400GT, a mixed endurance race, and a goodbye…

Started the 2022 racing season with a bang! The 400GT race with California Roadracing Association was an amazing experience. I have never done an endurance race before, and I was a little bit intimidated by the length of the race.

For those who don’t know, the GT race is double a regular race at 16 laps! I was running about a 2:20 per lap which equates to roughly 38 minutes! Now that’s a long time to be on the track at one time. If you’re used to doing track days, a typical session is about 15-20 minutes, and by the end of the track day, I am pretty beat.

Well, luckily I was only doing one race that day, so I had a lot of time to recoup from the practice the day before. There were a couple of 10-minute practices in the morning and a 15-minute qualifying right before noon. The race officially started at 1:30 pm, and I was so on edge! Once the race started, I got into a groove and everything felt normal.

This race had a mixed bag of bikes with Twins on the track at the same time as small-displacement bikes! I definitely had the smallest motor on the course with a 300cc and there were a couple of Aprilla RS-660 race bikes. I think I counted that I got lapped a total of 3 times before the end of the race.

Unfortunately, even with the recent upgrades to the Ninja 300R, it could not keep up with the R3s nor the Ninja 400Rs. Although, because of the space that I got to practice, I was able to knock 3 additional seconds off my pace with the best lap time of 2:16. This really got me thinking, I NEED that 400R. So it is with great regret, that I am retiring the 300R. More to come on my new bike!

* required