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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
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First track day coming up

So, my first track day is coming up soon, through Apex trackdays at Miller Motorsports Park, and I'm looking for a few tips for my first track day. I suppose mostly on what kinds of things should I bring besides myself, the bike, and my gear. I should be able to haul the bike up there, but a few tips on if I have to ride to the track might be nice too, it's about an hour ride from where I live. I'm super excited to get out on the track :D

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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 12:47 AM
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Get your suspension set up to you if you havent already, most bike shops will do this for about $30. Make sure you have some good tires, maybe bleed your brakes and give it a fresh oil change before you go. Go over your bike the night before and make sure all of your bolts are tight and that the bike is set up to the requirements of the track day organization. Also try to avoid riding there if at all possible just in case.

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helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 01:01 AM
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i agree with everything he said^
definitely do not ride to the track, it is a very bad idea.
also make sure you have the necessary bolts drilled and safety wired and bring extra with a couple of bits to the track in case your in need of more done. drinks lots of fluid and pack a cooler with food, if you know somebody with a ez up canopy bring that as well, its very nice thing to have, just bring more tools than you think you could need as well.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 08:43 AM
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liquids!!! your gonna dehydrate like your running a marathon in the desert!!! and snacks! healthy energy stuff. start drinking water at least 2 days before. im talking like drink so much water that you have to go piss every 5 minutes LoL.

and HAVE FUN!!!!!! you gonna take a hit off the track pipe. and be addicted!

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 09:59 AM
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Both repsol and crash made a great point. You need to hydrate like its nobodies business, lots of water and Gatorade. Try to drink at least 1 bottle between every session, if you can drink more than that good. If you dont have to go piss at least once an hour you are not properly hydrated and you will end up paying for it in the afternoon.

The tools and bolts is a great point, I will actally take every spare bolt, screw, nut, basically anything for the bike I have a spare of. You will also want to take enough tools to know you can fix anything that goes wrong. I had the reservoir bracket for my master cylinder break on the parade lap my last track day, and without my spare sh!t and tools my day would have been done.

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helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-07-2011, 12:33 PM
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oh ya.. mix your gatorade with water or drink about 50:50. dont drink just gatoraid.

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Duct tape is like the Force, it has a light side, a dark side and it binds the universe lmao
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 04:07 AM
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Bring your KEYS, gas can, chairs/table, EZ-up, food/drinks, and what everyone else said. Have a good time and be safe!

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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-11-2011, 03:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips :) I'm hoping I'll be able to afford all the track time that I know I'm going to want this summer..., haha.

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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-11-2011, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by maka_RTH View Post
Thanks for the tips :) I'm hoping I'll be able to afford all the track time that I know I'm going to want this summer..., haha.
It can get expensive between entry fees and tires. Then tire warmers, race tires and all the other goodies you will want as you get into the faster groups. But it is all worth it you can actually ride the bike how it was made to be ridden and in a safe environment.

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Quote:
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helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-11-2011, 11:31 PM
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You will get hooked....

Also a small piece of advice. Get your suspension done and a good set of tires first before you get any of the other mods/accessories. Track plastics also if you do want to be a total track whore. then dump some money into other stuff later on (warmers, rear-sets, wheels etc). I was able to run up to the fast Intermediate group with nothing but just good tires and a 520conversion

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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TribalCBR06 View Post
You will get hooked....

Also a small piece of advice. Get your suspension done and a good set of tires first before you get any of the other mods/accessories. Track plastics also if you do want to be a total track whore. then dump some money into other stuff later on (warmers, rear-sets, wheels etc). I was able to run up to the fast Intermediate group with nothing but just good tires and a 520conversion
This man speaks the truth. Getting your suspension set up properly will also save you money on tires because they will wear properly and not tear as much.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by DepPravacion View Post
helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 12:53 PM
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Some great advice in here! If you can rent a trailer form u-haul it will make your life much easier. Expecially since you cant carry most of your much needed materials on your bike when u ride to your destination.

Personal:
1. Hydrate yourself
2. Chose a track day organizer who is tested and true- the last thing you want is to go to a poorly run track day for your first time and it leaving a bad taste in your mouth
3. Go with a friend or bring a friend along.
4. Bring snacks
5. Ask questions when you are thier..everyone is very helpfull
6. Bring an EZ-Up Tent...it gets realll hot.
7. Start a thread like this.
8. Watch twist of the wrist 1 and 2 on DVD for some tips.
9. Wear some sort fo undergarmet like underarmer under your leathers- its a lifesaver.
10. Take a break every now and then and recharge- mistakes happen when your tired or frusterated.
11. Your helmet must be in good shape and have a good fit or it is usless. You should not be ableot chew gum confortably if your helmet fits correcntly.
12. Full length gloves and a tall boot.
13. Tool box with rachet set and misc tools.
14. Duck Tape- haha, dont laugh. You will need it!
15. Make sure you have a hard BACK PROTECTOR as they are manditory
16. Your suit (if two peice) must zip together tightly. If one peice then no worries.
17. Fold out chair for sitting...u will need it
18. Check the internet for a track layout- study it. Hell, close your eyes and imagine riding it. This will help as silly as it sounds.

