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Old 12-09-2010, 12:26 PM   #1
Eddy.T
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Starting Track Racing.

okay -

I have about 2 years of experience riding...

have never been to the track...

I just bought a bike...

and would like to get any advice, feedback, guidance on how to proceed with what i need to do/get for track riding...

What do I need to buy? for myself? for the bike?
how much does it cost?

A bunch of you guys here are experienced riders and go to tracks... and i would just like to sponge off some knowledge from you guys regarding this subject...
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Old 12-09-2010, 12:28 PM   #2
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Old 12-09-2010, 12:51 PM   #3
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Id say first thing, is to go watch a trackday and see what its all about and how it all works. ITs a blast and VERY addicting.

As far as costs? It can be cheap at first but get real expensive if you want to do it all the time and even go on to actual racing.

For your first day, rent some leathers (under 100 bux, or free) take your oem bike and some painters tape to tape all the lights up. Make sure your tires have decent tread.

As far as entry costs... again, you can go FREE(as long as you do corner work before) I recomend this as you can learn a lot by cornerworking and watching everyone. Plus, its free. lol

If you want to pay and not work, its anywhere from 100-180 ish depending on track/org and any speacials they are running.

Hope this helps get you started.

TomLSTD from LSTD can REALL give in depth advice here.
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:05 PM   #4
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First recommendation, buy a bike that is already been raced. It will be waaaayyy cheaper than building and you wont have to guess if its going to pass tech, and while we're on this one, make it a lightwieght class bike - EX 250, SV650, motard, etc. You will learn faster about corner speed and not learn to just rely on the big motor. Any idiot can go fast in a straght line, it takes an uncommon one to go fast in a corner.

Second recommendation track instruction and riding instruction, any classes you can get from local track orgs to Keith Code, Ed Bargy, Schwantz, et al.

Third, get good mid level riding gear. You're going to crash and you want it to hold up.

Fourth, take all of your money and throw it out the window, then go max out your credit cards and start borrowing money from your friends... its more addicting than any crack habit could ever be.

As far as costs go... how much do you want to spend ? When you start, go cheap, a good rider will beat a bad rider on a much better bike every time at theclub level. As you move up it will get much more expensive to remain competitive. My last race bike was $25k with dealer cost on all parts, some parts free, etc and still wasnt competitive on a national level but it did just fine in the local series.

Last edited by Hi-Side; 12-09-2010 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:08 PM   #5
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You're on the right "track" by asking for advice!

First, get to a track day. I'm partial to the one I work for, but just get to one and observe. Better yet, email me at tom*at*LSTD.com and ask for a corner working spot.

Next, don't worry about "prepping" your bike for all the track and racing goodies "everyone" has- stick with the stock bike and tape up the lights. Make sure you're in good order with tires and maintenance items.

Get some good, used leathers or rent some. Some TD's offer free leathers for use on your first track day. That'll get you hooked for the first day, but the next "fix" will want to come soon, so may as well get some GOOD leathers, gloves, boots, and helmet right up front. DON'T SKIMP ON SAFETY ITEMS. It makes no sense to have a $1200 exhaust system and $200 leathers.

Get in on the instruction offered by the track days and listen. Some, like us, have beginner and advanced instruction, taught by extremely experienced instructors, most of whom have been racing for a long time. I can't speak for the others out there, but I know ours are.

Get evaluated each time you're out and ask lots of questions from the staff at the track days. They'll be eager to help!

When you reach the point where you feel like you're up to race, take the CMRA race license school and get your provisional novice license. LSTD doesn't charge anything extra to take the licensing class, you only have to pay the CMRA fee which I believe is $75.

Cost? Well, some track days are one price at one track and another at the other tracks. Check the track day's website for pricing and dates.

For equipment, leathers, boots, gloves, and helmet can cost up to and above $1000. Spend that money on that stuff, you're hide and bones will appreciate it.

Now racing is a whole 'nuther animal, but get in to track days first and then decide if racing is for you. Some folks would rather just do track days. Racing is where the real rush is though.

