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Old 04-30-2009, 11:43 AM
  #81  
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I would avoid lowering the bike if possible. I am short as well and there other options to help reach the ground. Look to see if there is an aftermarket seat that is lower or more narrow. You would be surprised how much a different seat can help you reach the ground.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:46 AM
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Finally decided to make a man of myself. I'll be taking my beginner motorcycle safety course the third week of June.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by spdy0001 View Post
I would avoid lowering the bike if possible. I am short as well and there other options to help reach the ground. Look to see if there is an aftermarket seat that is lower or more narrow. You would be surprised how much a different seat can help you reach the ground.
There really aren't many aftermarket seats b/c there really isn't much there with the stock seat... so not much room to make improvements. I also bought Icon riding boots which give me about 1/2" more sole which helped a little bit... but still not sure I'm comfortable. I feel fine at lights and stuff, but there are times where I'm in a tight spot "walking it" and I have a hard time keeping the bike upright b/c I do not have much leverage.


Originally Posted by nokiaman View Post
Finally decided to make a man of myself. I'll be taking my beginner motorcycle safety course the third week of June.
Nice!! I loved the course, we had a good group, great trainers, and it was a lot of fun. I learned a lot as well. Enjoy!!
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by nokiaman View Post
Finally decided to make a man of myself. I'll be taking my beginner motorcycle safety course the third week of June.
Speaking of taking a motorcycle safety course...

I really wish that there would be some sort of motorcycle safety questions included in the regular test for people to get their drivers license. Hopefully it would keep at least ONE person from pulling out in front of me, or pulling into my lane on the highway when im right beside them and they are on their cellphone. I normally put up with this crap when in my car, but when im on my bike they are seriously putting my life at risk.
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Old 04-30-2009, 12:01 PM
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^

Car licenses are way too easy to get and people do not even look for bikes. That's why we need to be so on alert every time we ride.

If someone pulled out in front of me and really cut me off (people have pulled out in front of me... but I knew they were coming and made adjustments so it's never even been close to close), I would probably kick out their window...
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Old 04-30-2009, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by juniorbean View Post
There really aren't many aftermarket seats b/c there really isn't much there with the stock seat... so not much room to make improvements. I also bought Icon riding boots which give me about 1/2" more sole which helped a little bit... but still not sure I'm comfortable. I feel fine at lights and stuff, but there are times where I'm in a tight spot "walking it" and I have a hard time keeping the bike upright b/c I do not have much leverage.
I feel your pain JB it sucks to have a bike that you like soo much, but you aren't comfortable on. This is the reason that I sold my 1100 yamaha, I almost gave up riding because I was still a new rider but I could never build confidence on that bike. I ended up selling it and the two bikes I have had since then just fit me and really made me love riding again.
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Old 04-30-2009, 12:28 PM
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^ The thing is that I'm comfortable on it like 90% of the time. It's just in tight spots where I have to manuever the bike manually (while on it) where I feel uncomfortable and I'm afraid I may lay it down. I almost laid it down last night b/c I lost my footing a bit but was able to catch it and my dad (was leaving parent's house) helped me keep it up before it gained too much momentum.

Don't want that happening in a parking lot (or anywhere).
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Old 04-30-2009, 02:58 PM
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I know that uncomfortable feeling...like backing out of a parking space on your tip toes. My Triumph is a little tall and I hate that feeling. Anyhow, I don't know how low your seat already is, but people often shave their seats down.

Here's a tutorial for a Ninja, but I'm guessing if you've got the tools you can do it to any bike: Seat Shaving Guide

There are professional places that can do this too, but I can't remember any. Oh, there's also Corbin and Sargent seats too, they're just expensive. Sargent does custom work though http://www.sargentcycle.com/

Last edited by taitando; 04-30-2009 at 03:01 PM.
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Old 04-30-2009, 03:49 PM
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i hate you, taitando.

our household has a sym mio 50. it was purchased for my wife. she is still learning to ride it.

i am looking for my first bike. definitely in the used market.
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Old 04-30-2009, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by taitando View Post
I know that uncomfortable feeling...like backing out of a parking space on your tip toes. My Triumph is a little tall and I hate that feeling. Anyhow, I don't know how low your seat already is, but people often shave their seats down.

