There is little more invigorating than riding your bike on tracks and territories that you haven’t experienced before, and if you want to ride your bike in a safe and controlled environment without the threat of speed cameras or other hazards dampening your speed, then a track day may just be the answer to your prayers.
It’s not just a case of turning up and riding full throttle though! To get the most out of your track day, you need to take note of the following hints and tips.
1 Safety Equipment
Most tracks will have strict safety legislation that you must adhere to gain access to the track. You will more than likely have to have full leathers, but you will definitely need an AS1698 Australian Standards helmet and enclosed shoes – thongs just won’t cut it. Check in advance what the track you are visiting recommends that you wear.
Transporting your motorbike may be a new experience for you if you can transport your bike in a van or trailer. A day on the track can be exhausting, and you want to have a safe journey home. Your bike is an expensive piece of kit, and so you need to secure it well to van or trailer. Check that your trailer is roadworthy before you load it with your bike: the tyres are inflated and the electrics work on the trailer light boards. You don’t want to be stopped by police for an oversight.
Make sure that the licence you hold covers you for track day riding, as a minimum you may have to hold a racers Clubman one day licence. Take your licence documents and identification with you to confirm that you are qualified to ride on the track. The benefit of a Clubman licence is that you are covered for personal accidents so that in the event of an emergency you are protected financially.
Many a rider has turned up to a track only to realise that they don’t have enough fuel to last the day. Your tank needs to be full before you enter the circuit. If you can, bring a spare can, just in case you need a top up! Remember that just as your bike needs fuelling, you do too. Being hungry and dehydrated can affect your concentration on the track, so bring enough food and liquids with you to help you enjoy your day.
The temptation to go full on the throttle will be great, but you must try to resist – initially. Get a feel for the track, where the corners are, where the straights are, and any potential tight spots. Use your reconnaissance laps to warm tyres before you test your and your bike’s abilities.
Track days are a great way to take your motorbiking to a new level. It’s the chance to ride without having to worry about the hazards that face motorbike riders every day. It’s an opportunity to meet likeminded people and have some serious fun! Follow our hints and tips to make the most of a track day.