While we don’t want to rag on one of our fellow staff members (whose name rhymes with GuyB), we’ll gladly toss him under the bus in hopes that it helps you avoid a similar fate.
After checking the moto sheet for his race (our unnamed co-worker correctly noted that there were multiple classes in his race, but incorrectly determined that he was leaving on a third gate, when there were actually only two gate drops for that moto. As he told us later, there’s no worse feeling than sitting back in staging, watching while everyone in your moto is on the gas and heading to the first turn without you.
The other half of today’s tip (tips?) is to go watch the start on a few motos before yours to check out the starter. Does he have a routine? Does he drop the gate fast or slow? At one of our local tracks the starter drops the gate so quickly that we know of riders who have barely clicked their bikes into gear before the gate dropped. Knowing the starter’s routine—or whether he actually even has one—can make a big difference in how you get off the gate.