Bike:
1. Check your bike over
2. Bring gas for your bike
3. Change your collant to distilled water and watter wetter or other additive as this is manditory
4. Take 10min and have ur suspension set up for you- world of difference.
5. Tape your lights.

Important:
1. Know that you wont be fast your first lap, or first day for that matter. Things like racing take time.
2. Dont try to race or impress anybody- your thier to build on your own skill not compete with others- this will make your day much more enjoyable.
3. If they offer it- follow an instructure to learn the lines of the track for the first few laps.
4. Increase your speed slowely- overshooting a turn or straight can be dangerous!

Most of all...HAVE FUN!

Last edited by Stangy; 04-12-2011 at 03:51 PM.
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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 01:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stangy View Post
Some great advice in here! If you can rent a trailer form u-haul it will make your life much easier. Expecially since you cant carry most of your much needed materials on your bike when u ride to your destination.

Personal:
1. Hydrate yourself
2. Chose a track day organizer who is tested and true- the last thing you want is to go to a poorly run track day for your first time and it leaving a bad taste in your mouth
3. Go with a friend or bring a friend along.
4. Bring snacks
5. Ask questions when you are thier..everyone is very helpfull
6. Bring an EZ-Up Tent...it gets realll hot.
7. Start a thread like this.
8. Watch twist of the wrist 1 and 2 on DVD for some tips.
9. Wear some sort fo undergarmet like underarmer under your leathers- its a lifesaver.
10. Take a break every now and then and recharge- mistakes happen when your tired or frusterated.
11. Your helmet must be in good shape and have a good fit or it is usless. You should not be ableot chew gum confortably if your helmet fits correcntly.
12. Full length gloves and a tall boot.
13. Tool box with rachet set and misc tools.
14. Duck Tape- haha, dont laugh. You will need it!
15. Make sure you have a hard BACK PROTECTOR as they are manditory
16. Your suit (if two peice) must zip together tightly. If one peice then no worries.
17. Fold out chair for sitting...u will need it

Bike:
1. Check your bike over
2. Bring gas for your bike
3. Change your collant to distilled water and watter wetter or other additive as this is manditory
4. Take 10min and have ur suspension set up for you- world of difference.

Important:
1. Know that you wont be fast your first lap, or first day for that matter. Things like racing take time.
2. Dont try to race or impress anybody- your thier to build on your own skill not compete with others- this will make your day much more enjoyable.
3. If they offer it- follow an instructure to learn the lines of the track for the first few laps.
4. Increase your speed slowely- overshooting a turn or straight can be dangerous!

Most of all...HAVE FUN!
This is probably the best step by step of what to do to prepare to make sure you get the most out of your day.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by DepPravacion View Post
helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 01:26 PM
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Pretty much everything that's been said already.

You might want to make a checklist for yourself depending on how often you go. Here's mine. You can see that there's no way to ride yourself with all the gear you may need. The most important are chairs, some kind of shade (ie canopy) and food/water. Besides, if you crash, how do you get your bike home?

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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 03:48 PM
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I use that exact list- modified slightly. Great Tool....this may sounds harsh but i would maybe just go and watch a track day for starters and get your bearings. Then grab all of the materials you will need (rent a small trailer and so on) so that your first experience is a good one. Then sit back and see what materials you will need and place them in two categories- essential and non-essential.

Riding your bike to the track will not allow you to have all the nessessary tools needed to enjoy your day...look at it this way. If i forget something as simple as my tent, chair or water- my day is not successful! You already cant take those three things on your biker with you to a track day.

Just my two cents- in no way am i saying donrt do it, but taking all the nessesary percautions will make the world of a difference in your experience.

Also- i almost forgot! If you dont have a track bike you must TAPE YOUR LIGHTS. And dont ride around with your license plate on at the track.

Thanks!

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post #16 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-12-2011, 04:22 PM
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+1 to everything above.

There's a lot to learn, but here's what I've learned as a beginner.

Make sure you learn the race line (even though you'll could be slow). It's important for the riders behind you to have a sense of what you're going to do and where you're going to go and end up. If you're slow, and you hear bikes behind you, don't worry about it and don't look back, continue what you're doing. Remember, don't worry about someone else not being able to pass you. They paid the same amount of money you did, just continue on with your turn and keep focus. They'll get ahead of you when the time comes.

Also, don't follow your friends, chances are they'll have more experience. I would keep a safe distance behind someone else. If you have to follow someone, it should be a coach/controlled rider.

Have fun and take your time. The speed will come.

Oh, and be prepared to drain your bank account.
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post #17 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-14-2011, 03:11 AM
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Oh Snap! BDT pulled out the list.