Racing is very, very expensive and anyone who says different isn't racing. Planning financially for racing should see a budget of about $1000 per weekend between tires, entry fees, fuel, lodging, etc.

But give yourself some time in track days first, then decide if you want to make the leap, financially and physically, in to racing. There's nothing like racing a motorcycle with the CMRA; some of my best friends have been made there, and the memories are those that you never, ever forget.

Feel free to email me at tom*at*lstd.com if you have other questions, I'll be happy to help.

Finally, get with some of our fine sponsors here for hookup on gear. They all enjoy getting folks started in the sport the right way!
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:15 PM   #6
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It is not expensive when you first start, the faster you get the more it costs.
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Predator04 View Post
It is not expensive when you first start, the faster you get the more it costs.
Define "expensive". There's no doubt it gets "more expensive", but there's nothing that isn't expensive when getting started unless you're independently wealthy.
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:56 PM   #8
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good info tom, i can vouch for that. im still a noob at track
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:04 PM   #9
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I am guessing you mean track riding, not racing... as in going to track days.

Getting started is as simple as signing up and showing up on time with a working bike that isn't a hazard to other riders.

I don't know much about LSTD, but with Ride Smart you can rent a suit and boots for free your first day.

You don't need fancy tires, just have decent tread on em. Probably best to have a street performance tire, but I see all kinds of tires out there.

The best thing you can do is just go there. It seems intimidating at first, but after your first hour you will see it is pretty simple.

Cost, well I average about $200 per track day. That includes the 116 fee, gas (getting there, and used on the track), renting a trailer, and food that I pack, with some extra taken out to "tire wear."
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:10 PM   #10
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Tom - Thanks a lot man....

I am honestly - seriously - looking into this... and am eager to be at the track soon.

I will ensure all safety measures are taken, corners practiced and instructions listened...

I will definitely come talk to you VERY SOON!. thanks again sir.
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:11 PM   #11
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All the advice is much appreciated guys...
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:22 PM   #12
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oh and just on a side note - like many of you predicted...

i was referring to STRICTLY track days - not race... lol
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Old 12-09-2010, 03:54 PM   #13
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Just to chime in with some further advice...

1) Leave your ego at home
2) Don't push too hard, going fast will come in time
3) Ask questions (props to you for making this thread!)
4) Be careful who's advice you listen to, choose well your advisors and then LISTEN to their answers
5) It's hard to imagine right now, but next summer it will be HOT! You will be working harder at riding than you think and you will be sweating. That means drink water! More is better. The rule of thumb is; If you don't have to pee, right now... you need to drink more.
6) Make friends with a more experienced track and they will gladly help you
7) Make a list of the things you want with you at the track; ice chest, tools etc. Then use it.
8) Be prepared for finding out how slow you are. It's OK, there is somebody faster than everybody (except Valentino Rossi)
9) Have fun. That's what trackdays are about. There are no trophies (or trophy girls) at the end of the day. RIDE WITHIN YOUR ABILITIES ALWAYS
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:18 PM   #14
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1. Introduction

I've copied in a primer on how to race. In bold I've filled in how this differs for a track day.

1.1 What is Motorcycle Roadracing?

Motorcycle Roadracing is the best time you can have with your leathers
on. Motorcycle Roadracing is better than drugs, , and money. This is
good, since you need to give up all three to do it. Motorcycle
Roadracing will rip off the back of your head and glue it on backwards.
Motorcycle Roadracing is indescribable. In short, get thee to a track.

On a more concrete level, Roadracing involves a group of people on
bikes, racing around an asphalt track with many left and right turns,
and elevation changes. The tracks are like those used in Formula 1 car
racing, rather than like the ovals used in stock car racing--it's more
like Watkins Glen than the Indy 500. The motorcycles used range from
lightly modified street bikes to special purpose million dollar
factory-built race bikes.

Roadracing is done on many levels, from local clubs to World
Championships.

