First track day - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 09:27 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 34
First track day

(sorry for the dbl post ...... missed this forum)

My first track day is scheduled with Sportbike Tracktime on 5/12/02 at Gingerman (SW Michigan), and I was looking for any input from a track day veteran.
I already have all the bike prep info I need, so what I'm looking for is general tips and guidance on what to bring, on track behavior and, if anyone else has run there, some site specific knowledge. I may be going by myself (all my buds are normal and have children to attend to), so will I be able to count on finding some help getting the bike off my pickup?
I'm going into the lowest level I can (novice group) which sounds like I won't get in trouble by getting in the way of someone that is much faster (trust me, there will be a bunch of those).
So, as a bonus, does anyone else happen to be going to Gingerman on that day?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 11:18 AM
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Take you stands and of course all of your riding gear. Make a list before you get too excited. If you wait til the day before you will be all excited and forget to put something on the list.

Take plenty of drinks like water, gatorade, etc. Take healthy snacks like donuts, ding-dongs, donut gems, (oops, that's my list). Just stick with things like cranola bars and the such.

Take general tools you might need. Take plenty of fuel for the bike. Be prepared for any weather. If you don't take rain gear then it will rain. If you have a canopy for shade while resting then take it. If you don't have one then consider getting one. Take sun block and a hat if you are bald like me.

You will not have any trouble getting help loading/unloading the bike.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 11:25 AM
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I can't add anything to what John said except that I feel sorry for your buds. They are the ones that don't own 748 and have a track day ahead of them

Last edited by desmo079; 04-03-2002 at 11:28 AM.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 11:45 AM
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best advice i can give--PACK YOUR GEAR UP NOW.

seriously--helmet, all your shields, gloves (two pair if you got 'em), boots, leathers. it's too easy to forget them.

take lots to drink and drink it.

take some shade and something to sit on under it.

take a book, track days always run late and it'll keep you calm.

stay calm.

most important, hammer and clisel. you'll need it to get the big goofy grin off your face at the end of the day.

most importantly, stay calm, and ride within your limits. speaking of limits, the ones on your credit cards...lower them too. you'll understand soon enough. crack and herion have NOTHING on track time.


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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 12:34 PM
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Originally posted by FZR400Tony
crack and herion have NOTHING on track time.
So true, so true
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 01:02 PM Thread Starter
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cut it out ......

....... you dudes are getting me fired up and I still gotta wait a month. Seriously, thanks for the input. I appreciate the help and promise a report when the mission is completed. G'day.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 02:39 PM
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You are in real trouble my friend.

Cause after one you're gonna be hooked and what a sweet bike to 'track' on.

Drink LOTs of water and when you think you're gonna drown, drink a little more. And don't forget to pee before a session, park near the bathrooms. Dehydration is insidious and will cause great harm to your skills and reflexes before you realise you're thirsty.

If you're worried about being in the way, remember Mongrel's advice. "fast as possible in the corners and moderately slow in the straights" should be your montra for the day. And DO NOT freak out if you find yourself in a corner and someone is beside you. DO NOT LOOK at them or you will crash and take them with. The weirdest thing I experienced at my first track day was being close to someone else at speed. It's weird but control your emotions and thoughts, stay on the line you started, don't jump, relax.

If there isn't instruction as to what lines to take on that particular track, ask questions and try to follow someone faster than you while staying within your limits. You can also try to find some race footage from that track to get an idea of what the fast line should be like.

Have fun and don't worry, your biggest problem in the novice group is gonna be how to pass the other people who arn't following your montra.

Have fun, you'll love it if you let yourself relax. You can always break the track record next time.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 02:44 PM
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Oh, and work out a little since you have a month to go. Jog a little, deep knee bends, push ups, and something like the thigh master (in all seriousness) will work the groups you'll need on the bike. I hurt like hell after my first track day and after the above exercises wasn't phased at all after the next one.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 02:47 PM
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.....and remember everything mike told you at CSS!
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2002, 06:16 PM
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Damn good advice from Mongrel. The guys behind you will get by you in time.

I would suggest that if you start is the slow group and find out you are leading then think about asking to move up. Being behind better riders is one of the best ways to learn as long as you have self control. I don't know your skill level so this is something to think about. My third trackday would have been more useful had I moved up to the intermediate group. I was pretty much faster than most of the beginners' group but would have learned to go faster had I followed some intermediates. I'm very slow when by myself but can run significantly faster when riding with faster people(assuming I can trust them).

It is a blast and life as you know it will end in one month.
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