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post #18 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-14-2011, 12:48 PM
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i'm in a similar spot as the OP in a months. I'm curious about the suspension setup comments - i know it's only $30 per say to get it checked out but i'm wondering if there's some sort of chart that outlines recommended settings?
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post #19 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-14-2011, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by JVR1 View Post
i'm in a similar spot as the OP in a months. I'm curious about the suspension setup comments - i know it's only $30 per say to get it checked out but i'm wondering if there's some sort of chart that outlines recommended settings?
Get a shop that does it on a regular basis to set it up.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by DepPravacion View Post
helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #20 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-14-2011, 01:14 PM
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i'm in a similar spot as the OP in a months. I'm curious about the suspension setup comments - i know it's only $30 per say to get it checked out but i'm wondering if there's some sort of chart that outlines recommended settings?
There are recommended sag settings. Typically 30mm front and back for the track and 35mm for the street, but that's just a generality. Some like it harder, some softer. Rebound and compression are far more specific to each rider.

The fact is, every rider rides differently and therefore needs a different setup. There is no magical number. You really need a guy at the track to do it. They'll adjust it, have you do a couple sessions and come back, the guy will read your tire wear, make more adjustments, do another couple sessions, make adjustments, lather, rinse, repeat until you've got a correct setup.

Reading tires to make minor adjustments is an art form. Dave Moss did mine and was saying stuff like "do you see this arrow formation here?, that means you need more rebound." or maybe it was compression, I don't remember. All I remember was it was like he was speaking Japanese. I had no idea what any of it meant and was glad he was there to do it for me.
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post #21 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-14-2011, 01:38 PM
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^^ thanks for the info ..

i don't believe my scheduled trackday will have any tech's onsite so maybe i'll get it checked a couple weeks before hand so i have time to adjust to the new settings; then again after the trackday when i have some feedback to provide.
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post #22 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-15-2011, 12:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maka_RTH View Post
So, my first track day is coming up soon, through Apex trackdays at Miller Motorsports Park, and I'm looking for a few tips for my first track day. I suppose mostly on what kinds of things should I bring besides myself, the bike, and my gear. I should be able to haul the bike up there, but a few tips on if I have to ride to the track might be nice too, it's about an hour ride from where I live. I'm super excited to get out on the track :D
JEALOUS!!

My brother has lived in West Jordan for almost 3 years and hasn't ridden that track yet.

I've been out there for WSBK the past 2 and would love to ride it one day. Looks like so much fun, lots of technical turns and a huge straight away...

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post #23 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-15-2011, 12:45 AM
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I just came from my first one this weekend .. just go out there and have fun!!
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post #24 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-15-2011, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Knightshade View Post
JEALOUS!!

My brother has lived in West Jordan for almost 3 years and hasn't ridden that track yet.
What the heck is he waiting for? If I had a SBK track in my backyard I'd be there every weekend.

I'll be there June 10-11, you both should come out. It would be worth the drive.
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post #25 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-16-2011, 09:56 AM
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Congrats on getting out to the track!

I agree with much of what has been said here.

I would say, however, that once you've decided on a trackday organization... read their website thoroughly or ask the owner direct questions.

Not every trackday organization has the same rules, goals, etc.

For instance, at our days we stopped requiring headlights to be taped unless they are glass (which is very rare these days).

On a 600rr, you can get to the plug in the back and undo that, tape or remove your mirrors, throw a hose clamp on the oil filter...and you're track ready.

The hose clamp on the oil filter is because it takes 2 minutes and $2 ... and can save a lot. Many people do not know how to properly put on a filter or torque it, so the hose clamp prevents it from loosening and slowly oiling the whole track.

Have fun is the main thing to do. Your first day is all about discovering what a trackday is all about and less about massive improvement.

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post #26 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-16-2011, 01:10 PM
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+1 to all the great advice and props to you for the advanced planning.

I'd just stress the prep up front; have your bike and gear/supplies collected/packed well in advance. There's so much going on that first morning you'll have a much better time if you're not running around trying to find a tire gauge, messing with suspension, adjusting gear, etc. Relax and ride your own ride. Too many folks (myself included) get caught up with the speed of other riders and push beyond their limits. Ease in, learn the racing lines, and realize the day is a marathon not a sprint. Each session you'll build and add more knowledge/skill.

Finally, the best and first thing you should do when you park is introduce yourself to your pit neighbors. I guarantee they will do everything they can to welcome you and help you all day long!
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post #27 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-18-2011, 12:22 PM
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Pit neighbours are key!
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post #28 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-18-2011, 01:02 PM
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Not sure if it has been said, but bring an accurate trie pressure guage and a filled air compresser. (If you have a generator then the compresser will not need to be filled)

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post #29 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-18-2011, 11:58 PM
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Not sure if it has been said, but bring an accurate trie pressure guage and a filled air compresser. (If you have a generator then the compresser will not need to be filled)
Both very very important things, that I have learned the hard way how useless they are when you leave them at home.

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helmet mohawks are kinda like those BS vents people add to their fenders...
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post #30 of 32 (permalink) Old 04-19-2011, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks again for all the great info! The only thing that sucks, as Bluberry mentioned.., is riding my own ride... Since I was kinda trying to keep up w/ another rider the other day, I kinda lost it in a corner.., haha, so sadly I won't be making this first trackday :(. I'll definitely be heading out to a later one though, once insurance does their thing and I do mine and put the front end of my bike back together. (By the way, I don't recommend riding into embankments face first....)

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