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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
At the following tracks, what's considered decent or fast lap times to make it on the podium in provisional novice/novice/expert racing in ASRA (CCS)/AFM/WERA for supersport/superstock bikes? Even moreso, what lap times would be considered as respectable besides completing the race in itself?

BTW, I've looked at the lap times on the websites of the winners from 2018, 2017, and 2016.

- NJMP (Thunderbolt)
- VIR
- Jennings
- Barber
- Road Atlanta
- Summit
- Thunderhill
- Sonoma
- Laguna Seca
- Chuckwalla
- Buttonwillow
- Big Willow

Thanks!
 

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Jennings <1:20
Barber <1:35 is moderately fast for club level but I have seen "novices" run 32s.
Road Atlanta about the same


Tracks out west... whatever Corey Call can run plus 1 second...lol
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I see running <1:20s at Summit is somewhat fast. I see people who I've TD'ed with running those numbers, as well as #1 putting in 1:16s.

I also see <1:38s at VIR is probably respectable.

Those are both for Middleweight Supersport.
 

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AFM #327
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<10s off lap record is a good benchmark to start off with.

I dont race 600's in AFM, but on my R3. As Novice, multiple race winner in 2017/2018, I was ~5s off lap record at Buttonwillow and 7s off at Thunderhill and Sonoma. Novice winners at Thunderhill and Sonoma were ~5s off lap record. It also really depends on the year and competition you have. Sometimes, 10s off can get you a win, sometimes, 5s off is still 3rd place in novice (if there's a gifted teenager racing novice)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks. It's still a lot more I have to track down. Looking at race lap times, who's consistant year after year, etc...

I seriously need some sprocket work now to get that additional acceleration drive out of the corners. It helps with dropping lap times.
 

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I'll cover the east coast tracks and what would be real competitive times for Novices, that on an average weekend would give you a real good chance for getting on the podium. Keep in mind that with both orgs, you have some sand baggers that are running expert times, but don't do enough rounds throughout the year to get bumped. So you may occasionally have a ringer novice out there, but it's not the norm.

- NJMP (Thunderbolt) - 37s-38s
- VIR - 36s-37s
- Barber - 36s-37s
- Road Atlanta - 38s-39s
- Summit - 20s
 

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Thanks. It's still a lot more I have to track down. Looking at race lap times, who's consistant year after year, etc...

I seriously need some sprocket work now to get that additional acceleration drive out of the corners. It helps with dropping lap times.
15/43 is all you need on a R6 for any east coast track except Daytona or Road Atlanta. RA, you'll want 15/42, but until you're running sub 40's, 15/43 will work as well.

Don't fall into the 'I need short gearing' trap. You don't. Fix your slow corner speed, don't band aid the bike setup because you can't carry the corner speed. The faster you get, the taller gearing you'll end up running.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
15/43 is all you need on a R6 for any east coast track except Daytona or Road Atlanta. RA, you'll want 15/42, but until you're running sub 40's, 15/43 will work as well.

Don't fall into the 'I need short gearing' trap. You don't. Fix your slow corner speed, don't band aid the bike setup because you can't carry the corner speed. The faster you get, the taller gearing you'll end up running.
I've seen that advice given before.

The reason why I was thinking about changing the sprocket is because of my experience at Mid Ohio with turn 13 into 14, Laguna Seca coming out of turn 11 onto the straight - those types of turns in my opinion, you need drive as they're are vey slow speed turns. Also, I've noticed that on some tracks, I'm not even using the powerband's rev range effectively beause I can barely get the bike up to 150 mph on most of the mentioned tracks.

Wouldn't I want to have my top speed on any given track either revving to 14.5K in 5th or 6th gear while reaching my maximum speed on the track? Also, wouldn't I try to match my speed in any given gear to being in the middle of the power band during the most corners possible on the track to avoid excess shifting?

The examples:

16/45 (Stock) : 2.8125 with a top speed of 159.5 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.
15/42 : 2.8000 with a top speed of 164.8 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th. (Taller than stock).
15/43 : 2.8667 with a top speed of 161.0 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.
15/45 : 3.0000 with a top speed of 153.8 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.
15/47 : 3.1333 with a top speed of 147.3 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.

My understanding is fast guys are just touching 160 mphs at RA on the straight before the braking after pit out (CW). However, a good portion of the other tracks, many people aren't reaching 160 (unless they're really fast). I see why you recommended 15/42 and 15/43. I guess it can be used on most tracks as an ideal in the middle guide.

Maybe I just need to get out there and see what it is first hand.

Thanks.
 

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Wouldn't I want to have my top speed on any given track either revving to 14.5K in 5th or 6th gear while reaching my maximum speed on the track? Also, wouldn't I try to match my speed in any given gear to being in the middle of the power band during the most corners possible on the track to avoid excess shifting?

My understanding is fast guys are just touching 160 mphs at RA on the straight before the braking after pit out (CW). However, a good portion of the other tracks, many people aren't reaching 160 (unless they're really fast). I see why you recommended 15/42 and 15/43. I guess it can be used on most tracks as an ideal in the middle guide.

Maybe I just need to get out there and see what it is first hand.

Thanks.
Final drive at ~2.7 is about ideal. Shifting is part of it.
Yes turn 11 @ laguna is a 1st gear turn. Same with the corkscrew.
Not a whole lotta 1st gear turns in the SE.

