Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: redlands, CA, 92373
First off, if you are talking track days you can run anything with very little prep or expense. If you mean racing it's a whole 'nother ball game.
For track days most prep is essentially free. Tape over the lights and lens' and maybe replace the coolant with water. Take off the mirrors and you are pretty much good to go.
If you do it a lot, tires will be your biggest cost. I have been running my 97 yzf1000 for the last couple years and done ~10 track days with NO costs other than tires, fuel, and track fees (other than crash repairs once, getting frame sliders is a HUGE must for the track, saved me big).
At a minimum you need leathers, I highly rec 1-piece but most places will let you run 2-piece, helmet, race gloves, race boots. That can be done for under 1k but 1.5k is more reasonable for quality but not extravagant gear.
AFA bikes go, anything will work just fine. Most people would have you start on a 600 or smaller bike. Any 600 will be fine or ex500, sv650 (with suspension upgrades ~$100-$1000). But really for a track day bike 90% of the performance comes from tires so run whatever and mod it later if you feel like it.
And remember, higher performance in tires and bikes just means that when you finally exceed the limits you be going much faster when you wreck. The lessons learned at the limits of an ex500 at 100mph are the same as those on a r1 at 130. It just hurts more when you fuck up on the r1.
Overall, don't sweat it too much. Just go out with the FZ1 for a few track days and then see what you want to do.
Repeal helmet laws, they only protect people we most likely don't need in the gene pool any way!