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Discussion Starter #1
I never got into it... I don't want to race... But i would like to ride on the track and "enjoy" my bike... just a few questions..

Can you actually do that?

What are the "usual" rules at the track?

and is there anything specific I need to do to my bike to have it permited on the track?

thanx guys
 

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Hell yea! Some of the orgs are more laid back than others. A lot of us old guys are fragile and need to work the next day so we go slow and careful like. Where are you located?

Most the track day groups have a beginer group. How about going out to watch one. A lot of us Ducati guys tend to be older anyhow, not like the 20ish guys on 600 Jap bikes.
 

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NCRick said:
Hell yea! Some of the orgs are more laid back than others. A lot of us old guys are fragile and need to work the next day so we go slow and careful like. Where are you located?

Most the track day groups have a beginer group. How about going out to watch one. A lot of us Ducati guys tend to be older anyhow, not like the 20ish guys on 600 Jap bikes.
There are some track sessions called test and tune that don't allow passing or racing. That might be your cup of tea.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
sounds good, i really don't want to get rid of the bike, may get into the track idea.. sounds like a lot of fun. I'm located in NY (long island) I know there is another member from long island that rides track only... I'm a teacher/landscaper and very into fitness/bodybuilding... So its very important that I stay as much away from getting hurt as possible. I owned a street bike for 3 yrs when I was 19-21, rode dirt bikes, other bikes and owned a yfz450....(I'm 27 now) I can't let this ducati of mine go... Looks like track days are the way to go... I'm sure its going to cost a pretty penny.. Thanx for the replies and keep adding, I can't wait to ride this machine!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
sounds awesome/// i have a feeling you guys are in NC though.........lol
 

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hey, not all of the ducati riders are old. i'm 25.
track days are an awesome way to enjoy your bike. no cops, you can see all the way through the turns, no oncoming traffic.
you can run at your own pace, and comfortably step it up if you want. the setup differs between the track days, but most have pretty easy rules.
basicly:
tape or remove any glass (signals, mirrors, headlight)
replace coolant with water/water wetter. (they don't want anti-freeze on the track)
have serviceable tires and brakes (depends on the track, but 75% tire, no squared off tires, and 50% brake pads left)
most require either full leathers or a 2 piece with a zip (be it 270 or 360... depends) gloves, boots, and an undamged helmet. the strictness on personal safety gear depends on the track day.
its a good idea to bring your own gas to an event... buying gas at the track is super expensive (like 4 or 5$ a gallon)

i think that covers the minimum prep required for a track day... not a big deal at all really. the ducatis are made for the track, so stripping off the street gear is simple and easy.
my personal list of things to bring:
tool set (basic stuff, hand tools, suspension tools, tire guage)
5 gal of gas
tape
food and drinks in a cooler
rear stand
camp chairs
canopy to shield the sun
i usually strip off the mirrors and signals, tape the head light, change the oil and filter, set the tire pressure, check my brakes, clean and lube the chain, check the radiator, tape the wheel weights, (change the tires if they need it) pack all my stuff and get everything all set a few days before. i never have the extra money to stay at a hotel the night before, so depending on the drive i either leave in the am, or sleep in the truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
sounds great, my new hobbie.. just have to find some people to meet up with now
 

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To ride at a trackday, you'll need to join one of the trackday organizations. There are three main ones in your area: Sportbike Track Time (STT), Team Promotion, and NESBA. There are probably a couple of others I'm forgetting about. All of them offer instruction for new track riders. All organizations have passing rules and groups based on your experience; novice, intermediate, and advanced. I ride with STT. All of them have websites with all the info you'd need. You can spectate at their trackdays to observe and get a feel for what goes on. All of the orgs have their pros and cons. You need to find the one that's right for you.
There is also a NY/NJ Ducati group called DESMO. Check them out at www.desmoducati.org, as they have a yahoo mailing list you can join. They sponsor a trackday at Loudon, NH every year with BCM Motorsports, which is very well-run and offers instruction. That day would be a perfect first time experience. You must be a DESMO member to attend, which just requires signing up for the yahoo mailing list.

The stuff Fox listed does a good job of covering what's needed as far as bike prep and gear. The only thing I'd add is that some require your helmet (full face) to be five years old or newer.

Feel free to PM me if you have any other questions.
 

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Track Days are a bad, bad thing....

The thought of a trackday will consume you and your bank account... it will affect every area of your life including what 4-wheeled vehicle you drive, your job, your relationships and where you live.

Someone once said that trackday addiction makes herion addiction seem like a slight crazing for something salty....

You've been warned.
 

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Listen to Hank! Three track days and I'm getting a race license, next thing it's a 5 yr old Ducati to race, then other bike, a trailer, finally I'm buying a brand new bike, stripping down just for track. It's a disease...
 

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thats the truth. i just bought a new bike and i'm trying to figure out how many body organs i have to sell on the black market to convince one of the few supermono owners to sell me their bike.
you only need one lung to live right? how much do you think i can get for a "well broken in" liver... or half of one at least?
oh, and you don't have to join anything to go to track days... but it might be cheaper if you do. there are plenty of open track days around me that you just pre-register for and show up to. pass tech and your in.
typical price around here is around 200$ a day... plus another 200$ for tires if you rag them out like i do.
ends up costing 500$ total i figure... expensive hobby
 

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Track days are great. However there is alot of money needed. There are entrance fees, tires, gas, hotel fees, etc. A good reason why many decide to get a cheap bike to maintain. A reason why I'd like to do all my own work ont he Duc.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
well, besides track fees.... if i get a good set of tires won't they hold up a bit?
 

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ducati955 said:
well, besides track fees.... if i get a good set of tires won't they hold up a bit?
That depends on MANY factors - tire compound, track surface, track temp, how fast you ride, how hard you ride, HP of the bike, weight of the rider/bike, track configuration...etc.... there's a reason why the art & science of choosing the right tires is a major component of why people win/lose races.

However, at the Novice level (and even for most Intermediates), you're correct, ANY good set of tires will provide you with more capabilities than needed...

Tires have really advanced over the years - they're all very good at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
hell yeah, you guys have got me pumped, i can't wait to go!
 

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I bought a set of Michelin Pilot Power Race (med) and they lasted 3 days at the Autobahn and 2 days at MidAmerica.... the last day at midamerica was pretty hairy though(past the wear bars)... it was time for them to come off... Both tracks are pretty aggresive on tires. I was pleased to get that much out of them since I was pushin pretty hard. You being a beginner (no disrespect), you could get several days out of a new set of tires. Entry fees usually run around $120 to $150, then if you have to travel, it adds up, but well worth it.
 

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From when I started keeping track of things - about 7 years ago.... I have receipts that total over $100,000 for 2 bikes (expensive to begin with and very well set-up for the track), trackday fees, hotels, riding schools, airfare, a dedicated (used) track-bike van, (far too many) tires, helmets, leathers, tools, supplies and all kinds of other related stuff...

And by today's standards, both of my bikes are heavy, underpowered and not worth much at all... and the Duc needs work EVERY year...

I should have taken up something cheap, like playing golf or watching NASCAR or some dumb-ass stick & ball game shows....

These bikes are EVIL!!!
 
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