Showing posts sorted by relevance for query track. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query track. Sort by date Show all posts

Thursday, 31 July 2014

Track Day Planning

I'm pretty keen to go do a track day, and I have a buddy who is the same.  The Grand Bend Motorplex does motorcycle open lapping on its track.   I found GBM through motorcycletrackdays.ca.  The upcoming SOAR racing event at Grand Bend offers open motorcycle lapping prior to their weekend events.  That might be a good time for two nØØbs to go as there will be experienced track day people on hand to help us fumble through the technical inspection.

I figured it would be a show up on what you rode here on and go on the track, as you would with a car, but bikes seem a bit more involved.  Here is the list of motorcycle specific technical requirements:
  • Is your kickstand secured? Your spring return isn’t enough on a racetrack. Use a plastic strap tie or duct tape to secure your kickstand in the up and locked position before you come to tech. 
  • Tape over your speedometer. It’s the rule.
  • Make sure your throttle returns quickly and positively. We want to see it snap back when you release the grip. 
  • Change your antifreeze for straight water. If your bike puts antifreeze on the surface, it shuts the entire track down and may result in suspension. Antifreeze is 100 times worse than water on asphalt (It’s like wet ice). Swap it out for water before you proceed to tech. 
  • Tape over or remove lights, signal and mirrors. They all shatter and they all puncture tires. 
  • Brakes: Make sure they’re properly functioning, front and back, with no leaks, because we’ll check. 
  • Chain: Check your drivechain adjustment. Too tight or too loose means breakage. Refer to manufacturer’s specification. Also, check your master link. A rivet style link is preferred, but a standard ‘slip on’ while suffice if you put a dab of silicone on the key to secure it. 
  • Now that you’ve ensured your brake lines don’t leak, check the rest of the bike. Your engine and suspension components must also be leak free. 
  • Overall track worthiness: These are the small things that can lead to disaster. Loose lines can snag. If it can flop around, it can be snagged and lead to a crash. 
  • Body: All body parts must be secured or removed. 
  • Mechanical: Check your fasteners and ensure they’re secured at recommended torque. 
  • Tires: Properly inflated, with structural integrity intact (sidewall, tread, steel-belts, bulges).
Most of that is common sense/maintenance, but there are a couple of bits that will require some thought.  Tying up the kickstand is all well and good, but that means you're bringing a rear stand to keep the bike upright.  Swapping out the antifreeze also means you need to bring some distilled water.  Some tools, disposable gloves and fluids would probably be a good idea too.  Suddenly the back of the bike I want to ride to the track day is looking like a hardware store.  You wouldn't want to ride an hour and a half to a track to find out you don't have what you need to go around it.  Short of asking for a pit crew to accompany you in a four wheeler, riding solo to a track day seems difficult if not impossible.

Of course, this leads you down the road to a trailer, which then begs the question, why use your road bike for track days when you can pick up an older sport bike for not much, not have to pay for road insurance on it and spec it out specifically for track days.  Stripped of lights and needless accessories like rear foot pegs and indicators, you'd be ready to ride as soon as you roll it off the trailer, and the machine would be tailored for the track.

I've been to several racing schools, but the one time I really got into it was while living in Akita, Japan.  Kyowa Race track was a small carting track deep in the mountains south east of the city.  Kazutoyo, a student of mine, was an avid racer (he came to Canada for a summer to participate in a Mosport racing mechanics program).  We'd go up there half a dozen times in the summer and spend the day hauling the carts around that bendy circuit as quickly as we could.

The vehicle of choice for the carts and the paraphernalia that went with them was a cargo van.  We'd be able to fit three people, the tools, the disassembled cart and spare tires and other odds and ends all in the van and head to the track.  Riding around at break neck speeds was awesome, but I have fond memories of all the fettling that when on in the pits too; it's all part of the race experience.

Ford Canada's handy Transit Van Builder got me all
set with a customized utility van that could carry two
bikes and gear with ease... things I'd do if I were rich!
Now that I'm thinking about doing a track day on two wheels I'm tempted to imitate those Japanese carting guys and get what I need to make a track day possible.  I've been wishing for a trailer several times this summer to haul lumber.  Having one on hand and a vehicle to haul it would be handy for more than just track days.  

Or just win the lottery and get the full on racing support van.

If Mechanical Sympathy were to go full on into racing, I'd grab that 1000cc VFR from Angus (in my Transit race van) and prep it for racing.  Stripping off all the lights and extras and minimizing it down to a race bike.  I'd be a dangerous man if I had more money.

