Getting into track days and possibly WERA racing

Discussion in 'Information For New Racers' started by William Schneider, May 7, 2021.

  1. mpusch

    mpusch Well-Known Member

    I love hearing these posts. Glad it went well!
  2. William Schneider

    William Schneider Well-Known Member

    I ended up frustrated with the Ninja 650 for many reasons, so I am going the route of a track-prepped 1st gen SV650. I am going out to the seller's motorcycle shop next Tuesday and looking for advice on the buying process.

    The seller seems very nice and knowledgeable. He raced the SV in WERA last year and is stepping away from it due to health concerns. He was very honest with me when discussing the history of the bike and some issues its had in the past. The main issues include a cylinder needed to be replaced due to moisture issues, rust in the tank (which he cleaned out and is 99% sure won't be an issue in the future), and some smoke from the exhaust (which he fixed by replacing the valve seals I believe). Currently the bike should be in good working order. There some upgrades but not decked out, and the bike is set-up for the superstock class. He is including tire warmers and rear sprockets. He is asking $2500.

    This the seller seems to be a really great guy is there any reason I shouldn't trust him?

    This seems to be a fair price to me. Any thoughts on the price?

    Any thoughts on the history?

    What should I inspect on the bike when I go to buy it? Are there any common trouble spots on the SV?

    When I go to buy the bike, I was going to ask to take the bike around the neighborhood just to see how it rides. Is that normal for buying track prepped bikes?

    I have also never bought a bike in any capacity before.

  3. kenessex

    kenessex unregistered user

    The simplest way to get info on the bike is to post up who the seller is. I'll bet that if he raced WERA somebody on here knows him and knows the bike. Other than that, if it has good rear shock, penske, ohlins, etc and front springs and emulators or carts it is probably worth $2500 or there abouts, if it has decent bodywork, stainless lines, full exhaust, etc.
    Post up a pic and get some good advice about that particular bike.
  4. baconologist

    baconologist Well-Known Member

    What Ken said. I just bought that exact deal with some spare thrown in. $2500 for a track ready but basic SV seems to be the norm.
    TurboBlew likes this.
  5. William Schneider

    William Schneider Well-Known Member

    This is the FB listing:

    I am in touch with the seller about meeting to see it and buy it. He's willing to deal a little. I have gotten some advice that it's worth around $1800-$2200. There are no spare wheels included, but the more hard bits (extra wheels, clipons, bodywork) that are included, the closer it'd be worth to $2500.

    The seller has been super nice, honest, and helpful so I've been really happy working with him so far.
  6. William Schneider

    William Schneider Well-Known Member

    Just found out there are no emulators up front, so the fork is fully stock except for the springs.
  7. Tyson10R

    Tyson10R Well-Known Member

    My personal opinion: At least work your way into "Advanced group" track days before racing. There is less pressure on you at a track day, it's cheaper, and you'll end up making less mistakes in the long run. Besides who wants to get into racing and finish at the back of the grid? :D

    When new track riders go straight into racing they become a road block to the front runners when they catch you. There could be multiple people fighting for first place and they really don't want to check-up for lap traffic with a 30-40mph speed difference(the very slow new person) and lose a position to the guy behind them because of it, so shit can get hairy real quick. I've had some verrrrrry sketchy moments in situations like this, mostly at CMRA though. If you can get up to speed by doing track days, racing will be safer for you and everyone else out there.
    William Schneider likes this.
  8. mpusch

    mpusch Well-Known Member

    I started racing in intermediate and had no problems. I certainly wasn't at risk of winning a championship, but wasn't a risk to others. Plenty of people start racing before getting to A.
    Tyson10R and William Schneider like this.
  9. Tyson10R

    Tyson10R Well-Known Member

    Glad to hear that, you must learn fast. But I do stand by my opinion. I have almost taken out a couple new riders that were taking a nonsensical line while I was attempting to get around them, expecting them to take the normal race line.

    I think the biggest issue is combining expert and novice grids most of the time. I’ve seen some sketchy situations on some expert front runners video. But splitting the grid is not always realistic

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    William Schneider likes this.
  10. Mongo

    Mongo Administrator

    The biggest issue is the novices not taking a consistent line - but even years fo trackdays doesn't really change that happening.
    DmanSlam and William Schneider like this.
  11. Shenanigans

    Shenanigans in Mr.Rogers neighborhood

    That's Chad Pecci's(sp) bike. Met him once at Barber seems like a good dude. Hopefully others will chime in
    William Schneider likes this.
  12. SuddenBraking

    SuddenBraking The Iron Price

    There’s a pretty wide variation between A and I by track day provider.
    William Schneider and DmanSlam like this.
  13. DmanSlam

    DmanSlam Well-Known Member

    William Schneider likes this.
  14. stangmx13

    stangmx13 Well-Known Member

    A rider with the talent to run up front in an expert club race should have more than enough skill to safely pass someone at the back of a novice grid... as long as they hold their line.

    I went back to trackdays this year after years of only racing. Adv group is definitely no guarantee that someone will ride safe during a race. Some janky stuff goes down at trackdays in all groups. That's why racer schools exists - and hopefully they are doing a good job.
    Laz and William Schneider like this.
  15. 2blueYam

    2blueYam Track Day Addict

    You can always have a guy that is in the track organization's expert group and is showing up at a track he hasn't been at before and will potentially be having trouble finding and running the line in the morning sessions. This can be particularly true at tracks with blind corners (VIR for example).

