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Old 11-20-2012, 09:17 PM   #1
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How to prepare for track day (skillwise)

I been reading everywhere on this forum on how to prepare for track days and its mostly about gear and tuning up the bike, but how does someone get ready to ride?

Do track days for beginners offer training of some sort? Im more concerned about taking those corners at high speeds or even knee dragging. I always freak the fuk out on sharp corners... I mean thats pretty crazy if they just throw u in there an expect to drive like a pro.

I been driving for a solid year and I bought a 600 RR last month and Im thinking of taking it to the track next year or in 2yrs to have alot more fun on it.

Any help would be appreciated, thanks guys!
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:39 PM   #2
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Just go and do a beginner class. There you go.

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Old 11-20-2012, 10:54 PM   #3
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absolutely forget everything you know about the street (except how to operate the bike).

good luck!! its fun
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:50 AM   #4
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The training happens AT the track! :D Pay attention during your classroom time to your instructor and don't be afraid to ASK QUESTIONS!!!!!!!!!

Ask lots of questions.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:59 PM   #5
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is it possible to have a hyrid bike for both street and track? I dont see a reason why you can...just add back the mirrors, brake lights...etc and you are good to go right?
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Old 11-21-2012, 03:04 PM   #6
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yes, u can have the bike for both, i use mine for street and track with very little work to convert between the 2...

as to track, when u take a beginner course, usually you can get a lot of help/pointers from the instructors as well as one-on-one help on the track...

don't forget your bike key many have

track is so much better of an experience then street, it's not even close to the same - you will be hooked after ur first session...
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Old 11-21-2012, 03:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kali_cbr600rr View Post
yes, u can have the bike for both, i use mine for street and track with very little work to convert between the 2...

as to track, when u take a beginner course, usually you can get a lot of help/pointers from the instructors as well as one-on-one help on the track...

don't forget your bike key many have

track is so much better of an experience then street, it's not even close to the same - you will be hooked after ur first session...
thats good news, ty for sharing. What are some things that u swap from your bike between track/street?
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Old 11-21-2012, 03:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
thats good news, ty for sharing. What are some things that u swap from your bike between track/street?
take off mirrors, tape all lights, remove tail-light - i think that is all...
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Old 11-21-2012, 04:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
I been reading everywhere on this forum on how to prepare for track days and its mostly about gear and tuning up the bike, but how does someone get ready to ride?

Do track days for beginners offer training of some sort? Im more concerned about taking those corners at high speeds or even knee dragging. I always freak the fuk out on sharp corners... I mean thats pretty crazy if they just throw u in there an expect to drive like a pro.

I been driving for a solid year and I bought a 600 RR last month and Im thinking of taking it to the track next year or in 2yrs to have alot more fun on it.

Any help would be appreciated, thanks guys!
Read this: http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/...7d#/9cf1b97d/1

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Old 11-21-2012, 06:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kali_cbr600rr View Post
take off mirrors, tape all lights, remove tail-light - i think that is all...
aww, do u really have to remove the taillight? thats going to suck so hard because i have mine spliced together with connectors. Can u just tape over them with black duct tape?
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Old 11-21-2012, 07:39 PM   #11
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I've been riding my 600 for just under two years now, my first track day is this weekend. I signed up with trackXperience and they have a new racer school I'll be attending. Very nervous, but more excited.


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Old 11-21-2012, 08:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
aww, do u really have to remove the taillight? thats going to suck so hard because i have mine spliced together with connectors. Can u just tape over them with black duct tape?
i think u should be fine, as long as no visible light comes through the tape when u put on ur brakes... only reason i remove mine is because it won't possibly move around as it's after-market tail light and i have nice connectors and is pretty easy to remove for me - and i gain 10hp at least...
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Old 11-21-2012, 08:43 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhillyB View Post
I've been riding my 600 for just under two years now, my first track day is this weekend. I signed up with trackXperience and they have a new racer school I'll be attending. Very nervous, but more excited.


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You'll be fine. Chuckwalla is a great track and TX is a great org to go with your first time out. More than likely Gina will be your instructor and she is pretty cool. Just remember, go fast in the fast sections and slow in the slow sections. Turns 8/9/10 are slow turns so just work on your lines and confidence.

As to the op, get comfortable with your bike and the controls. Look for track day org's in your area that offer a new rider school. Their website should break down everything you need to do and bring. You can always call ahead and talk with them if you have any added concerns. Once you sign up, don't worry about knee down track record pace, just relax and work within your abilities. Also remember to relax, breath, and enjoy your time on track. The knee down record pace will happen as a result of good riding.
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:02 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaWNMoWER View Post
Just go and do a beginner class. There you go.
So true. Go there, and leave your ego at home. The track is where you learn the skills.
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Old 11-21-2012, 10:57 PM   #15
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Go to learn not to go fast

The more you learn the faster you get

If you go and try to go fast you wont learn

You will end up being faster than you ever imagined


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Old 11-26-2012, 05:06 PM   #16
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Others have pretty much answered everything.

I know with the TTD program, once you tell us it is your first trackday - you automatically follow a different path (meaning you will get special instruction and be grouped with other first timers)
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Old 11-26-2012, 10:14 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
I been reading everywhere on this forum on how to prepare for track days and its mostly about gear and tuning up the bike, but how does someone get ready to ride?

Do track days for beginners offer training of some sort? Im more concerned about taking those corners at high speeds or even knee dragging. I always freak the fuk out on sharp corners... I mean thats pretty crazy if they just throw u in there an expect to drive like a pro.

