Fun, Fun, Fun on the Autobahn!!! - Chicagoland Sportbikes
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 07:58 AM Thread Starter
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Fun, Fun, Fun on the Autobahn!!!

STT hosted the first-ever motorcycle event at the soon-to-be VERY swank Autobahn Country Club in Joliet. We spent the weekend riding the North Course. Talk about SWEET! The track is short (1.6 miles) and very flowing, with a few corners that will BITE'CHA if you don't pay attention. "Late Apex" is the secret code word. Pavement was SMOOOOTH and very grippy. Definitely a place for the little bikes (read: SV's and TZ's etc.) to SHINE. With my Road America gearing, I spent most of my time in 2nd and 3rd gear. The longest straightaway is only 1,260 (+/-) feet in length. Next time, we'll bring the Blackhawk setup!

Downside: Paddock area is very compact. Since this is a private, membership-only facility, we were marshalled into a rather intimate area on Saturday to allow sufficient space for members to park. If you're anticipating coming out for the CCS or WERA events this summer, best plan on arriving EARLY!

There is no electricity in the paddock and there are no showers. We were restricted to the bathrooms located at the base of the scoring tower - one of each plus a couple of porta-potties. And the concession stand is a LONG ways away! Another gripe: The curbing is T2 is ENORMOUS. This is definitely a "car track".

WERA will be racing there next weekend on the South Course (which looks a lot more "point-and-shoot"). STT will host several "Full Course Mondays" - 3.65 miles that are NOTHING like Road America - you will WORK YOUR BUTT OFF! And PTT, STT and NESBA will all have events on either course throughout the summer.

It was great seeing everybody again - a violent dispute between my stomach and lunch sent us home early on Sunday but up until that point I had a great time. Got a lot of "bugs" left to work out - mostly just confidence issues inside my little brane... but we'll keep hacking away. I'm finding out that a year is much too long to have been off the bike, and I become frustrated because I have very little patience with myself (How the hell did I get so SLOW?!?). And did I mention that it was COLD?!?!?!!!

The "C" bike came down with an oil leak behind the trans sprocket... and we've converted the clutch reservoir on the "A" bike to a 'Busa system (much more "Kim-proof" than the flimsy stock plastic reservoir)... John has LOTS to do before we load up on Thursday.

Next stop: CCS at Blackhawk Farms NEXT WEEKEND!!!!

Kim
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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:17 AM
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Cool cant wait to get out there!!

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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:21 AM
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What kind of times was everyone running on the N. Course?

I tried to find this place again on Saturday morning and couldn't find it. Are there any signs up yet? If I recall correctly, it's basically a little northeast of I55 and Arsenal Road right?
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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:35 AM
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Was a good time to bad it was 45 degrees with 20 mph winds all day. Got to meet a couple of new faces like Kneepain, Cal, Loudes, and as always Kimmy was there along with Dano. I was stuggleing with grip as my tires have 4 trackdays on them. 1:12's was best I could get. I am shooting for 1:10 in warmer weather.
post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kruz
What kind of times was everyone running on the N. Course?

I tried to find this place again on Saturday morning and couldn't find it. Are there any signs up yet? If I recall correctly, it's basically a little northeast of I55 and Arsenal Road right?

Easiest way to get there is take 80 to 53 south. Then right before you hit the Nascar track you will make a right on Laraway which there is a stop light and a sign for Chalange park paintball and the Autobaun. Go about 1 mile over the tracks and you will see a sign that points to your left for autobaun. Make a left and go another mile it will be on your right hand side.
post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:38 AM
 
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Looks like fun. Anyone going there this coming weekend?
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 09:53 AM Thread Starter
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We took I-55 south BEYOND 80 to the Arsenal Road exit. Following the directions provided by Autobahn's website, we had no problems finding the place, and there were no stoplights/traffic.

Kim
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 10:07 AM
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That track looks very promising

Anyone planning on attending the Nesba day this summer where they run both tracks as one?

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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KBOlsen
The curbing in T2 is ENORMOUS.
Cool. Easier to get my knee down that way.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 11:28 AM
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I made it out there on Saturday for my first track day of the year. I decided to join the Int. group since it was my first time out and a brand new track with nasty corners designed by the notorious Alan Wilson. I got myself up to speed after the first 2 morning sessions.

As Kimmie was saying, this is NOT a great track for liter bikes. I barely used 3rd gear at the end of the 2 straights before dropping it into 2nd for the remainder of the track. Most of the track has great flowing corners that link up nicely-- which means they are fast and no braking required. T2 and T5 are the decreasing radius turns that you need to watch out for. I really felt like they abruptly broke the flow of the track, but you have to remember that Autobahn was main created for cars and not motorcycles. Lastly, the North course is SHORT! I thought BHF was short, but with this course you are back at the start/finish line before your tires even have a chance to warm up. Plenty of grip, but what's weird is that the surface is very easy on tires. There was hardly any wear showing on my Pirelli DC unlike what happens after most track days. No tearing or signs of excessive wear on tires-- almost like they were never taken on the track. It was a cold day, but thumbs up to the Pirelli DC's for heating up nicely and sticking all day!

Most of my clean laps were in the 1:13's, with my fast lap time of 1:13.05. Had to fight through a lot of traffic in the Int. group, but honestly that probably kept me from trying to go balls out and restrained my competitive edge.

I'll probably go one more time this year with Nesba in early June, but I would rather try the longer South course, and definitely the linked Full course later this summer. That'll be awesome!
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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 12:01 PM
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Nice, can't wait to get out there myself in June and July. June I'll do 2 of the 3 nesba days, south one day and north the other. July 25 I'll be there with STT and the Zone Honda-Kawasaki riding the Full course. Might come back from ohio in september to do the full course with nesba if all else goes well. Good times

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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 12:06 PM
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Great news KBOlsen! Sounds like your knee is 100% again too!