1.2 What do I Need To Go Racing?

Less than you think. You need a race-prepared motorcycle (see 2.1)

FOR A TRACKDAY YOU ONLY NEED A STREET BIKE, IN NEAR PERFECT OPERATING CONDITION, WITH GOOD TIRES, BRAKES, CHAIN, ETC...

and
protective gear (race leathers, helmet, gloves, and boots). You need a
racing license (see 3.1 and 3.2). You need a way to get the bike to the
track (pickup, trailer, or van).

I DO NOT RECOMMEND RIDING YOUR BIKE TO THE TRACK. HAUL IT THERE IN CASE THE INEVITABLE HAPPENS TO YOU

The gear is vital. New race leathers are somewhere around $1000, and

$250 USED ON MH. MANY ORGS RENT LEATHERS.

worth every penny. They've got serious weight leather, foam padding,
and hard plastic body armour. Racing gloves cost up to $100, and boots
cost up to $300. Helmets are the same as street helmets; $150-$500,
depending on paint scheme :->

Don't try to cheap out on any of this stuff. Used is okay (except for
helmets, of course), but if you buy crummy leathers, you'll pay for the
difference in ambulance fees and pain.

As far as getting the race-bike to the track, the cheapest thing to do
is borrow a pickup from your uncle. Failing that, you can get a
hitch-n-trailer for your Big American Car or Yuppie Sport Utility
Behicle for between $500 and $1000, depending on quality, new or used,
weight rating, etc.

Personally, I think a van is the best solution, because it keeps the
bike out of rain, is easier to drive than a car_trailer, holds a lot of
tools and spares, and you can sleep in it. I think a van is best, but I
use a hitch-n-trailer, 'cause it was cheaper.

Don't ride your bike to the track, because then when you wad it up in
turn 6, you won't be able to get it home.
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:19 PM   #15
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1.2.1 Where Do I Get Leathers and Such?

Some leather companies commonly used by racers:

o Vanson Leathers, 617-344-5444, 213 Turnpike St Stoughton, MA

o Syed Leathers, Orlando, FL (800)486-6635, (407)857-SYED, fax
(407)857-9233

o Z Custom Leathers, Huntington Beach, CA (714)890-5721

o Dinar Leathers, Lebanon, NJ (908)236-0512, fax (908)236-0513

o Dainese

o AGV. They have a sponsorship program for anyone with a license,
and inexpensive leathers. Cool boots and gloves, too.

o Alpinstars. Boots of Champions.

o Held. Gloves of Asphalt Resistance.

1.3 How Much Money Am I Going to Spend?

You can do the first year for $5000, including buying a used bike and
protective gear. After that, it should be cheaper, until you need a new
bike, or start messing with your engine.

FOR TRACK DAYS FIGURE $600 FOR A COMBO OF NEW AND USED GEAR, A NEW SET OF TIRES IF NEEDED (RACE TAKEOFFS ARE USUALLY AVAILABLE AT THE TRACK FOR AROUND $150 INSTALLED FOR A SET. THEY WORK GREAT FOR A BUDGET (aka slow) TRACKDAY RIDER), $150 FOR THE EVENT, $50 FOR FOOD AND GAS

I've found a weekend at the races typically runs around $250, including
gas, oil, entrance fees, food, etc. You can do it cheaper, you can do
it more expensive. If you have a big bike, you'll need to replace tires
a lot (maybe every weekend), but on little ones, you can get a number
weekends out of them.

There have been rumors of a new "Low budget racing class" using
RD350-400 bikes, with a a $2500 claim rule to keep people from spending
lots of money on the bikes. (A "claim rule" says anyone can claim the
winning bike buy paying $2500 to the owner and taking it home).

1.4 Am I Going To Wind Up Maimed or Dead?

Well, all the championship level racers are maimed to a certain extent.
Doug Polen has no toes on one foot, Mick Doohan's right ankle doesn't
bend, and Wayne Rainey is paralysed from the waist down. On the other
hand, I've met a lot of expert club racers who seem pretty much okay.

You are going to crash, and you are going to break bones. Your
collarbones are goners. Fingers, handbones, wristbones, footbones, and
anklebones are also likely to get broken.