Here's a tutorial for a Ninja, but I'm guessing if you've got the tools you can do it to any bike: Seat Shaving Guide

There are professional places that can do this too, but I can't remember any. Oh, there's also Corbin and Sargent seats too, they're just expensive. Sargent does custom work though http://www.sargentcycle.com/

Note that I don't cover making a seat shorter at all in this page, you'll have to find that information somewhere else.

Straight from the link.
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Old 04-30-2009, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by taitando View Post
I know that uncomfortable feeling...like backing out of a parking space on your tip toes. My Triumph is a little tall and I hate that feeling. Anyhow, I don't know how low your seat already is, but people often shave their seats down.
Exactly.

The Corbin seat looks nice, but looks like it actually raises the seat height. There isn't much seat to play with on the stock seat, so I may look into sending the seat to Sargent. Several folks on the Aprilia forum have done this with good results and I'd feel more comfortable leaving it up to the pros since there isn't much room for error.

There are also some custom motorcycle places around Charlotte, so they may be able to do it a bit cheaper and quicker. I'm not so much concerned about the money as I am the turn-around time... but we'll see. I may just end up getting used to it the more I ride it...
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Old 04-30-2009, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by juniorbean View Post
Thanks for the info all.

One last question for the riders out there...

I've been thinking about lowering the bike 1/2" or 1". I barely reach right now and get get my tip-toes on the ground, but I don't know that I feel comfortable only having that much reach... so I've been toying with lowering the bike a tad to fit me better. I know that lowering the bike can affect handling, however, from what I've read, a minimal drop and doing it right should have minimal effects.

Thoughts?
Hi JB

I can only offer you the experience of other riders that have lowered their bikes, and only relating to a particular style. I have a 36" inseam, so I'm at times wishing a bike to be taller. As you aware, my bikes are all adventure tourers and as such quite tall in the saddle. My KLRs have a 35.5 seat height, and the Varadero 34.7. Many of my friends are not as tall but have the same style of bikes. Many have lowered them without any ill effects thus far. A friend just lowered his BMW 1200GS, and I had the opportunity to ride it after it was lowered. There was absolutely no change in handling geometry. I understand, however, that your bike is of a sporting nature, and it may react differently. I suggest trying to find a few sport bike forums and enquiring.


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Old 04-30-2009, 05:52 PM
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^ Terry,

Thanks for the reply. I have been doing some reading on the Aprilia forums. The only thing I read is that some people have noticed the turn-in to be affected slightly. Many said that after they adjusted to the slower turn-in... they were fine. This isn't a huge concern with me, however, as I have only been on the bike a few times and am just getting used to it... so I have not pushed it at all yet. I feel that, at this point, I would not notice a difference. Then, as I get more familiar with the bike and begin to push it harder I will be used to the way it handles already, so it should not have an affect on me. I'm going to do some additional reading but I appreciate all of the input!!
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Old 04-30-2009, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by juniorbean View Post
Exactly.

The Corbin seat looks nice, but looks like it actually raises the seat height. There isn't much seat to play with on the stock seat, so I may look into sending the seat to Sargent. Several folks on the Aprilia forum have done this with good results and I'd feel more comfortable leaving it up to the pros since there isn't much room for error.

There are also some custom motorcycle places around Charlotte, so they may be able to do it a bit cheaper and quicker. I'm not so much concerned about the money as I am the turn-around time... but we'll see. I may just end up getting used to it the more I ride it...
I'd go the custom seat/pan option before lowering the bike.
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Old 04-30-2009, 06:17 PM
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^ Yeah, I'm going to call them first. Price would be about the same, so I'll call Sargent and see what they say. If it's not going to give me at least a half-inch more reach then I'll likely just lower it. I really don't want to... so hopefully the seat thing works.
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Old 05-01-2009, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by juniorbean View Post
^ Yeah, I'm going to call them first. Price would be about the same, so I'll call Sargent and see what they say. If it's not going to give me at least a half-inch more reach then I'll likely just lower it. I really don't want to... so hopefully the seat thing works.

juniorbean,

I had my Daytona 675 lowered since I'm only 5"3 and i can barely get my tippy toes on the ground with stock height. I had it lowered 1" in the front AND the rear. Most (if not all) of the lowering links for bikes bolt onto the rear and by just lowering that part, there will be issues with the handling of the bike (especially sports bikes) since the front is sitting higher. The trick is to lower the front forks as well. I had to bring mines up to a shop to get that done since I don't know what i'm doing with the front forks.

