MDK Motorsports¿ Nick Wey Explains the Art of Seat Bouncing
Intro and Photos" Garth Milan
If you¿ve ever pondered how in the heck the stars of Supercross clear seemingly impossible doubles and triples right out of corners, you¿re not alone. While the uneducated spectator might assume that it¿s all in the specially prepared bikes that our factory heroes ride, the real truth is that it¿s in the technique. The art of seat bouncing is the answer, and this trick is oftentimes the only means possible to clear jumps that follow tight turns.
The secret to seat bouncing lies in the compression of the rear shock. By combining a hearty twist of the throttle with the correct application of weight on the seat, your bike transforms itself into the ultimate pogo stick that will boost you over all but the biggest of triples. The following technique is an essential one to master for anyone who takes their bike in the air (and who doesn¿t?), and is a staple skill to master before taking on a track with difficult rhythm sections and jumps.
Just before checking out of the SXGP series with a torn ACL, Team MDK Motorsports rider Nick Wey lent us his expertise so we could illustrate the proper way to seat bounce your way over just about anything. Take it away, Nick¿
SIT AND DON¿T SPIN
¿Though this double on my private SX track doesn¿t look that big, it would be impossible to clear without seat bouncing, because it lies immediately after a sharp left-hand turn. To make it over, I first concentrate on going through the turn cleanly, and set myself up in a straight path for the lip of the double. You don¿t want to be too sideways, because if you are, you take the risk of spinning out and launching off the side of the jump and into the cheap seats. Instead, pick a nice, straight run. Make sure your rear wheel isn¿t spinning excessively, and as you approach the jump, keep your butt centered right in the middle of your saddle. Your head should be just over the bars as you launch off the face. Don¿t lean too far back, or the springing action of the bike will cause you to go over the bars.
SPRINKLE IN SOME THROTTLE
¿Throttle application is critical in the seat bounce, as this is what loads the shock spring and launches you into the air. You need to be in a gear that will allow you to leave the jump in the meat of the powerband, right in the sweet spot. If you¿re in too high of a gear, you¿ll bog too much to load the shock, and if you¿re in a low gear, you won¿t have enough speed to make it over the obstacle. I always keep a finger on the clutch, and slip it slightly to make sure I¿m in the correct rpm range. Once you spring up, begin to stand like you normally would in the air, continue to keep your weight centered and spot your landing. Remember, as crucial as this technique is to fast lap times, it is also fairly advanced. Start small and practice over little jumps before taking it to something like the one pictured. Good luck!¿