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I want to start racing track this year. I have a problem though, No track bike. Should I get a dedicated track bike? Just buy a new Bianchi? or should I just check out Blaine MN (closest one) and see if they have a beginners time, where people can ride anything thats fixed.


Trevo
 

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i like whiskey
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Go to your local track or LBS

Trevo said:
I want to start racing track this year. I have a problem though, No track bike. Should I get a dedicated track bike? Just buy a new Bianchi? or should I just check out Blaine MN (closest one) and see if they have a beginners time, where people can ride anything thats fixed.
The velodrome in this area, Dallas/Ft Worth www.superdrome.com, has classes that beginners can take. You just have to show up with your shoes and pedals and a helmet. They walk you through all the basics of track riding, set you up on a bike, and off you go. I suspect that your local track would have something similar.

Personally I'd try a loaner bike for a little while before I bought a dedicated track bike. It might not fit perfectly, but they few bucks you spend renting a bike could be invaluable for determining exactly what you want when you actually have to lay the cash down.

Your LBS should be able to point you in the right direction too. That's always a good place to start for anything bike related.
 

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NeoRetroGrouch
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Track racing in the Chicago area...

Both tracks have “stock bike nights” where you race your road bike against other road bikes. You have to pick a gear at the start and leave it there.

From there, you can rent a track bike from a local LBS and race that on the same night. After 3 nights here, you graduate to being allowed to race on track nights. I completed my 3 nights last summer.

You can also use your own bike, of course. It’s really quite easy to put together a track bike from a steel road bike with horizontal dropouts to see what you like. I used a 2000 Bianchi Volpe frame. You need a rear track hub/wheel and use on non-QR front skewer. Remove one chainring and everything else that’s not needed.

Go to the track (or call or email) and see what’s available. You gain a lot of pack-riding and finishing experience in a hurry.

TF
 

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The only real critical thing to bear in mind if you try and use a road frame is the bottom bracket height of the frame in relation to how steep the banking of the track is. For example both the main 250metre wooden indoor tracks in the UK - Manchester and Newport, need a minimum BB height of 10.5 inches to avoid grounding your pedals/cranks. I suspect that most outdoor tracks would be ok with a road frame + 165mm cranks - but check anyway.

My other advice is just go for it, riding track can be a real buzz, especialy an outdoor one on a still summer evening. Fantastic!
 

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Trevo said:
I want to start racing track this year. I have a problem though, No track bike. Should I get a dedicated track bike? Just buy a new Bianchi? or should I just check out Blaine MN (closest one) and see if they have a beginners time, where people can ride anything thats fixed.


Trevo
Trevo,
Your road bike will not be welcomed at Blaine... at least not on the actual track. Check out their web site… http://www.nscsports.com/velo/ I’d strongly encourage you to consider their track class (http://www.nscsports.com/velo/dev_intro.html)... probably the best (and safest) way to get going at Blaine. There are more than enough bikes available to rent… no need to buy until you KNOW it’s something you like. Bob Williams is a real good guy and runs a GREAT track!! Let me know if you’d like any more first-hand info.

JBergland
 
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