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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi All,

I am planning on hitting a few track days this year and would like to have a set of racing tires just for the track. I am clueless as for what to look for, what to avoid, and what I want. I am hoping that some of you with racing / track day experience could share some insight on what you like and don't like in a tire, and maybe some pointers about characteristics of different tires, what tires you would recommend.

From some things I've read a while back, some tires hold their grip and slowly fade out before they break traction. Others will hold tight right up to break point. Any comments on this?

I have a 2002 R6 (still stock).

Thanks!


Mike
 

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Everyone is going to have a different opinions on what is a better tire. It's really a personal opinion and what kind-of performance you want out of the tire. Since you are only going to do a few track days have you looked at Metezler's Sportec. It is designed for the those that ride on the street, but want to experience the track once in a while to be able to do that with the same tire. Pirelli is also coming out with a new street/track day tire called the Diablo. All the Team Pepsi Suzuki riders came from different tires (Dunlop, Michelin) and the team rode the Pirelli last year with some very good results. The Pirelli tire has more flex in it's carcas and heats up quicker then most of the other brands therefore, it will get "stickier" quicker. The Pirelli (also the Metezler.. same company) tend to give the rider some warning before it will give way. I have heard several racers say that the Michelin for example gives no warning before it goes.
 

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The Pirelli tire has more flex in it's carcas and heats up quicker then most of the other brands therefore, it will get "stickier" quicker. The Pirelli (also the Metezler.. same company) tend to give the rider some warning before it will give way. I have heard several racers say that the Michelin for example gives no warning before it goes.

You're exactly correct. I like the Pirellis. They seem to last a little longer than most brands and just seem to be a more predictable tire. I've never used their street tires, but their race rubber is second to none.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for your input guys. I would like to have a set of tires that would be just for the track. For track-day use, how long might I expect the race tires to last? Is there some kind of wear indicator that would let me know it's time to replace the tires? I know there are many factors such as which tire, how hard I ride, etc. I've never ridden on the track. So I'm sure I'll go fairly easy the first time or two. I hope to hit maybe 4 track days this year at least. I'm just trying to get some general information to help me make a better informed decision when it comes time to get the tires. Thanks again for your help.

Mike
 

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I can only really speak for the Metezeler/Pirelli line (Dragon SuperCorsa line), since that is what the team used last year. For either of those manufacturer's the best combo is a green rear (their hard tire) and a blue front (their soft compound tire). This combo. will allow you to push the front without sliding it (tire is soft, therefore will stick more), but at the same time slide the rear without having it come around on you. With this combo you will get the most performance out of the tires while still getting a good life out of them. Considering you will probably not be breaking track records on your first few times out, usually the combo I just explained will be good for approx. 4 heat cycles. Meaning everytime you go out on the track and get those tires up to their operating temp. that session will be considered a heat cycle.
 

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One more vote for the Pirelli's from me. I've used them the last year and half and gone through a lot of them in that time. I'm a track day instructor, so I'm on the track a lot in a day. I use the SuperCorsa race tires and my GSXR750, Yellow front and Green rear. the front will run out of heat cycles before it wears out. The rear I can get about 3 track days out of one before it wears out. If we happen to run tracks that are opposite of each other, I get a few more events out of the rear.
 

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gixerbabe said:
I can only really speak for the Metezeler/Pirelli line (Dragon SuperCorsa line), since that is what the team used last year. For either of those manufacturer's the best combo is a green rear (their hard tire) and a blue front (their soft compound tire). This combo. will allow you to push the front without sliding it (tire is soft, therefore will stick more), but at the same time slide the rear without having it come around on you. With this combo you will get the most performance out of the tires while still getting a good life out of them. Considering you will probably not be breaking track records on your first few times out, usually the combo I just explained will be good for approx. 4 heat cycles. Meaning everytime you go out on the track and get those tires up to their operating temp. that session will be considered a heat cycle.
Yup...also most of the peeps I do track days with use the Pirelli supercorsa, or the Metzler Rennsports...:thumb:
 

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I too ride the Pirelli tires, I like the natural feel of the tires, but feel the grip is not as good as the Michelin (my experience is with the old Pilot Race), while I agree that the Pilot's would let go unpredictable, they did tend to slide in a predictable manner, that is it was a smooth slide, and could be gathered back easy enough. I also am by no means truly hard on tires (read old and slow). The Pirelli tires also slide smoothly and give you more feedback plus they heat up quicker, they just don't offer as much grip in my opinion, but this could be caused by my bike setup and/or my riding style.

Yes, I think that tire choice really does come down to riding style. While I LOVE the Pirellis, some people I know SWEAR by ((fill in the blank)) I dunno, For me, the Pirellis work great.

BTW...do you know jack Slowinski? He used to race an SV, and now races a ZX-6. I think I've heard him mention you before. If so, e-mail me... [email protected]
 
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