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Old 03-06-2019, 08:58 PM   #31
DirtyD
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Sack of Tomato
Motorcycles: CBR1K, R3, KX250F, YZ250
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Iím definitely in agreement with Ken that a high end sport tire would be a much better choice for the majority of riders when riding in sub 60 degree temps. At Sonoma on the 23rd it took all my skill to avoid a cold tire crash on my medium front, medium plus rear slicks. It was exciting for sure in the morning when the air temperature was in the upper 40ís and the track temp was in the upper 50ís according to my infrared temp gun. I was running lower pressures (32/20 hot) and really hammering the straights and the front brakes trying to keep heat in the tires. Of course the tires were slightly colder coming off the track than when they came off an hour long soak on the warmers. A couple of riders crashed that first session and I could feel the rear tire moving around a little so I limited my aggression and ended up 15 seconds off my typical first session pace.

That was in the morning. By the late morning/ early afternoon the sun was intermittently out, the air temp was in the upper 50ís, the track temp was in the upper 70ís and it was easier to keep heat in the tires. I ran a bunch of laps within 2 seconds of my personal best and even managed one lap within 1 second. Then the sun started going down. The track temps were surely dropping in the shaded sections of the track and I decided to back it down a second or two.

Iím sure that I would have gone faster, safer in the morning on a Q4 or a Rosso Corsa or any really good street tire. My best laps might not have been as quick when the sun was out, but most riders in the A group (including the instructors) arenít running that pace anyway. So unless youíre running at the pointy end of the A group and have experience racing a moto late in the day when the track is hard (and the water truck comes out while youíre sitting on the gate!) then slicks (at least the Dunlop slicks) on a cold day probably arenít the best choice.
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