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The Starting Line : Burnouts, leaning the bike side to side or just straight up, what’s the best way?

Motorcycle Drag racing Sportsman

The Starting Line is a biweekly column for our Sportsman drag racers brought to you by Schnitz Racing. Every other week we will feature a frequently asked question and have it answered by a panel of experienced sportsman racers, led by Ben Knight. Having questions answered by multiple racers will give our new racers several perspectives on the information they want. If you have a sportsman related question, submit it to editor@dragbike.com.

Burnouts, leaning the bike side to side or just straight up, what’s the best way?

Dustin Lee

This depends on bike and the type of tire your using. If your running a flat slick keep bike centered while doing burnout. If your running a street tire some heat on the sides is a great idea and some leaning is suggested to do so! hope this helps

-Be safe

Dustin Lee

Straight up, with maybe a little side to side to clean the edges works for me. But if you want to look cool and please the crowd, get right over on the sidewall for a long period then again on the other side. Crowd loves it’s!!!

Makes for really cool pictures too!

Janie Palm

The best way is the way you are comfortable with. I don’t believe if your bracket racing you need a huge John Force burnout, clean you tire off heat it up a little and be done. I personally don’t do too much leaning side to side a little bit goes a long way, as long as your traction patch is clean and warm you are good.

Brad Gott

Burnouts side to side or straight up. Depends on the tire you are using. A slick tire bike does not need to be moved side to side or leaned over due to all of the tires contact patch can be heated and cleaned off straight up and down. DOT racing tires used on street bikes are rounded and need to be leaned over to clean and heat a bigger surface, so when the tire flattens out it is cleaned and heated equally for better traction.

Jerry Turner

I’ve said this before, I love watching racers do burnouts just because so many racers do it so differently. Some racers take great pride in leaning the bike to get every millimeter of a street tire. Others don’t seem to lean the bike at all. I believe it’s important to clean the tire and put some heat into it. I don’t know if it’s necessary to lean the bike to the full extension you can on both sides. With a street tire, I personally will lean the bike some to both sides, but not to extreme angles.

But I will be watching to see how you do it.

We’ll see you in two weeks for another addition of the Starting Line, in the meantime check out our column sponsor Schnitz Racing.


Volume 1 – Issue 1 : What is the best advice for someone going down the track for the very first time?

Volume 1 – Issue 2 : How do I decide what class to enter? Most tracks have a street class and pro bike class but I sometimes see streetbikes racing in the pro bike class with the bar bikes.

Volume 1 – Issue 3 : What is the difference between a bracket class and an index class?

Volume 1 – Issue 4 : What is the difference between a pro tree and sportsman tree? And what is the best technique for cutting a light?

Volume 1 – Issue 5 : What is rollout and how does it affect my ET??

Volume 1 – Issue 6 : Does a practice tree really help with your reaction time and do you have any tips to how to use it?

Volume 1 – Issue 7 : What is courtesy staging?

Volume 1 – Issue 8 : What does “the race was won on the starting line” mean?

Volume 1 – Issue 9 : How are bye runs determined? If I get the bye, should I make the pass?

Volume 1 – Issue 10 : What is the best technique for a burn out?

Volume 1 – Issue 11 : What is cross over / cross talk?

Volume 1 – Issue 12 : Some racers do a quick launch after the burnout, why is that?

Volume 1 – Issue 13 : Do you have any advice on methods for consistency?

Volume 1 – Issue 14 : Do you recommend changing visors for daytime and night racing?

Volume 1 – Issue 15 : Deep Staging verse Shallow Staging

Volume 1 – Issue 16 : Some people log all of their runs and are always looking at old timeslips. How does this help them?

Volume 1 – Issue 17 : What do all the blocks on the track represent and how should I use them when racing?

Volume 1 – Issue 18 : What does sandbagging mean and should I try it?

Volume 1 – Issue 19 : What is meant by top bulb racing vs. bottom bulb racing?

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