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sure am! taking the Penguin licensing school that Friday and then racing that weekend. Will you?
Yeah, I should be at every Loudon round this season -- hopefully! Looking forward to meeting you there. I'm already getting pretty anxious with these 50F days showing up here and there...my driveway is still about 2" of ice though so it's kept me from getting adventurous and taking anything out yet.
 

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2021 Ninja 400, 1998 Honda VTR1000 SuperHawk
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Awesome. I'm planning on doing all of the Loudon rounds as well and look forward to connecting with you as well. You won't be able to miss the bike. Pumpkin...aka Orange Crush is like a rolling traffic cone. Perfect for my pace! View attachment 21883
Love that color. 😍
Very nice and good luck in your events this year. 🤞🙏

Got a question for you.
I notice the way you're strapping down the bike using the towel to help with chafing and better grip the bike. You're using two straps for this and is it effective enough to do similarly on a small one bike trailer like I just bought?

I also see the rear strapped to the seat frame too and again I ask as a total newb to tying a bike down if this too is a good strapping point while keeping the bike secure and stable?

I'll be hitting Jennings in the latter part of May for their Novice track school and the following day at their track day too.
It's my first time doing a track day and towing for that matter so any info on the towing will be much appreciated.
Thanks. 🙏👍
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Love that color. 😍
Very nice and good luck in your events this year. 🤞🙏

Got a question for you.
I notice the way you're strapping down the bike using the towel to help with chafing and better grip the bike. You're using two straps for this and is it effective enough to do similarly on a small one bike trailer like I just bought?

I also see the rear strapped to the seat frame too and again I ask as a total newb to tying a bike down if this too is a good strapping point while keeping the bike secure and stable?

I'll be hitting Jennings in the latter part of May for their Novice track school and the following day at their track day too.
It's my first time doing a track day and towing for that matter so any info on the towing will be much appreciated.
Thanks. 🙏👍
Thanks for the kind words. We strapped this bike down in the dark and then I drove it from Chicago to Vermont in one day. 17 hours and the bike didn't budge. Tying a bike down the first couple times is stressful but eventually you learn to trust it. It took some figuring out to get the straps to not rub the bodywork...but we got there. I compress the forks enough that the bike doesn't move..but don't crank on them so hard as to not have any give when I hit potholes. The back strap was really just peace of mind..I don't feel like it does much and often don't use one for shorter drives.
I think this should work well for your trailer. Take your time strapping it down (would recommend having a friend hold the bike up so you can work without stressing until you have have it down to a routine. My gauge for "is this secure" is to give the bike a little push/pull at the seat and if the truck (or in your case trailer) wiggles with it...that bike is secure.
Looking forward to hearing about your first track day...keep us posted ! There are NO dumb questions (I certainly have a lot myself) so please hit me up if you have any track day questions as you get closer.
 

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2021 Ninja 400, 1998 Honda VTR1000 SuperHawk
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Thanks for the kind words. We strapped this bike down in the dark and then I drove it from Chicago to Vermont in one day. 17 hours and the bike didn't budge. Tying a bike down the first couple times is stressful but eventually you learn to trust it. It took some figuring out to get the straps to not rub the bodywork...but we got there. I compress the forks enough that the bike doesn't move..but don't crank on them so hard as to not have any give when I hit potholes. The back strap was really just peace of mind..I don't feel like it does much and often don't use one for shorter drives.
I think this should work well for your trailer. Take your time strapping it down (would recommend having a friend hold the bike up so you can work without stressing until you have have it down to a routine. My gauge for "is this secure" is to give the bike a little push/pull at the seat and if the truck (or in your case trailer) wiggles with it...that bike is secure.
Looking forward to hearing about your first track day...keep us posted ! There are NO dumb questions (I certainly have a lot myself) so please hit me up if you have any track day questions as you get closer.
Thank you sir and most helpful with the response. I'm picking up the trailer next week and installing the hitch next week as well.
Hopefully I can get the bike finished and ready to go by the end of March and have it rideable. 🤞

I hope you're as stoked as I am and again best if luck with your events. 🤟👍
 

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2022 Ninja 400 ABS metallic gray/sparked black
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So how does the track experience work? Obviously a serious rider doesn't want to be anywhere near an old fart who just wants to check off something from his bucket list by doing a couple laps. Is track time split up in classes?.....if nothing else, for safety's sake? Also, are the requirements for safety gear as high as real racers stuff?
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
So how does the track experience work? Obviously a serious rider doesn't want to be anywhere near an old fart who just wants to check off something from his bucket list by doing a couple laps. Is track time split up in classes?.....if nothing else, for safety's sake? Also, are the requirements for safety gear as high as real racers stuff?
Hi Jesse,
Most track days I've been to have 3 groups; novice, intermediate, and advanced. You go out for 20 minute sessions, and then have classroom instruction time in between. On track you start the day working with a control rider who helps you learn the lines. The pace starts fairly slow as you acclimate to a new riding environment. In terms of gear, each track day org usually has a list of requirements. Basics are over the ankle boots, gloves, back protector. one or two piece race suit (some orgs will let you run two pieces zipped together, and some won't). I've met super nice/helpful/encouraging people at every track day I've done.
 

