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Track Motorcycle track riding topics and discussions

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  • 1 Post By Pavement Tested
  • 1 Post By ZXtasy
  • 1 Post By Wrench
  • 3 Post By Damon Mon Wai
  • 1 Post By Wrench
  • 1 Post By Sentinel
  • 2 Post By hawker
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Dec 23rd 2016, 01:26 PM   #1
 
  Sep 2016
  albany

Think i wanna try racing next year any tips?

so the story is, ive been riding dirt bikes since i was a kid. Got my first street bike when i was 18, but this last year i got my first sport bike. Picked up a 2001 R1. Had a blast on it this summer. I think i wanna try racing it next year at PIR. any thoughts, tips, or tricks i should know?
Dec 23rd 2016, 02:21 PM   #2
 Pavement Tested's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Bremerton

  '12 Concours14, '06 Sprint 1050ST, '06 GSX-R 750, '07 Ninja 650R, '03 R1
Maybe do a track day or 2 first to get the experience.

Racing ain't cheap. You gotta get licensed, pay race entry fees, pay for parts and maintenance as well as prepping the bike for the track if it isn't already, proper gear, transporting the bike to/from the track, paddock equipment, and the list goes on. You're looking at probably $4000-6000 to run one season and that's if you already have a race prepped bike.
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Dec 23rd 2016, 04:12 PM   #3
 
  Jan 2016
  Moses Lake, WA

  2008 EX-650R Kawasaki 'Fighter, 2005 ZX-10R Kawasaki 'Fighter, '12/99 Yamaha TW-200
Best tip is an old one, if you want to make a small fortune racing, start with a large fortune.

Have fun though...
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Dec 23rd 2016, 08:34 PM   #4
 Wrench's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  West Richland, WA

Supermoto racing can be done for a whole lot less $$$$. And it's dramatically easier on the body and bike if you go down.
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Dec 23rd 2016, 08:54 PM   #5
 Josh's Avatar
 
  Jul 2016
  The Couv

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephen View Post
so the story is, ive been riding dirt bikes since i was a kid. Got my first street bike when i was 18, but this last year i got my first sport bike. Picked up a 2001 R1. Had a blast on it this summer. I think i wanna try racing it next year at PIR. any thoughts, tips, or tricks i should know?
Start out with some track days and novice schools and learn how slow you and I both are before thinking about racing, hehehe.
Dec 24th 2016, 02:11 AM   #6
 Damon Mon Wai's Avatar
Inspector Gadget
 
  Jan 2016
  Seattle

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephen View Post
so the story is, ive been riding dirt bikes since i was a kid. Got my first street bike when i was 18, but this last year i got my first sport bike. Picked up a 2001 R1. Had a blast on it this summer. I think i wanna try racing it next year at PIR. any thoughts, tips, or tricks i should know?
Definitely do some track days, it will really help you get a feel for being on the track. When I started racing there were no track days, it would have been very nice if there was. Doing track days will also help you get your bike setup for racing. At track days you can get a baseline for your tires, suspension, gearing and geometry. During race days there are practice sessions in the morning but they are relatively short and you only get a couple sessions. So there's not much time to try different bike setups.

If you can make it to The Ridge look in to doing some of the OPRT track days. https://optimum-performance.org/ Yes, that's a plug for OPRT and I'm one of their instructors . Take one of our classes or just do the track day. Come find me out there and I'll tow you around for a session!
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Dec 24th 2016, 08:47 AM   #7
 Wrench's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  West Richland, WA

Quote:
Originally Posted by Damon Mon Wai View Post
Definitely do some track days, it will really help you get a feel for being on the track. When I started racing there were no track days, it would have been very nice if there was. Doing track days will also help you get your bike setup for racing. At track days you can get a baseline for your tires, suspension, gearing and geometry. During race days there are practice sessions in the morning but they are relatively short and you only get a couple sessions. So there's not much time to try different bike setups.
This. A whole lot of this.

Learning your bike and how to make it work effectively is paramount if you want to make good lap times. Horsepower can often be a detriment to this learning process. Run a solid, reliable bike that doesnt force you to do repairs between sessions. Tweak your clickers, fork height, rear sag, and tire pressure to see how they influence the handling.
Zoomie likes this.
Dec 24th 2016, 11:32 AM   #8
 
  Jan 2016
  Kennewick

  Depends on my mood.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavement Tested View Post
Maybe do a track day or 2 first to get the experience.

