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post #41 of 135 Old 03-14-16, 13:56 Thread Starter
aftriathlete
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Race report! While I raced out at Chuckwalla back in January to kick this thread off, this weekend was the opening weekend at my home track where I'll be racing the whole season -- Arroyo Seco in Deming NM.


First time running slicks (Dunlop KRs in the 7455/Med compound) and I had new gearing to learn as well (went from 1 down in the front to 1 down front and 2 up rear). The practice/track day on Saturday was rough -- winds were predicted to peak by 2 PM at 50-55 mph gusts, so in the desert that means a sand storm. My plan going in was to ride as much as I could in the morning until lunch, then probably pack it up and get my fresh tires put on for Sunday's races. Unfortunately, my first session out I was on track for about 5 minutes when it was red-flagged for a serious crash that wound up shutting the track down for the next 90 minutes due to the ambulance being away from the track. When I got off track, much to my surprise the front end of my bike was covered in melted tire due to the taller profile of the slicks rubbing on my front fender. So it was somewhat lucky for me that I was only on track for a few minutes because I don't know if I would have blown the front tire after a full 20 min session or not. The OEM fender that was on there was definitely toast and had to go, so off came the fender. I then got in a single full 20 minute session before the lunch break, and by the end of the lunch break the dust was so bad that the track was shut down for the rest of the day. So I got my wheels off and over to the tire counter and ran for cover with my wife and dogs back to the hotel for the rest of the day. Something of note: front brakes are dragging more than usual, and the mechanic told me it's probably just the Ferodo sintered pads glazing and laying down a lot of material on the stock rotors. So I popped the pads out and rubbed them on the concrete to try to get some of the glazing off to see if that helped.


Showed up early on Sunday to get my wheels back on and everything safety wired back up, and much to my dismay my front brakes are dragging terribly now. I can't even get one turn from the front when I spin it hard. So at this point, I mess with a couple things and loosen and reset everything I had touched changing out my tires to no avail. Wound up throwing the stock brake pads back in which had less material than the Ferodos did and that gave me an acceptable amount of brake drag. Scrambled to get everything ready by the first practice session, but I got out for 5 laps both practice sessions to shake everything out and get a feel for the new (old) pads. I was pleasantly surprised by the stock pads honestly, I expected much worse, but I didn't find them lacking in bite or feel.


I'm signed up for 4 races, and it's still windy today though not as bad as yesterday:


Race 1 -- MW Superstock. Gridded first of 9 guys in the Am wave, my start was horrible and I believe I saw my TC light on in first gear, which is a problem I thought I rectified last time I plugged into my Bazzaz. So that's something I have to look before the next round. The bad starts would plague me throughout the day. I duked it out with another Daytona (the only other Daytona racing here) for the first 5 laps, made the pass on the 5th lap, and was running for my life on the 6th and final lap when, with a 20 mph tailwind coming down the front straight (the shorter of the two straights), my rear tire came off the asphalt an unnerving amount while hard on the brakes to go into a 2nd gear turn. I let off the brakes, regained control, but wound up going straight off the end of the straight out into the desert. I kept it on 2 wheels, and rejoined, but I believe I wound up falling from 3rd down to 7th or 8th (final results not yet posted on the website). On the positive side though, my 5th lap had now lowered my personal best here by 1.2 seconds down to a 1:15.0.


Second race -- Formula Amateur. The open rules, money race for amateurs (well, track credit for future rounds), and it's 10 laps so hopefully my fitness will be an advantage for me. Again gridded first of 9 bikes. Bad start again and went into the first turn in 5th. Made two passes around the 4th/5th lap, and then chased an R6 and a CBR600 for the last 5 laps. My lap times dropped throughout the race, and my last lap was my fastest, down to 1:14.6, and I actually closed the gap somewhat on the R6 in front of me on the final lap but he ended up crossing the line about 3 seconds in front of me. So 3rd place and good for a $30 credit! Woo hoo! And all of a sudden, compared to the other amateurs I'm racing, I'm great on the brakes. I'm reeling in the riders in front of me on every braking section. So positive vibes from the 675R master, CRG lever, and Nissin calipers with stock pads.


3rd race -- MW Superbike. Gridded 1 of 11. Bad start again, but by the end of the first lap I had gotten back to 3rd. Braking continues to be a strong point for me, and all my passes are made on the brakes. Made the pass for 2nd on the 3rd lap, thinking I was in 3rd and someone had run away at the front. Chased the same R6 as the Formula race, but couldn't reel him in. Best lap down to 1:14.3. 2nd place!


4th race -- Southwest Thunder. Gridded 2 of 15. I came off track after MW SBK long enough to take a drink of water and head back on track. Same start as before, but now I'm on track with everything that's not a 4-cyl, so ultralight bikes, SVs, and one other Daytona, so now my start looks solid. I made the holeshot, and led the race from start to finish. 1st place and the fastest of the slow bikes! No blazing laps in this race as no one was in front of me or around me.


