So I was looking through my “Drafts” folder and found this post that I started writing back in September of 2011. This was back when I was racing my first race bike and before I built the Duzucati. Not sure why I didn’t post it back then, but looking back over the past few years I can’t say that much has changed. :)
So it’s almost the end of my third year racing in the AFM in a “cheap” class: 650 Production. Basically you take a relatively inexpensive motorcycle like a Suzuki SV650 and make it a race bike with limited modifications. If you’re not familiar with motorcycles, basically the SV650 isn’t a “race” bike like the sport bikes you’re familiar with. SV’s are great for commuting or just going out for a leisurely sunday ride, but they’re not that sporty, don’t make a lot of horsepower and hence don’t go through tires as quickly and since it’s production legal with a minimum amount of engine modifications should last a fair bit.
Boy was I wrong.
I bought my race bike fully prepped and ready to go racing for $3500- about the same cost as my leathers, helmet, back protector, boots and gloves cost me.
After 3 years (which I’m told is the average length of the career of a club racer with the AFM) I thought I’d figure out how much money I’ve spent on the bike. The obvious way to do this is figure out everything you’ve replaced and their costs and come to a total. Instead, I realized it was easier to list the things I did NOT replace (ignoring consumables like tires & gas):
- Fork tubes
- Upper & Lower Triple Clamps
- Rear brake caliper
- Swing arm
Exhaust headers Rear brake master cylinder Radiator& hoses
- Billet clutch cover
Frame? Replaced. Motor? Replaced multiple times. Rear shock? Replaced. Front fork internals, gas tank, fairings, rear sets, exhaust can, front fairing stay, windscreen, brake pads, chain, front calipers, sprockets, subframe, coils, rectifier, wiring harness, front brake master cylinder, brake/clutch levers, handlebars, brake lines, clutch pack and throttle tube all replaced one or more times.
Doesn’t include buying tire warmers and a generator, tons of track days, race fees, tires, gas, hotel rooms, etc.
So yeah, “cheap” racing. Ha!