CALVMX HOSTS JIM GIBSON’S INAUGURAL VINTAGE MOTOCROSS SCHOOL
By Steve Caro,
Otay Lakes, CA. March 28
inaugural Jim Gibson/CALVMX Motocross School took place under clear
skies and plenty of wind Sunday,
March 28. A class of 19 riders was enrolled to learn the techniques the
former factory rider and Moto Cross of Nations
team member had accumulated during his highly successful career.
From several pre-75
machines through the Post Vintage class and up to and including three
modern bikes, the line
up of bikes spanned the history of motocross. Gibson’s syllabus stressed
technique over machine capability which
allowed for easy accommodation of the various era machines.
Gibson’s first lesson on the day was illustrating the centers of the
machine. They consist of the...
By shifting weight forward and aft, the rider can change the weight bias
of the machine
which in turn will affect the reaction of the machine to the course.
Throughout the day,
Gibson emphasized minimal body movement on the bike. He stressed keeping
the majority of
the riders’ weight centered towards the rear of the machine with the
rider leaning forward in the “attack” position with
both elbows up. He pointed out that with everything going on during a
race, it was a waste of energy to be moving
unnecessarily on the bike.
One of the most
interesting topics covered in the class was cornering. Proper body and
weight position enable the
machine to turn when and where the rider wants to go. Weight on the
inside peg was shown to be all that was needed to
get a machine turned. Sometimes a mere tilt of the head and shoulders
was enough for a turn. Used individually or in
combination depending on the situation, both will benefit the individual
Other subjects covered
during the day included proper use of both brakes combined with a
coverage on proper starting technique (smooth clutch action over drag
bike style dump the clutch and hammer the
throttle) and mentally linking the track together ala road-race style
instead of breaking the obstacles into individual units.
“Maintain a flow” is how Gibson put it.
one six-hour course is not going to turn a rider into a potential world
champion. With an instructor like Jim
Gibson, it will however provide the individual with a basic skills
package to allow the rider work at taking his/her riding
ability to the next level.
The Jim Gibson/CALVMX
Motocross School is well worth the ultra-low tuition fee. Gibson’s
low key demeanor and
thoroughness in his instruction will benefit any rider no matter
what their skill level is. If you have the desire to improve
your ability and want to spend time with one of the best racers of
his time, check the schedule for his next school. You
will not regret your investment.