Pro Riding Tip—Riding Grass Tracks With Josh Strang

Babbitt’s/Monster Energy/Kawasaki rider talks about the nuances of grass track lines

Josh Strang takes a wide turn on a grass track.
The secret to quick times when riding grass tracks is to keep your momentum up by taking a wide line through a turn, and to “flow” through the corner.Shan Moore

Babbitt's/Monster Energy/Kawasaki's Josh Strang was a member of the Australian World Trophy Team, which claimed the overall team victory at last year's International Six Days Enduro in Chile. Strang is also the defending champ in the Kenda Full Gas Sprint Enduro Series, so it's obvious the Aussie off-roader has lots of experience riding grass tracks. We spoke to Strang at a recent Sprint Enduro to get some insight into his approach to riding grass tracks.

Josh Strang takes the smoother line and keeps his momentum up through the turn on the grass track.
If you watch a good grass track rider, it might look like he’s going slower, but he’s actually riding a smoother line, which allows him to keep his momentum up through the turn.Shan Moore

“When walking the track, especially the grass track, you always need to look for the line that keeps your bike in the most upright position and in a straight line,” Strang said. “You have the most chance of spinning the rear wheel the more your rear wheel is at an angle to the ground. If you can take a wider line into a turn and cut it tight across the apex, you can keep the bike more upright and be able to get back on the gas quicker than if you are leaning the bike over.”

“If you watch a good grass track rider, it might look like he’s going slower,” Strang explained. “But with what I call ‘Euro lines,’ he’s actually riding a smoother line, which allows you to keep your momentum up through the turn. The idea is to flow in the turns. When I first came to America, the riders here would dive to the inside of the turns, and then power out of it at the exit, which looked fast but wasn’t the fastest line.

Josh Strang turns on a grass track.
It’s important to see how much traction there is in the grass compared to the dirt.Shan Moore

“There are times the Euro line doesn’t work,” Strang continued. “Sometimes if the track is dry, it will get a fluffy berm where you’re trying to go out and cut in, and this style just doesn’t work. So sometimes you just have to follow the main line. You also have to check the traction. Sometimes the grass is grippier than the dirt, and sometimes the grass, especially if it is wet, is more slippery than the dirt. You have to take all of this into consideration. The main idea is to keep your momentum up by taking a wide line through a turn, and to ‘flow’ through the turn, rather than ‘stop and go.’ ”