Ride Day/Track Day - Willowbank SE Qld - Yamaha FJR Forum : Yamaha FJR Owners Forums
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-10-2007, 12:37 AM Thread Starter
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Ride Day/Track Day - Willowbank SE Qld

Hi all. On Monday 20 August there is a ride day/track day at Willowbank organised by Ulysses for Ulysses members and friends (we get a discount that way). Cost is $100 and they will hire you full gear (Joe Rocket leathers, boots, gloves) if you need it for $50. http://www.championsridedays.com.au/index.asp

I am going, and taking along 2 younger mates (both on 600Fazers). So far there are 8 or 9 in the group, and they will (apparently) give us total newbies a session or 2 as a separate group, and also some tuition/tips etc.

If you want to come along, post your interest here or PM me and I'll send you full details.

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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-20-2007, 01:52 AM Thread Starter
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Last week fitted new tyres to the FJR, thought I'd try the BT021's, and to the Fazer600 even though there was still 50% tread left, but there is a plug in the rear tyre (younger friend coming along and using the Fazer), checked everything yesterday, packed everything needed in the panniers & topbox, set the alarm for 5:30, and ......

Well, the big day arrived........along with the first rain in 2 months Don't get me wrong. I am very grateful for the rain, but:




They say it's only the third day they have cancelled in the last 5 years Oh well, riding there and back in the rain means that I did get an idea of the BT021's wet weather capabilities, and I'm happy with that - BUT IT'S NOT WHAT I WANTED

Oh well

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-20-2007, 04:20 AM
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Looks like a "wet arse and no fish" outing David............

The wet track shows the "un-smooth" surface in a few places. The Superbike racers must have some fierce vibration going through their bikes over the bumpy sections at warp speed. Last bike racing round I saw at this track there were some significant "surface irregularities" after turn 1. Still be good fun to run at full throttle though
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-20-2007, 07:03 AM
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David,

I am going out to Willowbank on Wednesday for an "Advanced Riders Safety Course" through Top-rider. Hopefully the Gods will be kind and stop the rain for us....

Sorry you missed out today mate

Moose

"What's the use of happiness? It can't buy you money".
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 08-29-2007, 08:20 AM Thread Starter
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OK - we are rescheduled for Monday 24 September. Let me know if you would like to join us.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-26-2007, 12:04 AM Thread Starter
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The second most fun in leather

Well, a different scenario on Monday:




And these were taken on the second session out on the track - still warming up at this stage:



So, what did I learn:

Track days are the second-most fun you can have wearing leather

The FJR is a heavy beast pulling down from WFO to make a 80kph corner Yes, I know that, but when really pushing the envelope it is good to have a wide run-off.

I showed surprising lack of confidence accelerating out of turns early on, really only hitting the throttle hard quite late in the turn exit. I know that I was being conservative, as I wasn't going to be taking my bike home on a trailer, but it really showed how my 'street manners' carried over to the track. Although I love accelerating hard out of a corner, I never trust the street to have consistent traction, and here I was, mistrusting the racetrack too.

Nothing learned here in this observatio, just proved in controlled circumstances: It's hard to stay with a 600 through twisty sections. I had a young friend using my 600 Fazer for the day (to improve his riding skills), and through the twisty section he could easily pull a 30 meter gap in about 200 meters. I would have loved to swap bikes, but I was not putting him on the FJR this time. Next time, maybe

It is addictive blasting past everything else (well, almost everything else) down the straights

This could cost me a lot of money (honey) because I am going to do it again (and again).

When I got home and was talking to Zea about the whole day, I made an interesting assessment -When riding on the street I think I never ride more that 7-tenths, and usually below that. With her on the back probably never more than 6-tenths. And I felt good about that. (But I think the road conditions and hazards probably add 1- to 2-tenths, maybe more, because there is no big run-off area, there is other traffic, roadside furniture, etc.) On the track there were times when I was up at 9-tenths, but I was treating it as fun, learning day, so I reckon I was between 8- and 9-tenths all day. When I'm on the Fazer I'll do a some 10-tenths stuff, but not on the FJR, I reckon.

So whens the next day - probably Monday 19 November. If we get a group of 10 we get a discount, so I'm working on it (we have 3 already). (And I'll have to polish the bike so it looks twinckly in the piccies)

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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-26-2007, 04:46 AM
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Hey David,

Looks like fun

I would be keen, BUT, how does it go insurance wise ?? I can't imagine it would be covered on the premis of a ride day at a race track..

Advanced motorcycle TRAINING perhaps... Will see whats in the fine print of my QBE policy...
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-26-2007, 06:39 AM
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so no one rides on the track in the wet huh...

i'd do a track day, but i just cant seem to justify the cost,distance and time. It still would have to be a saturday thing, punt down firday night and punt back home saturdaynight sundaymorning
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-26-2007, 07:11 AM Thread Starter
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I treat it as if I am uninsured. Really, the risk of doing damage is far less on the track than on the road. The risk factors are hugely reduced:

Firstly, everyone else is on a bike going the same way. No oncoming traffic, no dozy drivers in 4WD's, no people on 'phones, and everyone is bike-aware. No intersections to negotiate.

Second - every corner is wide open - you can see the entry, the middle, and the exit. No trees or barriers obstructing your view.

Third - everyone has the same instructions. Beginners group - no 'undertaking' (overtaking on the inside). You can only overtake around the outside of a corner, or down the straight. Now if anyone goes too fast around the outside of a corner, that is their decision.

Fourth - If you get to a corner too hot, the track is wide enough to brake hard for another 5 to 8 meters and still make the corner. Can't do that on any road I know. (I know. Never used a full 8 meters, but did use 3 or 4 extra once or twice).

5th - you can count on the surface and the traction. On the road every corner is potentially a new hazard (gravel, oil, surface breaking up, potholes, etc), but on the track, after one session, you can trust the surface.

The risk factor is totally controllable by the rider (except the risk of getting hit from behind, which is really small). Probably the biggest risk factor is guys braking too early for corners in front of you, but there is so much space you really should not get into this situation. There were three lowsides during the day, all in the more advanced group, and I called one of them before it happened. guys came onto the main straight together, and raced all the way down and into turn 1. I said to Matt with me: 'watch this, it has the potential for tears' and true enough one went down. Why? He just had to show his balls were bigger than the others guys. Sitting looking at his bike on it's side in a rented trailer to take it home, his balls probably felt pretty small.

I'm still grinning, but I was stiff and sore yesterday - about the same as I felt after a day kart-racing when out of condition.

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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-26-2007, 07:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thommo, they do run the track days (almost) no matter what. Only 4 cancelled in 4 years at Qld Raceway, and the one I was booked in was cancelled because there was standing water all over the place. Doing a day in the wet would probably teach me heaps.

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