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Discussion Starter #1
Thought I'd start a thread about my racing exploits 'down under'. Could be an instant cure for the insomniacs among you Lol. :zzz:

I've just completed my fourth season of racing in the local provincial championship called the Southland Cup. I race in a class called Formula 3 / Superlite which is dominated by SV 650s, the odd 600 four with one cylinder disabled (effectively a 450cc triple) and a few old 400 fours plus the odd 300 twin. Bit of a motley collection you could say :). I've managed to win the class title three years running now but it sounds more impressive than it really is. Unfortunately the grid numbers and strength of competition in my province is really poor, so as long as you rock up for all six rounds (18 races) and do OK with no DNF's then your pretty much going to be placed in the top three at seasons end and take a sash home.

So it's a bit of a local track hero scenario for me which means when I poke my nose out of my home province I get my butt kicked :icon_biggrin:
Last summer I had a huge reality check when I decided to try my hand at the Nationals in the Pro Twins class. At the first round I qualified 16th out of 18 riders which I kinda expected but in the race I was dead last by a country mile Ha ha. I was quite despondent and could have easily packed up and gone home then but I had paid big money to compete in four of the five rounds over the summer so that was what I did. Long story short, I ended up 15th out of 25 riders over the course of the competition but my placing was enhanced by some riders only doing a couple of rounds. There was a huge attrition rate over the five rounds with bike failures and broken bones so we went from a best of 19 starting riders on the grid to 11 by the last race of the last round. I was very consistent at least and finished all 12 of my races (three per round) with no offs or mechanical issues. I did get faster and even beat a couple of riders in round three which put a smile back on my dial.

I'm a sucker for punishment so this summer in January I will be again competing in the two South Island rounds of the Nats. I wont venture North this year though as it cost me a bomb to be tail end Charlie last time.
This year I wont have the same expectations of myself and just plan to enjoy it more and try and improve my lap times and hopefully placings. Won't be my first time learning the tracks either and will have some data to use as a guide to how well i'm doing. Looking forward to it, will keep ya's posted.

Before I wrap this up I'd like to say what a great run I've had with the SV mechanically. Admittedly being an engineer I'm pretty hot on maintenance and constantly checking the bike over etc but man it's been good just to park the bike up between race weekends and not have to spend hours in the garage or even worse have issues at the track. They really do seem to be able to take a bit of punishment these bikes. Most of my time has involved getting the suspension set up right and I'm pretty happy with it now.

Thanks to all of you who have answered some of my many questions the last three years. There is a wealth of knowledge on this forum.

Here's a pic from the last meeting:
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Discussion Starter #3
Well I went a lot better in the National rounds this year and made good progress, possibly better than expected.
I had a feeling after the Friday practice day at Round one that I was going OK, but deliberately wasn't recording lap times so I didn't get distracted with all that and start putting myself under pressure. In the first official timed practice on Saturday morn I was 4 seconds a lap quicker than last year, so that was real encouraging. Unfortunately in the first race a guy knocked me off the track when he lost his front end. I managed to stay on the bike though and rejoined the race in dead last. That's racing..
Race 2 on Sunday morning I got a good start passing four riders off the line and managed to hang on to that spot bar one rider getting past me. I ended up 13th outta 19 though there were a couple of DNF's ahead of me. Much better than being last and not even being able to keep up with the 2nd last place getter like last year!
One of the biggest benefits of being able to keep up with the race pace was that (apart from getting a tow) I could now see where I was losing time and what I needed to work on and where I need to push harder.
Race 3 on Sunday afternoon was in 31 degree heat (88F) and being the Southerner I am I did wilt a bit and found it hard to focus. I dropped a spot to come in 14th. I knocked 3.1 seconds off my PB at that track though and came away well happy :)

The next weekend at Round 2 was a touch cooler and pretty much perfect racing conditions . I had my mojo flowing by now and put in another good showing with a 13th, 13th and 14th. The pace was hotter this year and the new young guns out front were breaking the Pro Twins lap records. Comparing my best race time in Race 2, I can see that would have put me in 9th spot last year.
I knocked 2.2 seconds off my PB at this track.
The mighty SV didnt miss a beat, used a touch of oil and no coolant.

So I'm looking forward to next year already and know exactly what corners I need to work on. Regarding working on myself, I've just signed up for all four levels of the Cali SBK School which I will do in Australia this winter. Hopefully they can knock all my bad habits out of me lol.

A few pics from the Nats:

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
New Season, new bike.

We kicked off the (Southern hemisphere) racing season last weekend and about time after six months off the bike due to Covid-19 and then winter. Accordingly I didn't beat myself up too much over my rusty lap times. I did enough to secure two wins and a second placing. There was the usual lack of competition but we have a new 14yr old in our Formula 3 class this season riding a KTM moto 3 bike. It's a few years old but still quick enough and he knows what he's about. I have to admit he is quicker through the bends than myself so I have to make up time down the back straight with the SV's small power advantage.

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Really pleased with the new Gen 3 bike and I didnt have any teething problems despite my modifications and tinkerings over the winter. It needs a paint job now but feels very stable and planted on the track. And the 4 pot brakes are streets ahead of the Gen 2. Power wise it feels pretty similar and that was reflected in my terminal speed down the main straight (just shy of 130MPH). So really pleased thus far.

For those interested this is what I changed on the bike from stock:

M4 full system
Flashed ECU using Woolich software (done on a Dyno)
Remove all emissions crap.
Remove ABS system
Nitron NTR3 rear shock
Racetech fork springs
Traxxion dynamic damper rods + emulators.
Vortex clip ons
Venhill braided lines
Chinese rear sets
GB racing engine case protectors
Techspec tank grips
Yoyodene slipper clutch
Adjustable clutch lever


I still haven't quite worked out what I'm going to do with the tail unit. I'd like a Hot bodies but freight is criminal from the States to this part of the world. Meanwhile I've got a ebay pillion seat cowl on there.

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Kiwi, do you have more pics of your Gen 3 race bike? I got really interested in some details.
Another quesion: Have you remaped the ECU? What did you do? Added a module or remaped the stock one?
Does it worth it?

Congratulations for your progress, 4s faster is A LOT in a lap! You do a great job! Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Kiwi, do you have more pics of your Gen 3 race bike? I got really interested in some details.
Another quesion: Have you remaped the ECU? What did you do? Added a module or remaped the stock one?
Does it worth it?

Congratulations for your progress, 4s faster is A LOT in a lap! You do a great job! Good luck!
Thanks. I remapped the stock ECU. I got an experienced Dyno tuner who has a good name in the racing circles to do it. He uses the Woolich software. Most definitely worth it and essential in my opinion. My bike was running really rich at high RPM's with the M4 full system. We gained a couple of HP's just by sorting that issue alone.

I have a couple more pics, just tell me what bits your interested in and can take more if need be. It will look miles better when it's painted up and sponsor detail is added. About 6 weeks away yet.

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I have a full system, but I gave up of it because it's too loud to run on the streets and gives me headaches hahaha
Well, I'm interested in the dashboard area and if you have replaced the brake lines.
I'm in doubt about buying an ABS brake lines kit or just bypassing it. I don't like the abs behavior in bikes, and the SV is my first bike with it.

Thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Looks good, I'll get back to you. I'm just about to load up the van and head away to a race meeting for three days.
 
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