However, serious injury and death are not very common. Most crashes
involve sliding to a stop, getting up, and running to hit your kill
switch. Racers like to claim the track is safer than the street,
because there are no Volvos to turn left in front of you. And when you
do crash, there's an ambulance a few minutes away, with the engine
running.

But there's just no getting around the fact that this is a dangerous
sport. If that bothers you a lot, maybe you should take the advice of a
friend of mine, who suggested I try chess instead. :-> Remember: "It
ain't a sport if it can't kill you."

1.5 What's a Typical Race Day Like?

At six am, you're awakened by the guy in the pit to your left, working
on the jetting of his 2 stroke (WWIINNNNNGG). You didn't get to sleep
until 1am, because Otis The Wonder Dog (staying in the pit to your
right) was barking at the TV they were running off their Honda
generator. You try to wake up your pit crew, stumble to registration
and give away money, eat a bagel as you push your bike through
technical inspection, and then miss your first practice because you
forgot to safety wire your oil drain bolt after you changed the oil at
3am on Thursday night.

GET TO THE TRACK EARLY TO BE PREPARED. FIGURE 7AM AT THE GATE.

Finally, you get out in practice, immediately find the limit of
traction, spend two hours and $100 at the on-track vendors getting your
handlebars fixed, and then blow the start of your Supersport race. But
it's all worthwhile when you stuff that guy on the new ZX-6R who's fast
down the straights but can't keep in front of you in the carousel.

That's a little embelished, (could you tell?) but it covers a lot of
what goes on. Many racers camp at the track (cheaper than motels, less
packing and unpacking, less distance to travel in the morning). Race
days start early, with a line for the showers forming by 7.

Whenever you go racing, you should always bring along somebody (your
"crew") to help out. His main job is driving the truck home if you
break your ankle, but he can also take lap times and help fix broken
stuff.

You have to register for each race, and there's a fee for each (NE CCS
is $50 a race, for instance). Before you can get on the track (and
after crashes) you have to go through technical inspection. There are
generally several practices each day, divided up by speed, experience,
and/or class of bike.

If you crash, you and your crew haul the bike bike to the pit, fix it
(there are usually vendors at the track, eager to sell brake levers and
to mount tires), go through tech. again, and get back out.

And the best feeling in the world is watching someone pull away on the
straight, and then reeling him back in in the twisty stuff.
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:20 PM   #16
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1.6 I'm Still Not Sure I Want to Do This, How Can I Find Out?

One way to try to decide whether or not roadracing is for you is to try
out one of the many race track classes, like Reg Pridmore's CLASS,
TrackRiders, Keith Code's Superbike School, the Team Suzuki Endurance
Riding School, or the MARRC, Penguin, or Ed Bargy/WERA Roadracing
School. Each of these organizations offer track time at minimal expense
(you can use your street bike, or often rent a race bike) and teach
riding techniques valid for all speeds and all types of riding. See 4.1
for more info on these.

There are a number of on-line racers who blame their current obsessions
on attending CLASS.

Another excellent idea is to go to the races a couple of times and hang
out in the pits. If you can find a racer who might need crew, volunteer
to go along and help (I'm always available for this duty). This is the
best way to learn the routine. This sounds self evident, but there are
many people who want to start racing without having ever been into the
pits; they've just seen it on TV or from the grandstand.

Lastly, you should volunteer to be a corner-worker at your local track.
Corner Workers are the rodeo clowns of Road Racing. They hang out near
the crash points on corners, and when someone goes down, they run out
to get the racer and his bike out of harm's way, and out of the way of
the rest of the race. They're also in charge of the signalling flags
that get waved when something goes wrong, and on getting the oil off
the track. Without them, we'd all be sitting home wishing we could go
racing.

THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO DO, IN MY OPINION, PRIOR TO TAKING YOUR OWN BIKE ON THE TRACK. IT WILL GIVE YOU AN APPRECIATION FOR HOW FAST THE FAST GUYS REALLY ARE, HOW SLOW FAST STREET RIDERS REALLY ARE, AND THE OVERALL LEVEL OF PREPARATION, CAUTION, FOCUS, AND PROFESSIONALISM THAT IS EXPECTED ON AND OFF THE TRACK.

