Vintage Racing at Mid-Ohio Vintage Days

Chasing...leaving the S-turns....

Chasing…leaving the S-turns….

In the past couple weeks, we have documented our trip to Mid-Ohio Vintage Days here on the site.  We have described bikes of all kinds and a sea of parts for sale.  But for us, most impressive was the vintage bike racing… 

Thumbs up....

Thumbs up….

The ability to get right into the paddock, watching mechanics (and sometimes the riders themselves) tune the bikes, moments before entering the track, sets this experience apart from any modern MotoGP, SBK or AMA sanctioned race event.  Getting close to the action was easy, and we were able to saddle up to the fence, snap some photos, and feel as if we were part of the action.

The 2.4 mile Mid-Ohio Race course is packed with twists and turns that keep the action exciting, and being so close makes it an experience that we want to repeat over and over again.

The only frustrating part was not knowing the riders, which would have made it easier to follow the goings-on.  The races are often filled with multiple race classes, meaning many bikes may be on the track simultaneously, which can create confusion for the spectator.

But in the end, it was really about watching people take a 40 year old bike onto a track, open it up and let her rip.  And we got to watch that all day.  The effort put into these bikes to make them track-worthy is impressive, and the love shown these bikes was inspiring.  Although I don’t anticipate entering a race any time soon, I know that I think a little differently about the way I approach repairs on a vintage bike, having seen what’s possible…

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