There may be nothing more exhilarating and satisfying on motorcycle than a day at the track. No cars, no stoplights, no curbs. Nothing to hit, no police to write you a ticket. It's freedom to ride as fast as your guts and skill can carry you. It's the safest place to hone your skills. All bikes are great, but some are better than others. On this episode of 5 Best Bikes it's all about trackdays.

Michael Gilbert chimes in on this episode, and with good reason. Gilbert is the road test editor for the Bonnier Motorcycle Group. He's the fast guy for both Cycle World and Motorcyclist, a hired gun. He also races MotoAmerica in the 1,000cc Superstock class. He's faster than you, he's faster than just about everybody. He knows how to get the most out of a bike, but he also knows how to articulate that on a page and on the video screen.

At the end of the 10 minutes the list was set:

Ninja 400
Kawasaki Ninja 400Kawasaki

Some riders decry the displacement creep as smaller-displacement motorcycles have added cubes from 250cc to 300cc and now 400cc. We say the Kawasaki Ninja 400 has hit the sweet spot for a small sportbike that any skill level will enjoy.

Tuono V4 1100 RR
Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 RRAprilia

It's a Ten Best for two years straight for a good reason—it is a superbike undressed. More comfortable ergonomics with blistering Aprilia V4 1000 performance make it a sensible choice for those who want to enjoy their motorcycle every day not at the track.

Suzuki GSX-R1000Suzuki

While it may have been surpassed by more powerful and technologically advanced superbikes like the Yamaha R1, Ducati Panigale V4, and BMW S1000RR, the GSX-R1000 is the everyman's superbike. It's a solid choice from pros to weekend racers.

Yamaha YZF-R6Yamaha

Yamaha's R6 has been the most popular choice in professional and amateur roadracing since its introduction. Walk through any supersport paddock and you can't throw a tire warmer without hitting an R6. The latest generation just elevated its already solid performance to another level with superbike-worthy electronics.

Suzuki SV650Suzuki

Such a simple motorcycle has never been so adored by roadracers and trackday enthusiasts. Its lightweight chassis, willing V-twin, and easy to work on nature make the Suzuki SV640 a must-have for racers on a budget.