If you go to the track and say "I'd like to corner work" they'll be
delighted to have you, trust me. You get to see the racing up close
(only the racers get better seats), meet racers, learn the track and
rules, etc. At Loudon and Bridgehampton, you even get paid for working,
and some free meals.

Cornerworking is also a good suggestion for people who are concerned
about the possibility of injury. There is nothing like spending a day
watching people get back on their bikes after crashing.

MOST TEXAS TRACKDAY ORGS WILL LIKE ADVANCE NOTICE, IF YOU PLAN TO GET A FREE TRACK CREDIT FOR YOUR EFFORT. ANY TRACKDAY GROUP WILL ALWAYS BE HAPPY TO HAVE ANOTHER WORKER, EVEN IF JUST FOR A HALF DAY, AND ALL CORNERWORKERS APPRECIATE THE COMPANY. JUST DON'T EXPECT A CREDIT UNLESS YOU CLEARED IN IN ADVANCE.


1.7 What About Medical Insurance?

Some medical polices cover you for track injuries, and some don't. Call
your insurance company and find out. If you're not covered, you'll need
to get a special policy. The American Motorcycle Association (AMA) has
a policy called ARMOR that covers you in AMA sanctioned events. (Call
the AMA to see if your series is sanctioned.)

Don't race without medical insurance. If you think an aftermarket shock
is expensive, wait till you price those external fixators for broken
bones. Seriously, a big racing injury can easily bankrupt you.

INDEX

2. Motorcycles & Race Classes

2.1 What Bike Should I Use to Go Racing?

ANY BIKE IS FINE FOR A TRACKDAY. A USED RACE BIKE, OR SMALL ENGINE BIKE LIKE A NINJA 250 IS BETTER THAN YOU STREET BIKE. BUT IF YOU RIDE THE TRACK LIKE YOU RIDE THE ROAD, YOU ARE NOT VERY LIKELY TO WAD IT UP.

The conventional wisdom is that you should start on small bikes, and
learn to ride before you get enough horsepower to really hurt yourself.
In the US, the most popular starter racing bikes are the Kawasaki
EX-500, the Yamaha FZR 400, the Honda Hawk GT-650, and Your Current
Street Bike.

o Kawasaki EX-500

Made from 1987-1995, this is a 500cc parallel twin with a cradle
frame. You can find race prepped specimens for under $2000. It's
not the best handling of these bikes, but it's cheap and probably
fine for starters. As a little twin, it's legal for lots of
classes. There's a mailing list filled with racers: send
"subscribe ex500 your-address" to Majordomo@msri.org

o Yamaha FZR 400

Made from 1988-1990, this is a 400cc inline four, with an aluminum
"Deltabox" twin-spar frame. The 1990 model had twin front brake
calipers and a Deltabox swingarm. Race ready versions are usually
close to $3000. This is probably the best of the three, but it
also costs the most. I bought this one, because I didn't want to
worry about whether the problem was me or the bike; with the FZR,
I know it's me. There's a mailing list for this bike also: send
"subscribe fzr-400 your-address" in the body of a message to
majordomo@openix.com

o Honda Hawk GT 650

Made from 1988-1990, this is a 650cc V-twin, with a twin-spar
frame. Race ready versions are around $2500. The engine is a
little weak in stock form, but can really breath fire when worked
on. As a little twin, it's legal for lots of classes.

o Your Current Street Bike

This bike has one obvious advantage: it's nearly free (you do have
to spend some money race prepping it). A lot of people start on
their 600 Sportbikes; in my region, the Amateur 600cc grids are
completely packed. The disadvantage of this bike is that when you
wreck it, you've got no street bike. An even worse problem would
be wrecking it on the street and having no race bike! In addition,
it's a royal pain to rip all the street stuff (lights, signals,
etc) off every weekend, and when your suspension is set up
correctly for the track, it's unrideable on the street. A final
warning: some organizations don't let novices on anything bigger
than a 750.

