Thursday, November 30, 2006

Back On Track

I guess I should just admit that I suck at this whole blog thing. Oh well.

I spent the weekend before Thanksgiving at Jason Pridmore's STAR school. It's not cheap, it's not nearby, but it sure is fun. If you have a sportbike you owe it to yourself to get it out on a track. It's almost certainly safer than your daily commute to work.

They had a photographer at the event. Here are a couple pics: Pic1 Pic2

With some luck maybe I can convince Dave and/or Jason to thier butts out on the track. STAR has posted thier 2007 schedule (and they claim to have a few more dates in the works).

Here are a few things I learned at the track and on the trip as a whole:
1) Being fat and out of shape isn't conducive to spirited motorcycle riding. It takes alot out of you. Want a demo? Get down in a squat, lean forward and put your weight on your toes with your butt about 18 inches off the ground. Feel good? Now stay there for 20 minutes.
2) Tighten the pinch-bolt for your eliptical gear. It sucks when the chain suddenly develops 6 inches of slack when your coming out of a corner. No one got hurt and the bike was fine but it had to sit on the side of the track for 3 sessions before we took a break and I could retrieve it.
3) A 2.5-liter 4 cylinder is not sufficient if you're pulling a trailer from Seattle to Vegas to Tucson to Seattle. Sure, it will get the job done, but be prepared to downshift. Alot.
4) It's hard to find a parking spot in the mall. When you have a trailer. On the Friday after Thanksgiving. If there's a car dealer in the mall I suggest parking in thier lot. The spaces are big.
5) Getting boxed into a car dealership parking lot when it closes really sucks. When you have a trailer. On the Friday after Thanksgiving. If there's a curb I suggest driving over it. Carefully.
6) If you live in Tucson or Vegas and you ride a bike (or drive a convertible, or having any need of nice weather) DON'T MOVE TO SEATTLE. Vegas: 72 and sunny. Tucson: 82 and sunny. Seattle: 28 and snowing.

In other motorcycle news:

What do you think of this? I'm going to the Seattle motorcycle show this weekend to see it in person. I don't really need one. (Does anyone ever really *need* a motorcycle?) But I like the way it looks and it's lighter and more powerful than my Daytona. Which means I can get real fat and still go real fast.

I'll probably never own a new Ferrari. So this might be as close as I get to a new Italian speed machine.

I gave up on the Suzuki. I took it to a local dealer to have them deal with the oil leak and do the tune-up work. Pulling the motor (again) was just more than I was up for on this project. At this I'd just like to see it done.