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New to track. LOTS of street exp. Which bike?

Discussion in 'Information For New Racers' started by Jordano, Oct 2, 2020.

  1. StaccatoFan

    StaccatoFan My 13 year old is faster than your President

    You're welcome. The other point about track only machines is safety....yours and the others on the track.

    Track prepping eliminates headlights/tail lights/ turn signals, etc that can leave glass/plastic on the track surface.
    You also run water in your cooling system, no anti-freeze....again...safety.
    Race body work has a belly pan that catches any fluid leaks, hopfully...safety.
    Track only bike, safety wired.
    If you have a nice street bike, and want to keep it that way, you don't have to risk wadding it up in the track.
    If you wad your track bike, no biggie....you showed up prepared to throw everything you brought with you into the dumpster.

    The first thing you should learn after taking the leap to experience a race track is that the street is the street and the track is the track.
    They are VERY different environments. The only thing they have in common is both have asphalt. After even the 2 track days you've had, you should
    understand that that is the place to explore your limits, learn and refine technique, and the street is a place where you ride like a good citizen. The point
    of riding in the street is just to enjoy a nice day on 2 wheels where you can have a greater experience than in a car because the environment is not blocked out
    like it is within a car.

    Many of us don't get out 50 days a year, either. Many of us maybe only afford 4 days a year...but those 4 days are the best 4 days of the year.
    LeonJM and Jordano like this.
  2. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    That was the real holdup with riding my street bikes at the track. I didn't want to wad up a 2017 Tuono. I sold that, but still had a Super Duke GT; the suspension on that bike leaves something to be desired, and still a pricey bike to throw into the runoff.

    The old 600 I'm less concerned about. That was the goal at the outset; a low-cost bike that's suitable for improving on, capable, and not a large investment. But your point about parts/fluids is well taken. The 2008 is pristine, but I'd still probably take it out and switch back and forth.

    And, lastly, yes, lots more hazards on the street. Animals. Unexpected road conditions. Oncoming traffic. An RV making a 36-point turn across all lanes. After my second track day I remember going up the twisties and feeling very uneasy about all the various unexpecteds after having ridden close to my limit in a controlled environment. Your last point about "track riding for the track and street riding for the street" is well-made, and well-taken. In fact, a low side in the mountain twisties last summer is actually what got me exploring becoming more track-centered. Fortunately I didn't fly off a cliff or get run over. But, at 41 my time for embracing that kind of risk is behind me. I still will ride the street, but putting more of my miles on at a track is appealing for more than one reason.
  3. StaccatoFan

    StaccatoFan My 13 year old is faster than your President

    Yeah...I hear ya...I had a pristine 2010 1198s I absolutely LOVED. I bought it with 850 miles on it, and traded it in with 1700.
    For the street, the riding position was painful...the sound was intoxicating. Part of me wanted to convert it to a track toy, because that's the
    only place I could have really enjoyed it, but it was just too beautiful.

    When I went for a street ride, my 2016 Hypermotard got chosen first.

    In October, I traded it in on a 2020 821 Monster Stealth, and I absolutely LOVE that bike for street riding. I also still have and love the Hyper.
    So, I guess on my weekends I don't have my son, I'll ride one on Saturday and one on Sunday.
    Seiko likes this.
  4. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    This sounds like a good plan. :)
  5. TurboBlew

    TurboBlew Registers Abusers

    Having a couple of bikes is a luxury as well as a chore...lol.
    The more you ride a closed course... the less attractive the street becomes. And loading & unloading up for the track can be a chore as well. I just did a pedal saturday with a track day sunday... yes I bought warmers & a canopy but could have gotten away with out them. Wasnt looking to go for PBs just shake the rust and gauge my ride fitness. Also learned I hate the quick turn throttle on my bike. I had fun riding and saw quite a few folks that had been off their bikes awhile looking to get back out and up to speed.
    Jordano likes this.
  6. Sabre699

    Sabre699 Wait...hold my beer.

    SV650 for the win. (Prefferably clapped out)
  7. DmanSlam

    DmanSlam Well-Known Member

    @SuddenBraking, you're right. After a) visiting NJMP for the first time and b) talking with the riders who ride their 300s and 400s at other kart tracks, a 300/400 actually makes for a good 'swiss army knife' for kart/big bike tracks.
    SuddenBraking likes this.
  8. stangmx13

    stangmx13 Well-Known Member

    An 04' CBR is too old to be worth much time riding on track IMO. Its not modern, rides like a tank, and has poor aftermarket support. Ive raced an 04 and an 09. The 09 (07+) is so much easier to ride that you end up riding it very different than the 04. 07+ should be your cut off for CBR600RRs. Of course, this only applies if you plan to gain skills and get fast as fast as possible.
    Boman Forklift and Jordano like this.
  9. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    What's the consensus on a latest-gen ZX-6R?
  10. DmanSlam

    DmanSlam Well-Known Member

    Got a friend using one in the A group with N2. If that's your only ride option, use it. Plenty capable bike.
  11. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    The world is my oyster. I'm not rich, but am thinking about what bike I actually want. I liquidated the 2004 CBR600RR. I decided I want something more modern for track purposes. My riding goals are changing, so I can liquidate something I have (or a couple) and get what I want.

