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Topic: Dirt biking question
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Apr 18, 2009 05:00PM)
I've a dirt biking question, which makes sense considering the subject. Our local race track (sprint cars and other types of racing on asphalt and clay) was taken over by some new guys and I was talking to one today. Keep in mind I know nothing about this racing stuff. Another guy asked if they would be setting up a dirt bike racing course, you know with the jumps and all that, rather than use the race track that they have been using on the other side of the higway. He said no because 'the dirt isn't good for bike racing'. I didn't ask what he meant as I was trying to be cool and act like I understood but what did he mean? This is sandy desert soil, kind of heavy grain, while on the other side of the highway it is more like common dirt. What is good or bad dirt for bikes mean?
Message: Posted by: Big Jeff (Apr 18, 2009 11:38PM)
Dirt bikes like hard packed dirt to get better traction. Riding in sand is hard and slows you down. If you watch supercross on tv you will see a little patch of sand, they do that to make the track a little harder to ride, that's also where you see some crashes to.
Message: Posted by: MagicSanta (Apr 19, 2009 12:07AM)
I don't know what supercross is but what you say makes sense. The sand would make the back wheel spin out and hard to get traction like you say. The soil conditons here change from location to location and it wouldn't seem good where the cars race. Thank you.
Message: Posted by: Big Jeff (Apr 19, 2009 10:38AM)
Supercross is motocross racing inside a stadium, easy to see the whole track. I went to "the superbowl" of motocross at the LA Colisum in 1978 & 79 and it was packed with about 65,000 people.

The problem with sand is it makes it hard to keep the front tire straight and you see a lot of racers just falling over, atleast it doesn't hurt when you hit the ground.
Message: Posted by: MickeyPainless (Apr 19, 2009 01:32PM)
I was involved in building a BMX (bicycle moto cross) track back when my boys were into that sorta thing. We had to haul in some ridiculous amount of clay to compensate for the Kern River sand where we built the track! I'm sure Doug Higley can weigh in here as I recall he has experience in dirt racing both cars and bikes!

They do have racing in sand-sandy loam type terrain but you have to re gear and use different tires!

Super Cross is a BLAST to watch! Those cats are catching some MAJOR air off the jumps and with the "Freestyle" aspect added, it gets pretty hairy!
Message: Posted by: TomKMagic (Apr 19, 2009 04:55PM)
My uncle has several trails in the acreage behind his house, not a professional track. Most of it is hard packed dirt, but some of the curves and corners have sand. I don't think he planned it that way, but it sure is fun to slide around in the sand as well as go fast on the straight common dirt parts. It almost feels like drifting with a car, but on a dirt bike.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Apr 22, 2009 05:46PM)
What he was saying IF it's a true 'Dirt Track' for midgets, sprints etc. is that is a CLAY base. Clay sucks (literally) when on two wheels...after some heavy racing by the midgetsd etc it is hard and slick as glass...also not cool for the bikes.

For Mickey...I never rode dirt bikes BUT did a lot of track announcing for ALL types of Motor Sports including dirt bikes. I prefer the 500cc 'Speedway Bikes' (No brakes, zero to 60 in 3 seconds.) Short races. Dirt not clay.

The Supercross stuff, I never got into because the 'air' scrubbed SPEED and that was my love of the sport. Jumpers use Dirt with sandy cushions to land on.

I was involved in Formula 1 Sidecar bikes (pavement) and had my own tour: Super Sidecar Thunder, which went around California to the Stock car tracks.

I have driven Modified Midgets and Stock Cars. Never two wheelers.

(for the record)
Message: Posted by: Big Jeff (Apr 22, 2009 05:53PM)
Doug,

I miss Speedway Motorcycle Racing, I used to go on Tuesday nights in Ventura A LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNGGGGG time ago. I knew a guy whos dad raced and I knew a girl who raced, both division 3(beginner) and they were fun.

Do they race anywhere in LA anymore? I used to watch them racing from Europe on those huge tracks, I haven't seen them on TV for a couple of years or more.
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Apr 27, 2009 10:40AM)
Speedway Motorcycle racing is prety standard World Wide.
In California it's Auburn and Costa mesa (at the fairgrounds. In Costa MJesa they also do the Dirt Sidecars which is THE scariest Hairiest most dangerous racing in the world. These guys ARE nuts. Figure a 1200cc monster on a 10th of a mile track.
Standing start, Passenger DRAGGING in the dort to stabalize the machine and they ALL head for Turn ONE at FULL speed motors wound out to the limit. To be a passenger (monkey) is the limit of daring...many wind up really FUBAR after a nighjts racing. Must see to be belived. My guys and gals on my tour passengered at 160 mph on the road courses and about 80 to 90 on the ovals (they lay out just 1 or 2 inches from the pavement on the left side of the machine to keep the bikes turning right...we went the opposite direction of the stock coars on the ovals.) Any way my drivers and riders had heart attacks when I took them to see the Dirt Sidecars..they couldn't believe it and passed on the oportunituy to try it out. haha. I had Champions (World and State) on the tour and they wouldn't dream of Speedway Dort Sidecar racing the way it's done in Costa Mesa.

My other favorite Motorcycle racing is Flat Track and they are big long Mile DIRT tracks (many time Horse racing tracks) where the big bore Harley's run at about 130 mph. So fast they are a literal BLUR as they go by. You might see a hundred or mnore lead changes in a race. AWESOME. Chris Carr was my favorite.

Here is a vid you might enjoy about the 1200.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJL5rs4zALE

Good Speedway Race
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRVe6TMTYxg&feature=related

here's a fun vid using the special Speedway bikes (no brakes) on a short track
and a few laps. They get in TONS of races every night of racing. Much fun as you can have!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5wSWFRntG7w&feature=related

Usually though wehn someone breeches the barrier tape they are put back about 50 feet and penalized for the re-start.

Dirt Sidecars...not a good race but you get to see what they look like
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GKhdKHhYeQ&feature=related
Message: Posted by: Big Jeff (May 9, 2009 02:06PM)
Thanks for the links Doug, they brought back some good memories. I will have to go to atleast one race this year, maybe combine it with an Angels game since both are in OC.

My favorite races were the hadicapped starts with the fastest riders in back, made for some exciting races.
Message: Posted by: critter (May 9, 2009 06:32PM)
I think soft(er) dirt would be good for training. Adds resistance.
As one of my favorite ex-Navy SEALs says: "The more thou sweatest in training, the less thou bleedest in combat."