    You can also have someone that shows up with an expert race license and gets put in the expert group and has trouble staying on the line at at track day as well.

    You also have track day orgs that don't police who gets into expert very well. Avoid these or just be pretend you are running in the Intermediate group and be ready for anything that happens in front of you.

    Then there is always the "Oops" moment that any track day rider or racer can have at any level during a track day or a race when they find themselves off line / off pace.

    Yep, no guarantees what so ever.
    Laz and William Schneider like this.
  16. William Schneider

    William Schneider Well-Known Member

    I'm back again...

    A few deals have fallen through for one reason or another, so I'm still looking for a bike. A 2nd gen SV has presented itself as a good option. I have a few questions regarding the 1st gen vs 2nd gen SV's, SV's in general, and smaller/cheaper bikes in general.

    1st gen vs 2nd gen:

    What do people recommend? 1st gen or 2nd gen?

    Are there some things that one does better than the other? (Yes I know one has carbs, the other has FI, I don't mind messing with carbs)

    Which one has more potential as a superbike (if I ever wanted to build it out)?

    It seems like for similar setup, a 2nd gen runs $1k-$2k more than a 1st gen. Is it still worth it (particularly for a rider when ability is generally the limiting factor)?

    Are many parts cross compatible?

    SV's in general:

    What are good upgrades on the SV's?

    What's with the different wheels and such? Like the F4 wheel, GSXR wheel, etc. Are there issues with the stock SV wheels?

    What are common issues on the SV's? Or adjustments that need to be made (ex. I've heard that the rear ride height should be increased slightly)?

    What modifications should be done to accommodate a taller rider? Taller seat, adjustable rearsets, angle the clipons forward? Anything else?

    Small bikes general:

    Why would you get a Ninja 300/400, R3, or RC390 instead of an SV (for learning purposes in particular)? Those all cost generally more. Concerns about reliability and maintenance because the SV's are generally older bikes? The SV is not as competitive in its respective class (I don't believe that)? The smaller bikes handle better? The SV may be too much power? I realize this might be too much comparing apples and oranges.

  17. lopitt85

    lopitt85 Well-Known Member

    I'm now messing with a carburetor for the first time in 8-10 years (1970 Plymouth Satellite that I sold) with my recent Ninja 250 project. I'm starting to realize why I didnt miss carbs :crackup:

    Once i get this one sorted out I'll probably never own another car or bike with a carb.

    I'll retrofit FI on a classic car if I have to.
    gapman789 and William Schneider like this.
  18. SuddenBraking

    SuddenBraking The Iron Price


    Fuck carbs.
    William Schneider likes this.
  19. William Schneider

    William Schneider Well-Known Member

    Hello Folks,

    I picked up a 2nd Gen SV650 from a member on the forum (see the photo)! It's not the prettiest but has some good upgrades (suspension, MC, SS lines, etc.). I already took it to Barber this week after the MA event and already crashed it:oops: (not much damage, was able to run it for the rest of the time). Thermosman helped me dial in the suspension but told me I had to rebuild the forks. They took significant force to compress, which led to a slight front-end bob in the turns. He believed that the fork oil used was far too heavy. Other than the front-end issue, the bike feels awesome, and I am excited to continue learning on it!

    I already picked a few additions from people on the forums and STG (PC3, quickshifter, LV exhaust, engine covers). I am trying to be very cheap with this bike because I don't really care about how it looks, it's an SV, so plenty of used parts, and I know I am going to crash/break things as I learn. The next stuff I am looking for is well-used bodywork (in the SE, so I don't have to ship), aftermarket angled clipons (for stock forks, 41mm, I believe), a steering damper, and adjustable rearsets (I'll be making a post in the WTB section as well). Once I get the PC3 and exhaust installed, I will be looking to get it tuned. Does anyone know a good engine tuner in the SE area, preferably closer to Huntsville? I know there are a lot of parts that fit on the GSXR 600/750 and the SV. Would aftermarket rearsets for the GSXR work on the SV? Are there any other "high-recommended" modifications that I should make to the bike for Superstock racing (other than safety wiring kind of stuff)?

    Any additional advice on the SV would be greatly appreciated.

    So, I am planning on starting to race a few times next year in the lightweight twins SS class. I have gone to 5 TD's with STT now and am still in the novice class. I tried to work with the instructors this week specifically on what I need to do to bump up to intermediate and go racing. The main skills to work on were lines through some of the corners, leaning the bike more, and putting down power while coming out of the corners. It was a little difficult to work on those this week because we were fighting rain the whole time. On the topic of starting racing next year it seems like the majority of folks on the forums think that is quite reasonable, but the majority at TD's think it will be out of my ability. I get the feeling that I would really like racing because every time I find someone on track around my ability, it makes me want to push harder to keep up with or pass them. With the fact that I am still in novice and will probably do about 3-5 more TD's this year, do y'all think it is unreasonable to be racing next year and how would I be able to determine when I am ready?

    Shenanigans likes this.
  20. baconologist

    baconologist Well-Known Member

    Fix the bike, do maintenance

    Seat time
    Seat time
    Seat time

    The first race of the year is in Feb at Tally. Spend your winter at JGP, first Sunday of the month they do a mock race.

    Seat time
    Seat time
    Seat time

    Prep the bike
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