Rider and mechanic Brian Van spent the weekend of 01/29/11 getting one of his 2 bikes ready for the 2011 Race Season. A lot goes into building and maintaining a proper race bike. Brian is extremely particular about his bikes and likes to do 99% of the work to them himself. Before Brian started Sportbike Track Gear he worked as a mechanic at a Cadillac dealership only a few miles from where Sportbike Track Gear is located today. He has a real sense of how things are supposed to work and be put back together. Being a little superstitious he does the work himself. Putting his career before the racing he is often up late hours of the night working on the bike since during the day he is busy growing and maintaining his business. Brian isn’t a sponsored Yamaha rider, he is a privateer just trying to race and have a good time, he doesn’t have 5 mechanic’s waiting for him to pull into the paddock to change his tires, adjust a few knobs on his suspension. He for the most part will do this himself with maybe a helping hand from someone else in the pit.
A lot goes into building a race bike to fit the rider. Not every rider likes the same style setup, suspension, brakes ect. The goal is for the rider to use the resources at hand to build the best bike for them to use. With a lot of parts options, teams usually take the time to test different setup’s in the off-season.
On this particular evening the main focus of Brian’s bike was to get the motor pulled and sent off to get it freshened up. Yamaha has designed these motorcycles to be worked on pretty easily. To pull the motor on a R6 requires about 5-10 tools max. If your a handy guy this job wouldn’t require much effort. The key is to remembering where everything goes when putting the motor back in. Since Brian has done this before no notes or pictures had to be taken. For someone doing this their first time we recommend taking notes and pictures, as well as organizing the nuts and bolts as best as possible to know the order of where they go.
After the motor is pulled it really opens the bike up and will allow Brian to get in and clean every part of the inside of the frame to make sure when he shows up at a race track his bike is SPOTLESS. For riders going after sponsor’s for upcoming season, they all know the way they represent themselves, their bikes, and their pit’s is huge to their success in finding new sponsors.
The next post about Brian’s bike will show how clean every inch of his motorcycle will be before he heads out for the first ride of the season. A clean looking bike is a well maintained bike. If anyone needs help with recommendations on parts that have worked for our race team, please let us know.