Are we there yet?
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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 12:48 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike_rbm
Great news KBOlsen! Sounds like your knee is 100% again too!
I wish! On Saturday, it was good for the morning sessions but by the end of the day John had to help me off the bike. By mid-morning on Sunday, I was sporting a definite gimp! It's going to take time (which I can manage) and patience (of which I have none). I won't be doing GTO any time soon, but it should be good for Friday practice and the sprint races on Sunday. Wah, wah, wah... anybody got any Brie??

Kim
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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 01:19 PM
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I stopped by saturday to watch some friends, it was the first time I have seen a track day. I want to try I think the itch needs to be scratched. SOON
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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 01:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy911
I stopped by saturday to watch some friends, it was the first time I have seen a track day. I want to try I think the itch needs to be scratched. SOON
Blackhawk Farms man, May 14th and 15th with NESBA

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post #16 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 01:50 PM
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Well, I gotta say i had an awesome time both days. Although it was cold, especially on sunday, as soon as we got out on the track, I forgot all about it. Saturday and Sunday were only my second and third track days ever, and the first time riding the track bike I just bought last month. Saturday was a learning experience, and I felt way out of place on my GSXR, but Sunday things started to feel much better.
The track was AWESOME!!!! I had a lot of fun figuring out T2 and T6 throughout the days. The STT group did a great job putting on the show. I look forward to getting out there with both NESBA and STT numerous times this year. Sunday was a little more crowded in the B group, but by the end of the day I think there was only a dozen or so of us left to brave the cold. By far the best session of the day, although i was pretty beat by then.
Met some great people both days. Got lots of great tips and advice. Didnt get a chance to meet you Kimmy, but got passed by you alot. .
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post #17 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 01:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vimkgt
Blackhawk Farms man, May 14th and 15th with NESBA
I'm signed up for May 15th for BHF. My question is are there any AM WERA riders on the board that are going to be there this weekend? I completed the Team Chicago school and was wondering what it takes to get into AM WERA racing.
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post #18 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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By Sunday, the Novice group was really rockin' out there! I'm very impressed with STT's traffic management in that group. Nobody was ever held up for very long.

Spud, there aren't a lot of WERA folks here... seems most are CCS/F-USA riders. For many of us, it's too much traveling to follow the WERA series (you can compete in every CCS Midwest event and never have to drive further than 8 hours).

WERA does have their own forum... www.13x something... can someone chime in with a link? You'll need to purchase a WERA license, plus I believe they require you to purchase your own transponder from them.

Kim
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post #19 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 02:33 PM
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www.wera.com


I spend most of my day there.
post #20 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 02:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Good2Go
www.wera.com


I spend most of my day there.
Thanks I found it and 2 hrs just disappeared.
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post #21 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 04:14 PM
 
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Went out there Sunday the weather sucked but did a few laps. I thought is was a pretty cool track. The back section flows and there is a selection of decreasing radius turns. Good stuff. T1 is a little shady with a barrier real close to the track. I can totally see myself tucking the front going thru t1...lol
And the Armco at T3. But other than that...the track is cool. And it's nice and close. spent all of the day trying to get my bike set up.

Good to see a bunch of you out there
post #22 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2005, 04:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kruz
What kind of times was everyone running on the N. Course?
Not sure...didn't have a lap timer. The last session Sunday me and a couple of guys (paul and some other dude on a R1) were ripping around. Someone said that they timed us doing 1:06/1:05s...if that's true I bet I could 1:00 flats with better weather and at race pace.
post #23 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-03-2005, 08:29 PM
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fyi!!!!!!!!!! This weekend’s WERA event is not open to spectators.

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post #24 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-04-2005, 07:34 AM Thread Starter
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That's correct. Since it is a private venue, you must be either a participant or crew to gain entry.

Kim
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Duck, duck, duck, GUZ!
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post #25 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-04-2005, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimGoFast
fyi!!!!!!!!!! This weekend’s WERA event is not open to spectators.
People wishing to watch local motorcycle racing can do so at Blackhawk Farms this weekend

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post #26 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-04-2005, 08:50 PM
 
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Yeah they said the trackday wasnt open to spectators but they let us in with
no problem.

John
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post #27 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-04-2005, 09:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimGoFast
fyi!!!!!!!!!! This weekend’s WERA event is not open to spectators.
wasn't planning on spectating. Seems they're crazy enough to let some Am's on the track after completing a Team Chicago school and 1 day of race practice.

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll have my R6 back from Yamaha yet, so unless someone wants to loan me a bike, I'll probably be sitting this one out. So I may have to wait for Grattan, or my birthday to come back to the Autobahn with WERA.
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post #28 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-04-2005, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Good2Go
Was a good time to bad it was 45 degrees with 20 mph winds all day. Got to meet a couple of new faces like Kneepain, Cal, Loudes, and as always Kimmy was there along with Dano. I was stuggleing with grip as my tires have 4 trackdays on them. 1:12's was best I could get. I am shooting for 1:10 in warmer weather.

It was good to meet Steve and see so many other CLSB riders (Kim, Mikdivad, Loudes among and of course, Dano). If I could get my R6 around the track as fast as Steve moves that little SV, I'd be happy. 1:14.18 was best on Saturday. Sunday; forget it. Too [email protected] cold. After tiptoeing around for 3 sessions, freezing my tail off, packed up and went home after lunch.

Anyone going to BHF to race this weekend? If I get clearance from "Command Central", I'll be there on Saturday.

Tom / '06 Triumph Scrambler / '06 BMW R1200GSA / 1969 Honda Mini-Trail / '14 BMW S1000R
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