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Anyone going to Pocono Fri (10/6)?!?
Old 10-04-2006, 04:08 PM   #1
drewcampbell4
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Default Anyone going to Pocono Fri (10/6)?!?

Signed up for my first track day with TPM for this Friday. I assumed that I could just ride my bike up there, but others have informed me that this is a bad idea. Is anyone going from the Newburgh/ New Windsor NY area that has a trailor and would be willing to let me ride with you. Obviously, we would split the gas etc...


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Old 10-04-2006, 04:25 PM   #2
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Welcome to the site...riding to a track day is definitely risky...ride sharing is the way to go if you can. If not, then maybe see if you can get a hitch and borrow a small trailer maybe?

How'd you hear about the site?
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Old 10-04-2006, 08:24 PM   #3
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Thanks for the welcome.

I don't think it is worth renting a trailor and hitch given that the ride is only about 100 miles. Oh well...

Anyway, I heard about the site from Chris at RPM Cycle Works...
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Old 10-04-2006, 09:01 PM   #4
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Hi and welcome to SBA

Are you riding with TPM? If so, then post up on their board!
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Old 10-04-2006, 09:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drewcampbell4
Thanks for the welcome.

I don't think it is worth renting a trailor and hitch given that the ride is only about 100 miles. Oh well...

Anyway, I heard about the site from Chris at RPM Cycle Works...
Awesome, Chris is good people. Also, think long term, I've yet to see someone do one day and not do another...and another...you get the idea

I can post up on the TPM board for you, give me an email addy where people can contact you (unless you became a TPM member then you should have access to their board.)
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Old 10-04-2006, 10:03 PM   #6
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How are you gonna get home if you crash??
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Old 10-04-2006, 10:18 PM   #7
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Welcome to SBA

100 miles may be a simple ride if you're just on the street, but at the end of a full day of track sessions when you're completely exhausted it'll seem like a nightmare, furthermore if you do go down and your bike isn't rideable you're stuck there with no way home.

Good luck!
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Old 10-05-2006, 07:03 AM   #8
drewcampbell4
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Thanks for all the advice guys!!!

I know the ride home will be tough, and I'll probably pick up a hitch over the winter. However, I signed up for the day last weekend, and hadn't given too much thought to how I would get the bike there.

If I am too exausted to ride, I guess I can get a hotel room for the night. If I crash, I can always rent a u-haul to throw the bike in the back, and drive home. Granted, neither situation is ideal, but I hate to pay a couple hundred bucks to rent something unless I have to (i.e. crashed the bike.) That said, for my next trackday, I will be much better prepared!
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Old 10-05-2006, 08:21 AM   #9
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hey drewcampbell4
ill be heading there from orange county, but on saturday dont fret the ride back, its not that bad, i suggest 84 to 209 to rt 80, pretty and not much traffic.
Kevin
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Old 10-06-2006, 08:17 AM   #10
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Hey Drew, good luck today! We expect a full report and pics too! Hope you have fun today!!!
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Old 10-09-2006, 09:55 AM   #11
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Did you make it out to Pocono? How was it?
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Old 10-11-2006, 11:58 PM   #12
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Well, I did make it out to Pocono last Friday. Unfortunately, I only got to ride in one full session because I crashed out during the second ;(
I never did find someone to share a ride with, so I ended up riding the bike to the track.

Obviously, I had to leave at about 5am (still dark) wearing my leathers and a heavy backpack with water, some tools, food, etc. I’m not sure how cold it was, but a half-hour into the ride I could no longer feel my hands or feet. The shivering got so bad that I had to pull of several times at the rest stops just to get a little warmth. Eventually, I made it to Pocono, and was able to follow the other cars to the paddock. Once I pulled in, I picked a spot and starting preparing my bike for the track. I removed the mirrors, pulled the lights, and taped everything up. I went through tech and waited for the riders’ meeting. At the meeting I learned that we would run three groups; white, red, and then cars. That’s right, there was a session for cars, which of course meant the paddock had Porsches, Vipers, Corvettes, etc. Anyway, after the riders’ meeting I went to the first class session for the ART basic course. Bill informed us that we would be going slow the first few sessions, and that we would basically spend the first session learning the race line. Being 23, and having read twist of the wrist, I felt this was beneath me (God, I wish I could go back and take this back.) Moreover, it seemed like the class would cost me several sessions while we learned stuff that I already knew. I told myself I was at the track to practice and go fast, not relearn the basics. As such, I had Bill switch me to the white group.