In the meantime I'm still trying to look for ways to ride my Ninja to the track and do some laps without dragging along someone in a cage to support the activity.

Links:
Motorcycle track day primer: a good explanation of track days.
Beginner's Guide to Track Days in Ontario: a great checklist on how to approach track days - renting a bike is what I'm now looking into...

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Track Day Dreams Part 2

For a first trackday using an intermediary like Pro 6 Cycle gives you the support you'd need to ensure your bike is prepped well (they have tires, mechanics and other bits and pieces on hand).  Pro 6 runs track days at Calabogie Motorsports Park in Eastern Ontario.  It happens to be on the other side of some of the best riding roads in Ontario, and on the way to my buddy's house in Osgoode.
A couple of hours at speed on the highway and I'm up past
Gravenhurst and turning toward the Haliburton Highlands!
For me the trip is a Southern Ontario grind out and up the 400 before turning east to face some of the nicest roads in Ontario.  Giving three hours for the highway part, I'd aim to meet up with Jason somewhere in the highlands and then we could ride the twisties to Calabogie.

Day one would get me into the Highlands.  Day two would be riding twisties.  Day three would be the track day at Calabogie and Day four would be the return ride home.

To prep for the track day I'd swap out coolant for distilled water at home before the trip and practice stripping the bike down (covering and disconnecting lights, removing mirrors).  I'd also strip the bike back as light as possible, removing the passenger pegs for single pegs, the toolkit, any extra attachments at all.

I'd get a big duffle to carry my gear for the track day (I'd carry rain gear and clothes in a separate, smaller bag).  The track duffle would have to be big enough to carry track leathers, tools, a bike stand and the parts needed to prep the bike.  The idea would be to get to the track and be able to open up the bag and prep the bike quickly and efficiently.

The trackday bag would open up trackdays around Ontario, and once I'd experienced how the pros at Pro 6 Cycle do it, I'd be able to prep better for future days.

I'm a ways away from this at the moment.  Here's a wish list of needed bits and pieces:



A Vicious Cycle
Firstgear-Torrent waterproof duffel = 40l... should carry everything needed for a trackday...

$84






motorcyclesuperstore.ca
Alpinestars S-MX-5 Boots




$264




motorcyclesuperstore.ca
Alpinestars GP PRO one piece leather suit
Size 50 - this one's a bit tricky.  I'm everything from a 2-4x (tall, long in the body, shorter in the leg and triangle shaped)
$857 (on sale!)

A full body suit is going to be a tricky proposition off the rack.  There are some custom options out there, but you're buying from the other side of the world and I imagine returning a poorly done suit would be next to impossible.  That TopGearLeather site offers custom race suits for less than the off the rack retail suits (~$600), but caveat emptor (they may be awesome, I don't know).




motorcyclesuperstore.ca
Alpinestars GP PLUS gloves


$190








motorcyclesuperstore.ca
Schuberth SR1 Stealth Helmet



$950






motorcyclesuperstore.ca
Vortex V3 rear bike stand


$90 (+$70 wheel kit)






So I'm looking at about $2600 worth of riding kit before I even start considering the bike, and I'd want to consider the bike.  I'd start with the current Ninja 650r and build up experience and certifications, but I'd eventually like to get into The Vintage Road Racing Association.  The dream would be race prepping a 1980s Honda Interceptor (strip lights and extras, whittle it down the bare minimum, race prep the engine), and race it!



Racing ain't cheap.  I'd be dangerous if I had a lot of money and free time on my hands.  Since the summer's almost over and I'm back to the classroom, I'm hoping to put together (Kijiji, ebay, whatever cheap alternative I can find) the bits I need to get myself on a track next year.

If I can't arrange the equipment, I might (make a big) ask for the Racer5 3-stage introduction program.  It's one hell of a birthday present, but if supported track days cost you about $250 a pop anyway, paying an extra hundred to rent someone else's bike and get close instruction seems like one hell of a deal.

LINKS
FOLLOWUP

I tried on the Joe Rocket race suit at Royal Distributing the other day.  It was a 46.  It fit at the shoulders and waist/legs, but it was too short in the body.  If I were proportioned properly I'd be about 5'11", but with this long body I'm 6'3", my inseam is only 32".  I'm hoping a 48 is a bit longer in the body, and would be a loose fit everywhere else.  I wish there were more local places I could go try race suits on.  If RD gets a 48 in, that might end my quest for a suit for now.

