This is an easy one.
- Riding Instruction
- Getting in shape
- Setting up your suspension
OK there you have it guys. Three things 100% guaranteed to make you faster. #1 will cost you 1/3 of that new pipe that doesn’t do shit other than make you fail sound check, and the second one is FREE! #3 is pretty cheap, set your sag, maybe get a piston kit for your fork, stock stuff is damn good already.
I know, I know you really want that Ohlins TTX, that new Akrapovic Ti exhaust, and those carbon fiber air ducts for your new Brembo GP4 calipers….that’s fine, really go for it.
But remember what Crash Davis told Nuke LaLoosh:
A motorcyclists’ “Ungodly Breaking Stuff” is good setup, practice, and being fit.
Spend your money on farkles and bling, but I really doubt it’s going to make you much faster. I know I don’t get faster from it. Sure, I still upgrade my bike, don’t get me wrong, but I try to choose functionality, safety, and reliability first. Then speed. Yes I converted to a 520 chain and lightweight sprockets, after the originals wore out. I picked up some used aftermarket forged wheels at less than half price because they do make a big difference on handling. I installed a piston kit in my stock forks and purchased springs that match my weight and riding level and found the cheapest adjustable shock I could find rather than rebuild my old OEM shock. I mostly upgrade parts as they need replacing, and don’t dump perfectly good stock parts in favor of bling. Instead, I use that money for trackdays, good tires, and quality gear.
I had the chance to purchase a new bike this winter. 20 more HP, newer electronics, etc. etc. I decided not to do it. I spent less than half the money I would have needed on retrofitting better electronics and a few of the above upgrades. Then, I bought a new helmet to replace my 5 yr old one, and ordered new leathers that are airbag compatible. O.K. I splurged a little since they are custom. But, I did get a great deal, and they will fit perfect. Now I can afford a few more trackdays.
This winter I’m working out, building core strength, and practicing body position on my bike in the garage. All these things WILL make me faster, and safer, and don’t cost anything.
So commit to getting better, faster, and stronger. And you will. Looking good and having all the sparkly bling is cool and all, but it only gets you rep at Starbucks, the fast guys know you can’t buy speed, you have to earn it.