160mph top speed? Um... you might be lucky to see 155 at Roebling IF you came out of turn 9 WFO at 120+mph. Road Atls back straight?? The tip of the expert field might hit 160...maybe. On the flip side you would need to be an absolute animal on the brakes. Plus RA has that dog leg so you are tipping in WFO.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I was going in looking at expert and novice lap times as well as speeds at the start of the braking zone on various tracks. There's a lot of variation in the same class from expert to novice. Take Thunderbolt for example. You have experts running +/- 1:30s and sniffing 145 mph by the time they get to braking marker 5, but some novices are running 35s and 36s while just making it to 135-140ish.

That 6 second spread is a lot, and I believe it mostly comes from carrying corner speed properly and having a decent drive when rolling onto the throttle. My goal this year, if the opportunity is there, is to run sub 32s a TB. I've never ridden RA, Jennings, Barber, Summit, or VIR, so half my day will be devoted to learning those tracks upon making it there - God willing.
 

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you probably want at least a day at barber...lol. Easy to get to 1:39s... whittling down below that is tough to do.
Jennings isnt hard to figure out and a track where turns 2, 3, 12, & 13 will seperate men from boys. No hard braking zones just alot of trailing. Nobody races there anymore.
VIR is kind of tough. No comment on Summit.
Road Atlanta has some hard braking areas.
Lil talledega is a really hard braking circuit for 1.5 miles.

Learning them at a track day vs morning practice of a race weekend... way easier.
 

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I've seen that advice given before.

The reason why I was thinking about changing the sprocket is because of my experience at Mid Ohio with turn 13 into 14, Laguna Seca coming out of turn 11 onto the straight - those types of turns in my opinion, you need drive as they're are vey slow speed turns. Also, I've noticed that on some tracks, I'm not even using the powerband's rev range effectively beause I can barely get the bike up to 150 mph on most of the mentioned tracks.

Wouldn't I want to have my top speed on any given track either revving to 14.5K in 5th or 6th gear while reaching my maximum speed on the track? Also, wouldn't I try to match my speed in any given gear to being in the middle of the power band during the most corners possible on the track to avoid excess shifting?

The examples:

16/45 (Stock) : 2.8125 with a top speed of 159.5 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.
15/42 : 2.8000 with a top speed of 164.8 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th. (Taller than stock).
15/43 : 2.8667 with a top speed of 161.0 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.
15/45 : 3.0000 with a top speed of 153.8 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.
15/47 : 3.1333 with a top speed of 147.3 @ 14.5 RPMs in 6th.

My understanding is fast guys are just touching 160 mphs at RA on the straight before the braking after pit out (CW). However, a good portion of the other tracks, many people aren't reaching 160 (unless they're really fast). I see why you recommended 15/42 and 15/43. I guess it can be used on most tracks as an ideal in the middle guide.

Maybe I just need to get out there and see what it is first hand.

Thanks.
Note: This reply is brash, not against you, but against the info you've read and quite frankly I'm tired of reading it.


No. I keep saying this over and over through out the years. I don't know where new track riders/racers pick up this info about this ****ing top speed in top gear bullshit. Last time I was at Mid Ohio I was turning 35's. Nothing great but good enough. I'll give you one guess as to the gearing I was running on my R6.

Take this mentality of "I need to use all 6 gears" and toss that stupid shit out the window. This is going to be some ground breaking information....

Not every track is a 6 gear track. NJMP, for example, is a 4 gear track. You never use 1st and you never use 6th. Barber, as well, is a 4 gear track. 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th. No first, no 6th.

R6's are like minnows in the water. They're ****ing everywhere. That means the setup for them is everywhere.

If you've never been to half the tracks we're talking about, put 15/43 on your bike, and Don't. ****ing. Touch. It.

There is a 99.9% chance if Turbo, myself, or any other half decent Expert watched a gopro video of yours, we would find no less than 12 things affecting your lap times far more drastically than what sprockets are on your bike.

You will want to **** with your bike at each track you go to. Don't. 15/43. Set it and forget it until you actually get to the point where it will begin to matter.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I've never gotten my bike into 6th gear on any tracks I've ridden. I've only gotten my bike into 5th gear, and that was a stretch when I did (short shifting 4th at about 13K or so).

My understanding as of now about novice supersport (middleweight), I'll be up against people running 750s and 848s. During trackdays, I remember running side by side with an associate of mine on a 750 (he has since become much faster), and upon me exiting turn 12 at TB with him on my tail, he would be pulling hard by me by the time we got to the start/finish line.

Let's say I can match another racer corner for corner with speed and he's on a 750 or a 848, how do I stay competative down the straight? That's generally where I get walked on by bigger bikes.




Also, I go back in and study the videos I take while at the track. I try to identify where I'm weak, where I can brake less, trail more, and where I can carry more speed upon corner entry. By no means am I saying I'm super fast or great, but I'm trying to improve. I'm confident that the next time I run at Laguna Seca or TBolt, I should be able to run 42s or less and 34s or less respectively. This is just based on me looking at my own lines, braking, accelerating, and seeing where I can get faster in an attempt to get to somewhat novice competative lap times.

I need wayy more seat time. Smooth is fast, and fast is good. My methodology is use the speed I can carry in conjunction with as much real estate as I can to get there. I'll keep studying, practicing, and implementing until I get to a competative pace.


I'll see if some of the fast guys during practice weekends or trackdays wouldn't mine me to trying to follow their lines and keep up with their pace.
 

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You don't need a data logger. It's not hard to know where you're slow at, your competition will show you when they come slipping by.

Knowing where you're slow, and FIXING where you're slow, are two very different things.
 
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