But...I've also read of other rider's experience (in the daytona forums) with just lowering the rear and having no issues but I wanted to play it safe and have the front lowered to match the rear as well.

good luck with whatever route you choose to go with
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Old 05-01-2009, 03:36 PM
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^ Thanks for the reply!!

Little update. I contact Sargent as well as another company who do custom seats. Since the Tuono seat is so minimal to begin with, shaving it is not an option. Additionally, the seat pan itself is the width of the seat, can't narrow it either.

I have spoken with my local Aprilia dealer and they said if the bike was lowered, the front and rear would be lowered together in order to keep the geometry of the bike correct. They would also adjust the spring rates if necessary to ensure the ride is as close to stock as possible.

So I just need to decide if I want to lower it or not. I'll keep reading to see what other options there may be. Next week I'll likely ride the bike to the dealer to have them look at it and see what they think...
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Old 05-04-2009, 11:57 AM
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If shaving the seat's out of the question, you'll probably just have to go with lowering. It's either that or wearing KISS style platform boots, but I think shifting would be tough

Originally Posted by endo022
I had my Daytona 675 lowered since I'm only 5"3 and i can barely get my tippy toes on the ground with stock height. I had it lowered 1" in the front AND the rear.
Hey, another D675 owner. Just wondering what your inseam is and if you're still on tip-toes after lowering the D675 one inch. I'm 5'7" with a 29/30" inseam and although i'm not fully on tip-toes, I am on the ball of me feet. My bike is sprung for a 165lb rider.
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Old 05-04-2009, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by taitando View Post



Hey, another D675 owner. Just wondering what your inseam is and if you're still on tip-toes after lowering the D675 one inch. I'm 5'7" with a 29/30" inseam and although i'm not fully on tip-toes, I am on the ball of me feet. My bike is sprung for a 165lb rider.
my inseam is 28"...and after the drop...i can put the balls of my feet on both sides. Good thing with the D675...the bike is a bit more narrow so it helps with the footing as my short legs aren't spread too far apart
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:25 AM
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The following post was made in the BMW: S 1000 RR news thread.
<hr style="color: rgb(255, 255, 255); background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" size="1">
Originally Posted by kidduce View Post
I work at a BMW dealer actually and I agree with most, its not ugly but what the hell is up with the headlights? BMW unlike honda and suzuki are not made to throw away after 30k on the engine. 100k is sommon on these bikes.
Is this really the case with Honda and Suzuki bikes? What about Yamahas? Or any bike for that matter?

I would imagine that like a car, proper maintenance and engine work will let you keep the bike forever. Are repairs on the motor that expensive that it's better to just buy a whole new bike and scrap what you have? Seems wasteful to me.
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Sly Raskal View Post
The following post was made in the BMW: S 1000 RR news thread.
<hr style="color: rgb(255, 255, 255); background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" size="1">

Is this really the case with Honda and Suzuki bikes? What about Yamahas? Or any bike for that matter?

I would imagine that like a car, proper maintenance and engine work will let you keep the bike forever. Are repairs on the motor that expensive that it's better to just buy a whole new bike and scrap what you have? Seems wasteful to me.
+100k miles on ANY bike is quite high and not as common as in automobiles.

That being said the Jap bikes are not "throw-away" and neither are the german bikes. I disagree completely with what the poster said in the other thread.

+30k is getting "up there" for a bike, but with proper maint. it should continue to run well. Just like cars it all comes down to how you maintain the bike.

....remember your bike (unless you are riding a MV Agusta) is worth far less than your car....putting tons of $$$ into rebuilding/repairing an old bike is not really worth it compared to your car.

