Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

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Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by menzies3032 » Sep 28th, '20, 14:04

Hi All

Over the last month I have been very lucky to be able to attend 3 track days (having had them cancel earlier in the year due to Covid Lock Down)
I have to say that the experience was bloody fantastic.

Following a recent conversation with a friend from Switzerland who was blown away by how little money it costs to have a full track day experience on the best tracks in the UK with all the best equipment it reminded me that as a group we are not all experienced track day goes with a garage full of track bikes, road bikes, muddy bikes, touring bikes etc. So wanted to take 5 minutes just to share.

If you have had a bash at doing a track day and are thinking about doing more but don't yet want to spend thousands on buying a track bike and all the equipment, then you want to keep reading this.

Bike Hire
For me personally this is a perfect option. (for others it wont and will be to much money.... and that's fine each to there own)
You pay some money, you take nothing other then what you need / want to ware to ride in (leather boots gloves etc) and then you are given your hire bike for the day. Everything is taken care of for you. Tyres, tyre pressures, fuel, tyre warmers, all of it. When its your session you walk in the garage they give you the bike you get on it and ride it. When your session is done you hand it back and they deal with it for you till your next session. Its like having your own personal pitt crew.
How much does it cost... well depends on the bike you want and how many times you want to go per year. If you want to ride a track prepped 2019 ZX636 then your looking at £300 for the day(not including cost of track day). If you fall off it and destroy the bike you have a maximum liability of £750. If your looking for 1000cc then expect to pay more. If your happy with older bikes and lower power then expect to pay less, if you use the service 6 times per year then also expect discounts.

If this sounds something your interested in then highly recommend speaking with Matt at Small Boys Track Hire Bikes. (sorry no SWB discounts yet and to be clear I personally get nothing out of this if you ring him. This is just my personally recommendation)
http://www.smallboytrackbikes.co.uk/the-bikes.php

Tracks
When it comes to tracks we are very lucky in the UK there are a lot of tracks to choose from and a lot of people running them. Thanks to our own Billinom8s we all get the opportunity of being on track at Llandow every year and this is a great introduction. However if you have watch British Superbikes and are thinking I really want to go where the racers go and try riding round that track..... well you can.
Personally I find "No Limits" (https://nolimitstrackdays.com) my organiser of choice offering you 7 session a day for 20 minutes per session.
Expect prices to range from £75 to £170 depending on tie of the year and the track your choosing. Cadwell Park mid season expect £99 however Oulton Park height of season expect the £170.

Some of these bigger tracks really are something and will take you a bit of time to learn but are also very special places to be if you enjoy being on track. If your looking for the full track day experience then its worth stepping up and having a go at one of these tracks.

As I mentioned at the start I have been luck to do 3 recently which include

Cadwell Park
Known as being the UK Nurburgring a favorite of most with up hill, down dale, banked bends, fast straights and slow tight bends as well as "The Mountain" If your interested what the track actually looks like when your riding it then you can watch one of my videos (if you don't want to watch then don't click the link B-) ) https://youtu.be/ZIgudBjisfQ
118616552_3923509450999472_860895988454255107_o.jpg
Oulton Park
Was a fantastic place. Not only a great track but pitt garages and a good cafe. The track is technical, fast and flowing and great great fun. If your interested what the track actually looks like when your riding it then you can watch one of my videos (if you don't want to watch then don't click the link B-) ) https://youtu.be/xUNWYQ-4EPw
downloadz_160920_4643_oulton.jpg
Donington Park
Again a very special place. Probably the 2nd most important track in the UK (after Silverstone) and arguably the number 1 UK tracks for bikes used by WSB and BSB races. Again lots to learn and and great garages and cafe areas. If your interested what the track actually looks like when your riding it then you can watch one of my videos (if you don't want to watch then don't click the link B-) ) https://youtu.be/oqWJZWXUwfw
downloadz_220920_0520_donington.jpg
Hope you found this helpful and this helps for some of the newer people to track days to inspire you to come and try it out. If its your thing it really can be a lot of fun.

Enjoy, ride safe :-bd
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by Ruffian » Sep 28th, '20, 14:26

I'm surprised you didnt make a youtube video for explaining this rob??
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by menzies3032 » Sep 28th, '20, 18:39

Ruffian wrote:
Sep 28th, '20, 14:26
I'm surprised you didnt make a youtube video for explaining this rob??
Although I know your comment was a bit of a sarcastic one and I get why however I have to say actually the thought had crossed my mind and why not :-ss

Was just conscious that many of us (yourself included Ian) have done many track days and know how it all works and are confident about what equipment we need and how to use it and how a track day runs.... but I am assuming that is not the same for everybody so thought this might be helpful for some, that perhaps was a different way to introduce themselves to the idea and see if its for them.
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by Ruffian » Sep 28th, '20, 18:59

You know me rob,

I'm all game for fun and games and light hearted piss taking. I do agree that some people who never have done a track day would love a general introduction of what to hopefully expect.