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

2020 Moto Wishlist

Next season is a long, cold winter away, but I'm already daydreaming about what might be...



TomTom Rider 550 Moto-GPS:  I've always made do with my phone, but Google Maps is kinda crap when it comes to navigating on a bike.  Whenever you reach a way point it wants input, which isn't easy when you're flying through the air at 60mph with gloves on.  The TomTom not only is glove friendly, but the software is moto-specific, so no pointless inputs.  It even has a twisty-roads function!  $370CAN

A New Roof: I'm partial to Roof Helmets. To date I've owned a first generation Desmo and a Boxxer. The Boxxer is a simple thing and I miss the plush, quieter and more substantial Desmo I had before. Roof has actually come out with a new Desmo, the RO32, and I'm partial to the new flat dark blue lid they've just done. Roofs are hard to find in North America, but Chromeburner has the new lid on for about $500CAN.







Racing Kit!  A one piece racing suit for the other thing below.  Now that I'm with sports bike, perhaps I could take it out to track days.  To do that I'd need the proper racing kit.  To get the right spec helmet, boots, gloves and racing suit, I'm at about $2200.  Fortnine has the bits I'd need.








A long time ago I did a car performance driving school at Shannonville Race Track and really enjoyed it.  Taking the Fireblade out on track would be a brilliant way to get to know this athletic machine.  Riderschoice.ca has track days.  I just need to get the bike sorted and have the kit necessary to do the business.
Starting at about $170.





Of course, if you're doing track days and need to prep a bike for the track, you need to drain coolant and all sorts of other stuff.  What you really need is a way to get it there.  The new Transit Connect is super fuel efficient for a van and would carry my stuff and people when needed.  About $37k.




Van's got a tow hitch, so trailer, obviously...  $1600 at Canadian tire for this one.  Maybe trailers don't matter, but I'd like to colour match this one to the van.  With that and a fitted cover, it could take one or two bikes to wherever the snow ends in the winter and trackdays in the summer.




BIKE WISHLIST:

A next level off-roader.  I've done a few rounds of off-road training and dig the experience.  I'd like to race enduro and need something dependable and big enough to carry me.  There was a Suzuki DR650 I looked at in the summer for a very reasonable $4000.  It was five years old but basically brand new due to some back luck by its owner.  I wish I could go back in time, get that bike, sort it out for enduro racing and then do it!



Track-day bike:  I've already got this one underway with the Fireblade project.  Sorting out the CBR900rr in the garage and then making it track-day ready would be brilliant.  The real block to entry is the cost of racing kit and the ability to transport the bike to the track.  I think I'm some finishing up and detail work away from putting the Honda back on the road in the spring.




Top Speed Machine:  I've always been partial to the Suzuki Hayabusa, and it would let me do a bucket list thing (200mph on a motorcycle) with only a few modifications.  To stretch the bucket list wish, I'd take it out to speed week in Bonneville and do 200mph on the salt.  If I wanted a leg up on this, someone has a modified turbo Hayabusa in Windsor.





A 2-up Touring specialist:  The Tiger will do 2-up work, but it isn't ideal for it.  A bike that's a 2-up specialist would be the ideal tool for the job.  Out of all the big cruiser/touring bikes out there, I think the Goldwing is the best.  I've ridden a friend's.  It's surprisingly athletic, even with 2 people on it.  Touring bikes don't come cheap - the 'Wing is a $30k thing.




Anime Dream Machine:  The Kawasaki Z1000 has long been a favourite and its Sugomi designed look is pure anime awesomeness.  I've got to admit that the Fireblade project sitting in my garage scratches many of the same itches though.  There's an orange Z1000 in Quebec going for about $10k.  I think the Fireblade might have scratched this itch...














Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Track Days & Dirt Days

Two goals over the summer as far as biking goes:  go to a track day and get in some off road experience.  Fortunately I've got choices for both nearby:
That's not too far!

1... Track Days:  Grand Bend Motorplex does beginner track days at various times throughout the summer.  I'm going to make a day where I can go down there and give the Ninja a workout in a track environment.  It'll be an early start, but if I can time the weather right it'll be a great opportunity to develop more fluid riding and gently get a feel for how the bike handles in more extreme conditions.  A hundred bucks doesn't seem bad for a full day of track time.

