Welp, I made it out yesterday and while the day was nothing short of an adventure, it was spec-freakin-trackular!
I managed to get the brake pads done, and the tank grips put on, but once the temps hit 92 degrees I looked at my motorbike and I thought: "You know, today just isn't the day for a major ordeal so I'm gonna button her up and hope for the best. So I did. And we loaded her up and she went off to my friend's house for a little slumber party before our 6 am departure.
It was every bit as beautiful as it looked as we rolled out of town. There was a serene emptiness to the streets as we made our way out of dodge and along the two lane blacktop leading to the track. We got there with plenty of time to spare to sit and befriend our neighbor, who had an absolutely gorgeous Aprilia RSV4. Sorry, but I jisss loooooooooove me some RSV4.
The day started off pretty well, and I immediately picked up where I left off in my lap times. The C Group this session was substantially more amateur than usual and I found myself breaking in the new pads on more than one occasion as a rider veered out into my path. It's cool, I remember when I was a noob... then again, I am always learning something so I guess I'm a perma-noob who just has a few more habits down than some. I brushed it off as I kept on my quest to do my thing. I don't want to sound like one of those people who makes excuses, but the tank grips made a huge difference in grip and leverage. I would say that throughout the day I was 30% less fatigued from having to constantly scoot back on the seat, and my crotch didn't take the classic Kawi crotch punt one time. It also made a difference in my cornering.
That pic was taken during one of the last sessions of the day. These were taken earlier on:
This is my favorite corner on the track. Turn 3 on the map below, its a nice little uphill-dowhill series of awesome. Turn 2 is great, too but I love me some elevation changes and this one just gets my grits every time. I am constantly working to take it with just the right amount of finesse and I got just a little bit closer to nailing it yesterday.
I also watched a guy completely skip the chicane portion and run himself straight off the dirt, up the hill and back onto the track. It isn't the first time I've seen it happen but I was somewhat peeved that he kicked dust up into my face during my great zen moment. Oh well, shit happens. And later in the day I wound up returning the favor of dickishness when I passed a guy on the inside of the kink leading up to the Bus Stop. But I graciously apologized... well sorta.
Anyway, ultimately I got myself into a pretty good rhythm throughout the day and managed to get a lot more video this time around. I'll get that uploaded ASAP but for now there are just the pics.
Coming out of the Sweeper and into the esses
Some additional pics from the day:
And then there was a minor breakdown situation on the way home from the track. I'll tell ya, nothing will make you think about the quality of your motorcycle tie-downs quite like this:
Still... there was much to behold in the irony of also catching the sunset...
Edit* I should amend this to point out that our configuration doesn't run the mazda turn, only the sweeper (Turn 10).