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Motorcycle school comes to Shelton

Shelton-Mason County Journal of Shelton, Washington

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California Superbikes School returns to Shelton for fifth year, gives students confidence and knowledge on bikes

As the motorcycles cruised around the Ridge Motorsports track, the engines purred in the BMW slOOORR superbikes. As riders shot down straightaways, they accelerated. When they leaned into corners, their knees almost touched the ground. The sunny weather was perfect for the final day of the California Superbikes School.

"I wanted to give something back to the sport," program founder Keith Code said. "It had given me a lot. So I began the superbike school, and it was the first time people could really get on the race tracks unless they were racing."

Last week, from July 11-15, the school, along with enthusiasts on motorcycles, took over the Ridge Motors-ports Park race track in Shelton.

The California Superbikes School was started in 1980 by Code, a former motorcycle rider who is renowned in the racing world. He bought his first motorcycle at age 12 and then became involved in racing in Southern California. Code is known for his research and riding techniques he has passed along to bikers.

His program, which travels across the United States and globally, has had more than 150,000 students.

"My favorite part is to see the students have realizations about their riding, and when they make jumps in their improvement," Code said. "That's my favorite part."

Code's program breaks down riding into different drills and levels. In the California Superbikes School, riders can complete four skill levels. The first level focuses on correcting common mistakes riders make and building confidence, and the final level is personalized for what riders want to work on.

During the school, riders get coached on and off the track. Several bikes are equipped with video cameras that students watch footage afterward to study their body position and get critiqued from their coaches. Students in the beginning levels spend time in a classroom learning the different techniques from teachers.

This is the fifth year the school has been at the Ridge. It draws people from across Washington, Oregon and Canada.

The program attracts riders who are trying to build confidence, learn more about riding or who are serious about racing.

For student Walloce Sohl from Vancouver, British Columbia, this is the fourth time he's participated in the program in Shelton.

"I think everybody that rides motorcycles should take one of these courses," Sohl said. "Most people, when they finish here — even if it's just on level one or level two — they can't believe that they've been riding motorcycles without that knowledge. Or that anyone rides motorcycles without that knowledge. The instructors are phenomenal and you have the kingpin (Code) over there. You can't get any better than that."

Sohl, who has been on rides in Cambodia and Colombia, said the school has helped build his confidence. He owns five different bikes, which include a racing bike and a Harley.

One of the newest instructors at the school on Thursday was Shannon Deane. It was the eighth day of training for Deane, who went through the school herself.

"The visual skills are paramount," she said. "I think it's extremely important, the two step. I found that to be tremendously helping for my own riding. It's good to know where you're going and what you're looking at and being aware more than anything when you're riding a motorcycle."

Deane, who used to teach music to children, was asked by the school if she would be interested in teaching. She loves sharing knowledge and motorcycles, so she said it was a perfect fit for her.

For more information about the California Superbikes School, visit

"I think everybody that rides motorcycles should take one of these courses. Most people when they finish here — even if it's jast... level one or level two — they earl believe that they've been riding motorcycles without that knowledge. Or that anyone rides motorcycles without that knowledge."

Walloce Sohl, California Superbikes School student

Copyright 2016 Shelton-Mason County Journal, Shelton, Washington. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: July 21, 2016

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