On April 20th, Savage Lin and I met at an undisclosed parking lot for a pow-wow that will never be forgotten. We were going to be meeting up with THE MAN, THE MYTH, THE LEGEND HIMSELF, Dr. Stuntenstein. We called in the doctor to talk about the Shuffle Air: one of the hottest, most sought-after new tricks on the circuit, and executed by Lin himself.
When we asked Lin how he performs the Shuffle this is what he had to say:
“The first step is to highside. Yes, if you’re highsiding then you’re learning, let me tell you. This is the hardest part of the trick, and it takes a lot of commitment and balls. I get my bike up to about 30mph and lock the rear tire. This is where I use upper body strength because there is a lot of push and pull.”
Stick that Landing!
“As I’m in the whip, I lock up the front brake and push and pull with my arms, similar to a 180 Air. Landing this trick takes lots of balance, because the goal is to land a bunny hop whip while going into a roll back 180.”
After a few more discussions, Lin put on his safety gear. The doctor was sitting super close to Lin’s approach. I knew him being this close was dangerous and stupid but I really thought that it was necessary in order to fully dissect what’s going on during Lin’s consistently huge Shuffle Airs.
Dr. Stuntenstein says that as the motorcycle is meeting its climax of the trick and Lin stabs the brakes, the suspension is really doing all the work.
I think so, too, but as the bike whips, the R6 suspension is maxed out. When the bike rotates past 90 degrees (or the highside point), all the weight of the bike is transferred to the rear and it’s in the air.
With the momentum, the suspension then decompresses, exploding the limber Yamaha into the air. But a key factor is body language. Yes, that’s right, all this is going on at the blink of an eye and Lin also adds some of his so-called “push-pull technique” into the handlebars. This little technique seems to be the business for landing the trick. As I saw Lin come by time after time, I noticed that each of his Shuffle Airs were a little different, but Lin made on-the-fly adjustments through his handlebar input with his push-pull technique and landed every single one.
After the photographer got the right shot, we sat down with Dr. Stuntenstein and asked Lin if he had any last-minute words of wisdom for the thousands of lot riders out there trying this trick.
“This trick takes lots of time spent crashing to achieve,” Lin cautioned us. “Don’t give up after your first spill. Oh, yeah, and speed is your friend.”
Remember, this trick is not for entry-level riders, so be careful and don’t event attempt it if you don’t have the appropriate skill level.
After issuing that warning, Dr. Stuntenstein went bunny-hopping off into the sunset, practicing the moves he had just seen Lin throw down.