Getting started with EMRA

Discussion in 'Open Forum' started by Nevets, Jul 8, 2015.

  1. Nevets

    Nevets EMRA Executive Member

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    Steve O'Brien
    Hello,

    After thinking about it, and hmmm'ing and haw'ing for a few years, I've decided that I want to get involved in track racing.

    I've owned a street bike for 5 years, and currently ride a Ninja 1000 (the sport touring model). For reference, I'm 6'4" tall, and weigh about 180 lbs.
    I want to take the Race School classes next summer, which gives me time to get a bike, and all the necessary gear to start racing.

    I was considering racing in the lightweight class (under 420cc). My primary goal is to learn how to ride safely and correctly, and I might consider being competitive once I've accomplished that.

    My current obstacle is a lack of information. I have no idea what kind of bike I should be considering to get started. From reading the forums here, it seems like people are recommending 600cc bikes as first bikes (in particular the SV 650, which is a bike I like the look of). But that would be too large a bike for the lightweight race class.

    I'm really excited to start racing, but nervous because there is so much that I don't know.

    My immediate goal is to buy a bike that is suitable for Race School and learning how to ride. And if possible, I might even take it out for a track day this summer.

    Thanks in advance for any help you guys can offer. I can tell just from reading the forum that it's a great community, and I can't wait to get involved.

    - Steve
     
  2. TSR

    TSR New Member

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    Hi Steve,

    I started racing with the EMRA in 2014, so hopefully I can give you some insight into making the plunge.

    When I took the race school in 2014, like you I rode on the street, but I had never ridden a bike on any track. Although EMRA school is great and the instructors work to your experience level and pace, if you could, try running some track attacks before the school, I was pretty shaky the first few session of the school!

    The track days are a great gateway drug for racing! You'll have more time at a track attack to make sure your bike and gear is working properly. There are also vendors at the track days that offer skills classes(OTP) which I've gotten some excellent experience out of.

    As far as a bike, most Novices start on either a 600 sport bike (GSXR-600/r6/zx6/600rr) or a 650 twin (SV650/Ninja 650). I would recommend trying to find a good used race bike rather than building from scratch. Lots of the racers upgrade, and sell their old machine with spares far less than you could build from scratch. Plus, It'll likely be pretty close in setup and ready to pass tech. Much less headaches!

    Lastly, make sure you budget for good gear. I would much rather have an older/slower/ugly bike and good quality leathers/helmet/boots/etc.

    It's a great club, and a hell of a rush, come join the fun!

    TR
     
  3. Beatinpileguy

    Beatinpileguy Member

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    Steve, I currently ride a Ninja 650R and compete in the lightweight and middleweight classes. I would not recommend going any lower as far as size. As stated by TSR and may I say his opinion is right on track; spend your money on gear and look for a used race bike as this will be the cheapest and most user friendly option getting started. Good luck and hope to see you on the grids next year!
     
  4. Nevets

    Nevets EMRA Executive Member

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    Thanks for the help guys.

    I fully intend on spending good money on a one piece race suit, as well as boots and gloves.
    Being 6'4" tall, and on the slim side, it's been a lifelong struggle to find clothing that is tall enough, but doesn't fit like a tent.

    Any suggestions where to go for good gear?
    As you guys recommended, I'm not afraid to spend money for good gear. I want to stay safe, and I'd rather get something good now that I can wear for many years.

    How much do you normally spend on a helmet? My street helmet is a Shoei that I spent ~600$ on; and while it's Snell approved, I wouldn't want to use it on the track (I have a bluetooth communicator that sits on the outside).

    Thanks again for all the feedback, I really appreciate the help getting started.
     
  5. Nevets

    Nevets EMRA Executive Member

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    I don't understand how you can race a 650 in the lightweight class. The race class states bikes smaller than 420cc (550cc for twins, and 650cc for singles).

    Are you racing a single cylinder bike?
    The Ninja 650R is twin cylinder isn't it?
     
  6. TSR

    TSR New Member

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    One good source for gear is Canadasmotorcycle.ca I'm thrifty, and try to purchase last year's colour scheme gear and reduced prices. i.e. at the start of this year I bought a Bell Star helmet for about 45% off retail because it was an ugly colour. My head is pretty near and dear to me, so I try to get the best I can afford.
     
  7. Arctic Donkey

    Arctic Donkey Active Member

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    Steve
    I'm a little taller and heavier than you and find the Gen2 SV650 (2003 and newer) a pretty roomy fit.

    We don't run a lightweight sportbike class at the moment, only lightweight superbike:
     -[FONT=Arial,Arial][FONT=Arial,Arial]420cc or less multi cylinder, 680cc or less twin and single cylinder engines.
     -Any motorcycle type.
     -Tires – DOT or slicks
     - Unlimited modifications
    [/FONT]
    [/FONT]

    other-Steve

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