Racing ain't cheap. You gotta get licensed, pay race entry fees, pay for parts and maintenance as well as prepping the bike for the track if it isn't already, proper gear, transporting the bike to/from the track, paddock equipment, and the list goes on. You're looking at probably $4000-6000 to run one season and that's if you already have a race prepped bike.
Probably not what he wanted to hear, but necessary.

I used to teach Hunter Ed and loved when someone said they wanted to hunt for the cheap meat. I would laugh and go through the list of things they would have to buy, then look at success rate and the actual cost per pound. Much cheaper and more reliable, though not as fun and tasty, to buy your protein from Safeway!

Fun ain't cheap!
Dec 24th 2016, 01:00 PM   #9
 mars's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  McMinnville, OR

  Sport1000, CB160, CB550
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavement Tested View Post
Racing ain't cheap....$4000-6000 to run one season and that's if you already have a race prepped bike.
It doesn't have to be like that. Racing smallbore vintage bikes or Ninja 250s is a lot more affordable. They're cheaper to build and maintain, they burn less fuel and a set of tires can last the whole season.

It's probably easiest/cheapest to start with a turnkey race bike. There are usually several for sale in the region; check the OMRRA Race Bikes for Sale and WMRRA Race Bikes Forsale forums.

If you prefer to do it yourself, Ninja 250s are abundant and relatively cheap, or find a rusty old CB/CL 160/175 and build a vintage roadracer (http://www.groupwracing.com/160building.html).

You may already own most of the gear you'll need and you can do without all the fancy paddock bling to get started. Racers are friendly and will help you in the pits! You can acquire the rest of it as you go.

If nothing else, safety-wire your R1 and sign up for New Racer School in the spring. It's fun and you'll come away with your Novice race license, then you can figure out what to do next.

Edited by mars on Dec 25th 2016 at 11:17 PM Reason: Battling the WYSIWYG editor.
Dec 25th 2016, 11:37 AM   #10
 Sentinel's Avatar
 
  Jun 2016
  Poor Tortured

Plus a whole bunch on the Ninja 250 idea. OMG they're fun and a lot less stressful than the bigger bikes. And I would never say that there is more skill required to push a small bore bike around a track fast, but that was my experience. It is really a different kind of thing. I think of it like longboard surfing versus shortboard surfing. The 250 is like a longboard - it doesn't accelerate or drop-in as hard, and you have to finesse it around more. The reward is really a different beast than the pure adrenaline rush of 200 horsepower and spinning the back wheel out of a turn. Big bikes on the track are kind of like juggling knives, naked, at night, on the roof, in the snow. It is cool, but you have to be careful, and really good, and it is unforgiving as hell. I loved my N250R.
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Dec 28th 2016, 09:43 AM   #11
 
  Jan 2016
  Seattle

Here's my brain-dump at the moment.

My background : Riding for...man it's getting close to 20 years... Racing for about the same...road racing, offroad racing, supermoto, flat track, ice....I've won some races along the way. I'm just starting to really learn how to ride a motorcycle.

Whatever you do, try some track days first, and find some quality instruction. The quality of instruction available varies tremendously from individual-to-individual and group-to-group. I've sat in the pits during one group's ride-around in the morning, and observed NONE of the instructors demonstrating proper, or even consistent from instructor-to-instructor, bike placement. Ask your instructor(s) what their background is, how do they teach, and what specific exercises they use to target what result? Do they have a curriculum? In what order do they teach skills? Ken Hill(Ken Hill Coaching) has a lot of great information on his website/podcast that will give you a good jumping off point.

With a dirt-bike background, you'd likely do pretty well if you wanted to come race supermoto with Cascadia (Cascadia SuperMoto). Practice days are cheap (~$40 vs ~$200), bikes are cheap ($3k-10k vs $5k-30k+), tires are cheap (~$300/season vs $300/day)... The racing is different, but also a lot of fun, and the atmosphere at the track is second-to-none. It might also be a bit more "familiar". Roacracing tends to have a more serious attitude, SM is a bit more relaxed.