Overall, a great weekend. Took nearly 2 seconds off my best, felt very strong on the brakes, and took 3 podiums including my first race win. I'm right there in the mix with the 4-cyl MW bikes too. Things to sort out in the next 3 weeks: race front fender, turn off Bazzaz TC in first for the race starts, sort out front brake issue with bead blasting the rotors or cleaning my calipers.


Cheers!
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post #42 of 135 Old 03-14-16, 14:15
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well done!

WERA EX 917 aka North Central grid filler

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post #43 of 135 Old 03-14-16, 14:26
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Wow, that's quite a day. Nice work!
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post #44 of 135 Old 03-15-16, 04:29
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Great job! This is why I decided to sticky this thread. I love it!

You said you were on the stock brake pads, and yet you were a demon under braking? Says something about our brakes. :)
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post #45 of 135 Old 03-16-16, 23:43 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shamrock View Post
Great job! This is why I decided to sticky this thread. I love it!

You said you were on the stock brake pads, and yet you were a demon under braking? Says something about our brakes. :)
Check it out, got my name in Roadracing World again, but it's nice seeing it next to podium places, I'm pretty psyched! Also, as for the stock 675 brakes, man, I'm pretty impressed now that I'm actually starting to push their limits.

http://www.roadracingworld.com/news/...-seco-raceway/

2010 Daytona 675
2005 Ducati 999
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post #46 of 135 Old 03-17-16, 00:28
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Hey congrats man! That's an awesome weekend!!!
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post #47 of 135 Old 03-25-16, 16:01
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Sounds like you had a great weekend!!

My first weekend of the season was pretty - meh. I wasn't happy with what or how I did, but the full report is here:

http://honeybadger302.blogspot.com

Racing Like a Honey Badger Blog - updated 10/27/16 with AFM Round 7 Race Report and 2016 Wrap Up

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post #48 of 135 Old 03-26-16, 00:18 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoneyBadger View Post
Sounds like you had a great weekend!!

My first weekend of the season was pretty - meh. I wasn't happy with what or how I did, but the full report is here:

http://honeybadger302.blogspot.com
Well it would be tough to have any kind of weekend you feel good about when you're having vehicle trouble even getting there. But good job pushing through and keeping it rubber side down the whole weekend!

It's awesome you put some hard work in during the off-season to better prepare yourself for racing, that's what I love to see! We all have our own strengths and weaknesses, and as long as we're trying to turn our weaknesses into strengths, or at least less of a weakness, every day then we're doing what we can do. Personal strength of mine as it relates to riding is actually my fitness -- all my races here at Arroyo are 7 laps except for Formula Amateur which is 12 laps, and I'm actually stronger in that race because everyone's getting tired by the end. But I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the strongest rider when it comes to technical execution and reproducible lap times -- I still don't have a good grasp on being able to actually use specific reference points on the track so all my riding actions are based on more of a spatial awareness than an actual solid point. Which as you can imagine inputs some slop into your lap and makes your lap times fluctuate. I'm also not great at blipping the throttle, so at the end of literally every straight I'm getting a little fishtailing on the brakes trying to get it downshifted to get back on the throttle. So I definitely know what I need to work on!

2010 Daytona 675
2005 Ducati 999
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post #49 of 135 Old 03-26-16, 01:20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aftriathlete View Post
Well it would be tough to have any kind of weekend you feel good about when you're having vehicle trouble even getting there. But good job pushing through and keeping it rubber side down the whole weekend!

It's awesome you put some hard work in during the off-season to better prepare yourself for racing, that's what I love to see! We all have our own strengths and weaknesses, and as long as we're trying to turn our weaknesses into strengths, or at least less of a weakness, every day then we're doing what we can do. Personal strength of mine as it relates to riding is actually my fitness -- all my races here at Arroyo are 7 laps except for Formula Amateur which is 12 laps, and I'm actually stronger in that race because everyone's getting tired by the end. But I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the strongest rider when it comes to technical execution and reproducible lap times -- I still don't have a good grasp on being able to actually use specific reference points on the track so all my riding actions are based on more of a spatial awareness than an actual solid point. Which as you can imagine inputs some slop into your lap and makes your lap times fluctuate. I'm also not great at blipping the throttle, so at the end of literally every straight I'm getting a little fishtailing on the brakes trying to get it downshifted to get back on the throttle. So I definitely know what I need to work on!
Ya, I was kind of worrying about the truck all weekend - the BF ignored it all Saturday morning (he wasn't riding in practice) and I was running around the pits all weekend trying to arrange people to carry stuff and/or haul the trailer along with back ups if things didn't work out with plan A. I'm sure it didn't help, but somehow I've got to learn to let that stuff go and put my head down and race when the time comes (not that I'm thinking about it when on track, but it wasn't ever far from my mind the rest of the time).

I'm not stressing over the weekend anymore though. Gonna go to a track day on Sunday where our next round is and try to keep myself in "go" mode, plus can hopefully hook up with one of the faster guys at the TD I coach with at our next day for a few pointers.

The working out was HUGE though - approximately 6 years ago I let the desk job routine excuses win out, and just hadn't been willing to push through "the suck" of getting back into shape since then until this winter. While my cardio could still use work, as far as racing goes, that is more "maintain" at this point and I'll be focusing more on my strength as that was definitely an issue as I was trying to pick up the pace. Thankfully a friend who's a PT is helping me out and put together some meal and workout plans for me, my abs already hate him LOL.hrottle. So I definitely know what I need to work on!

