How Fast Do Speedway Bikes Go? [Expert Guide!]

The cars on the track may be getting faster, but it’s the bikes that are really flying these days. The speedway bike racing has become a massive sport in its own right and one that enthusiasts can get super-fit at. Here’s a look at how fast these bikes go so that you can decide if this is a sport you’d like to try out.

The Evolution Of Speedway Bikes

It wasn’t long ago that bikes were used solely for transportation. These days, they’re used for more than just getting from point A to point B. The bike racing industry has grown by leaps and bounds over the past decade and with it, the types of bikes used for racing have changed.

One of the earliest forms of organized bike racing was cycle speed skating. In the 1920s and 30s, elite cyclists would race across the country on fixed-gear bikes as a form of exhibition. In the 1950s, cycle speed skating became a global sport and was revived in the 1960s as a means of recreational sport. This eventually led to the formation of the International Skating Union (ISU) in 1964, which today sanctions international speedway competitions.

The need for faster bikes spurred the development of the racing bike. The average speed of a racing cyclist in the 1960s was around 20mph, but that increased to 30mph and then 42mph in the 1970s and 1980s respectively. This was made possible by technological advancements in tires, brakes, and gears. In the 21st century, bikes have only gotten faster with the average speed reaching 48mph in 2016. This is basically due to regulations banning engine revs above a certain level and limiting the use of some of the older components, like derailleurs.

The Difference In Spec

There are various grades of speedway bikes, ranging from leisure bikes to race bikes. The main difference between these two is in the level of performance they possess as well as how they’re constructed. The leisure bike has a relaxed pace of riding compared to the race bike, which is designed for speed and performance.

The standard specification for a race bike is as follows:

  • 6061-T6 aluminum alloy frame
  • Front and rear suspension
  • Closed-gear drivetrain
  • Full titanium or composite wheels
  • Full tool chain
  • Riding position
  • Matching number plates

Additionally, bikes for rent must have the following:

  • Front and rear suspension
  • Closed-gear drivetrain
  • Sidewinder-style handlebars
  • Riding position
  • Matching number plates

The standard specification for a leisure bike is as follows:

  • 6061-T6 aluminum alloy frame
  • No suspension
  • Open-gear drivetrain
  • Racing handlebars
  • Riding position
  • Matching number plates

As for the frames, they’re made from strong, stiff materials like steel and aluminum and feature full-fledged carbon fiber reinforcement. The hubs are usually made of metal, have a flatter surface than earlier versions so that they can spin faster, and are locked together by using multiple sets of splines (i.e. ridges) to prevent slippage when riding over rough surfaces.

The Differences In Use

There’s also a difference in how the two types of bikes are used. While the standard usage for a leisure bike is just to get you from point A to point B, the race bike is engineered for speed and efficiency. This means that the rider will be in a more aggressive position and will be using the bike more like a go-kart. With this positioning comes additional benefits like increased power and lower center of gravity, which makes the bike less likely to tip over.

Additionally, the material used for the frame of a leisure bike is usually lighter and cheaper, which makes it easier to travel and maneuver around town. However, this usually comes at the cost of strength and durability. The race bike is more suitable for rugged environments and longer trips where the extra weight is more than made up for by the increased speed and efficiency.

Which Type Of Bike Is Right For You?

These days, the decision to purchase a leisure or a race bike mostly comes down to personal preference. If you’re a fast rider who enjoys pushing their speedway bike to the limit, then the race bike is probably the one for you. However, if you’re looking for a simple and efficient means of transportation, then the leisure bike may be the one for you.

When it comes to buying a luxury item, especially one that’s associated with elite athletics, there are a few aspects you need to consider before making a purchase. The first and most basic rule is to use your common sense. If you’re not sure whether or not to purchase a luxury item, then chances are you’re not meant to have it. Just because a brand names a product is “luxurious” doesn’t necessarily mean it’s worth buying. It all comes down to opinion and how much you’re willing to spend. The worst thing you can do is buy something you think is great just because the brand name is attached.

Additionally, make sure you’re not buying a used bike. You don’t want to end up with an appliance that broke down after just a few months of use just because the previous owner didn’t know how to properly maintain it. This can easily be avoided by simply researching the make and model before making a purchase. A good used bike search engine will do the majority of the work for you by presenting you with all the information you need in an easily digestible format.

Nowadays, the decision to buy a leisure or a race bike mostly comes down to personal preference. If you’re a fast rider who enjoys pushing their speedway bike to the limit, then the race bike is probably the one for you. However, if you’re looking for a simple and efficient means of transportation, then the leisure bike may be the one for you.

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