Kawasaki Versys Forum banner
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since I have room in my trailer, I'm going to bring, prep and ride the Versys on the track for a session or two this weekend. I'll be riding at VIR's South Course. I'll spend most of the time on my Gixxer, but the group said I could go ahead and tech two bikes, so I'll give the Versys a couple of sessions to see how it does.

Wish me luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
139 Posts
Sounds like a blast! I know I can hit the tight turns and switchbacks harder/faster on the Versys than on my VTR.... and I still have the stock tires on the V.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
I went to a trackday at Little Talladegha Grand Prix and was so tempted to take it out there. Let us know how it handles out there and post pics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
Had my V out on the Kilarney race track in Cape Town last weekend. I went along with the BMW club (tons of GS' and Dakars). I was one of two Kawas there, other one was a ninja.

Waiting for the fotos of the day to become available, then I'll pull some this way as well.

The V was sweet on the track, I left there feeling so much more confident in what my V can do if I let it ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
108 Posts
That is awesome!!! I would love to get my V. on the track, it would do wonders for feeling out where the limits are... though, I must admit, I've done a great deal of that on the street. But the track is a whole different animal. You get to hit the same corners over and over and build everything up, and in an environment that is constant. Mos def would love pictures when you get them!!!
Aus,
Erik!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
754 Posts
The V was sweet on the track, I left there feeling so much more confident in what my V can do if I let it ;)
I knew this bike would rip on the track much like the SV 650. Thats one of the reasons I got it. I heard that former AMA superbike rookie of the year Brian Livengood uses a Versys for endurance races. It is a fully capable track tool. Now I gotta get a track day in.:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
not to hijack thread, but turns out pics of the BMW track day I had the V at will be slow in the coming :( Apparently the usual photographer (CircuitChaser) wasn't there, the other guy with a big lens was a professional photographer but a friend of one of the guys there, hoping to get hands on the fotos once guy makes them available to his friend.

See here (No V in sight though :()
BMW forum after the track day

I see my buddy requested pics of the V on the track but no comebacks yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm back and the Versys did great at the track. It actually did better than my Gixxer 1000, but I've been chasing brake problems with that bike for a whole season and this past weekend was no different. In fact, I packed up early and came home at lunchtime on the first day.

Back to the Versys, it did quite well. We were riding on the smaller VIR South course. There is a fairly long straight that runs uphill. While the speedo on my Gixxer would regularly show well into the 160s, the Versys maxed out at an indicated 115 mph. I definitely had the the slowest motorcycle in a straight line, but I was not the slowest motorcycle on the track by any means. It is fun to have a motorcycle on the track where you can basically turn in, crack the throttle to put some weight on the rear and then just go WFO at the apex. Fun!

For braking, I was expecting fairly poor performance because they seem fairly weak on the street. A nice healthy progressive tug on the brakes produced very good stopping performance. Here, the softer initial bite of the brakes allowed weight to transfer before the majority of the braking force was applied. Stopping from only 115 was not taxing and I experienced no fade during the 20 minute session.

The suspension is very soft on the Versys, so being smooth is a BIG plus in transitions. There is a hairpin turn on the back side of the course that leads to gentle right hand turn transitioning to an uphill left hand turn. If I rode aggressively through the transition the motorcycle would bob and weave through this section. By riding in "rain-mode" I was able to transition in a much smoother manner and keep everything composed. This would make an excellent rain riding (racing?) trainer.

The Versys also turns in with very little effort. I was able to ride hard from the drop of the hat and felt like I could drain a whole tank of gas at a time. On my Gixxer, riding in August), I'm soaking wet after 20 minutes. The Versys was a pleasure!

On my second lap, I was scraping pegs on both sides and having a ball. As an FYI, you still have a 1/2" (~1 cm) of tire tread once the pegs start to scrape. I was not able to drag a knee on Versys because of (1) short legs and (2) only one session with peg feelers still installed. I may try again at my next trackday.

The tires were fine and I didn't even lower the pressures to track-appropriate levels.

So, In summary, the Versys was a ball to ride at the track. Plus, faster riders won't feel pressured into a banzai hairball pass because they know as soon as the road straightens out, they can just blow by.

Pics as soon as they are available, I promise!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
139 Posts
Very cool! Just an observation.... at only 155Lbs, I have less than 1 cm chicken strips left and have never scraped the pegs... (yet) I do tend to hang off a tad to the inside too though
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
754 Posts
Your write up was awesome Don! I cant wait to get on the track now thanks to you. Do you moonlight for Motorcyclist or what? :thumb::clap::thumb:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I had about 1800 miles on my tires and had a blast. I think sticky tires would tax the soft suspension even more.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Let the peg scraping begin!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
440 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Bummer! Picsofyou.com had a hard-drive crash so all the pictures have been lost!

That settles it, I'll have to do another trackday on the Versys to get some pictures.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
no news on pictures from my side either, suxor :mad:

I really wanted pics of me and my V on the track..... it's not vanity... it's appreciation ;)
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top