By Gary Bailey
Professor Bailey here with a look at a few things from the Budds Creek National. I have been so wide open working with riders getting them ready for the Loretta Lynn Regional Qualifiers that I have not had a chance to just hang out at a National for the weekend before now. On Saturday, while I was sitting in the press tent at Budds reviewing the video and photos that I shot, I was approached and asked to do this week’s Breakdown. I welcomed the opportunity because with so many cool shots from the day, it seemed only right to share some of them with you
I wound down my Budds Creek weekend watching the amateur races on Sunday while helping out my boy Cooper Webb, and with so many ideas are swirling in my head that it is difficult to pick just one thing to discuss. But since it wouldn’t be Budds Creek without Henry Hill, I guess I will begin by focusing on an interesting little section right before Henry Hill.
In this section, there were lots of ruts and everyone had a different idea about where to go. Some lines were smoother, but for sure they were not the shortest.
Andrew Fredrickson photo
Ryan Dungey, by far, was the fastest guy on the track by a second or more a lap. Dungey had a great line in this section and was fast here (as he was in so many places on the track).
I know there are those that are going to jump right in and say, “Well that’s only because Stewart or Reed or Villopoto or whoever else were not there.” That may be true, but the fact is Dungey was there and healthy and that is all part of racing.
So let’s have a look at a slidshow of some still photos.
Now let’s take a look at Dungey’s line selection in this section. I'm not sure whether Dungey spent much time looking for the smoothest line. For sure what Dungey did do was to select the best line, whether smooth or not, that would allow him to carry the best momentum through this section and around the track. It just so happens that the best line in this section was right up the middle.
By picking the line in this section that would allow him to carry the best momentum, Dungey demonstrates what good racers know and that is: the most important part of going fast is not going faster, but carrying the best momentum. Once you learn to carry more momentum to go fast, rather than just trying to go faster by overriding the bike, you actually become faster. If you watch all other forms of racing it’s about lines and momentum, don’t override the bike or overdrive the car.
The next thing I want to review in my Budds Creek footage is how many riders don’t use the clutch and talk a little about why they should. At least let’s talk about why it is a good idea to have your finger on the clutch. First, we’ll look at the Lites riders and then the 450 guys.
Happy trails, keep the wheels pointed down.
- Gary Bailey