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'04 F4i - first track day

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Old 05-24-2009, 05:04 PM
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Default '04 F4i - first track day

Well, I've been riding a year this weekend and I did my first bike track day yesterday with Nesba at Road Atlanta and it was awesome! I had an absolute blast!

The day started off very cloudy with a 40% chance of rain forecast so I figured it would turn out to be a bum day but it only ever lightly sprinkled for maybe 5 mins and didn't keep the track wet.

They stated in the riders meeting that anyone who thinks they will be faster in the group should stage in left lane so I did that. The second session I started in the first group of 8 with the fast beginners but I couldn't quite keep up. I think by the end of the day out of 40 people or so in my group I was probably at number 15 or so. My bike is an '04 with a two-brothers slip on, speedohealer, and stainless steel front brake lines. I'm 6'2 215lbs and one thing that surprised me was how well the F4i can do on track. I'd always imagined the RR',s R6's, etc would hand me my *** but it wasn't so. I realize rider has a LOT to do with this but that's what the track is about isn't it? I have done between 30-40 car events and driven RA before so that probably had something to do with it.

I prefer the bike turn 12 over the car. I wasn't imtidated flying over the hill on the left but when you have to make the crest to the right it's a bit more earie. Even at the end of the day I wasn't taking the back straight at full throttle around the bend. I would let off once I hit 135ish just before it started bending and then half throttle it at say 115 the rest of the way.

I was running basically brand new Pilot Power 2CT's and I thought those tires were awesome. They gripped really well.

I think I almost crashed twice from what I can remember. Once was going into turn 1 and I completley let off throttle mid corner and it completely unsettled the bike bad. The second was going into a brake zone I grabbed too much brake and locked the front tire up briefly and it have a crazy headshake in the handlebars. Luckily I quickly let off the brakes and it straighted out and I just rode straight onto the rumble strips and came to a stop. The corner worked signaled me when I could go again. After that I slowed down my pace a little.

Otherwise, all and all it was an awesome experience and coming from the car world I can say it's MUCH more tiring! I was freakin exhausted at the end of the day and I need to get in better shape before I think about doing a 2-day event!

Well I'm done rambling! I wish I had a video.
 
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Old 05-24-2009, 08:17 PM
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Congrats man... Sounds like a blast.
 
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Old 05-24-2009, 08:51 PM
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Awesome, glad you had a great time. The F4i is still a VERY capable track bike.
 
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Old 05-24-2009, 11:03 PM
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sounds like a good time i wish i had a bit more skill so i could do it.


mike
 
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Old 05-24-2009, 11:33 PM
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I thought of some more stuff I would add. One of the things I thought would be difficult to get used to coming from car track days was having no mirrors but it wasn't. Having the open passing was kind of cool too because you can pass whenever you want on a straightaway or braking zone but at times it also seemed dangerous. There were guys in my group who were probably running 60-70 on the back straight while I was running 125 and passing someone like that with that speed difference can be a little nerve racking. You better damn well hope they hold their line.

I reviewed my pictures towards the end of the day and it confirmed a few things I was doing wrong. I was not getting off the bike enough and I had my feet too far forward on the pegs where I dragged my shoe a couple of times.
 
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Old 05-25-2009, 07:50 AM
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Old 05-25-2009, 10:02 AM
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Good to hear that the F4i does well on the track! That's why I bought it I was dragging the midpipe on my old Katana and it really wasn't safe around Grattan ... needed more ground clearance.

Looking at the pics, you look a lot more comfortable in the left hander than the right. You need to move your head and shoulders more when turning right, notice in the pic of the left hander they're off to the side more. (I've got the same prob in right handers, as the instructors always tell me) That and the foot thing. If your more toward the toes on the pegs, you can't turn your foot to the side like that and it forces you to move your body more than just twist. Also keeps you from wearing out the toe sliders

I can't wait to get back out on the track! (and I bet you can't either!)
 
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Old 05-25-2009, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by KillaBeave View Post
Good to hear that the F4i does well on the track! That's why I bought it I was dragging the midpipe on my old Katana and it really wasn't safe around Grattan ... needed more ground clearance.

Looking at the pics, you look a lot more comfortable in the left hander than the right. You need to move your head and shoulders more when turning right, notice in the pic of the left hander they're off to the side more. (I've got the same prob in right handers, as the instructors always tell me) That and the foot thing. If your more toward the toes on the pegs, you can't turn your foot to the side like that and it forces you to move your body more than just twist. Also keeps you from wearing out the toe sliders

I can't wait to get back out on the track! (and I bet you can't either!)
What's funny is I'm actually more comfortable going right. lol There was only one corner going left where I practiced really hanging off the bike each time and that is when they took those pictures. I can see which sessions I started putting my feet back more on the pegs too because I scrapped my boot a few times.

I can see I need to get my body down more on the right handers for sure. One thing I did not do enough of at the track event was looking ahead. I was terrible at it.

I definitely want to get back out on track! Too bad it won't be for awhile!
 
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Old 05-25-2009, 11:35 AM
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Congrats! I was hoping you'd do well & have a good time. Glad you liked your new tires as well.

Yep, if you run every session during the day, you will certainly feel it at the end of the day...no matter how good of condition you are in. When temps really heat up, you should be drinking about a bottle of water/gatorade after every session to keep your body hydrated. Its important to eat good healthy meals during/after trackdays as well. And yes, those two-day events will definitely test your fitness but as long as you're following good hydration & get proper rest, you'll do fine.

Ok, now I'm going to check out those pics!
 
  #10  
Old 05-25-2009, 12:50 PM
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Cool Pictures. Thanks for sharing. I am hoping tomake my first track day this year, finally got my suit, last week http://www.newenough.com/browse/view_product_images/328
How do you like yours? I was looking at those at CG but have the boots ad gloves already so went this route instead.
 

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