You can go out and get a new bike instead of thowing thousands at a bike that may be worth thousands. Life is short, ride & drive more bikes and cars over time.
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:38 AM
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^^^^^^^^^^^
That is not the case with other bikes. My dad's Honda Goldwing has 130K miles on it and is still running strong. I have had bikes with 10K miles that ran worse than bikes with 40K miles. Maintenance is just MUCH more important on a bike.
Its funny because alot of people actually refer to the BMW bikes are one of the least reliable
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:41 AM
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It's very possible to keep your Honda/Suzuki/etc over the 50,000 mile mark. What usually happens to these bikes are the squids who trash them out with horrible maintenance. A good example would be to compare them to a child who wants the cute little puppy. They see it and just have to get it, but aren't ready or capable to perform proper care. So many new riders jump into the motorcycle scene without realizing how demanding it is to properly maintain a motorbike rather than their Camry and soon lose interest or refuse to shell out the cash for the upkeep of their motorcycle.
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:47 AM
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Thanks for the info guys. I didn't think these bikes were throw aways either, but I do understand the amount of care they require in keeping them running well. I agree with what Moog stated, at a certain point it will be cost effective to get a new bike if the repairs on the old one could be the same amount as a down payment on a new one or the entire price of a bike depending on what you get.
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Old 05-12-2009, 12:02 PM
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Not sure what else I can add other then to reinforce that you can easily get 100k out of most bikes, especially the Japanese bikes.

My uncles Honda Special 900 has about 160k miles on it and still going strong. And that's just one of tens of thousands you'll find still running great with those kind of miles. I also know several Goldwing owners nearing the 110k miles mark. I also know many Suzuki SV's approaching 70k or more miles.
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Old 05-12-2009, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by spdy0001 View Post
^^^^^^^^^^^
That is not the case with other bikes. My dad's Honda Goldwing has 130K miles on it and is still running strong. I have had bikes with 10K miles that ran worse than bikes with 40K miles. Maintenance is just MUCH more important on a bike.
Its funny because alot of people actually refer to the BMW bikes are one of the least reliable
It also depends on the engine too. Your dad's goldwing is a water cooled flat six....compared with an oil cooled v-twin for example....you are going to get quite different results when it comes to high mileage for the engines.
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Old 05-12-2009, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Moog-Type-S View Post
It also depends on the engine too. Your dad's goldwing is a water cooled flat six....compared with an oil cooled v-twin for example....you are going to get quite different results when it comes to high mileage for the engines.
Am I correct in guessing that the water cooled motor's last longer with proper care?
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Old 05-12-2009, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Sly Raskal View Post
Am I correct in guessing that the water cooled motor's last longer with proper care?
I don't want to over-simplify it, but put it this way:

If you ride "highway type" riding all the time...ie not sitting in traffic, then oil cooled is perfect......if you find yourself in very hot weather (so cal summer) sitting in traffic for long periods of time, then your oil cooled engine will run hotter, thus possibly reducing it's life-span.

That being said oil cooled engines are not bad engines. They are great tried & true designs. Water cooled has the potential for more power from the engine due to its design, and can remain at factory engine temps regardless of riding conditions.
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Old 05-12-2009, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Moog-Type-S View Post
I don't want to over-simplify it, but put it this way:

If you ride "highway type" riding all the time...ie not sitting in traffic, then oil cooled is perfect......if you find yourself in very hot weather (so cal summer) sitting in traffic for long periods of time, then your oil cooled engine will run hotter, thus possibly reducing it's life-span.

That being said oil cooled engines are not bad engines. They are great tried & true designs. Water cooled has the potential for more power from the engine due to its design, and can remain at factory engine temps regardless of riding conditions.
I understand now. Thanks.
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Old 05-12-2009, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by juniorbean View Post
^ Thanks for the reply!!

Little update. I contact Sargent as well as another company who do custom seats. Since the Tuono seat is so minimal to begin with, shaving it is not an option. Additionally, the seat pan itself is the width of the seat, can't narrow it either.

I have spoken with my local Aprilia dealer and they said if the bike was lowered, the front and rear would be lowered together in order to keep the geometry of the bike correct. They would also adjust the spring rates if necessary to ensure the ride is as close to stock as possible.