If not Grand Bend then there are other options.  Cayuga is $125 for a day and an hour and forty five minutes south through Hamilton.  Mosport and Shannonville are both venues for Riderschoice.ca, who offer track days there.  I haven't been to Shannonville since I did the Nissan advanced driving school in the 1990s, it'd be nice to go back.  Shannonville does their own track days, for $145 a day.  Calabogie is way out Ottawa way, but it ain't cheap, though the track is supposed to be fantastic.


2... Off Road Training:  Yamaha Adventures is a lovely hour and a bit ride north of where I am.  The full day package on their bike isn't cheap ($329), but it would give me a chance to get a feel for off-road riding without the equipment overhead.  

Trailtour also offers trials and dual-sport courses, both of which are cheaper alternatives, and they happen to be under an hour south of the family cottage.  Trials riding is very technique intensive and would do a lot to improve my balance on any bike.

As many different experiences in as many different circumstances as I can manage, that's the goal this year.

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Money To Burn Wish List

Another wish list... we were talking about what we'd do with a lotto win while camping last weekend.  I'd be aiming to expand into road racing and off road riding.  Here's what my cost-no-object-moto-summer would look like.


LOGISTICS


I've been thinking about a Ford Transit van, Guy Martin style, but now I'm thinking about a trailer.  Stealth Trailers make an aluminium bike trailer that is pretty awesome.  It weighs about 1200lbs and carries another 1700lbs, so something with a three thousand pound towing capacity would manage it.  Fortunately, the Jeep Cherokee I'm currently fixated on can tow 4500lbs.


Trailer: ~$6000
Jeep:    ~$36500
----------------------
~$42,500
I'd also pick up a custom pop up tent with Mechanical Sympathy printed on it.  They look like they go for about a thousand bucks plus whatever the custom screening costs.  Setup off the back of the trailer I'd have an instant pit stand.


Tent ~$1500


ROAD RACING


Track Bike (newer)

Kawasaki ZX-6R if I wanted to keep it Kawi as I have thus far.

Other short listed bikes would be the Honda CBR600RR or the Triumph Daytona 675R.  All three are mid-displacement bikes that would allow for an engrossing track experience.  A litre bike is a bit much for track day riding, unless you're either an ex-professional or compensating for something.

Price range (new) : $12,500 (Honda) to $14,500 (Triumph) with the Kawi in between.  I'd pick the one that fits best.  Rather than a new one I'd probably find a used one and then strip it down to race.  I could find a lightly used one of these for about six grand and spend another four to get it race ready.
~$10,000

Track Training & Track Days

 Racer5The three day intro-weekend would do the trick giving me the basics on a rented Honda.

$1000

Getting in some laps at Grand Bend...
$100 a pop x 5 a summer = $500

Pro6 Cycle track days at Calabogie
$350 a pop x3 a summer (x2 meet up with Jason) = $2100

Vintage Racer

Join the VRRA and take their racing school.
$475

A mid-80s Honda Interceptor would be my classic bike of choice.  I couldn't care less how competitive it might be, this is an exercise in nostalgia.

You can find well kept ones for a couple of thousand dollars online.  Converting it to a race bike would cost that much again.
$4000

Road racing ain't cheap...

--------------------------
~$18,000 + race costs (tires, etc)

OFF ROAD

Suzuki DR-Z400S x2
Build out a couple of Suzukis, do some training, complete some multi-day enduro events.
~$7000 each + maintenance and upgrades


Join OFTR
~$65

Trail Tours Dual Sport Training
$250

Smart Adventures All Day Training
$260

$2000 competition budget
--------------
$16,575


Forty-two, eighteen and sixteen and a half thousand (~$76k) and I'd be having a very busy summer expanding my motorbiking repertoire both on and off road.  That's only a two thirds of the price of a new Range Rover!  What a deal!


Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Bike Delivery System: escaping frozemagheddon!

It's supposed to drop into the -40°Cs in the next couple of days.  We're in the bowels of winter here and I'm getting cabin fever.  I've already day dreamed of the kit I'd need to go to track days, but that kit would serve another purpose, to get me clear of the never ending winter with my own bike.

Having a second vehicle that is utilitarian is never a bad idea, but I'm not much of a truck guy.  I am a Guy Martin fan though, and he happens to have a Transit Van!  You can pick up a well maintained, low miles Transit Van on autotrader.ca for about twenty grand, or about the price of a new hatchback.  It'll get over 32mpg,  and will happily carry a couple of bikes and kit (or other stuff) as needed.  With a carrying capcity of over 1600lbs, it would be more than up to the job of moving two bikes and riders out of the snow belt.

