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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Wish List #12

Winding up the 12 days of Christmas Wish Lists I'm going to list what I think every motorcyclist wishes she or he will find under the tree. A track day or track school. Who doesn't want to ride faster and better?!


Warning from the Surgeon General: Track Days are highly addictive and have been known to cause such side effects as distended smile muscles and safer street riding.


The nice thing is that you can send a buddy (or buddette?) a gift certificate for part of the cost to thank them for coming out in the dead of night to rescue you from a flat tire on the side of the road. Buy one for yourself and the two of you can have a great time together.


A common misapprehension about track days and track schools is that you have to be fast to attend one. Or that you have to be a racer, or have a race bike. WRONG! You only have to want to improve your speed and handling skills to attend. Every school has different groups on the same day that separates the newbies from the intermediates from the fast riders. They put you in with other riders of a similar skill level so that you learn in a comfortable environment. Challenging in an exciting way, but not terrifying.

As far as bikes are concerned I've seen Gold Wings, BMW GS's, and vintage Triumphs on the track. Ben rides his Sprint ST with the bags off while Dave has been seen on the track with his R1200RT and the bags still on. Beth has ridden her 175cc class racer in with the bigger bikes. I'll admit that choppers would probably be a little out of place. If you don't want to risk your own machine all the schools have bikes and leathers for rent at reasonable prices.

Here are a couple of ones that I know. Leave a comment if you have another favorite.



Penguin has been in New England for as long as I can remember. Several friends recommend them highly for professionalism, quality of instruction and amount of track time.




My friend Ben is a great fan of Tony's Track Days. Great people and plenty of track time are his comments. A nice feature is that they run at both Loundon, NH (NHMS) and NJ Motorsports Park (Thunderbolt)



On the west coast the California Superbike School has always gotten rave reviews. Keith Code has literally written the book(s) about fast riding so what more is there to be said?

Tell them I sent you if you want to feel cornered.