A good way to pick a bike is to go to your local track, hang out in the
pits talk to people your own age who are smiling, find out what they
are riding and why. Look at how many bikes are in each class, an how
the racing is going. Some classes are just for nut cases (I would never
say that about any particular class, like, oh, say, the Amateur 600's).
Other classes have an air or respect for their fellow riders.

Some people start in vintage racing; it's not just for retired
roadracers. A good starter bike is a CB350 Honda. They are cheap, and
in the USCRA there are two classes for them, one for stock motors and
one for modifed motors.

No matter what bike you race, it's simplier if you get a bike already
racing in the class you're after. And stay as close to stock as you
can; you need to spend the first season learning to race, not working
on your porting.
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:20 PM   #17
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2.2 How Do I Find This Race-Ready Bike?

The best ways are

1. hang around the pits at your local racetrack (see 4.1) and look
for "For Sale" signs,

2. check the classifieds in Cycle News, Roadracing World, or American
Roadracing (see 6.1),

3. check around the newsgroup and mailing list (see 6.1)

2.3 What Class Should I Race In?

ASK EACH ORGANIZATION. ALL WILL START YOU IN NOVICE, WHICH IS WHERE YOU REALLY NEED TO BE, REGARDLESS OF YOUR STREET EXPERIENCE. IF YOU ARE OVERQUALIFIED FOR NOVICE, YOU CAN ALWAYS MOVE UP LATER IN THE DAY. REMEMBER, TRACK RIDING IS A LIFETIME THING, NO NEED TO PROVE ANYTHING TO ANYONE OR YOURSELF THE FIRST TIME OUT....UNLESS YOU WANT TO SHOW EVERYONE YOU KNOW HOW TO WRECK WITH THE BEST OF THEM

Most organizations have different racing classes divided up by engine
displacement, 2-stroke vs 4-stroke, number of cylinders, and how much
magic has been performed on the bike. Take CCS, for instance (see 3.2).
It has a couple of "Lightweight" classes for production-based street
bikes. It allows 4 stroke bikes with 4 cylinders up to 400cc or 4
stroke twins up to 650cc. "Lightweight Supersport" is for mildly
altered bikes (new pipes, jetting and suspensions) and "Lightweight
Superbike" is for bikes with titanium con-rods and such. (The details
of what's legal and what's not are more complicated, but that's the
general idea.) The grids for these classes are filled with the three
bikes mentioned in 2.1

You're usually allowed to "race up a class," which means you can ride a
600cc bike in the 750cc class. On some tight, twisty tracks, you might
not even be at much of a disadvantage. At the AMA national at Loudon,
for instance, there's usually a 600 in the top ten of the 750
Supersport races. And in the beginner classes, slow bikes with fast
riders beat fast bikes with slow riders all the time.

It's a good idea to start in these relatively slow, lightweight
classes. If you take your CBR900RR to the track to learn on, odds are
you're going to get lapped an awful lot, fall down all the time, and
might even be a danger to the more experienced racers. In fact, some
organizations don't let novices on anything bigger than a 750. My race
school instructor explained: "It was just getting too ."

2.4 What's this "YSR" stuff I Hear About? (NOW HONDA NSR, OR TMGP...www.tmgps.8k.com)

Another Bike/Class option is to race YSRs. The Yamaha YSR is a 50cc or
80cc two stroke that looks like a sport bike. They are raced in parking
lots, on go cart tracks, and on regular race tracks.

YSR racing isn't as high speed as full size racing, but it is a
fantastic alternative for people who can't ante up the entrance fee for
big-time racing, or are not prepared (due to family, etc) to risk life
and limb for the pursuit of adrenaline.

YSR's also provide a semi-safe place to hone up racing skills (most of
them are directly transferrable) before stepping up to lightweights.
Crashes are not usually serious, so racers can get used to falling off.