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Hi Jesse,
Most track days I've been to have 3 groups; novice, intermediate, and advanced. You go out for 20 minute sessions, and then have classroom instruction time in between. On track you start the day working with a control rider who helps you learn the lines. The pace starts fairly slow as you acclimate to a new riding environment. In terms of gear, each track day org usually has a list of requirements. Basics are over the ankle boots, gloves, back protector. one or two piece race suit (some orgs will let you run two pieces zipped together, and some won't). I've met super nice/helpful/encouraging people at every track day I've done.
Thanks for the response. That does sound like fun but can you rent the stuff? Obviously nobody would want to drop 4 digits for equipment on a track day if it was just something they only wanted to try.
The novice class is probably interesting. You could actually have 3 generations in the same class. I bet there's a wide range there. I wonder who is harder (and easier) to teach, a 17 year old with sharp reflexes and superior learning skills or a 67 year old with 50 years of motorcycle experience but has never been on a track and isn't as sharp as he used to be.
 

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I wonder who is harder (and easier) to teach, a 17 year old with sharp reflexes and superior learning skills or a 67 year old with 50 years of motorcycle experience but has never been on a track and isn't as sharp as he used to be.
Pffft! That’s an easy one. The 17 year old has all the advantages but the biggie is the 17 year old has no fear of death.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Thanks for the response. That does sound like fun but can you rent the stuff? Obviously nobody would want to drop 4 digits for equipment on a track day if it was just something they only wanted to try.
The novice class is probably interesting. You could actually have 3 generations in the same class. I bet there's a wide range there. I wonder who is harder (and easier) to teach, a 17 year old with sharp reflexes and superior learning skills or a 67 year old with 50 years of motorcycle experience but has never been on a track and isn't as sharp as he used to be.
If you make it to a penguin track day in loudon NH, you can rent most gear, including a ninja 400.
 

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Thanks for the response. That does sound like fun but can you rent the stuff? Obviously nobody would want to drop 4 digits for equipment on a track day if it was just something they only wanted to try.
The novice class is probably interesting. You could actually have 3 generations in the same class. I bet there's a wide range there. I wonder who is harder (and easier) to teach, a 17 year old with sharp reflexes and superior learning skills or a 67 year old with 50 years of motorcycle experience but has never been on a track and isn't as sharp as he used to be.
Definitely the older guys. I used to teach beginner rider courses (MSF classes) for 4 years and had everything from high-school kids to retired 60-70 year olds in my classes. The older folks were definitely the hardest ones to teach. And the ones that had riding experience already for many years, had some pretty bad habits that they couldn't fix during the class despite how many times I tried to correct them on it.
 

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Definitely the older guys. I used to teach beginner rider courses (MSF classes) for 4 years and had everything from high-school kids to retired 60-70 year olds in my classes. The older folks were definitely the hardest ones to teach. And the ones that had riding experience already for many years, had some pretty bad habits that they couldn't fix during the class despite how many times I tried to correct them on it.
I shouldn't be surprised despite experience mattering. That is a great point about correcting bad habits. As they say, you can't teach an old dog new tricks.....(says the guy who retired and then bought his first sport bike)
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 · (Edited)
Well I'm a week and a half out from Round 1 at NHMS on Pumpkin...AKA Orange Crush. Friday will be licensing school and then race days Saturday and Sunday. Weather will most likely be chilly but hopefully dry at least. Bike is prepped..safety wired, coolant replaced, shock swap, fresh brake pads etc but otherwise mostly stock. I put more focus on getting newer gear and having budget for track days this season. Cardio is in a decent place so from here it's a matter of showing up prepared and ready to learn. Focuses for R1 are learning the track and the bike, establishing a baseline lap time for myself to build from this season, and getting more comfortable with having other bikes in closer proximity to me than at trackdays. The rest can follow. Stoke level is high!
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Alright...weekend preview. Bikes are loaded in the trailer. Gear is mostly organized, airbag is charged. Next on the list is food shopping...because we might as well cook and eat in style right? The forecast for Loudon is improving. mornings look chilly with temps in the high 30's-low 40's but warming to 50's-60's and sunny. I'll take it.
For this weekend for this season, the bike is mostly stock with fresh Q3+ tires. I've ridden exactly 2 miles on it so the goal will be to get comfortable on it, adjust controls and learn the track layout better. Friday is race license school. Saturday morning we have two practices, a rookie race, and then I'll be eligible for 2 novice races. Sunday has 1 practice and there are two novice races on the schedule.
It definitely feels like a step up from track days but a logical step. I'm interested to see how it feels in practice. With chilly early season track temps I'll be doing my best to keep things smooth.
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