If you do want to go roadracing after trying a few track days, think pretty seriously about a lightweight bike. It sounds expensive, buying another bike to go racing, but the first time you throw your R1 down the racetrack, you'll have likely done enough damage to get most of the way to a Ninja 250. If you can swing it, I'd go for a KTM 390/Ninja 300/R3 instead of a 250. They're faster enough to be more applicable to riding a bigger bike.

If this sounds overwhelming, the first step is easy : go sign up for a track day in the spring, and have fun!
Damon Mon Wai and stephen like this.
Dec 28th 2016, 10:09 AM   #12
 
  Jan 2016
  Lebanon, OR

  2014 Honda Interceptor
Sign up for a track day.
MotoFit runs a really good intro to the track school during their track days and they run Saturdays. They do it at ORP and the Ridge (maybe PIR this year).
MotoCorsa also has a beginner school for their TDs, their TD includes lunch also. They do Mondays.
2Fast does Fridays before OMRRA races at PIR.

You have a lot of options for good trackdays in the Northwest.

Come to Bike Night in Corvallis at downtown American Dream next Wednesday, 6pm-ish. If you can find me I'll fill your ear with info about Trackdays and help you get in with the local sport bike riders.

Edit: OMRRA does a thing called "taste of racing" that might interest you. http://omrra.com/taste-of-racing/

Edited by lazyeye on Dec 28th 2016 at 10:14 AM
Dec 29th 2016, 12:49 PM   #13
 
  Sep 2016
  albany

sounds good man. ill be there
Dec 30th 2016, 11:41 AM   #14
 R Roughspur's Avatar
 
  Feb 2016
  Woodland, WA

  08 Triumph Scrambler, now for sale.
The smoother you operate the vehicle, the more sensitive you'll be to what is happening, and that means quicker without drama. Watch real old racers that still win. Good luck and have fun.
Jan 1st 2017, 03:05 AM   #15
 BarryMcCockener's Avatar
 
  Feb 2016
  Shelton (little Arakansas)

Quote:
Originally Posted by hawker View Post
Here's my brain-dump at the moment.

My background : Riding for...man it's getting close to 20 years... Racing for about the same...road racing, offroad racing, supermoto, flat track, ice....I've won some races along the way. I'm just starting to really learn how to ride a motorcycle.

Whatever you do, try some track days first, and find some quality instruction. The quality of instruction available varies tremendously from individual-to-individual and group-to-group. I've sat in the pits during one group's ride-around in the morning, and observed NONE of the instructors demonstrating proper, or even consistent from instructor-to-instructor, bike placement. Ask your instructor(s) what their background is, how do they teach, and what specific exercises they use to target what result? Do they have a curriculum? In what order do they teach skills? Ken Hill(Ken Hill Coaching) has a lot of great information on his website/podcast that will give you a good jumping off point.

With a dirt-bike background, you'd likely do pretty well if you wanted to come race supermoto with Cascadia (Cascadia SuperMoto). Practice days are cheap (~$40 vs ~$200), bikes are cheap ($3k-10k vs $5k-30k+), tires are cheap (~$300/season vs $300/day)... The racing is different, but also a lot of fun, and the atmosphere at the track is second-to-none. It might also be a bit more "familiar". Roacracing tends to have a more serious attitude, SM is a bit more relaxed.

If you do want to go roadracing after trying a few track days, think pretty seriously about a lightweight bike. It sounds expensive, buying another bike to go racing, but the first time you throw your R1 down the racetrack, you'll have likely done enough damage to get most of the way to a Ninja 250. If you can swing it, I'd go for a KTM 390/Ninja 300/R3 instead of a 250. They're faster enough to be more applicable to riding a bigger bike.

If this sounds overwhelming, the first step is easy : go sign up for a track day in the spring, and have fun!
Ken Hill will be up here several times with the Track Time track day group. His talks are free to everyone that is attending the track day. Their group sizes are the smallest of everyones so you are pretty much guaranteed open track. +1 on hitting the track on a smaller bike such as a ninja 250. You learn a lot and repairs are cheap. Shameless plug, mine is for sale: >>>2012 Ninja 250r<<<(please don't buy it, I still want to get some laps on it this year. It's just too much frickn' fun... ;-))
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