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Club Racing a Buell XB9R

12305 Views 12 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  stapleking
I've read about a guy racing one in a similar class in Canada. First thing he did was convert to chain-drive. Allows clutchless upshifts, should shave a bit of time off your laps.

He modified the exhaust and airbox, installed a fuel injection box, and ported the heads.
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Well, if you race a Buell at NHIS, you're guaranteed at least one fan. Hope to see you.
He claims to have finished in the top 5 consistently, with one win and a third place overall in the championship.
A few guys in WMRRA race 'em in MW GP twins. As I understand it, they are not competitive largely b/c of the really short gearing, and the belt drive makes changing gearing really impractical. I think if you're serious you need to do a chain drive conversion. If you're track has no straights maybe that won't matter so much. I race an '03 SV 650.
Why did the AMA rule them out?
Don't be stupid...

Racing is about learning to ride a motorcycle faster than your competitors. Period. So race the cheapest possible bike that's competitive. That's the SV. A buell will cost you thousands and thousands more a year to race. Plus, there's the unquantifiable cost of sitting and watching the races because your bike is waiting for parts or has just blown something up. An SV can be pumped to 85 rwhp (more than the stock 1200 buell motor makes!) and run season after season without rebuilding it. Anybody who claims that kind of reliability from an ancient pushrod motor is insane or lying.

Here's a thought- get an SV, and learn how to race it. After you get an impressive racer's resume together, go to your local Buell dealer and convince him to support your racing with discounted/free bikes/parts/labor. That's the only way I'd race something like that.

Otherwise you're a sucker, paying extra for something you don't need.
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Having been a team owner that raced a VR1000 and Buells in the Lightning series, as well as Anthony Gobert's Muzzy superbike and several other GSXRs and FZRs over the years, my best advice is to buy a used XB9R, with a race kit if you can find it, and then go race it.

A chain conversion ($ 1,250 approx) will be worth it's weight in gold. IF you don't do anything stupid to the motor, (meaning keep it relatively stock inside), and don't try to run it at 10 grand, you will have a relatively reliable racebike, and parts are cheap. You can do an engine rebuild on a Buell (XL1200 series) for about $ 120.00 including pistons, rings, & gaskets. If you do the work yourself.

Buell engines are much simpler to work on than overhead cam engines, and contrary to popular belief, (those who haven't actually raced them) they are reliable if you don't overev them substantially.

Also remember, dyno's don't win races, riders do. In the amateur classes, 5 or 10 hp is not going to matter much. Don't get caught up in the "More motor is faster lap" crud. That just costs money and grief. You go to race, not work on racebike at track. Keep it close to stock. Use stock pegs, bars, etc. They are cheap, and you can keep spares. Trick parts are great until you break them.

I have a friend (Chris R) that is 600 class champion in endurance racing, and went from an R6 to an SV650, and went 2 seconds a lap faster at Texas World Speedway, due to a LESS POWERFUL engine. he had more time to actually think about what he was doing.

Besides, go racing, have fun, learn, and feel good about it!

Buy the Buell. You won't regret it.

They are not much more initial cost to purchase, as used ones are going for $ 4,500 - $ 6,500 since the 12R came out.

Best of luck.
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I forgot to add, Buell supports EVERYONE who races a Buell more than any other factory PERIOD. Henry Duga, (Buells first employee) does the track support at the national events, and if you call him, they have a list of recomended changes and mods to the bikes for racing. They also have a race support program that if you are actually racing, you can buy race parts for cost through your dealer.

Contact your HD/ Buell dealer, or get on the web and call Buell and ask for Henry Duga in race support.

They make it easy and fun!

Re: Don't be stupid...

>>Here's a thought- get an SV, and learn how to race it. After you get an impressive racer's resume together...

Ya did that last couple years on an EX500. Talk about cheap racing and very competative with everyone on the same bike. I did put a resume together (lots of wins and placed 2nd in Daytona), and I did just what you mentioned with the local Buell dealer. Still waiting for him to make up his mind.

You are right about the SV. They are a workhorse.
Don't be afraid

Of going to other dealers. Some shop owners are too timid and cheap. Just because he's your local guy doesn't mean you have to go to him.

A good follow-up post would be a solicitation on advice from racers on how to get sponsers.

You made a stron case for racing a Buell...makes me want to do it.
Am I the only one fascinated by the prospect of seeing one of those fanstatic "skeeter foggers" back in action? The Mighty H-2..been there, done that and survived! Oops, I just revealed by soon to be AARP status!
No.....I did the H1, H2 thing in the 70's too. "Production" classes with hand-carved aluminum labyrinth seals on the cranks, one-off CDI ignitions; shocks with pinholes drilled in 'em to replace the fish-oil the factory used for damping fluid, aluminum swing arm bushings carefully colored to look like the compressed cardboard stock pieces, etc., etc.

That I'm still alive to reflect on the adventure is truly a miracle
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