I been driving for a solid year and I bought a 600 RR last month and Im thinking of taking it to the track next year or in 2yrs to have alot more fun on it.

Any help would be appreciated, thanks guys!
My first trackday was just a regular open trackday. They put you through a short classroom session detailing how the track is laid out, pitting in and pitting out procedures, track etiquette, etc.. The control riders are there to help you.. They will do a few lead-follow laps with first timers and n00bs to get a feel of the track race line, and they always ride slower than necessary during these laps to make sure they don't put too much stress on you going fast early on. I've been to 5 trackdays so far and have yet to drag knee, and I'm not in a hurry to. Go out there to have fun and learn.. Start perfecting your times and getting fast later on. You've gotta walk before you can run.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
is it possible to have a hyrid bike for both street and track? I dont see a reason why you can...just add back the mirrors, brake lights...etc and you are good to go right?
Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
thats good news, ty for sharing. What are some things that u swap from your bike between track/street?
Quote:
Originally Posted by SniperFalkon View Post
aww, do u really have to remove the taillight? thats going to suck so hard because i have mine spliced together with connectors. Can u just tape over them with black duct tape?
I DD my bike, and it takes about 30 mins to basic track-prep it and less time to take it from track-ready to street-ready. Use blue or green painters tape (You can find it at Lowes/Home Depot/Walmart/Ace/etc..) NOT DUCT TAPE!

*Tape headlights, turn signals, and taillight.
*Unplug your headlights and your brake light so they don't heat up the tape from shining and make it harder to get off (just unplug the connectors from the headlight housing and zip-tie them to nearby wires to keep it from dangling) you don't have to remove any of your lights.. just tape them up
*Remove license plate
*Remove mirrors
*Tape wheel weights
*Zip-tie passenger footpegs in the up position or remove passenger footpegs
*Check oil and coolant
*Make sure all drain plugs are tight and all visible bolts are tight and bike is in good mechanical condition.

These are just the basic track-prep tasks that I perform.. Some tracks require more detailed prep, and some people do more detailed prep. This hasn't failed me yet though..

Let me know if you want to see pictures of any of this to help you get a better idea of how I do things. I'd be more than happy to help you further!

Last edited by zipties; 11-26-2012 at 10:16 PM.
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Old 11-26-2012, 10:39 PM   #18
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Lots of good information here already.

I hope you get hooked at track days as I did. These stickers are from this year.

Next year I'm hoping I'll have the funds to do Road America, Blackhawk, Mid-America, 3 BIRs and Barber.

...I guess I do have a suggestion, try to lend a helping hand to someone that might need it :)

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Old 11-26-2012, 11:53 PM   #19
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STOP WORRYING AND PREPARE FOR THE BEST EXPERIENCE ON YOUR MOTORCYCLE. oh yeah don't forget the key
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Old 11-27-2012, 01:15 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zipties View Post
...
*Unplug your headlights and your brake light so they don't heat up the tape from shining and make it harder to get off (just unplug the connectors from the headlight housing and zip-tie them to nearby wires to keep it from dangling) you don't have to remove any of your lights.. just tape them up
...
Before I went to a track-only setup on the 600 I rigged my rear lights and plate bracket to just unplug and come off in under 20 seconds but the rest of the lights I just taped up. I never had any problem with tape sticking and I think it's because I would keep the lights waxed - headlights, turn signals, everything that would light up. The wax is transparent so it doesn't affect the light output but it's just slippery enough to keep the tape from sticking when it gets cooked by the heat.

I would just grab an edge and rip the whole piece of tape off in one swoop at the end of the day, took about 2 seconds and I never had any sticky residue. YMMV.

To the OP...

Just make sure the first track day you sign up for isn't an "open" track day with no instructors. A track near here does those a few times a year and while there are control riders and some rudimentary instruction it's not at all comparable to an actual track day organization that has a set curriculum and people who have experience teaching.

Best advice was already given above, leave any ego at home and show up ready to learn. If you're like almost every one of us you will come away from that first day both energized and humbled.
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:08 PM   #21
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Humbled for sure!! Especially when you think you are just inches from having your knee down, and you're leaned sooooo far over and you just know you look uber pro.........then you look at the pictures and your knee is 2 feet from the ground, the bike is barely over, you're sitting up high in every one
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Old 11-28-2012, 02:45 PM   #22
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Lots of good advice already..but to add to some of it. You will be in a "C" group with other riders that are near your skill level. My best advice is get someone to go out with you on your first couple sessions that knows what they are doing. (trackday control rider) Have them critique you after each session. If you go out by yourself and try to ride how you think is right you will just develop bad habits. The longer you ride with those bad habits the harder they are to break. (body position, breaking, shifting, lines, etc) I was teaching my brother the friction zone and how to let the clutch out on a motorcycle about 6 months ago. After about 4 track days and me working with him, he is at an "A" group pace. So be willing to learn and take advice. The skill and confidence will come with seat time. Have fun!
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Old 11-29-2012, 03:31 PM   #23
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there isn't much you can do to prepare. track riding will be very different from street riding. The best thing that you can learn on the street to prepare is not to be cocky, take it slow and listen. The first day is about not killing yourself, and how much your face hurts from smiling!
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Old 11-29-2012, 03:52 PM   #24
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I didn't read every response but I would recommend practicing smooth throttle control and body position on the streets. Don't push it but a smooth throttle is key on the track. Other than that just go learn and have fun!

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