Zoom Zoom Trackday Buttonwillow Mar 4 - MVAgusta.net
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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Zoom Zoom Trackday Buttonwillow Mar 4

By request from Admin, here are some photos. The first and last ones are my fave.

http://www.sidewazzz.com/index.php?o...2_itemId=20572

I have a long description of the day I can paste in (I posted on another board) if anyone is interested. Basically, I rode terribly and I'm very damn happy I didn't crash it Sat.

The track was muddy in the morning, "only" dirty in the afternoon, and I hadn't been on a racetrack since Oct 31, 2002.

Edit, BTW, the Munroe Motors guys were there with their IOM MV. Nice dudes, we talked for quite a while.

Last edited by luvtolean; 03-06-2006 at 08:45 PM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 08:45 PM
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That got to be my favorite helmet design of all time (I binned my 3 yrs ago outside Spring Mt.'s T8 )! I would love to read your track report. It's always entertaining to read of other's enthusiasm for the track.

Admin, can you add a track section to the forum?!

"Every mistake is a learning opportunity"

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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OK, this is posted from a board where I've been posting for quite a while, so many know my history. I raced in 2001 and 2002 with a reasonable record, and a couple of trophies. So to go out and ride like I did was pretty heartbreaking. But it's all good, all learning.

Also, I love that paintjob too. But this was probably it's last trackday, it actually hit 5 years last month.




Well, I really put this post up as a model of how not to do a trackday. I rode like shit. All day.

There are many reasons for this, and I will attempt to capture them here in this long, wordy, post. This is not a set of excuses (though to be perfectly honest I was a bit embarassed for myself) but more of a dire warning to those out there who may or may not know better.

I've spent far too much time at the track to have made so many mistakes. But the real problem had nothing to do with the bike. It was little details that totally, and I mean TOTALLY fucked me up mentally, all day.

I put off signing up for the day due to weather and a very slight cold I'd fought all week, but kept thinking was going to get worse. It didn't go away, and didn't get better. I was also worried about rain. Friday afternoon I figure it all seems good enough and around 3 or 4 PM head out to the garage to dump the coolant and pull the lights. Simple, practically mindless work.

As I worked on it, I really got a bunch more respect for the ride. I was in a hurry, so I didn't take any pics, but this thing is so easy to wrench on. All the lights in the rear are simple to remove. 4 bolts, total. The mirrors use a cool fairing stay that incorporates this neat contact connector for the turn signal. 10 bolts and the mirrors and front signals are off. All with easy access again. The fairings are all quick turn fasteners. I pulled the tail off, which also meant the tank came off. 3 easily accessed bolts, and the tail section, and gas tank are all off the bike. Oh yeah, and the fuel lines come from MV with quick connects. Unplug those, the pump connector, two vacuum lines and off. Sweet! The music is on and I'm really enjoying this.

Pop off the cover around the key (2 bolts) and the rad cap is right there. I pull the cap, and the drain bolt and dump out this weird looking blue coolant. I do notice that the drain bolt is very short (like 4 threads total, I don't think this deal is ASME spec), but don't think much of it. Yet. I put the bolt back in loosely, fill up the bike with DI water and flush it out. Then I put the drain bolt finger tight and hit it with the ratchet. It pulled the damn threads out with no torque worth mentioning. Long story short, I did get it heli-coiled, but I wasn't loaded an in bed until 12:30 AM or so.

I got up at 5AM to drive up to Buttonwillow. The weather was picture perfect, until I crested the Grapevine...the damn valley was completely socked in with thick tule fog. Sonofabitch!!

I get to the soggy track in time for the last 3 minutes of the rider's meeting. (As pennance?) I was told to sit through the C group, "never been to the track before" meeting. Fine, whatever. But I hadn't tech'd and A group was heading out. Oh well, it's wet, <50º, and I didn't mind missing that first session even a little bit.

Pushing my bike to tech, I notice bikes that have been on track look like hell. Covered in muddy water. Nice. I haven't been to the track since Oct of 2002, and I'm coming out on a muddy track, on a new bike, that I'm paranoid of crashing. Not good for the mental health.

I ask to go wobble around with the C group's first session, but am told no, just start at the back of the B group for their second. OK, fine. (This did turn out to be the right thing to do BTW)

Knowing the suspension set-up was totally screwed, the sag was off, etc etc, I paid Aftershocks $20 to do a suspension setup as I waited for my first session. This was a wise move. The front preload was too high, and the rear too soft. They got me in the ballpark (but the rear preload is maxed, need a new spring) which really did transform the bike.

I set my tire pressures very low for the day, 29 front, 27.5-28 in the rear to try and get some heat in them. I head out for my session and go slow as hell. I almost drove it off track too, with all the rear ride height from the reduced rear sag, and the lower front end from the added sag there. That turned out to really help as I got going. I came in from the session totally bummed. I was fighting the bike, and losing, the track was real slick, I really, REALLY don't want to crash the MV, and B-Willow has never been my favorite place. Mommy. I came into the pits, and decided to snap some pics before I wadded up my bike.

