That’s right, the old beast came through on the year’s biggest ride!
I had the Repi all prepped and ready for this year’s Friendship Ride… lines bled, parts lubed, and even some old parts replaced… followed up by a good scrub and polish. Well, “the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry”, and come Saturday morning the battery decided it was done. I guess nine years of starts was all it was able to take. Time was running out, didn’t know what to do. Should I continue on with the Repi, knowing that I would have to be push started after each stop and face the ridicule from all my battery tending friends? Oh, HELL NO!
I quickly pulled the cover off Ol’ Yeller, dusted off the parts that were dusty. Wiped down all the gruff from the previous rides, checked the tire pressure and when I went to start it up… nothing. Damn, I had unplugged the tender to use for some other, at the time “necessary” electric device and forgot to plug it back in. No worries, I knew that the battery was good so with a quick jump from the wife’s car, we were on our way.
That’s right, no prep, no fancy new parts, no clean and polish, just wake up, shake the bugs off and go. I did require a little help on my first stop/start, but after the first leg Ol’ Yeller was starting and stopping like the best of them. Still had to endure a day of ridicule and jabs from the mob, but I held my head up high with the fact that my oldest, slowest, most outdated bike still took care of business. I just love this thing, and I’m probably the most comfortable on the bike after owning and riding it for the past 21 years.
Here’s to old friendships that never let you down.
Well, at least for this year. Another great day at the track, the temperature was perfect and for the first time in recent years I was able to enjoy the day without rain, cold or blistering hot temps.
I was so happy to see Dave Moss there as I’ve been wanted to get his hands on Juicy to work out the kinks I’ve had since the git go. “Best 40 bucks you’ll spend on your bike”, so true. Dave is a genius at setting up bikes and after the first few session, he had the bike feeling so much better and I enjoyed the rest of the day working on the cornering tips he provided.
I’m quickly realizing that I need to work harder to get in better shape as these days really take their toll by the mid afternoon sessions. Over winter I’m going to increasing my cardio program so next year I’ll have more endurance throughout the day.
Although I’m not planning any more track days for 2017, I can’t wait to get back out there. I feel my progress has been slowed a bit as I adjust to the new bike, but with each new ride I feel more and more confident. Looking forward to working harder in 2018 and maybe finally getting that knee on the ground.
Thanks to my buddy Alan for following me on occasion and letting me know what changes I could make to better my cornering. It was so helpful to get advice from a friend I truly trust and rider who continues to amaze me.
It was good to get back on the track and try to put to rest the demons I found here the last time. I was finally able to get some laps on the new bike and become more accustom to its grace and precision. This thing is truly built for the track and dissimilar to the street bike I previously brought to the track. I felt stronger and stronger every time I went out and I could feel my heart pounding with excitement after each session.
My new Janman Leathers were awesome. It was so nice riding for the first time in leathers that were made just for me. They matched the bike perfecting and I may have been the best looking slow guy out there.
Oh, but did I mention the heat? It was hot, but that wasn’t going to stop our fun. Although at track speeds the heat was fine, the time in between sessions is when I really felt the sheer force of the blazing temperature. We rode well into the afternoon but decided to call it quits when it was just too hot to enjoy the rest of the day.
Unfortunately during the second session I missed a corner and dumped it in the dirt. The bike has a few scratches but nothing broken.
I did bump my head so they wouldn’t let me back out on the track, but I understand. I was really starting to enjoy the bike and look forward to getting back out there a soon as I can.
Thanks to Let’s Ride Trackdays for putting on another great day. I’m sorry for the delay I caused the other riders.
I’ve found that after riding Buttonwillow a few times now the counter clockwise off ramp a-section just did not jive with me. I think I’ll stick to clockwise for a while until I’m a little more familiar with the new bike.