Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Redlands, Ca. 92374
TRACK DAYS vs CLUB RACING?
I was born in Oct. of 1952.
I have never owned a baseball, football, basketall, bat or glove. I started riding when I was 16y/o which is actually pretty late.
I started actual closed course road racing when I was 49 y/o. Prior to that, I had raced AMA dist. 37 desert racing from about 1970 to 1980.
After too many close calls on the street, I started doing a few track days. I realised what fun it is to have nothing to do but focus on riding fast. No guard rails, no old ladies in Buicks turning left in front of me or semi-trucks/suv trying to come into my lane while I am still in it.NO COPS. Just pure guilt-free fun.
Then my riding buddies decided to go racing. So I sold my 900 SS SP and bought a new '02 R6. But, guess what? They all decided that they couldn't afford it or had to move out of the area etc. etc.
So there I was at my first race all alone. Once the green flag dropped, it was like an instantaneous feeling of nirvahna. After a few race weekends, I developed a new set of friends. I participated in CCS races at Las Vegas, Buttonwillow and Streets of Willow.
After a while I realized that the 600 class was not for me. Too many young riders that did not have to be to work on Monday. So I sold my R6 and bought an '04 DUCATI SS1000 DS to get into a battle of the twins class.
Well about that time CCS ran out of money to come to California, so I joined Willow Springs Motorcycle Club. But, my Duck was too big for the middleweight BOTT (906 vs 992) so now I have to race against 999, RC51, SV1000 etc, etc.
So here are my comments about Track days and Club racing.
Tons of fun. Generally you can ride your bike to the track if you want to. But always have a buddy that can get your bike and you back home if necessary. Instruction at the track is sometimes available.The cost varies, but your investment is rather low.
For me the big drawback for track days is that they are usually on weekdays, since the trackday companies have to pay a lot more to rent a track on weekends.
This is the crack cocaine of motorcycling. Instantly addictive. Very dangerous. Very expensive. But it is legal.
Don't make the mistake I did. Check out your local club. Find out about the racing classes. Remember: If you get that GSXR 1000 for racing, you will be lining up with the same size bike all the racers in your class are riding. Horsepower is not the key. Look at the track times. Guys on SV650 will brobably turning lap times on par with the 1300cc Buells. Choose your bike with your comfort level in mind rather than horsepower.
You will need a bike, a generator, tire warmers, race stands front and rear (kick stands must be removed) race body work which has oil containment. Safety wire, safety wire pliers.
All of this can be purchased used and probably should be because a used race bike has most if not all of the rule requirements in place.
On thing that should never be used is tires. One set per weekend. If you get a liter bike it will most likely eat one set on practice on Sat and one set on Sun for the race. At the race track, most tire mfgers have their vendors there selling at racer discounts.
And of course a truck or trailer to get your bike and gear to the track.
Once you have the required equipment, racing is cheap track days on weekends. On Sat for about $90 you can practice from dawn to dusk. For about $190 on Sun you can practice in the morning for about an hour and race in two races.
Nonetheless, no matter what, you should visit our local track to watch some club racing. For much less that a SuperBike AMA race you can watch racing all day and get to chat with the club members.
Once you try track, you never go back.