So, I'm nearing the end of an exit ramp going from a 65 mph road onto a 45 mph road. I need to merge across 3 lanes of traffic in just over 1/4 mile in order to make a left turn at a traffic light. (BTW, I'm a newbie and a very conservative rider.) I've downshifted to 4th and am moving at about 40 mph. The road ahead is clear. There's a Blazer gaining on me in the lane just to my left and more traffic in the other lanes a little behind him. I figure I'll downshift another gear, roll smoothly on the throttle, and merge across while watching traffic over my left shoulder.
That's when life gets exciting. I look over my shoulder, make the downshift and roll on the throttle, but apparently my clutch hand isn't in sync and the RPMs soar. When the clutch engages, the bike lunges forward, briefly breaking my hold on the left grip and maybe even picking the front tire up off the ground (Not sure about the tire because I was too busy trying to hold on to the bike.) Thankfully, the bike didn't get the least bit out of sort and I had plenty of speed to merge.
Finally, I'm sitting at the traffic light waiting for the left turn signal. I put the bike in neutral and sit back trying to absorb what just happened. Woo hoo! What a rush! Pretty scary, too. I figure that part of the reason the front end came up so much was because I was down to my last 1.5 gallons of fuel. Also, I wonder if perhaps I'd actually downshifted to 2nd rather than 3rd.
Anyway, I'm fine, apparently no one else was affected, and I've learned something about the tiger crouching just beneath my saddle.
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