WHAT IS IT? LightSpeed’s carbon fiber transponder
holder may seem like an extravagance that was designed
for bucks-up factory teams, but it is a very practical
device for local racers—if their local tracks use electronic
WHAT’S IT COST? $59.95.
CONTACT? www.lightspeedcarbon.com or
WHAT STANDS OUT? Here’s a list of things that stand
out with the LightSpeed carbon fiber transponder holder.
(1) Theory. Electronic scoring begins with burying
wires underground at the finish line. The buried wires
go to a computer with specialized software that records
when a bike is passing. To make your bike readable to
the computer, a transponder has to be attached to your
bike. It sends a signal out that the wire picks up. The
typical way to mount a transponder is in a plastic case
that zip-ties to your fork tube (between the two triple
clamps). This works fairly well, but there is the danger
of the transponder spinning on the fork tube and getting
wedged between the triple clamp and head tube, locking
your steering. As a failsafe, most racers put duct tape
around the holder just in case the zip-ties slip. That is
like wearing suspenders to hold your belt up.
( 2) LightSpeed fitment. The LightSpeed carbon
fiber transponder holder is molded to bolt to the pinch
bolts on your top triple clamp. With this mounting
technique, it can’t slip down, spin or fall off. Factory
teams use this holder because it is bulletproof and
doesn’t requires duct tape.
( 3) Installation. Depending on the year of your bike
and pinch-bolt location, you mount the transponder
holder to the triple clamp. First, pull the correct two
pinch bolts out, then slip them through the carbon
fiber holder and back into the triple clamp. On bikes
with the pinch bolts mounted on the front side of the
clamps (Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki), this
puts the transponder behind the front number plate
and out of harm’s way. On bikes with rear pinch clamps,
like KTMs and Huskys, the mounting is behind the top
clamp. We suggest using a torque wrench on the pinch
bolts and checking them often.
( 4) Protection. LightSpeed’s design mimics the
mounting system of the stock plastic holder, which
is a hook at the bottom and a post at the top. The
transponder sits on the hook and slips over the post.
A hitch pin through the post secures it in place. The
major differences between the plastic bracket and the
LightSpeed bracket are the material and the mounting
system. As far as the electronics go, it doesn’t matter
which side of the bike you put a transponder on, but
the LightSpeed unit is designed to go on the left side
of the bike, on the top triple clamp, situated behind the
front number plate.
( 5) Business 101. Think of a transponder as
equivalent to the pencil that the score keepers used
to write numbers down with in the old days. If your
race promoter is charging you to rent a transponder,
he is ripping you off. He didn’t charge you for a pencil
a few years ago. When you sign up for a race, being
scored is part of the sign-up fee. It is greedy for a
promoter to make you pay an additional fee to be
scored. What’s next? A fee to rent a starting spot
behind the gate? Or, a fee to park in the pits? (Oh
yeah, the AMA National promoters already charge the
teams at the 250/450 Nationals.) Transponders should
be part of your sign-up fee—and if the promoter has to
raise the entry fee to cover the costs, then so be it—but
he should not be charging you extra to be scored.
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? Price is the only drawback,
but on the plus side, you don’t have to fiddle with duct
tape to keep it in place.
If you race every week, the LightSpeed
transponder holder is a valuable addition,
but it isn’t essential.
LIGHTSPEED TRANSPONDER HOLDER
MXA TEAM TESTED