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Track days worth it?


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Discussion Starter #1
I have read a few threads from the past. Thought I would post up a new one to shed some light on the subject. Might help some other people with track day questions or get them out on the track!

I will be tracking the FZ at Blackhawk Farms this May. I am very excited, but also nervous, about getting it out on the track.

What do I need to do in order to prepare for the upcoming track day? A list would be awesome. I am riding on stock suspension, and have no money to upgrade that. I do have a tune and some other goodies on the bike. I also have all of the gear. What kind of advice do you track day riders have for me? Anything and everything you guys can think of helps!

Thanks!!
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What tyres are you on, and at what percent? Do you have a pressure gauge?


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Discussion Starter #3
Q3+ but will get new tires (a rear, just got a new front before winter) in early April most likely.
 

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Q3+ but will get new tires (a rear, just got a new front before winter) in early April most likely.
Great. Enjoy it with a time tracker app on your GPS-enabled phone, and preferably a powerbank with you


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If I ride my FZ to the track, and have an incident that renders the FZ out of commission, my plan is:
1. I have AAA Premier so I can get it "towed" back home (up to 200 miles)
2. I have friends there with trucks (etc) that can transport me and the FZ back home.

But most of the time I transport the FZ to the track with my own truck, so if I'm unfortunate, I can just load the FZ back up and go home.

In any case, always have a backup plan.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
If I ride my FZ to the track, and have an incident that renders the FZ out of commission, my plan is:
1. I have AAA Premier so I can get it "towed" back home (up to 200 miles)
2. I have friends there with trucks (etc) that can transport me and the FZ back home.

But most of the time I transport the FZ to the track with my own truck, so if I'm unfortunate, I can just load the FZ back up and go home.

In any case, always have a backup plan.
I will be trailering to the track day...but always good to have a plan for that. Even though it gives me the chills thinking about it.
 

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Bring more gas than you think you will need, snacks, lots of water, an easy-up canopy if you have one with some buckets to hold water to weight down the corners if it's windy. Sliders or crash protection on bike? Painter's tape to cover all lights, remove mirrors. Run air pressure much lower than street, ask others if unsure about anything... usually guys are super nice about helping a newbie. Most of all have fun and don't try to be Rossi your first day out...there will be plenty of time for that.

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Discussion Starter #8
Bring more gas than you think you will need, snacks, lots of water, an easy-up canopy if you have one with some buckets to hold water to weight down the corners if it's windy. Sliders or crash protection on bike? Painter's tape to cover all lights, remove mirrors. Run air pressure much lower than street, ask others if unsure about anything... usually guys are super nice about helping a newbie. Most of all have fun and don't try to be Rossi your first day out...there will be plenty of time for that.

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Going to channel my inner Rossi for sure, but not going to try and be him haha. Thanks a ton!
 

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First of all, whoever is hosting the track day, go to their website (or if you're under 35, their Facebook page - or if you're under 25, their Instagram... thing), and they should have plenty of info on trackday prep, procedures, rules, etc.

I'll echo the above, don't try to be a hero at your first track day. Think of the whole thing as, "I'm going on a street ride on a really nice road, with no cops or oncoming traffic, and I can really ride my bike like I want to and HAVE FUN".

Find someone at the track who's either a control rider or a coach, or a veteran rider who knows what they're doing, and ask for advice, and listen and learn. And since you have a few months, go to Roadracing World.com and see if you can order a copy of their annual Trackday Directory. Lots of good stuff in there.

Oh... and HAVE FUN. 😁
 

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Trailering in is the only way to do it. It's likely you'll be exhausted by the end of the day. Riding home in that state wouldn't be smart. Having someone along is a good idea to help you load up in case you do have an incident and injure yourself.

Turn 1 can easily catch you out if you're not careful. I've read stories...

Watch some Dave Moss videos to help understand suspension setup.

When in May? I may run down there ... I've wanted to get down there for a couple of years.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Trailering in is the only way to do it. It's likely you'll be exhausted by the end of the day. Riding home in that state wouldn't be smart. Having someone along is a good idea to help you load up in case you do have an incident and injure yourself.

Turn 1 can easily catch you out if you're not careful. I've read stories...

Watch some Dave Moss videos to help understand suspension setup.

When in May? I may run down there ... I've wanted to get down there for a couple of years.
May 11th. I am going with a few others I believe. It will be my last hoorah of Midwest riding before I head down to Arizona.
 

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Strangely enough, I have also been floating the idea of moving to arizona. Or at least southwest, I'm tired of the winter.
 

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I will be in Mesa, AZ. I plan on moving maybe around mid May!

There are a couple of tracks here in AZ that run track days, as well as Chuckwalla, CA, which isn't too much of a stretch from metro PHX. You should also consider taking a ChampSchool class at Inde Motorsports Ranch, about 1-1/2 hours east of Tucson. You'd be amazed how much you can learn there!

Strangely enough, I have also been floating the idea of moving to arizona. Or at least southwest, I'm tired of the winter.
Come on down! Just be prepared for ridiculous heat in the summer... 😓
 

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Don't start trying to improve your times first time on a track, that's how many crashes happen I wouldn't even time your laps at all.
And, when you start feeling confident is the most dangerous time.
Relax, learn the lines, stay out of the way of the fast bikes.
 

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Don't try to win a championship on your first track day. Just go out and have fun, and keep hydrated - you'll be astonished how much you sweat, even on a cool day!
 

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Track day on stock suspension and it looks like you have a first gen FZ09. That should be interesting. Let us know how it goes.
 

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Here are a few good and not very obvious ones a veteran gave me. (I've never been to the track, but I wrote these down for when I do)
-Bring a chair of some kind so you can sit and relax. He recommended something where you could actually take quick naps on.
-Bring a bungee cord to hold your leather suit up when you half remove the top of it while in the pits.
-Don't forget your sun glasses! you will need them while at the pits to keep your eyes from getting tired. (which leads to burn spots and excessive blinking and apparently less attention prone while riding)
-CHECK YOUR OIL AFTER EVERY SET!
-BREATHE. You would think this is obvious but apparently, when we are stressed we tend to stop breathing.
 
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