    Current bikes:
    1) Super Duke GT (would work, but not ideal for the track as the suspension adjustment is electronic and very limited)
    2) 2004 Aprilia RSVR factory. Good bike, but a bit finicky and parts availability would be tough if I have a getoff.
    3) 2008 Honda CBR1000RR. I could keep this for track duty, but given that I am newer to this type of riding I'm starting to agree not having to worry so much about excess power in and out of corners could be beneficial to actually improving.

    Right now I'm leaning towards taking both the RSVR and CBR1k to the next track day, booked for the 19th of this month. But I could also liquidate one, or two, or all three, and get whatever sport bike I want. And maybe also a newer EXC-F dual sport. Not really into the long ST rides at this time so I'm thinking of just getting out of the SDGT.

    The newer ZX-6R intrigues me because I believe it has the electro gizmos (I know, not really necessary) and has a bit more torque and HP than the 600s. The R6s (now out of production) new seem to be marked down too. I could get a <2016, but it seems the 2017+ has some advantages, if I go the Yamaha route. Could all be an exercise in continued dreaming; who knows? Plans to ride lots of track are one thing, and doing it is another.
  12. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    Understood. And I feel it. The fast cornering is what excites me right now. And after my mountain lowside last summer I'm more and more appreciating the absence of mountain hazards on a track. My crash hurt, but imagining what would have happened, had the oncoming cars that stopped to check on me been more closely headed for my post-laydown line line of travel, is what really concerns me...

    Yeah, regular riding with no concerns for oncoming traffic, animals, unanticipated rocks, cliffs, speed limits, etc., is appealing. :)
  13. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    Also curious about the new RSV 660, but not sure it's as well-equipped outta the box.
  14. Mongo

    Mongo Administrator

    You won't notice or need any of the positives you list about the Kawi. Honestly for trackdays use the Honda. You know the bike already so that's a bunch less to think about when riding.
  15. StaccatoFan

    StaccatoFan My 13 year old is faster than your President

    It's a brand new model in it's first year. Let someone else deal with the "teething pains" that come with that.
  16. Marcos415

    Marcos415 Well-Known Member

    I got an 07/08 zx6r that I will be selling soon super cheap. I’m also in SoCal. I’ll be riding that bike on March 15th at Buttonwillow if you want to check it out. I’m selling it because I race an RC390 at cvma so the zx6r has just been collecting dust the last 2 or 3 years.
    Jordano likes this.
  17. Boman Forklift

    Boman Forklift Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't recommend buying and developing a new bike. Buy someone else's already setup racebike and you will be many $$$$$ ahead. Unless you are the type of person that really enjoys the building process and doesn't mind that it will take more time and especially money to get there?
  18. SDR1290

    SDR1290 Member

    This thread is great. Amazing bits of information on here for newbies such as myself.

    OP, what bike did you settle on?
  19. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    Hey! Glad to see the revival. :)

    My most recent purchase for fun/track duty/exuberant canyon riding was a BMW S1000RR. It was a carefully researched decision and had me feeling like Marc Marques in the track (still med-ish B pack, though).

    The advice here about a well-equipped used track 1000 or 600 is well taken. Myself, I've been very comfortable on bikes for decades worth of spirited canyon riding. So, If I were going track-only, I'd stick with a litre bike. Probably still a S1000RR even if track equipped.

    If a newer rider focusing on track-only. I probably would have bought a 600, well-appointed for track, or street legal.

    For my purposes, there are still only a couple or a handful track days a year. So a street legal 1000 is the ticket. And the S1000RR is top of the pile IMO in terms of both form and function. Based on my research, I'd take an R1 or CBR next in line in that order, with the R1M and SP versions preferred.

    Again, if I were a newer rider and not so accustomed and wanting to not forgo insane power, I'd buy probably an RS660 due to its excellent appointment of electronics and competence on both track and street (some suspension work may be required according to what I've watched and read). Runner up might be Street Triple 765 RS. I might even flip the order.

    I've still got a soft spot for the Tuono 1100, though. And I really do want to ride an RSV4, especially on a track. :)
  20. Jordano

    Jordano Active Member

    Caveat, of course, is that I'm not a racer. And I think most people here that have opined on the thread are.

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