weather was GREAT and EVERYONE had a GREAT time. So…let’s get started shall we?
*** Knee Down Class ***
Riding a motorcycle, especially a sport bike, brings all kinds of thrills and one of them is “knee dragging”. You see this MotoGP, World Superbike, MotoAmerica, club level road racing circuits. and your local track days. It’s so popular that even the little guys on mini bikes are doing this.
Belive it or not, there is a right way to do this and that’s where Coach Can comes in handy. He uses his many years of racing in Europe, and WINNING by the way, and gives you the tools to succeed…all that’s needed is for you to TRUST what he says and the willingness to get out of your comfort zone. To help his students, Coach uses two stations: Mini Oval – you learn at a slower pace on the Superbike-coach Mini Bike & Main Oval – students use their own bikes to try and get their knee down.
Ok, so I can hear you now…”Really? We’re using a mini bike for this? I’m too big for that thing”. Yes “Linda”, that’s right…ha ha ha. It’s because of it’s size that makes getting your knee down soo much easier, and yes, SAFER! The purpose is to make it as easy as possible for his students to feel what it’s like to drag their knee so it’s not soo uneasy and startling when they do this on their own bike. This also makes crashing, yes it’s going to happen, so much “easier & safer”, and FUN (yes, I said that…ha ha ha) if/when it happens. You’re much closer to the grand so if/when it happens, you just get up and get back on the horse. BTW, ALL crashes we’ve had, and really not that many…many 2 students per class…have ALL been low sides and NO ONE has gotten hurt.
The Main Oval is where students get the chance to get their knee down on their OWN bikes, and BOY did we have SUCCESS! Coach Can has a standard 80% success rate and ALL his Knee Down Classes, and he RARELY misses this mark. This time around, he had one of his MOST successful classes. Out of 20 students, 18 got their knee down…that’s 90% people! It’s not just the student that celebrates when they get their knee down (and yes, you can see their ear-to-ear smile in their helmet) but Coach does too. Even the other students get into the action and congratulates each other when this happens.
In between these track sessions, there’s the classroom sessions. This is where Coach Can talks about how to make this happens and even brings in a bike to demonstrate the proper technique. After he demonstrates, each student gets on and tries it themselves while Coach watches and helps correct what they are doing wrong…this in it’s own can be a FUN time for both Coach and students…ha ha ha
*** Wheelie Class ***
So, you’ve been riding your bike for a while now, and after watching racers lofting their front wheel in the air, you decide you want to learn this. You start searching YouTube and watching all those “video instructors” showing you just how “easy” it is and what to do. Some show you how to use your clutch to do “clutch wheelies” and some show you how to do “power wheelies”.
After hours of watching these, it starts looking real easy so you decide to try it out for yourself. Basically, 3 things are going to happen: you’ll fail…MISERABLY, get the front wheel up (maybe you ride it, maybe you don’t, but it comes up), or you CRASH! Chance are 2 out of these 3 results are going to happen…you guess which 2 I’m talking about. The main result, however, is you FAIL MISERABLY! Why you ask? Simple Junior…these videos CAN’T and DON’T tell you WHAT YOU’RE DOING WRONG…PERIOD!
Well, have no fear because Coach Can of Superbike-coach Corp is here! If there is something Coach LOVES to do besides riding on the street or track and that is doing WHEELIES. Not only do you have the classroom sessions but Coach Can has several tools at his disposal to help each and every student achieve doing wheelies: mini bike, wheelie machine, and yes…SMR rental bikes if you don’t want to take the chance with your own bike (there is an additional cost for these of course)
To start things off, of course after everyone has checked in at registration and received their color wrist band for the group they are assigned (Blue, Red, Green), Coach Can introduces himself and his staff and goes into the class structure and what to expect. Then they all walk the track and go to the different stations where they are explained. At the end, Coach does a “demo” run…first to show he really knows HOW to wheelie and the other how he wants the attempts to look like. As mentioned, there are 3 groups everyone is placed in: Blue, Red, Green and there are 3 sections used for training: Main Track, Mini bike/Wheelie machine station, and the Breakroom (yes, this is IMPORTANT!).
To start things off, RED group goes to the Main track where students use either their bike or the rental bike(s); BLUE group goes to the Mini Bike/Wheelie Machine station (group is split into 2 sub-groups between the mini & wheelie machine and will switch about 1/2 way into their session so everyone has a change at both; GREEN group starts in the Breakroom. Once each timed session is done, Marion blows here whistle and everyone switches.
The schedule is actually quite “complicated” but EVERYONE gets equal time at ALL stations, and as the day goes on, the Breakroom becomes a vital part because you’ll need this time to rest and recharge…TRUST ME! The main thing is to FOLLOW DIRECTIONS and listen to Marion. If, for some reason, you miss a turn at the wheelie machine and/or mini bike, relax…you’ll be the FIRST person up at that station…EVERYONE will get equal time at all stations…
This is the MAIN section and the REASON everyone comes and takes these classes. The main track has two straights: main/LONG straight (allowing multiple attempts) and secondary/short straight (allowing 1, maybe 2 attempts). Here, both renters and owners share the section, giving the renters “right away” so they don’t heat up (these SMRs are “race bikes after all and tend to heat up much easier and quicker then the owners bigger street bikes). While they make their attempts, Coach Can watches on and gives out instructions, as needed, when students return. Later in the day, if asked, Coach will even offer to go out on the student’s bike to show how it’s done.
This is a machine Coach Can built himself to help his students loan the proper technique for doing wheelies. Here, students get the feeling of what it’s like to get their front up and to keep it up. Sure, this is stationary but you use the same technique and will showcase exactly what they’re doing wrong. It’s also a station where both Coach and student can have a little FUN!
The mini bike is also a major part of this class. Yes, it’s small, but the technique used is the same. Only difference here, as you can see, to make it easier and a little safer, students are instructed to drag their feet. Doing so, allows the student to “eject” quicker and safer then if having their feet on the pegs. Because this is a “tool” and not a rental (EVERYONE gets a shot on this little thing), if it breaks…no biggie & no charge to the student. Coach has a saying that makes the rest of his staff cringe…”if it isn’t broken by lunch time then you aren’t trying hard enough”…ha ha ah
BREAKROOM / CLASSROOM…
This really is an IMPORTANT station. Not only is it used for classroom sessions but it’s also where students go to take a much needed break. Trust me, by the time you get done on the main track, mini bike, and wheelie machine, you’ll WANT/NEED this section.
The classroom sessions also have their time of course. Not only is it here where coach talks about the proper technique but it’s also where he PUMPS you up and gets you motivated to succeed. After lunch, Photog Dean goes out and takes some video of students attempting wheelies, which is later used in the last classroom session as a “blooper real” session. This is key because Coach has video to go over with his students and talk about what they’re doing right and wrong. Yes, some of this can be funny and Coach will CALL you OUT, but it’s all in good fun. With all that said, it really is an important part and extremely useful.
As you can see, there is a lot that goes into these classes but everyone has a GREAT time! What makes this ALL worth it is the FUN these students have, the effort they all put into getting the job done, and the successful results some achieve. Normally these classes are held a couple times a year but unfortunately 2020 has been a difficult year and Superbike-coach was only able to get in 1 each. For 2021, watch the schedule because Coach Can is working on offering these two classes more. As mentioned, like ALL his classes, both the Knee Down and Wheelie Classes book out way ahead of time, so once posted, take your shot and SIGN UP and let’s have some FUN…!!!
For more info, click below…hope to see you all in 2021!!!