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Flat Track Racing Series-

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I just found out about Flat Track racing and discovered that I live only a few miles from one of the tracks that they have the annual race at.

It looks like some of the bikes evolved from some dirt bikes.   Is anyone familiar with this sport and the equipment that is used ?

 

 

 

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There's only about 100 years of history, how much time have you got? Seriously, Google is your friend.

Which track?

Edited by RichBaker
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Motorcycle racing started on horse tracks and over time, evolved in to all the variations we have today.
Board track racing was an evil offshoot that had great popularity back in the early days. I'm guessing the riders were happy to get back on dirt ovals
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10 hours ago, preventec47 said:

I just found out about Flat Track racing and discovered that I live only a few miles from one of the tracks that they have the annual race at.

It looks like some of the bikes evolved from some dirt bikes.   Is anyone familiar with this sport and the equipment that is used ?

 

 

 

Back in the 70's you could buy a new flat tracker right off the showroom. Bultaco and Ossa both made bikes for short track - Bultaco had a 250 and 360 Astro that were great bikes that you could buy on Friday and race Saturday night. Ossa made a 250 DMR ( Dick Mann Replica ) that ripped also. If you wanted to race the big tracks - half mile and mile tracks - you had to build a custom 750 with a Triumph, BSA, or Yamaha twin engine. Harley had an XR 750 that you could buy if you put your name on a list and waited forever - they only made a couple hundred a year to comply with the AMA rules. The big bikes normally ran a Trackmaster frame with all aftermarket components and were very expensive to build. Flat track was big back then with races all over. I grew up in the midwest and there were outlaw short track and half mile races every weekend with good purses where you could make a living at it. It's a great sport and seems to be making a comeback.

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Our flat track newbie should watch "on any sunday" for some historical perspective

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45 minutes ago, surfKnobby said:

Back in the 70's you could buy a new flat tracker right off the showroom. Bultaco and Ossa both made bikes for short track - Bultaco had a 250 and 360 Astro that were great bikes that you could buy on Friday and race Saturday night. Ossa made a 250 DMR ( Dick Mann Replica ) that ripped also. If you wanted to race the big tracks - half mile and mile tracks - you had to build a custom 750 with a Triumph, BSA, or Yamaha twin engine. Harley had an XR 750 that you could buy if you put your name on a list and waited forever - they only made a couple hundred a year to comply with the AMA rules. The big bikes normally ran a Trackmaster frame with all aftermarket components and were very expensive to build. Flat track was big back then with races all over. I grew up in the midwest and there were outlaw short track and half mile races every weekend with good purses where you could make a living at it. It's a great sport and seems to be making a comeback.

San Francisco in the early seventies had eight TT and Short Tracks within a hundred miles of home.  There were AMA Sportsman races on Wednesday night, Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday during the day.  A typical race at Hayward Speedway or Fremont had four hundred participants.  Classes ranged from hundred cc to seven-fifty cc, with rider skills ranging from Novice, Junior and Expert.  The AMA required riders who wanted to get their Class C Novice pro license to first win enough Sportsman races to earn the points (70 then 90) to qualify for expert status.  To become an AMA Class C Expert, the process started all over again.  Forty points to become Pro Junior, ninety for Expert.  A good rider with good equipment could expect racing hundreds of races over a period of four to five years to gain top status.  It would take one more year to get a "National Number."  National Numbers had no local district letter (A ~ Z) affixed to the number.   

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2 hours ago, kcposty said:

Our flat track newbie should watch "on any sunday" for some historical perspective

Speaking of the movie, Jeff Ward in going to do some flat tracking this season. :applause: 

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2 hours ago, solimine said:

San Francisco in the early seventies had eight TT and Short Tracks within a hundred miles of home.  There were AMA Sportsman races on Wednesday night, Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday during the day.  A typical race at Hayward Speedway or Fremont had four hundred participants.  Classes ranged from hundred cc to seven-fifty cc, with rider skills ranging from Novice, Junior and Expert.  The AMA required riders who wanted to get their Class C Novice pro license to first win enough Sportsman races to earn the points (70 then 90) to qualify for expert status.  To become an AMA Class C Expert, the process started all over again.  Forty points to become Pro Junior, ninety for Expert.  A good rider with good equipment could expect racing hundreds of races over a period of four to five years to gain top status.  It would take one more year to get a "National Number."  National Numbers had no local district letter (A ~ Z) affixed to the number.   

