Radio Bemba 00.0
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Rocking the spot.
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I have two sets of bars for this reason and I swap out my to my brakeless 3T track bars for the drome. The more bikes the better (if you can afford it) but I would agree with 165 that you should really give the velodrome at least two or three visits before you buy a bike that's dedicated for track racing. You might not like it... it's... "different". If you're anything like me, it will probably be a very humbling experience for you. Then again, if you were going to get a new bike anyway, go for it.
I'm relatively new to the track too. Three suggestions from me to you as a fellow newbie:
1) Try to get a feel for what an appropriate gearing would be for you in your first few races. I started with 48 x 16 and found myself spinning out way to easily. Now I'm at 48 x 15 which while it may not seem like much of a change is a GIANT improvement. You're gut response (like mine) will probably be to gear up even higher ( 48x14, 50x15 etc.) because you want to keep up and do well. I wouldn't do this quite yet. Not until you get used to the movement of the track and the other riders. I still don't feel comfortable enough to go higher than 48x15 because what you gain in power you lose in control (i.e. if you suddenly have to slow down or decelrate a little it will be much harder and you might crash because of it).
2) Get used to riding in a pace line. Most people are very timid at first, but after a few laps start figuring out how to keep their line and get closer to the wheel they're sucking. You might have experience with this from road racing. IF you don't, get some. I wouldn't want to ride with you on the track if you have zero paceline experience. I'm pretty sure most others wouldn't want to either.
3) Don't be afraid to ask anyone and everyone questions if you're not sure about something. Most people are really friendly about it and would rather have you ask about something than have you screw them up during a race or practice even, for whatever reason. Trackies, in my experience, are much friendlier than roadies. More of a comraderie. Less attitude. The older guys have LOADs of knowledge to share. Ask them for it.
Hope that helps. I still have lots to learn too and I look forward to it! Good luck.