So I just need to decide if I want to lower it or not. I'll keep reading to see what other options there may be. Next week I'll likely ride the bike to the dealer to have them look at it and see what they think...
JB, one other thing to consider when lowering your bike. It will make your bike more upright while on the kickstand, making it slightly more susceptible to tip over. You can get your kickstand chopped and rewelded or bent however. That is an on-going debate in MC forums. Personally I don't like either idea. I actually replaced my stock kickstand after my bike tipped over in my shed. Luckily I found one from another Kawi model that was ~1/2" shorter. It made all the difference in the world.
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Old 05-12-2009, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Pure Adrenaline View Post
<-- Avatar... '07 GSX-R600

She sees a lot of extreme track and race duty, on top of street riding. Still trucking hard as ever. It will take a lot for me to get rid of her.

I've only been riding for about a year and a half now, but I dove in head first. I went to the track only a month after riding, put my knee down and the rest was history. I now race in WERA and currently stand at number 2 in C Superbike Novice and 6th in C Superstock Novice in the North Florida region. With a good rest of the season, I hope to stand on the season championship podium.
You race at Barber Motorsports park often?
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Old 05-12-2009, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by knight rider View Post
JB, one other thing to consider when lowering your bike. It will make your bike more upright while on the kickstand, making it slightly more susceptible to tip over. You can get your kickstand chopped and rewelded or bent however. That is an on-going debate in MC forums. Personally I don't like either idea. I actually replaced my stock kickstand after my bike tipped over in my shed. Luckily I found one from another Kawi model that was ~1/2" shorter. It made all the difference in the world.
Good to know considering I am leaning towards lowering. Thanks for the information!!
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Old 05-12-2009, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Pure Adrenaline
<-- Avatar... '07 GSX-R600

She sees a lot of extreme track and race duty, on top of street riding. Still trucking hard as ever. It will take a lot for me to get rid of her.

I've only been riding for about a year and a half now, but I dove in head first. I went to the track only a month after riding, put my knee down and the rest was history. I now race in WERA and currently stand at number 2 in C Superbike Novice and 6th in C Superstock Novice in the North Florida region. With a good rest of the season, I hope to stand on the season championship podium.
I've always wondered what is the best way to get started on this path. I do not know where to start to find out information as to different classes, where I can race locally, etc.

Do you have any advice on that Pure Adrenaline? TIA
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Old 05-12-2009, 04:19 PM
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Originally Posted by juniorbean View Post
I've always wondered what is the best way to get started on this path. I do not know where to start to find out information as to different classes, where I can race locally, etc.

Do you have any advice on that Pure Adrenaline? TIA
Don't know where you're located, but you can always look up a nearby track and look at their calendar of events. They'll typically list when they have track days and who it's hosted by. From there, you can look up the host and see what they offer in terms of classes and levels. They should also be able to tell you requirements like gear, bike-prep, inspection, etc...
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Old 05-12-2009, 05:11 PM
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^ I live outside of Charlotte, NC. I have checked with Lowe's Motor Speedway and didn't see anything for someone like me (with no experience). From what I've been told I have to be involved with a club to participate in track days, but no idea what clubs to look for. And no one has really been able to point me in the right direction to get started racing...
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Old 05-12-2009, 06:27 PM
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Probably won't find much in Nascar country (Lowe's Speedway), but there are some tracks within traveling distance. I can't believe how few choices you guys have over there in terms of picking a dedicated track day provider/school.

Anyhow, it looks like these guys are the most active group in your vicinity: NESBA

They have track days at VIR and Carolina Motorsports.
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Old 05-12-2009, 07:47 PM
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^ Nice.. thanks for the info.

I had contacted Carolina Motorsports before since they are only about 45 min away... but they just told me I had to come with a group on a track day... didn't really give me much beyond that. I'll check with NESBA...
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Old 05-13-2009, 06:55 AM
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You could also ask the dealer. A dealer in town (BMW-Ducati), every other month or so gets a big group together and goes to do a track day. I heard this a long time ago so it may not still be the case, but it's worth a shot.
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Old 05-13-2009, 10:54 AM
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^ Hmm, I do know a few people there, I could ask them about that. Good idea I'm going to ask the Aprilia dealer as well...
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Old 05-15-2009, 02:37 PM
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