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Thread: Small bike training for big bike racing

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    apriliaforum Junkie aftriathlete's Avatar
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    Small bike training for big bike racing

    Anyone ride/race small bikes, dirt or SuMo, for training for their big bike racing?

    I have a little junker CRF150F that's kinda fun, but considering what I have access to locally here in Tucson -- Musselman's Honda Circuit kart track and dirt facility with a flat oval track, 2 motocross tracks, a vintage motocross track, and a trail network -- I'm thinking about getting rid of it maybe for a small 2-stroke mini like an 85 with both dirt and sumo wheels/tires so I can do it all. The CRF150F just isn't made for what I'm throwing at it, the non-adjustable suspension is really made for small people just putting along on trails, and considering it's kind of a piece of junk I'm not even considering throwing money at it to put lipstick on a pig.
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    I have an RM65 sumo. Excellent training tool and it's a ton of fun as well.

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    apriliaforum prov-nov dazo's Avatar
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    Not sure if my KTM450 is the kind of small bike you are talking about, but I feel like riding in the dirt was one of the best things I've done for track riding

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    wow... a 150f is like a superbike compared to the CRF100 I ride.
    you dont need ohlins to do kart track laps and see benefits.
    however dirt biking is a good way to get injured.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dazo View Post
    Not sure if my KTM450 is the kind of small bike you are talking about, but I feel like riding in the dirt was one of the best things I've done for track riding
    Not a small bike by any means, but the same idea. I appreciate the value of dirt riding for track racing, it makes you comfortable at the limit of your bike's traction and you have to learn how to stay right there on the edge.


    Quote Originally Posted by turboblew View Post
    wow... a 150f is like a superbike compared to the CRF100 I ride.
    you dont need ohlins to do kart track laps and see benefits.
    however dirt biking is a good way to get injured.
    I'm not looking to be the next big motocross rider, but I would also like something that I can do the most basic suspension adjustments to. I wouldn't go so far as revalving or anything on a different bike, but at least having clickers would be nice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Luciano View Post
    I have an RM65 sumo. Excellent training tool and it's a ton of fun as well.
    That's what I'm talking about. It seems to be big here in the southwest, unfortunately not in Tucson from what I can find. I think an 85 would be perfect for what I want to use it for, but then I've never ridden an 85. Or a 65 for that matter. I've ridden a 2-stroke 100 and my CRF150F, and they're both on the large end for what I would want.
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftriathlete View Post
    That's what I'm talking about. It seems to be big here in the southwest, unfortunately not in Tucson from what I can find. I think an 85 would be perfect for what I want to use it for, but then I've never ridden an 85. Or a 65 for that matter. I've ridden a 2-stroke 100 and my CRF150F, and they're both on the large end for what I would want.
    Yea, the 65 and 85s are very popular. They're fast little buggers too; much quicker than something like a Grom or Z125. I have a ZX-6 shock on mine and rebuilt forks. If you haven't already, join Minimoto Alliance on Facebook; lots of good info and great group of people.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aftriathlete View Post
    I'm not looking to be the next big motocross rider, but I would also like something that I can do the most basic suspension adjustments to. I wouldn't go so far as revalving or anything on a different bike, but at least having clickers would be nice...
    on my 100... I did springs & raised the fluid level in the forks some. Enough to support my fat ass when getting jiggy with it on a kart track.
    If you have access to a dirt track...even better.
    Ive seen guys fit a stock R6 shock to a 100... not sure why though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Luciano View Post
    Yea, the 65 and 85s are very popular. They're fast little buggers too; much quicker than something like a Grom or Z125. I have a ZX-6 shock on mine and rebuilt forks. If you haven't already, join Minimoto Alliance on Facebook; lots of good info and great group of people.
    Joined. I have a couple guys that ride minis trying to talk me out of 2-strokes, saying they are too maintenance intensive. I feel like that's the case with the CRf150R too though, and that seems to be the only 4-stroke for racing minis.

    Quote Originally Posted by turboblew View Post
    on my 100... I did springs & raised the fluid level in the forks some. Enough to support my fat ass when getting jiggy with it on a kart track.
    If you have access to a dirt track...even better.
    Ive seen guys fit a stock R6 shock to a 100... not sure why though.
    I do have access to dirt, there's a little dirt oval and a vintage MX track. Idk, I'm wondering if I should give up the kart track idea and stick to training in the dirt since there's no one around here to ride with on the kart track anyway.
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftriathlete View Post
    Joined. I have a couple guys that ride minis trying to talk me out of 2-strokes, saying they are too maintenance intensive. I feel like that's the case with the CRf150R too though, and that seems to be the only 4-stroke for racing minis.
    You should do a top end every 40 hours orso but parts are plentiful and cheap. And 40 hours is quite a bit of track time! Other than that, oil every 10 hours. Tires easily last a whole season. It really isn't bad for a small race engine.

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    Wound up with a KX100. Put the heaviest springs on it I could get, but it's still soft for me. Super fun though, I got out on it this weekend for an hour on the vintage MX track at MCMP. Dirt only though, at this one I'm not planning to kart track it.
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    I've had the opportunity to use a stock ktm 390 duke which I often used for smaller GoKart track, around 1.2km long, no straight.
    I agree you don't need all the bling to make it work. What I found is that it helped me a lot for fitness & endurance since there's no straight, always need to flick the bike left right. Now I'm bringing the v4 to the same smaller tracks, lots of throttle control, nice practice to go as low as elbow down
    Since you're not there to kick lap times, you can focus on improving other riding style

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    That's the way to go to drastically improve yourself. Always back to basics

    Quote Originally Posted by ZarcoChamp View Post
    I've had the opportunity to use a stock ktm 390 duke which I often used for smaller GoKart track, around 1.2km long, no straight.
    I agree you don't need all the bling to make it work. What I found is that it helped me a lot for fitness & endurance since there's no straight, always need to flick the bike left right. Now I'm bringing the v4 to the same smaller tracks, lots of throttle control, nice practice to go as low as elbow down
    Since you're not there to kick lap times, you can focus on improving other riding style

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    Love mine

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    We have a guy up here with an indoor go kart track who lets guys ride/race minis. Up until a couple of years ago most of the guys rode the 125/140 Chinese minis. Rode/raced for a couple of winter seasons (our winters are 4-5 months long). Loved it. Brought me back to my ice racing days on a 1/16 mile oval. At 55 I was having a blast banging handlebars with the 20 somethings. Rode dirt track style and was backing it in in all the corners. Best part for me was we rode starting at midnight (20 years on night shift) till 3/4 in the morning. It was so great not having to dust off the cobwebs getting back on the bike in the spring. It was also excellent training for using your eyes as most of the corners you just about had to be looking backwards to see the exits if you wanted to do fast laps. The fast guys (of which I was happy to say I was one) lapped the track a second or more under the lap record of the owner on a 4 cycle race kart. Now that I have my Tuono, I may have to wipe the dust off the little bugger and go back. Best rider training I've done.

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    These are RS50's outfit with 125 motors, at our local kart track. It is super tight and i am learning a ton and really improving my skills. I am sure the next time I go out on a full size track i will be a lot more confident!
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