I wanna go fast! - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-05-2012, 08:26 AM Thread Starter
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I wanna go fast!

I took my V to the track on Saturday for the first time just to see what she could do. This is the end of my second season riding track days, and I normally ride in the intermediate group (having spent all of last season learning to not ride turtle slow). My normal track bikes have been a ZX-6R, then a Triumph Speed Four, and currently a Triumph Speed Triple 1050.

I signed up for the beginner level since I wasn't sure exactly how the V would handle, and because I wanted to run my exact street setup. Stock suspension, stock brake lines, EBC HH brake pads, Pilot Road 3 tires at normal street pressures (about 40/40).

Woah, was she fast.

The V doesn't have enough engine to beat sport bikes on the straights, but if you're willing to push her she can sure corner well. The instructors at the track day looked at my like I was a little nuts for running touring tires on the track, but it worked out just fine. By the end of the day I was running a solid intermediate pace and blowing by all the beginners. In one lap I passed 6 other bikes when I got sick of being stuck in traffic. The V has lean angle for days.

The only issue I ran into is that if you push a Pilot Road 3 to its traction limit, it will slip without warning. Driving out of one corner I lost the rear tire momentarily. All of a sudden my peg was grinding into the pavement *hard*. Standing the bike upright somewhat regained traction and from then on I took it a little easier.

I've got a spare set of rims and a buddy sold me some lightly used sticky tires in V size. I'm looking forward to next season to see what she can do with real tires in the intermediate class.

I'd rather be riding.
2005 Triumph Speed Triple | 2009 Blue Versys
1997 Suzuki DR350SE (sold) | 2004 Triumph Speed Four (sold) | 2008 ZX6R (sold) | 2008 Concours 14 (sold) | 2007 Suzuki M50 (sold) | 2006 Ninja 500 (sold)

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-05-2012, 09:57 AM
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Need some pics. Love seeing a V tooling around the track..
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-07-2012, 01:51 AM
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+1 on pics, especially of abused tires <3

2008 Kawasaki Versys
1994 Honda NTV 650
1999 Suzuki AN125
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 07:08 PM
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I've looked in to doing a track day, I live only an hour and a half from Barbar so hopefully I can make it there in the spring. Are you doing the STT track days? They seem like a great group of folks, plus there are a few that live in my area. Maybe we can hook up at Barbar next year, course I would have to start in the novice class but that's ok...

Sold 2005 honda vtx 1300 bought an '09 versys
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-14-2012, 08:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jehos View Post
I took my V to the track on Saturday for the first time just to see what she could do. This is the end of my second season riding track days, and I normally ride in the intermediate group (having spent all of last season learning to not ride turtle slow). My normal track bikes have been a ZX-6R, then a Triumph Speed Four, and currently a Triumph Speed Triple 1050.

I signed up for the beginner level since I wasn't sure exactly how the V would handle, and because I wanted to run my exact street setup. Stock suspension, stock brake lines, EBC HH brake pads, Pilot Road 3 tires at normal street pressures (about 40/40).

Woah, was she fast.

The V doesn't have enough engine to beat sport bikes on the straights, but if you're willing to push her she can sure corner well. The instructors at the track day looked at my like I was a little nuts for running touring tires on the track, but it worked out just fine. By the end of the day I was running a solid intermediate pace and blowing by all the beginners. In one lap I passed 6 other bikes when I got sick of being stuck in traffic. The V has lean angle for days.

The only issue I ran into is that if you push a Pilot Road 3 to its traction limit, it will slip without warning. Driving out of one corner I lost the rear tire momentarily. All of a sudden my peg was grinding into the pavement *hard*. Standing the bike upright somewhat regained traction and from then on I took it a little easier.

I've got a spare set of rims and a buddy sold me some lightly used sticky tires in V size. I'm looking forward to next season to see what she can do with real tires in the intermediate class.
Normal street pressure is 32/36 and you'll get slightly more traction going a few PSI lower than this. The high pressure, especially at the front will cause a sudden loss in traction and smaller contact patch. The front wheel has less weight on it so you want a lower pressure to equalize the tires. The PSI numbers printed on the tires are MAX safe inflation pressures the tire can handle. The tire pressure you actually run at depends on the weight of the rider and bike - manual recommends 32/36psi.

Last edited by twowheels; 11-14-2012 at 08:24 PM.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-15-2012, 07:49 AM
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Awesome You can find a few videos of the Versys on the track destroying race bike riders' egos hehe
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