[python] Re: Ice python and ice races

  • From: "25hz" <25hz@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <python@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 23 Feb 2006 21:56:43 -0500

When we did the ice racing, Discovery Channel wanted to film it.  I missed
it when it was on TV, but here's the video segment of it:

Marcel is there with his ice python and there's a couple shots of me with
the tilting delta python.  Marcel was really flying on his python . .
.again, but the combination of the hard ice and the LONG sharp blade we
ground meant that he was REALLY eating up the ice when he cornered :)  We
also raced the next weekend in Toronto but I took the Sabre (ice trike)
instead of the python.

> Hi Tim,
> just read the impressive ice-race report on your site:
> http://bikes.jkcc.com/python%20clone.htm
> Too bad that the tire of Marcel went flat. I understood that he
> would have won the race otherwise.
> Here is the text for those who are interested:
> =============================================
>  So, how well did it work?  Well, as you can see in the picture, he
> to be zipping along fairly well as he's setting himself up to go into the
> corner.  In fact he went extremely well, and generally faster than most of
> the three wheelers there.  Traction on the front wheel was great and the
> only problem he had was not being able to get enough bite with his rear
> blade, even though it had a pretty wicked edge ground on it, and polished
> with a whet stone.  In the 2 man pursuit races, he got so much speed in
> first heat, that the rear end slid out on a corner unfortunately, and he
> went down.  In the slaloms, his masterful riding control enabled him to
> the python around the cones by sliding out the rear end slightly, and he
> beat all but the fastest two or three trikes.  In the 10 minute criterium
> race, he was cruising around, and lapping other riders, and well on his
> to a podium finish when one of his tire screws somehow managed to cause a
> flat and he momentarily lost control and hit the boards pretty hard.  He
> right up and back on, and finished out the race on a flat for the last few
> minutes and still managed a 4th overall (I think).  Overall, it was an
> amazing effort for such an extreme bent and the biggest part of the
> was due to Marcel's riding ability.
>      As for the traction issues on the rear end, I think that was due to
> reasons.  I think the largest part of the problem is how the python turns.
> On a normal bike, the rear wheel gets pulled through the corner and
> a line inside the front wheel's track, and has a fair bit of weight on
it -
> likely close to 50%.  The python rear end doesn't follow, but rather it
> "turns" through the corner on its own path and as a result, I don't think
> puts down nearly the same force as a normally steered bike does.  I know
> that Marcel and I could easily slide the rear wheel out on dry pavement by
> turning hard and at speed.  Now take that same force, and try to turn hard
> with a blade on ice that can chip away under heavy loading, and I think
> is part of why the python rear end was weak at fast cornering.  Add to
> the fact that as the ice got chewed up from the racing, the blade was
> tracking across rough ice on the corners and further minimizing its
> every time it encounterd crossing multiple ice grooves, and it lost even
> more traction.  Even though the rear end would start sliding, Marcel
> mastered the art of letting the rear end do a power slide, while he kept
> power on and deftly used his left hand as an outrigger on the hard turns.
> It was amazing to watch him rip up the corners right on the edge of
> disaster, lap after lap, after lap :)
>      Anyway, the ice python did an excellent job at the ice races, and I
> think it would definitely be tough to beat on larger tracks with larger
> radius corners.  In the mean time, it'll get converted back to a "normal"
> python, and he was talking about possibly selling it.


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