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Old 08-14-2013, 02:56 PM   #1
Thayleal
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Racing: CMRA Formula 4 Mini Endurance

This is long and if you are considering racing in your future read it. I just wanted to share my experiences for others to benefit.

So I was looking up at my schedule and realized there is only one more 2 hour round in my first CMRA season for the Formula 4 Mini Endurance Schedule. This got me to thinking about all I learned, trials, crashes, fun I have had. I figured I would like to share for those that think they want to race but think they can't or aren't fast enough...


I got my CMRA license back in February at the first race of the season, MSRH after a failed attempt in November where I crashed out first session during the class. I agreed to be team captain on the secondary BRAWP Racing team aka BRAWP BRAWP riding with Gabriel (John Rangel), JRedford1( John Redford) , Magus (David Hicks), and Kraze Kris Lillegard. Most of the team minus Kris got their license the same time I did. So a whole team of Prov Novs set out to race in Formula 4 Mini Endurance on a fully race prepped Ninja250. I had about 2 days in level 2 under my belt at that time and was middle of the pack speed and I was nervous as . I worked corners, air fence and raced the two mini sprints to get my two races for the weekend out of the way to complete most of my Prov Nov requirements.

I had been encouraged by Mr. P and Kris because they said it was the cheapest way to not only get seat time but to get faster. I can't speak for the whole team and I hope they chime in but to me they were absolutely right. Going to track days and doing 20 minute sessions you seem to get in the groove right as the flag is being thrown every time. Just when you have settled in, relaxed, and started to flow you have to get off the track. With mini endurance, alot of races you race 45 min to hour stints with RACERS. There are some serious people out there like Kris, Jay Newton, Ken Ryder, Mark Shim, that are hauling the mail out there. You only see them for a second and they are gone. Then there are lots of people that are developing their skills little by little as well. I have watched riders we all know Joeybaila, Rykoson, Gabriel, JRedford1 develop those skills rapidly.

Being out there for an hour gives you two unique opportunities to develop your skills. Not only do you get to see the fast guys go around the corner and try to mimic them but you also the variety of people out there give you a chance to follow and learn from each rider you encounter. You can see how they passed you, look for openings, see where riders are weak or strong and try to incorporate that in your riding. You start to develop a mentality that allows you to read a track better, account for changes in line, track conditions, other riders better. Since you are on the bike longer you develop that endurance of mind and body while also allowing you to try new things, push in different corners and learn to trade braking, corner entry speed and throttle out to build a base to increase your times. In my opinion if you are a track junkie that is interested in racing then Formula 4 Endurance Racing is the purest way to get into it at the most economical price. Fuel, tires, race fees are all cheaper for Mini Endurance and shared between a team are nominal. Most races are less than 100 bucks a person in fuel and entry fees and occasionally you have to buy tires. We have only used 2 sets for the whole season.

Lessons Learned the Hard Way:

1. It is easy to get wrapped up in the competition of it all. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and realize you aren't going to be competitive and you are only racing yourself out there. I struggled with this all season and it cost me.

2. Relax! It doesn't matter if you are slow as long as you have consistent lines. The fast guys will get around you and it is their responsibility to make a safe pass.

3. Ride your ride and enjoy. You get better through practice and seat time and there is no better way than spending an hour out there tweaking one corner at a time until you are happy.

4. Don't get discouraged. This goes back to number 1. I struggled with this because I felt I had to be fast to be out there on that track but what Mr. P was trying to tell me finally clicked at the last TWS (Texas World Speedway) event. This is for fun so have fun! If that means you don't want to be riding with your hair on fire on the edge of crashing then do that. But pay attention and learn! Just remember if you crash it costs money in gear, and you could possibly ruin the race for your team.