First session went well. I was surprised at how technical the track was, and got a stuck behind a bit of a slower rider for a few laps. I was able to pass him on the straight, but doing so showed me I was a little uncomfortable breaking as late as I had to. In any event, after the first session, I chatted with a few of the guys, and was surprised at how nice everyone was.

The second session didn’t go nearly as well. There was one rider between a TPM coach and me. After the first warm-up lap, I passed the bike in front of me and began to follow the coach. He allowed me to pass, I assume to watch me but after a lap speed past me. (He later told me that I was leaning off the bike properly and he was trying to show me that I was using way too much lean angle.) In any event, after he passed me, I decided I was going to keep up with him come hell or high water. The first lap went fine, but on the second lap, the control rider passed a bunch of bikes in one of the smaller straights. I knew I was going to have to break late in order to follow, but I wanted to be Rossi, so I went for it. I passed them without incident, but got scared at the turn rapidly approaching. I thought I squeezed the break, but I must have applied them too quickly because the front screeched and then went into a tank slapper (a rider behind me said he saw my rear wheel go airborne.) Anyway, I released the brake, but it was too late. The bike went down on the left side, and I landed on my back. I surfed the pavement for a little while, before jumping to my feet and running to the bike which had ended up in the grass. They had to red flag the session because I couldn’t get the bike upright (my shoulder was killing me.) Eventually, with the help of the control rider, I got the bike up, and rode the ride of shame back to the paddock.

Damage to me was limited to a bruised shoulder and knee, as well as a major bruised ego. Unfortunately, the bike didn’t get off so easy. The front fairing was f**ked, I had to use bungee cord (provided by another rider) to keep it together. The radiator was bent, although it wasn’t leaking, the shifter was broken, the tank had a large scratch on it, etc. Everyone there was so nice, trying to help me get the bike back together. They provided time, suggestions, and even parts!!! I bought a clutch lever from the truck and a really cool guy helped me put it on. As I said, I used bungee cord to keep the front fairing together, and used a bolt and some tape to “fix” the shifter. Some of the coaches said I could try to get it back through tech, but at that point I just wanted to go home (the thought of a two hour ride home was daunting!)

After all this, I made my way home with all types of thoughts going through my head. First, I would never ride the bike to the track again. It was cold, hard, didn’t allow me to bring everything I wanted, and could have been disastrous if the bike couldn’t be ridden. Second, there is truth to the saying, “you have to go slow to go fast.” I thought my desire to be Rossi could make up for my inexperience. What a joke. No one can expect to be great at something they have never done before. Track riding, like anything else takes practice. I rushed into something head first, and got in over my head. Third, was how nice everyone was. After the crash, everyone offered a kind word and advice. Although some of them must have been thinking, “stupid rookie got what he deserved,” none of them said it. They asked if I was okay, and if they could do anything to help. Moreover, a bunch of people offered me a ride home, and a few offered my bike a ride home!

So, I will spend the winter fixing up my bike, and getting it ready for the spring. Next year, I can return to the track with a little more experience and a little more humility. I’ll start by taking it slow and realizing that the track is a place to learn and IMPROVE, not to prove anything!!!






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Old 10-12-2006, 08:22 AM   #13
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This is probably one the best write-ups I've read!

I'm sorry that your day ended early, but I'm sure glad you were riding with TPM and that there were people around you to offer help!

I'm impressed with your self-reflection regarding what happend and your candor in sharing it with us.

Now, you have a winter project and time to look forward to next years season.

There are a bunch of TPM coaches on the board, RCM78, CBRBob, Lateapex, Yetidave, Africanbootyscratcher just to name a few

Pick their brains and listen to their advice! Enjoy and see you next year at the track
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Old 10-12-2006, 09:34 AM   #14
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Drew:

Lesson learned - good on you!

Glad to hear you made it home safely.
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Old 10-12-2006, 09:41 AM   #15
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Well, you learned your lesson and that's all that matters. Good for you but I'm sorry that the price was so high. but at least you know now and your 2007 season can be a good one!
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