Dry your eyes, man!
That’s pretty much what I expected in response to my last blog, in fairness it’s probably what it deserved. You can’t go whining every time you don’t do as well as you’d hoped. In actual fact I received some very good advice from a lot of people, mostly from people who have to line up on my grid. No Limits Racing is competitive, but it is also an incredibly supportive paddock. Thank you to all who helped me find some ways of improving my chances of success.
I have decided to look at every aspect of my performance and explore ways of improving.
First step was setting some context – what usually happens at the first race of the season? Pretty much the same thing it seems, based on previous results.
Second was exploring what was different about the Oulton weekend from weekends when I did well. The answer was fairly straightforward – preparation, or lack thereof. No practice day, last minute bike prep, last minute van prep, arrive at 11pm and qualify at 9.30am. Usually I have a day of practice under my belt and I always try to avoid arriving as late as 11pm even before a practice day. Getting up at 6am to start getting scrutineered, attend a briefing, get signed on, eat, fuel up etc before a 9.30 qualifying in the wet just doesn’t work for me.
Thirdly my mindset wasn’t right. I was spiralling into negativity just because of one bad race on one track. So I need a better way of managing disappointment.
Fourth is the bike itself – we knew it wasn’t handling well at Cartagena but I did nothing about it. I’m not sure to what degree it is affecting my times but it isn’t helping.
Fifth is the coaching aspect – the negativity I took from being told I was clueless was something I had to get over, writing the blog was actually a very effective way of venting that but I need to go further.
So here is the plan of attack:
- Remember it is a long season, I gain points over time. Nobody ever won at the first weekend.
- Booked onto practice sessions before the next two rounds, time off work booked – no more getting there and trying to qualify first thing.
- Van is now complete, ready for the rest of the season, all paperwork complete etc ready for Snetterton the weekend after this. Preparation all underway, plus a free weekend this week to get everything ship shape. No more panics.
- I am reading Pyschology of Motorsport Success based on a recommendation. I am already learning a lot about healthy and unhealthy ways to use your brain.
- Bike goes to Dynotech tomorrow for a suspension checkup.
- Booked onto another Motovudu course the day before we go to Donington.
None of the above can guarantee instant improvements, but I am setting out to improve my preparation, my skillset and my mindset to give myself the best possible chance of being proud of my performance.