When it's about to hit -40°C, the Transit could get loaded up for a long weekend and aimed south.  A power drive could get me to The Tail of the Dragon, where the two bikes in back could be unloaded, ridden hard, put away wet and driven back into the inhuman wintry darkness after a couple of days of two wheeled therapy.


Tail of the Dragon, eating its own tail!
The Tail of the Dragon is only 11 hours away, but while it's minus forty here, it's in the low teens in Tennessee.  A banzai ride in the van into ride-able territory would make the vehicle much more than just a track day tool.

Based out of Marysville, Tennesee, I'd do a 210 mile loop one way and then do it backwards the next day...  Friday: leave noon, arrive in Marysville about 11pm.  Saturday: all day clock wise.  Sunday: all day counter clockwise. Monday: leave after breakfast, be home by 8pm.

Stage one would be getting the van.  At that point I'm in for about $20k.  It'll also come in handy for track days and picking up bikes.  I'd be able to throw my Ninja and a buddy's bike in there for the drive down and get to it.


The Triumph Daytona took out bikes twice its
displacement in Performance Bike's Track test.
Stage two would be getting a bike that doesn't have to compromise to get me there.  A sport focused machine that will arrive ready to take on the twisties would do the trick.  My first choice would be the Triumph Daytona 675R.  At only 189kgs (416lbs) ready to ride, it's a light weight machine that punches well above its displacement.

You can pick up a new, last year's Daytona for about twelve thousand bucks.  For the ten grand under the price of the cheapest Volvo SUV, I'd have a a bike delivery system of epic proportions, with an epic bike in the back of it.  When it isn't taking me out of the snow belt it could be picking up used bikes or taking me to track days.

I've almost talked myself into this!

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Transitioning to Season Two

It's getting into autumn and my first season of biking is coming to a close.  I've enjoyed the Ninja and I've done a lot of work on it.  I've overcome my anxiety around opening it up and working on it and I've put a lot of miles on it in all kinds of weather.  I'm far from the beginner I was in April and my garage is more a shop than it's ever been before.

Not only has riding become a new interest but it has also reawakened my love of mechanics which has in turn influenced my work in general.  So far the whole experience has been a positive one full of firsts and valuable learning opportunities.

I'm thinking about season 2 and where I want to go.  When I started off riding I was aiming at a KLR650 or other big dual purpose bike but went with the Ninja because it was local, available, low mileage and made a lovely sound.  The Ninja offers me an opportunity to explore the limits of a modern road bike, but that can be a tricky proposition, and an expensive one.  Were I to stay with the Ninja I think I'd find some track days and feel out some of the more extreme limits.  Knowing how a vehicle handles on the track offers you a unique insight into how to manage it on the road, especially in emergency situations.  I've driven cars and shifter-carts on track and know how to work towards the edge without stepping over it (too far).

I've been very careful with the Ninja, but I'd like to push my understanding and that involves taking risks with the machine.  I can't understand the dynamics of riding if I'm never riding over seven tenths.  If I'm going after a deeper, more nuanced understanding then I've got two options: the dirt track or the race track.  One is obviously cheaper than the other.

The KLR is still under consideration
I'd initially shied away from doing off road for fear of wear, but I'm over the maintenance panic now.  I'd still like to develop my road riding skills, but exploring limits seems like a less dangerous option in off road and multi-surface riding.  To that end, I think I'll look to a multi-purpose/enduro bike for my second season and begin exploring roads without worrying about where the tarmac ends.  The ultimate goal is still the long distance/adventure touring bike.  I love the swiss army knife abilities of those bikes.

The KLR still offers an affordable, basic, multi-purpose bike and I'd consider it seriously.  It's also not crazy expensive.

Triumph Tiger 800xc, my first
British bike?
Given a bigger budget I'd aim for a Triumph Tiger 800xc.  It is a capable off-road bike that doesn't tip the scales too madly, while still offering an effective road mile covering bike.  A bike that can pack in the miles is what I'm looking for.

Either the bargain basement KLR or the Tiger would get chucked to the curb if I sat on them and they didn't feel right.  Now that I've done some miles I'm getting a much better idea of what I want my bike to feel like.


