Practice 1 & 2:
Our goal for the weekend was to evaluate different DOT race tires.
We started out on set of the previous weekends Pirelli Super Corsa
Pros for the first session. We then put on a set of Bridgestone
DOTs that the trackside vendor had. The tires felt good and didn’t
seem to do anything bad in the second practice session.
Saturday Race#1 EX-GTL:
In the GTL race I started last so I concentrated on trying to get
a really good start. I did get a good start and I was working my
way up through the field when I noticed the bike was running a little
on the warm side. I backed off the pace a little bit to see if it
would bring the temp down, but it didn’t work so I pulled
into the pits to get a look at it and make sure there was nothing
wrong. We decided to call it a race since I lost so much time in
the pits and I got ready for the next race. The tires seemed consistent.
They seemed to have pretty good feel from the front and rear.
Saturday Race#2 EX-Thunderbike:
I got a really good start and the tires were feeling AWESOME! I
had worked myself into the top 5. After the second lap the front
tire started pushing really bad. The tire really wouldn’t
hold the line in corner entry. It became very hard to make the APEX
of the corner well. To say the least the front end was not very
confidence inspiring. With the front tire pushing it was difficult
to get a good drive out of a corner and I ended up dropping back
to an 8th place finish.
Saturday Race#3 EX-Light Weight Grand
Between LWGP and Thunderbike there was only about 10 minutes to
grab some water, refuel the bike, and get back to the track. So
for the next race I got another really good start. I started the
race in last place (22nd) and by the end of the first lap I as in
the top 15. I ran the race as fast as I could. I still had the confidence
in the rear tire. The tire wasn’t spinning on corner
exit and it felt really good, but the front was not working any
better than in the last race. I ended up finishing the race in 7th
A couple changes we wanted to make for the next day were gearing
and tires. On the gearing we went up one tooth on the transmission
sprocket. This would enable me to change my shift points around
a little bit and to get more out of 4th gear on the straight. As
far as tires went, we decided to try using Donlop’s DOT tires.
On Sundays you get one 20 minute practice session and I thought
that would be a good situation to evaluate the tires. Right away
on the outlap I noticed the Dunlops had really solid feel. However,
on my second lap I noticed the front end was hopping on high speed
corner entry while trail- braking and turning at the same time.
In corners where I was going straight, braking hard, and then turning
(with very minimal trail-braking) the front end felt fine. I pulled
into the hot pit to adjust the rebound compression dampening to
see if that would cure the problem. We were not able to get the
problem fixed in that session so we decided we weren’t going
to burn up a set of tires if we weren’t able to fight for
the lead, so we decided the best thing to do would be to continue
to use the Bridgestone rear and the Pirelli Supercorsa Pro front.
Because of the instability we were getting from the Dunlop front
tire we were unable to evaluate the gearing changes and this adjustment
was left to be evaluated in the next race.
Sunday Race#4 EX-Supertwins:
In this race I got an amazing start and went into turn one in 3rd
place from the third row (got to love the torque of a Buell and
the way an Evolution Industries clutch works. The clutch has a very
linear feel and you can easily control the amount of drive by just
feathering the clutch.) Supertwins is a tough class. We got beat
by (2) 1098s, an Apirlia Mile, a 749 Ducatti and Brett Guyer on
a 1000 Supersport. The gearing change worked well enabling us to
run in the 18s for the first time. In the end I finished 6th. I
don’t feel too bad about this finish considering I only have
85 HP compared to a 1098s 140 stock HP. I was still 3 seconds per
lap slower than 1st place so we will be adding some HP for the next
Sunday Race#5 EX-Light Weight Superbike:
Because of pre-entry miscommunication with LRRS (apparently you
have to fax your entry 10 days prior to a race weekend and 8 days
was not enough) I had to start last in 3 out of 5 races we entered
this weekend, this being one of them. After the first lap I had
worked up the field into 8th place from 17th. The Bridgestone rear
started to step out at full lean and try to high side me when I
tried to apply maintenance throttle to drive past the APEX of the
corner, but coming off of the corner the rear tire would not spin
at all when I was driving onto the straightaway. I was running as
high as 5th but with the bike trying to spit me off at the APEX
of every corner a guy got by me and I finished 6th. I continued
to run 18s in this race.
Evaluation on Buell XB9 (85 HP and 65 ft lbs torque):
Pirelli Supercorsa Pros:
Front- Has amazing feel even after
7-8 races and 3 practice sessions
Rear- Controllably spins, it doesn’t
try to high side you and lets you know what it is doing at all times
Bridgestone Battlax BT-002R Racing
Front- Pushes after 2 laps and hard
to catch your APEX
Rear- After 3 sprint races started
to high side me at max lean. Probably would be a very good track
day tire for someone who is a casual Sport rider. These are
Front- Very solid feel, jury still
out on corner entry.
Rear- Solid feel, feels really planted
we will be doing more testing with them before we race with them.
Haven’t tested Michelin DOTs