Racing Like a Honey Badger Blog - updated 10/27/16 with AFM Round 7 Race Report and 2016 Wrap Up

AFM #302

Special thanks to my 2016 sponsors and supporters!!
RiderzLaw; Dainese D-Store SF; Catalyst Reaction Suspension Tuning; Woodcraft; Dunlop Race Tires; Pacific Track Time; Erich Stiegler Farmer's Insurance; Cycle Gear; Motion Pro; Moto Guild; Chicken Hawk Racing; Skratch Labs
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post #50 of 135 Old 04-05-16, 12:05 Thread Starter
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ASMA Round 2 race report!


I would love to say I didn't low-side twice today and there wasn't a video on facebook getting passed around, including on the SportbikeTrackGear.com facebook page, but that just wouldn't be true. With that said, had some positives too worth noting.


I went into this weekend way too tired, and in retrospect it makes sense that I made a couple dumb mistakes like I did. Work last week unfortunately crushed me with a 3:15 AM wakeup on Wednesday, and 3:00 wakeup on Thursday, and a 2:15 wakeup on Friday, then later in the day on Friday I had to drive 5 hours back from California to Tucson to load up the trailer and get on the road for another 4 hours to Arroyo. The amount of caffeine I had to consume Friday thru Sunday just to function was kinda crazy. The bike was working well though -- I got the brakes sorted and they were feeling pretty good in the practice on Saturday. And with my traction control now off in 1st, I did a practice start every session and felt much stronger on the starts than last round. But now, for the races.


1st race -- Middleweight Superstock. Considering I ran off track in this race last round, I started last, #9/9. Had a good start and got up to 5th by the first turn, then picked my way up to 3rd by the 5th of 7 laps. Near the end of the 5th lap though, I noticed the 2nd place rider was starting to come back to me a bit, and on a slow (<30mph) right leading onto the 2nd longest straight on the track, I got greedy with the throttle trying to get a better drive and the rear came around and down I went. An easy low-side really, but my right Attack peg/mount was gone, and I was off in the dirt anyways. So I didn't rejoin and road back to the pits after the race annoyed with myself. But these things happen, no big deal. Changed out my peg and my rear brake lever, wiped the bike down, cried over the new rash on my tail fairing, and pressed on.


2nd race -- Formula Amateur. The open rules, amateur "money race." Started 3rd, had a good start, but two guys on 1000s had decent starts as well. My main competition got out front of those 2, and I got caught up with these 2 guys for the first 2-3 laps til I could finally get clear and keep them at bay on the straights. I eventually ran away from them, finishing 3rd with the 4th place guy finishing about 15 sec back. Unfortunately the 8-9 seconds I lost trying to get past these guys in the first couple laps was the gap between me and the 2nd place guy by the end of the 12 laps, so I know I had good enough pace to hang in there. Here's a pretty good rear-facing video from one of the guys on a 1000, I'm pecking at his tail constantly for the first few laps before I disappear. Best lap in this direction, a 1:14.2 again matching what I got down to going counter-clockwise last round.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mUobqxDD-HQ


3rd race -- Middleweight Superbike. Good start, was in 3rd when on the 2nd lap these dynamic things in the video happened. The video is taken from a guy running in front of me at the time -- he goes off the inside of a kink and rejoins right in my path, and we very nearly made a baby. 20 seconds later going through the esses, I touched the big crack between the curb and the asphalt on the last right ess, lost the front and down I went again. I can't figure out how to share Facebook videos here, but if you care to see some really exciting footage of it, go to SportbikeTrackGear.com's Facebook page. I wound up picking the bike up, figured out it was still rideable, and got back up to 6th of 8 by the checkered flag.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3gc92iDkF8


4th race -- Southwest Thunder. I came off the track from MW SB, took a swig of water and went back out for Southwest Thunder. In that short time, two guys that were right behind me came over asking if I was OK from the low-side, because apparently it looked pretty bad. Nothing significant to report in this race -- it was me, a few SV650s, and ULW bikes. So I ran away with it pretty easily, 1st of 10 I believe. Meager lap times considering I knew I was way out front. I'm actually debating continuing to race this one in the future as it's not much fun really with no one to mix it up with.


All in all, had some successes and got at least a few good, fast laps. I'm disappointed, but the bike is ok for the most part, and I'm OK, just a little bit of a sore hip. Went through a lot of my spares, but lever guards definitely help save brake levers and Attack rearsets crash pretty well, I just went through two pegs and one peg mount. Hopefully I'm in better physical condition and better rested next round! Between now and then, I'm getting a EVR slipper put in to take that out of the equation on hard downshifting sections. All in all, not a great weekend but you have to expect some valleys with the peaks!


Roadracingworld.com coverage just posted.
http://www.roadracingworld.com/news/...-seco-raceway/
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2010 Daytona 675
2005 Ducati 999

Last edited by aftriathlete; 04-05-16 at 13:14.
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