First while getting used to a "new" machine, You're doing great.
Second you hit on something that I do that I didn't think to tell you. When doing the tight turns I will ride the front brakes while hammering the throttle. It causes a little bit of weight transfer to the front tires therefore causing them to grip and turn better and hammering the throttle helps break the back end loose to let it slide around.
I'm curious why you think the flat track tires were a mistake. Mine work very well for me. I run a copy of the hoosier tri-tracks. what are you running?