The sun started coming out after that and I was ready to bow down and give thanks. Then the Zoom crew called an early lunch to let the sun dry the track.

On lunch I went over and talked to the Munroe Motors guys who had an MV F4 1000 there. They've had some good success with it, and even took it to the IOM. Check it out here. I ordered my lunch and went over to talk to them. They are really digging the bike. It's been very reliable, and fast! He tells me to break in the SPR hard, apparently many who buy these bikes baby them too much and the rings don't seal. No problem here! He also tells me about the front brake lines. Stock they come with a nice looking braided line with a T on the fender. As they went into "scrutineering" at the IOM they were told that they had to change the lines out to race. Apparently at full extension the line can kink. A rider in Europe had one fail, get into the front wheel, and a nasty get off. Of course, this is the line I have, at a track with two different wheelie hills. Great. Also not good for the brain.

I head out for session 3 and the track is dry. Sweet, GAME on! I started to put in some decent laps, and started to feel the flow a bit. I started passing a whole lot of people too. Then while trailing another rider into turn 1 much hotter than I'd been all day, the dust from him clipping the apex was so thick I could taste it...off the throttle in turn 1 the rest of the day. Then, as the muscle memory started taking over, I had problems shifting. The MV has a long stiff throttle, and I wasn't lifting off the throttle enough for good, clutchless shifts. I was also having trouble getting my boot under the shifter. I had a minor slide or two going into turn 3. My deathgrip was wearing out my hands. My leathers were also too tight as I've gained about 20 pounds since I last raced. This lead to a blow out. (See pic below) I dropped into the hot pit to shake them out and got back out there. I think this was the session flagged from a bunch of mud flung on the track by a rider going ag.

I fixed the shifter in the break and read a B-willow track description from Tigert. Zipping up my too tight leathers for this session, the pull actually broke. Damn, time for new ones I guess. I went back out and was going faster still. I was focusing on shifting and it got better. Then for some stupid reason, going into slick turn 3 I ended up trail braking. For no good reason. I was already going super slow in there. The front end, of course, immediately tucked when I tipped it in. Oh fuck. It came back and I didn't crash. Back into the hot pit to calm the hell down and get my mind right. This session little mistakes like this kept happening. I'd start to put some turns together and then mentally lose focus. Then my shifting went to shit again and I tagged the limiter real hard when a half assed shift allowed the motor pop out of second while WFO. Fuck it, the next lap was the checkered anyways. I cruise around after the checker flag, as one should to allow the bike to cool down a bit. Of course people are sucking the paint off me...I'm even passed by a couple of tools after the esses while I'm hand up to exit the track. Geez guys, Rossi would definately be proud.

I haven't found my smoked visor and the sun was in my eyes the whole last session, so I plan to go out with sunglesses on under my helmet. I hate this. The last session somehow I miss the call. So I end up out on a hot track, on cold/low pressure tires, with no inside passing allowed. This sucks. I can't just run the outside of the track as people don't want to pass and break the rules in the corner. I get the tires up to temp and start to go. The sunglasses are driving me crazy, I slide the front again in 3 (though not on the brakes), I'm shifting bad, have a fade out in the bus stop and miss all my marks....I stayed out, ran it slow and just tried to enjoy it at a slow pace. Of course, after the checkered flag, out of the esses, hand up, I'm again passed by someone trying to win the race to the pits I guess.

There was a photog out that took some pics. You can see my progression. I felt pretty good through Lost Hills (where the last photo was taken) all day, and I love that section of the track.

EDIT, as soon as their server comes up, I'll grab a couple of pics. Sidewazzz wasn't ready for the load apparently.

So, new leathers, sort the throttle, get some sleep the night before, stay away from the mud, get the right brake lines, quit worrying about your bike...and then have fun.
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 09:04 PM
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Pretty interesting read!!! I assumed they ran the trackday clockwise. T3, if I remember correctly is Riverside, is a b$tch to deal with at the pace. I raced there last July and 2 friends (J-M Arechiga of Littlebigracing and Cliff Sands of Socaltrackdays) lost their rides over that turn. Ended up outside in the dried mud! We had a good laugh hosing them down.

Come to think of it, my friend, Slowone, had the same shifting problem with his SPR just like you did. Let me check with him!

"Every mistake is a learning opportunity"

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 09:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks!

If you haven't seen it, I started a thread about the throttle this morning too.

http://www.mvagusta.net/forum/showth...3&page=1&pp=10
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 09:43 PM
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Great pictures of my...i mean your SPR!
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by admin
Great pictures of my...i mean your SPR!
I'm glad the owner approves.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 04:06 AM
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Good read...nice pics.
I think we've all had days similar to that at the track.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 04:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvtolean
Also, I love that paintjob too. But this was probably it's last trackday, it actually hit 5 years last month.
Is it a HAGA replica?
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 11:47 AM
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Steptoe,

It's actually a Harada replica, unfortunately been discontinued by Arai for sometime.

"Every mistake is a learning opportunity"

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