5. Always attend practice before the race... otherwise you will end up on the NASCAR track at TWS (Texas World Speedway)

6. Find people who are going to be supportive to race with. HalfFast and the BRAWP crew have been invaluable in technical help, friendship, encouragement, and tips. I would have quit without them and for that I am eternally grateful.
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Last edited by Thayleal; 08-14-2013 at 03:01 PM.
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:14 PM   #2
Thayleal
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Bears noting the HalfFast and BRAWP BRAWP teams are 8th and 9th respectively out of 40 teams in Formula 4 Mini Endurance in their first full years racing with one race to go behind Leather & Lace who is in their second year of racing (Congrats Girls!). One more race anything can happen!
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:16 PM   #3
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nice write-up

I would love to come out and try F4 with the cmra, the only racing I have done is with TMGP except for that one that was put on at GSS a few yrs ago and that was on a 250
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:32 PM   #4
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Great write up Trey. Can't wait till the next race.

Aren't you the proud owner of our team's endurance bike now?
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Old 08-14-2013, 03:52 PM   #5
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Yes to what everything Trey has said and Thanks to everyone on the team for making it possible for me to race. Trey and John, you guys have went above and beyond.
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Old 08-14-2013, 05:23 PM   #6
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Bravo!
You've come a long way, young padawan.
Congrats.

Also, the ladies and I thank you and the team for the friendly competition, but we are still going to continue to kick your butts!
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Old 08-14-2013, 06:02 PM   #7
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When it comes to 250, 3 things come to mind.
1. Fun
2. Fun
3. Fun

Oh, the bonus?

1. Cheap. 1 set of tires last pretty much the whole season. One 5 gallon tank is enough the entire track day for the bike and a little generator.
2. Skill improvement. At least personally, after starting to race the 250, i improved on my 600 ( A lot!!).
3. Bragging right. Nobody says anything about passing a 250. But, when a 250 passes a liter bike on the turns, you'll start loosing some friends. Kekeke... Those liter bikes never wanna admit they got passed by a baby ninja.
4. On track pictures, you could look like a pro racer. The bike sits low, and you get to lean it more. So dragging knee and elbow is child's play. If that means anything to you. But, my suggestion to you. Save the environment and money on your pocket. Pretty soon, buying those knee pucks can be painful. Freaking things are expensive.
5. Don't miss the train. The 250 is becoming a huge phenomena. At least there are half a dozen new teams joining the party next year. One, it will get harder to buy one, because the demand is growing (heard there is this crazy Asian dude who wipes out whatever 250 hits the market). Two, those new comers will get fast soon, and you wanna become competitive and be in front of the pack by the time the grid is full.
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Old 08-14-2013, 06:13 PM   #8
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i wanna ride a 250 one day
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:00 PM   #9
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I have too heard about this crazy Asian traveling all over the country swiping up 250s. I'm having to piece one together because of him lol
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Old 08-14-2013, 08:15 PM   #10
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Any of you guys that race in the Formula 4 Mini Endurance going to be at Cresson with Ridesmart this weekend? I am interested in it and would like to talk to someone in person to get all the ins and outs...
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Old 08-14-2013, 08:23 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Yes to what everything Trey has said and Thanks to everyone on the team for making it possible for me to race. Trey and John, you guys have went above and beyond.
It's a pleasure John. Good stuff!!
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Old 08-14-2013, 09:19 PM   #12
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Trey!! I wish I had the time and writing ability to express the fun I have had on these 250's..I tell you what just like Mark Said its about the Fun!... and budget for me anyways....these bikes help you learn so much about your riding that you just can't do so quickly on the bigger bikes...all of the riding technique have progressed my riding ability...can't wait to see how it translates to my 600 after the last few endurance races...

Most people say start on a 250...well I did it backwards....600 first then the 250...I have learned so much of what you have already talked about. Everything you and Mark have said are spot on! I think thats why its so big in Europe, and starting to get popular in Asia. If we had more 250 riders we could fill up grids and even have mini sessions added to track days. They could open up the mini track at TWS (Texas World Speedway)....or even MSRH for a session for all 250s....how fun would that be.