Mini-racing, as it's also called, is most popular in So Cal, but there
are contingents around North America. In Texas, for example, check with
The Texas Mini-GP Series (TMGPS), run by Dennie Spears (409-776-8898)
and Scott Shaeffer (whose name I can't spell). They race monthly in
Houston and Dalls, and have a wide range of classes from stock to
superbike. Also, in Texas, try the CMRA (800) 423-8736. In Toronto,
contact the Nifty-50 racing club (905) 830-1021. In California, try the
CMRRA at 909-674-5357. British Columbia is home to the Pacific Coast
YSR Club, whose number I don't have.

2.5 What's This "Mini-Moto" Stuff I Hear About?

Mini-Motos are little miniature motorcycles--like 8 inches high, 3 feet
long, and 50lbs. They've got little 2-stroke engines, no suspension,
tires that feel like real race tires, and cost $1500. People race them
in parking lots and sometimes on go-kart tracks. Supposedly, they'll do
60mph, given a long enough run. It's something to see.

2.6 What is "Race-Prepping"?

RACE PREPPING IS NOT REQUIRED FOR TRACK DAYS. TAKING OFF MIRRORS IS A GOOD IDEA AND ALL OTHER GLASS AND PLASTIC WILL BE TAPED WITH BLUE PAINTERS TAPE THAT COMES OFF EASILY AND WONT HURT THE BIKE.

"Race-prepping" is getting your bike ready to race. If you've bought a
bike that's already been racing, race-prepping is all the grunt work
you don't have to do. It means stripping off all the street stuff
(lights, signals, kickstands, etc), replacing the radiator coolent with
water, safety-wiring anything you wouldn't want to come loose at speed,
putting on number plates, adding a steering damper, etc.

"Safety-wiring" is drilling little holes through the heads of bolts
that hold on important stuff, running wire through those holes, and
attaching the wire to some fixed point, or to another bolt. This makes
it impossible for the bolt to turn, no matter how much it vibrates and
bounces. Obvious targets for safety wiring are oil drain plugs, fork
oil drains, the remote shock reservoir (mine fell off once) and brake
caliper bolts.

It is really helpful to have someone show you how and what to safety
wire; the race rulebooks are not very clear or complete. When you go to
the track to hang around before becoming a racer, you can check this
out, perhaps asking someone for hints and help. Most racers are very
helpful about this kind of thing, and love to talk about their bikes.
(Just don't catch them 10 minutes before their next race.)

Every organization has its own specific rules about race-prepping.
You'll find them in the rulebooks (see 6.1 and 3.2).

2.7 Do You Insure Race Bikes?

No.

TRACK BIKES.....YES. FULL COVERAGE INSURANCE WILL COVER THE MAJORITY OF TRACK DAY CRASHES> THEY DO NOT COVER CLOSED COURSE COMPETITION, SO DON"T "RACE" AT TRACK DAYS. JUST "RUN WITH" PEOPLE AT YOUR SKILL LEVEL.

That's a little extreme, but not much. Some people do get special theft
insurance if the bike is really valuable (like a 916 or RC45). There's
no such thing as liabilty insurance on the racetrack. If somebody hits
you, you might be able to yell at him, but he's not paying to fix your
bike. And for 's sake, don't get a lawyer and sue him--that will be
the end of amateur racing. There's no such thing a collision either. If
you slide your bike into the wall, you buy the new front end yourself.
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:29 PM   #18
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Helping out with any of the track day groups, either working corners or grid or gate will result in a credit arrangement where you can work a day, then ride a day for free. At some organizations you can split a day, where one person works while another rides. This is great for husband / wife combo, or two guys who want to ride a half day each.

Going this route, using race takeoffs, plus gas puts the cost of a local weekend at less than $75. Paying full rate, with new tires every 3-5 trackdays, can get a little pricey, at maybe $250 - $300 a day. But it is still 5 times cheaper than going racing, hence the sport's increasing popularity.
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:30 PM   #19
Eddy.T
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Wow. Mr.P - you have left me speechless with all that...

I have a strong feeling i will be a happy track day person with all you guys telling me how to do this right the first time...

thanks again man.
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Old 12-09-2010, 06:13 PM   #20
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Predator04 Its a learning experiance in the making.
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