Yeah it was crazy popular back then with lots of races, racers, and spectators. Every county fairgrounds had a track and drew big crowds when the bikes raced - more fun to watch than the stock cars. Good times.

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Back to the op’s question, there is a 450cc class that uses dirt bikes. Started awhile back with the dtx class that tried to keep the price down and bring in some new blood to the sport using mx bikes. They were a lot more ill handling than a tracker frame and it kind of fizzled out. Over time they have figured out a lot and the class is now the stepping point to the big motor class.

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I have only seen 2 different races in my life but worked with someone that his dad was into it in the 70’s. He was really good and had a lot of stories and setup advice.

I enjoyed hearing the old guy most talk about it. And the son had 10+ trophies before going to mx.

It looks really hard. Lol I know for sure I would be horrible at it. But also have no desire to practice or learn just seeing is perfect for me.

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Not exactly the same but this video always reminds me of pictures the old guy had of his many bikes and I could see him doing this against moder bikes all vintage suited up.
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Oh man,  the rider in yellow with the football shoulder pads on the old bike with skinny tires had me in tears when he passed everyone

to take 1st !    Is is possible his engine was bigger than the others due to some handicap system ?   How the hell could he win ? ? ?

BTW  .   I found many YouTube videos of Dakar but I cant find any place that shows the bikes up close.

I want to see what they look like especially with the super large tanks.   Someone mentioned 9 or 10 gallons

but I think that must be with at least one refill during the race.

 

 

Edited by preventec47

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It looks like a really big engine. From what I can see I really have no idea what size it is or anything.

Only remember stumbling across the video somewhere, in a strange way and all it showed was a pic of him with the wild looking handlebars so got my attention. I didn’t expect the results in the video at all.

Assuming he was goofing around and would crash or blow the engine, don’t know Japanese so had zero to go on from the details of the video.

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On 1/18/2019 at 12:10 PM, surfKnobby said:

Back in the 70's you could buy a new flat tracker right off the showroom. Bultaco and Ossa both made bikes for short track - Bultaco had a 250 and 360 Astro that were great bikes that you could buy on Friday and race Saturday night. Ossa made a 250 DMR ( Dick Mann Replica ) that ripped also. If you wanted to race the big tracks - half mile and mile tracks - you had to build a custom 750 with a Triumph, BSA, or Yamaha twin engine. Harley had an XR 750 that you could buy if you put your name on a list and waited forever - they only made a couple hundred a year to comply with the AMA rules. The big bikes normally ran a Trackmaster frame with all aftermarket components and were very expensive to build. Flat track was big back then with races all over. I grew up in the midwest and there were outlaw short track and half mile races every weekend with good purses where you could make a living at it. It's a great sport and seems to be making a comeback.

First time even hearing of a Bultaco was seeing a bike in a massive old dairy barn basement. Looked like the one in my attached image only set up for flattrack.

with all stock parts piled next to it in a organized manner.. the bike looks like new after wiping the dust away. But as always around here with old farmer guys. He has zero interest in the bike or selling it. Acquired from a neighboring farm estate sale and moved into his barn luckily it’s concrete floored and really reasonable temperature year round so the dust protects the shine underneath. It turned over with great compression. And likely just changing fuel lines and some cracked rubber pieces it would run.

ill need to dig I have pictures somewhere of it from 12-15 years ago.

F47AA5B5-1D9C-4BA3-A199-F7D372A3CF87.jpeg

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The story of AMA Pro Flattracker, Ricky Graham will give you an idea what it's all about

 

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Oh man,  the rider in yellow with the football shoulder pads on the old bike with skinny tires had me in tears when he passed everyone
to take 1st !    Is is possible his engine was bigger than the others due to some handicap system ?   How the hell could he win ? ? ?
BTW  .   I found many YouTube videos of Dakar but I cant find any place that shows the bikes up close.
I want to see what they look like especially with the super large tanks.   Someone mentioned 9 or 10 gallons
but I think that must be with at least one refill during the race.
 
 
Google be your friend, dakar rally bike, ktm production rally bike or Lyndon Poskitt racing

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