KTM's outrageous 990 Supermoto
Fortunately there is no shortage of multi-purpose bikes out there.  From Yamaha Teneres to KTM 990 Supermotos to BMW's famous adventure bikes, there are many options and many of them have that naked, standard bike look that I prefer.

I'm planning on finishing up my work on the Ninja and putting it out for sale this fall while looking for my second season bike, this time spending a lot more time considering how I fit and what I want to do with it.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Motorcycle Things: Winter '17 Wishlist

A motorcycle wish list circa 2017:


Jon Campbell on Google+ shared updated colours on the Aerostich line of motorcycle clothing.  I've always loved the look of Aerostich kit.  Unfortunately, a Roadcrafter suit costs more than most of the motorcycles I've purchased.  

One of these days I'll get the coin together and spring for an Aerostich one piece suit.  By all accounts it'll be the last time I need to.  

They have lots of custom options so I should be able to find a long in the body, regular inseam that fits me properly.  With colour choices aplenty, making an original looking suit that fits is an ongoing pastime.

***


Keeping with the orange kit theme, I'm also wishing for a go with the updated Desmo RO32 transformable helmet.  Quieter, more comfortable and more spacious, it's my go-to Desmo helmet evolved.  Short of buying one from overseas untried, I'm stuck.  If we end up in France this summer, a trip to Roof might be in the cards through.

***

With the Tiger's winter maintenance done, I'm hoping to return focus to the Concours ZG1000 Fury streetfighter I've got half finished.  

On the to-do list is getting a rear light and indicators.  I'd ordered them through Amazon but the dodgy Chinese company that makes them never evidently sent it, though they charged me for it.  The Amazon marketplace seems to be increasingly filled with overseas companies that have a very slow delivery time, assuming they ship at all.

It'd be nice to get this running smoothly by the summer for some blistering solo rides where I finally get to find out what those new Michelin tires feel like.  In a perfect world I'd enjoy the summer on it, ride it to the Distinguished Gentleman's Ride in Toronto next September where someone offers to buy it for what it cost me to make it.  I could then role that over into next winter's project.

***

A couple of road trips this summer would be nice.  I've had a trip around Lake Superior in mind for a while now.  It's about 2000kms around from Manitoulin Island and back again, and another couple of hundred kilometres and a ferry ride home.

Launching from Little Current at the north end of Manitoulin, I'd go the Ontario side first just to avoid the misery that is the border crossing into Michigan at The Sault.  After sitting at that for almost two hours last year, I'll go backwards around Superior just to avoid it.  Doing 350km/days on average, we'd get around Superior in about six days.  If we wanted a day off, we could push for a couple of days to get a day of rest.  A day up to Manitoulin and a day back at the end means eight days on the road.


A trip down the Appalachians to see the full solar eclipse this summer is also on the short list.  Doing this one for ten days means we'd have a couple of days to explore areas on the way down and on the way back instead of making miles every day.

From just over the border in New York state all the way down to Tennessee, this is motorcycle nirvana with mile after mile of twisting mountain roads.

***

Racer5 is running their introduction to track riding again this year.  A May long weekend getting familiar with the racing dynamics of a motorcycle would be pretty wicked.  By the end of the course I'd be qualified to race.  The next step would be getting myself into the VRRA for some vintage racing.

***

I never get bored of imagining throwing a few grand down on some motorcycle racing gear.  My two pairs of Alpinestar boots have been excellent, so I'd probably base a lot of the racing gear on what they offer.  I'd read reviews of the Handroid Knox racing gloves and they sound totally next level.  An Arai helmet has always been a long term, top end motorcycle helmet wishlist item, and they have a nice Isle of Man special out this year.

***
A track-day specialist bike would also be nice to have tucked away, only to be trailered to the track for hard work.   This '99 CBR600 F4 is well cared for and going for about three grand.   I'd strip it down to bare essentials and put a carbon single seat cowling on the back.  After wearing out the tires on it, I'd go to racing tires and continue to evolve the bike into a track specialist.

***

Guy Martin did a race in his Ford Transit van last year where he averaged well over 100mph for an extended length of time.  I wouldn't spend much time in one the other side of 100mph, but having a van would sure be handy.  From transporting my own bikes out of the snow for a cheap ride in the winter, to taking the race bike to the track, having a bike transport system would be mega.  With taxes, a new one nicely spec-ed out is just north of fifty thousand of your finest Canadian dollars.

***

Some top shelf gear, getting race ready and having the custom Kawasaki on the road... if I came into cash in 2017, that's what I'd be spending it on.