Trackday Prep & New Duds…

I suppose that for me this evening is a bit like a deep inhale before that long relaxing exhail when you realize you’re finally able to just let it all go. I really can’t wait to get back on the bike as its been way to long – the ‘ol blog very clearly illistrates that this month. I’ve more or less been horribly boring… To be frank my mind has not exactly been very focused on riding as of late due to the craziness at work, but the next few weeks should be a nice mini-break from all of that amazingly wonderful chaos.

Now that I’ve finally got some time to both breath again and think ahead, I find myself in the midst of starting to plan out my upcoming trackday. Given the madness that ensued last time I took the ’04 999 to Willow (See Nothing Like A Trackday, Trackday The Adventure Continues , and The Italian Diva Sings and Dies Again) I’ve decided that this time instead of riding my bike up to Willow, I’m going to be a little bit smarter and drive it up.

This of course no doubt will result a few new courses in my continuing moto-education as I’ve never really needed to deal with things like truck ramps, handlebar tie-down gizmo’s, etc. with a streetbike. When I was younger we used to trailer our dirtbikes, but that was a long time ago… And let’s be honest does anyone really care if they scratch their dropped in the mud, beat to shit CR250? Oddly I find myself greatly looking forward to this new found knowledge. Somehow I get the feeling that it simply will not be the last time I use it…

Clearly when it comes to riding, things are changing for me… And as things have begun to move into more of a ‘sport’ category over the course of this year I’ve continued to comment on safety. Specifically my safety! Perhaps even to a greater extent than I have even realized until the great Gaz mentioned on one of our buisness trip travels that I seemed rather preoccupied with the topic at times. Hanging out with Ienatsch was more or less the last straw because after seeing his collection of racing leathers it really hit home that I’ve been riding under-protected for my style of riding. This is not a judgement call on brands or styles or other ways of protecting yourself while riding. Simply a reaction on a personal level. The faster I get, the more time I’ve been spending while riding thinking about what would happen if I had a ‘get off moment’. So while I’ve greatly enjoyed my custom set of Bates Leathers, the bottom line was that I felt it was time to move on and move up.

The Surprise

Due to how crazy work has been lately, I never got a chance to write anything about MotorMilt’s amazing surprise. A couple of weeks ago when I got home from the last round of biz travel, I walked in the door to a set of brand new Alpinestars leathers. To be honest I was totally shocked. MotorMilt and I had been talking about leathers ever since I had come back from Colorado, but I never expected he would go out and get a set for me as a present. It totally caught me off guard and came out of left field. But in a rather nice way…

The new set is an S-MX suit. From what I understand the boys over at ProItalia rushed it over while I was out of town so it would get here in time to shock the shit out of me. Which obviously it did. Off the rack it fits fantastically well. That really surprised me. They’re much tighter and snug than my Bates set. In terms of protection they’re night and day different. Way more space-age looking plastic, a massive back protector, pucks, and armor in places I didn’t even know they put armor. On a protection level it’s simply amazing and at the same time seemingly smarter. My major concern was that all this extra protection would making me feel less human and more robotic but to be honest when you’re sitting on the bike, they just feel like an extension of your skin…

So I’m stoked to test them out tomorrow for the first time and of course run the CLASS course with them…. It should be fun…. And I certainly get the feeling that the next few days will be very, very relaxing…