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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

I'm looking to get prepared for a new year, and in this one I want to start going to track days and putting some quality time down with some nice clean tarmac.

Does anyone have experience of tracking an 848 and have any recommendations for a track noob on what (not) to do, any essential equipment that will make it easier, or any basic tips n' tricks that will help a noob get up to speed quicky.

Any recommendations on tracks to avoid, tracks to go to in Germany/France/Italy would be much appreciated. I'm based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Thanks for any replies...

Dave
 

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interested to see what kind of info the more experienced guys can put in. im also looking to get into track days this year as well. already bought a full termi set and gonna throw a ohlins shock and cartridges also since im a lighter guy.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Good start point. Do the race termi's disqualify the bike from the EU tracks due to noise/emissions limits on public track days? I've been thinking about them as I love the sound but don't want the hassle of having to do some maintenance before and after track days to avoid any disqualifications on the day.
 

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I wouldn't do anything other than get some Optimal race fairings (best bang for the buck). Don't want to crash those OEM fairings. Once you've done a few track days and you've really decided you want to continue (most likely will), then start investing in mods.
 

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I agree. No doubt you will get hooked, but best to just do your first with a close to stock bike to see how you actually like the closed course experience, because regardless of how setup the bike is nobody sets the world on fire their first trackday.

For low cost initial mods, I would look into things that help secure you TO the bike and things that help "fitting it" to your personal ergonomic preferences: StompGrip/ TechSpec tank traction pads, grippier footpegs and/or new rearsets, adjustable levers, maybe a new grippier seat like a DP Neoprene or Superpole, etc. I'd also try to get to a shop that deals with bike suspension setups to have static & rider sag measurements adjusted so you have the OEM stuff working as well as it can.

Yes, track bodywork IS a very worthwhile investment to protect those $$$ OEM plastics, but I'm a fan of doing the first few trackdays in the OEMs because it makes you aware that you are in for a VERY expensive event if you go out and try to set the lap record your first time out. Use track time to learn the flow of the course (basically when do I turn left, when do I turn right, why can't I see where I'm supposed to tu....oh there it is) then try to work with a CR (control rider) for suggestions on lines, work on body position, etc. EVERY trackday should be a learning and practice experience.

Then register for a trackday, have a blast, then start attacking things you didn't like about the bike. :)

As an aside, since you asked about tracks in Italy, I would DEFINITELY head over to the DRE (Ducati Riding Experience) portion of Ducati's main site as they are basically an organized riding school that utilizes 848Evos & 1199s as their student bikes at circuits like Misano and Mugello.Ducati - Ducati Riding Experience_ - Ducati Riding Experience

For Germany, there is a group site called 'Bridge to Gantry' based in the UK, but last year they set up a motorcycle-only training/ riding day at the Nurburgring Nordschliefe. I'm on the email list for information regarding the event for this season, because 13 miles per lap of the most demanding road course in the world on a motorcycle is something I NEED to experience. Ride the 'Ring with safety and speed

You are in for a VERY fun and HIGHLY addicting side of the motorcycle world.

-Christian
 

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I am in Italy...you have to get to Mugello!! I know they don't care about noise out there. I would also replace the coolant with some distilled water and water wetter.

Hit me up if you want to meet up at Mugello. I leave Italy in May but I am going to try to get in some track days in March and April...

Also, if you are going up into Germany, I would suggest the Nurmburg Ring Nordschliefe. It isn't a true track anymore, but I would do it just to say I did.
 

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I am in Italy...you have to get to Mugello!! I know they don't care about noise out there. I would also replace the coolant with some distilled water and water wetter.

Hit me up if you want to meet up at Mugello. I leave Italy in May but I am going to try to get in some track days in March and April...

Also, if you are going up into Germany, I would suggest the Nurmburg Ring Nordschliefe. It isn't a true track anymore, but I would do it just to say I did.
Why is it not a true track anymore? I heard they closed that ridiculously long straightaway...is that true? Is it not a closed loop anymore?
 

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Race plastics, tank guards, clutch cover, frame sliders, axle sliders, bar end sliders, foldable/cheap levers are all recommended minimums. Other than that, start in the novice group, ride well within your ability (7/10) the first few track days and work your way up from there. Bike needs very little, riders need a lot of work.
 

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Get your suspension set up. Go ride.

Bodywork would be a good idea if youre queasy about the stock body.

Some decent tires would be a good idea as well. other than that go out and enjoy the bike. Dont try and drag knee at 55 degrees on your first day. Focus more on running predictable lines and maybe take a novice school if there is one around you.

welcome to the addiction! :thumbsup
 

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I agree with everything that was said. You may also want to purchase some sliders to protect your bike in the event you go down.
 

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For those interested, I just shot a couple of FB messages with the B2G group for their projected English-speaking training days @ Nürburgring. Looks like they are working on confirming dates in July and also working with a company in the bike rental trade for sportbikes rentals. He was thinking around 2k Euros (so about $2500 US) for liability hold on a credit card to be released when the bike comes back in one piece. Then its just the matter of flight, car rental, and hotel. I'll share details as I get them as far as the Doc Scholl/ B2G riding school goes.

I'm actually really thinking of doing this. Would be great if I could bring my own bike over, but that would be too much of a hassle should something go wrong in the process. If I have to spend a couple of days at the 'Ring on an R1 or S1000RR (which I'd prefer since I rode one for 2 days @ a SBK School last April) I'd be ok with that. :)
 

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If I would have pulled my head out of my ass, I would have done this last year. I live like 6 hours away from the ring.
 

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The nordschliefe has been a one way toll road for the last 80 years...according to wiki.
i wouldn't listen to everything you see on wiki ;)...it's still a track where they do track days all the time...so obviously not a toll road. I'm pretty sure they don't do as much racing there anymore, but it's still heavily visit by track day organizations and automotive companies testing out new cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Just found an interesting web site that allows me to visualise and discover tracks near me in the EU:

Tracks in Europe - Trackpedia

The site doesn't seem to include all tracks, as I know of one in Bourg-en-bresse which does Cars and Bikes, but I'm going to see if I can register and add it.

Does anyone else have any links that do a similar function but may be more up to date/inclusive?
 

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Blue masking tape, hose clamp for your oil filter.

Certified back protector with full gear.


Trailer to tow your bike in.


Tent for shade, chairs.


Water and food.


+ all the other things mentioned. Suspension set up properly "sag" is a must prior to even loading gear up.


Never been there lol ;) others will have better info.
 

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Does the EVO has rear sets with solid mount foot pegs? I've been very happy with mine from vortex lots of grip on the pegs and well built.
 

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I would also ride the bike stock for your first few track days. But I would for sure put better tires on it, the stock tires kinda suck. I really like the Pirelli Rosso's, they stick very well and work on the street well after your trackday.

The key on your first trackday is to be unprepared... show up, see what other people do, learn from that and make your own judgement call. The quicker you go, the more frequent you go, the more you'll wanna spend on the bike and track day oriented supplies.

Trackdays are addicting, but the quicker you go, the more expensive the "hobby" becomes. So be mind full of that, go out there, enjoy yourself, hook up with a trackday regular and learn! :)
 
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