Personally I struggle with YouTube at the moment as it just seems every man and his dog are making videos of random cack trying to get their 3 minutes of fame.

A bit like colin furse and people. I just can't stand it.

If its genuine trying to help out then brilliant.
If people are doing it for the look at me look at me, then got more chance of being noticed running down exeter high street naked.
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by MikeZ » Sep 28th, '20, 20:25

One option not mentioned above is using your day to day road bike. It doesn't matter what bike you ride or how fast/slow you are, just pick the speed group that suits you. I usually ride there, ride the track, ride home. Obviously if it's too far away for me to do in one day then i stop overnight before and ride home after. The big disadvantage of this way is that if you bin your bike then you have real hassle.

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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by billinom8s » Sep 28th, '20, 20:49

Same as if you bin it on the road.

They do Road Bike Only trackdays now too.
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by menzies3032 » Sep 29th, '20, 19:06

Using road bikes on track days is how I started and to be honest riding a £2k bike on track I was up for, but when I sold it and bought a £6k bike was really not so keen for putting it on track. Did it once and was just to worried about “the what if”. Track days are so much fun I personally really enjoy them. I guess the message is, give them a go but if your worried or concerned about putting your shiny road bike on a track then hiring might be an option for you.
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by julesh » Sep 29th, '20, 22:01

"Known as being the UK Nurburgring " by who exactly :lol:

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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by R6 STU » Sep 30th, '20, 22:36

I was lucky enough to win a Facebook competition.
Track day and hire paid for!!!
I rented an R1 last year with track bike hire but with small boys it was a full super stock spec zx10 on slicks (wets for the morning’s wet session when it pissed it down)
The bike was a big step up from my r6 but great to ride a potentially £15k bike, probably £25-30k to build.

I’ve had the temptation to get a thou but initial cost and running costs it’s just not worth it.

When you do the maths it’s a no brainier.
Van hire alone is 25% of the bike.

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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by R6 STU » Sep 30th, '20, 22:41

https://youtu.be/l7Hpk_82A7c

I’ll go back next year to try out the gsxr1000

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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by menzies3032 » Oct 1st, '20, 16:44

Hi R6 STU
What a great prize to win. that's a result.

Great video as well like the rear facing camera angle must try doing this myself. Being a bit of a Suzuki fan myself I was very tempted by the Gixxer Thou at Donington. I think it would be good at Silverstone or Donington but think will stick to the 600's for Cadwell as dont think you need it. For me the perfect bike was the one I started on which was the Gixxer 750 not the torque of the 1000cc coming out the corner but 140bhp to fire you down the straights.

As you say for me its a no brainer cost wise and I have 0 stress when comes to preparation or maintenance.
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by R6 STU » Oct 1st, '20, 23:15

If I didn’t do euros I’d sell the r6 and use the money for renting.

I did want to try the gsxr as it’s probably the thou I like the most. Will next year.

But nice to ride a super stock spec bike.

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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by R6 STU » Oct 1st, '20, 23:18

menzies3032 wrote:
Oct 1st, '20, 16:44
For me the perfect bike was the one I started on which was the Gixxer 750 not the torque of the 1000cc coming out the corner but 140bhp to fire you down the straights.
Wouldn’t fancy the zx10 at cadwell or Oulton.

I really wanted a go on the triumphs last year but only zx6’s now

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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by menzies3032 » Oct 2nd, '20, 15:40

The Triumphs were really good bikes when they were working and had a brilliant exhaust note. But he really had some problems with them. They were always over heating and blowing gaskets and the amount of times I would hire one and there was problem with the quick shifter.

Have to say the ZX636 are nicer bikes to ride and a great riding position however there down on the 765 by about 10 bhp. Not that you really notice or that it causes an issue unless you happen to be trying to overtake a 1000cc on the straight then its obvious.

Think next year might just give the Gixxer 1000 a go at some point and see how i get on.
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Re: Cracking Track Days and Small Boys Track Hire Bikes

Post by Ruffian » Oct 2nd, '20, 18:50

menzies3032 wrote:
Oct 2nd, '20, 15:40
The Triumphs were really good bikes when they were working and had a brilliant exhaust note. But he really had some problems with them. They were always over heating and blowing gaskets and the amount of times I would hire one and there was problem with the quick shifter.

Have to say the ZX636 are nicer bikes to ride and a great riding position however there down on the 765 by about 10 bhp. Not that you really notice or that it causes an issue unless you happen to be trying to overtake a 1000cc on the straight then its obvious.

Think next year might just give the Gixxer 1000 a go at some point and see how i get on.

Do you understand why I enjoy the Kawasaki bikes now rob??
Would love too try a full on 1000 but still reckon small block would be more fun for me.
Ktm 390 is what I want to enjoy.
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