This is one of those things that you have to try to believe. Trust me too there are tons of folks that will let you hop on their 250s....they crash well anyways plus your only going HALFFAST....lol

If you haven't seen this vid of our teams check this race out at MSRC..

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Old 08-14-2013, 09:23 PM   #13
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oh yeah..and some other fast dudes who love their 250 riding...

Thomass-WFO
Dirk Anderson
Ty Howard
Brandt Dillon
Quan
John Hutchinson


to name a few.
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Old 08-14-2013, 09:57 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rykoson View Post
oh yeah..and some other fast dudes who love their 250 riding...

Thomass-WFO
Dirk Anderson
Ty Howard
Brandt Dillon
Quan
John Hutchinson


to name a few.
You forgot the soon to be the new king of 250, Caleb (Proasian3).
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Old 08-14-2013, 11:15 PM   #15
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Great thread
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Old 08-14-2013, 11:17 PM   #16
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Quote:
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You forgot the soon to be the new king of 250, Caleb (Proasian3).
yup....he is what 9?
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Old 08-14-2013, 11:38 PM   #17
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Here is a motivating vid that made me wanna get my licence...now just have to see what I am gonna do with it!!! Thank I'm finally done with my reqs too!

http://kck.st/w1fVRr
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Old 08-15-2013, 12:39 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rykoson View Post
Here is a motivating vid that made me wanna get my licence...now just have to see what I am gonna do with it!!! Thank I'm finally done with my reqs too!

http://kck.st/w1fVRr
i wanna race when i get fast maybe after next year idk

or maybe wait until i have like at least 1 year of riding experience, 2 years would be awesome.
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:51 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jredford View Post
Great write up Trey. Can't wait till the next race.

Aren't you the proud owner of our team's endurance bike now?
Yes Sir... Think we got that mechanical figured out from last race. Hopefully taking it for a test run in the next few days once I get the brakes bled and it isn't threatening rain.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slyder View Post
Bravo!
You've come a long way, young padawan.
Congrats.

Also, the ladies and I thank you and the team for the friendly competition, but we are still going to continue to kick your butts!
Maybe but if you think we are going to go down without a fight you got another thing coming!

Quote:
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i wanna ride a 250 one day
I am sure that if you talk to Bluepine he might let you ride one of his like 30 250s. I would volunteer one of mine but the one that is finished is a team bike that is committed to the team. But when I get my new one finished I could let you take it out a couple sessions possibly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zx10r08 View Post
Any of you guys that race in the Formula 4 Mini Endurance going to be at Cresson with Ridesmart this weekend? I am interested in it and would like to talk to someone in person to get all the ins and outs...
Look for the big black bus that says BRAWP Racing on the back. You can't miss it. It is a 40 foot metro bus. Mr. P, KrazeKris, and the Honey Badger at minimum will be there and they are the ones that have encouraged me to race. They are great resources!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Umayr View Post
i wanna race when i get fast maybe after next year idk

or maybe wait until i have like at least 1 year of riding experience, 2 years would be awesome.
If you read my post then you would know as long as you are consistent you don't have to be fast. It is a great place to develop your skills where you can watch people much faster all the way down to your level to learn things At Hallett I ran times faster than I would ever dreamed in May. I finally hit my groove I had learned so much. Unfortunately I have taken a huge step back due to my accident over Memorial Day. I pushed the SV too hard for my skill level and made the sacrifice in confidence. The main thing to remember is you are out there to have fun and are only racing with yourself. That being said you just relax, don't push yourself past your limits because other people have to ride too. Knowing you don't want to blow it for the team helps you tune back and learn. It is a winning situation! There is also rumors floating around of more HalfFast and BRAWP teams next year....
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:55 AM   #20
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Quote:
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There is also rumors floating around of more HalfFast and BRAWP teams next year....
+ Griff's HPC or Excitebikes team
+ Crazy Dog Racing team
+ Myla, Rod, Bruce team
+ etc, etc, etc,
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