2018 SA Bike Festival

The weekend of 25 to 27 May 2018 marks another rendition of the South Africa Festival. This year it wasn’t a weekend with the boys for me, rather a time to catch up with an old friend, Quick Fix.

We set out early on Saturday morning to be (almost) the first bike through the gates at the festival. We treated ourselves to some V.I.P. tickets, which in turn gave us access to the Jamie’s Italian VIP lounge situated on the second floor of the pit building. We had a great view of the test rides out on track as well as the Monster Energy FlightNight show later that evening.

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Guess what beauty we could stare at whilst enjoying the show from the V.I.P. lounge.

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Quick Fix, enjoying a taco.

One of the perks included eats and drinks for the day but myself and Quick fix definitely tried some of the other delicacies offered at the event’s “Eat Street” section.

Here one can find tons of interesting munchies ranging from the free range chicken tacos, to wood fired oven pizza (with the oven mounted in a truck), to artisan crafted ice cream for desert. It was definitely not slim pickings when it came to a variety to fill one’s belly.

The rest of the show wasn’t boring either, at the Harley-Davidson stand, Quick fix had the opportunity to feel what it would be like to handle a bike. A Harley forty eight strapped to a rolling road gives one some of the sensation one would experience in riding such a machine on the open road. An experience she wouldn’t soon forget (judging from the facial expressions.

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Quick fix, admiring a Suzuki… (what else?)

The lower floor of the pit building was home to all the usual culprits. Honda, Suzuki, KTM, Husqvarna, Harley-Davidson, Indain, and newcomer Zontes all had their respective display areas on the floor. Oddly, there wasn’t any new, or more exciting featured from these motorcycle building giants apart from the arrival of Zontes, who mainly produce small displacement machines.

Bosch also made an appearance on the display floor with a ton of interesting tech. Most interestingly was a secondary battery system, I’m guessing would be more popular with the adventure bike crowd. The system allows a secondary battery to be used to jump an otherwise dead main battery or provide an alternative power source for all kinds of adventure gear.

As per usual the 2 stroke club of South Africa provided for a few prestine and highly saught after twostroke legends. Furthermore, there were a few awesome custom creations on display. You can view two of the fsvourites up above.

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Super GP round on Saturday

From the V.I.P. lounge we also had a good view of the Super 600 and Super GP races at Kyalami GP curcuit during the weekend. The enclosed lounge did however muffle the beautiful exhaust notes of these awesome machines.

Later on in the evening we were entertained by the LeRiche trail bike show and the Monster Energy Flightnight stunt show. No photos of these as light conditions didn’t really make for good image quality. But the gist of it culminated to an absolutely fantastic festival. A lot better than I expected and a definite improvement on last year.

Until next year’s show, safe ride and enjoy the journey.

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Wolf spirit breakfast run.

Hello again to everyone in the vast reaches of cyberspace. I know I’m late with this post but I do have a compelling reason. But more on that later.

It was a cool, cloudy morning as we set of to the Cock & Bull pub in Hartebeespoort. Add to that some light rain and you have a cold, moist ride for about 87 km.

At the event the weather got better, but not by much. Part of the festivities was a burnout competition. Check out the video of the winner below.

An awesome ride. Safe ride and enjoy the journey.

Ink & Iron

Hello to everyone in the vast reaches of cyberspace. The past weekend marked the annual Ink & Iron day jol. As I’ve said at the start of the year, I will be doing a post about every event that I attend this year. The Ink & Iron day jol will be the first entry in this list.

The Ink & Iron jol is basically a custom bike concourse with a few tattoo competitions thrown into the mix for good measure. The event ran till late but due to circumstances we had to leave early. Here are some of the photos of the custom bikes that were on display at the event:

(Note that my camera’s time and date stamps are out of whack again)

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Oh. They had pizza in a cone too.

Can’t wait to see what will be in store next year. I hope that the custom touches on Anxiety’s bike will be done so he can enter the event as well.

Until then. Safe ride and enjoy the journey.

Breaking Bad News

Hello to everyone in the vast reaches of cyberspace. We interrupt the seasons festivities to bring you this important news update.

According to sources including The Bike Show and News24, a Democratic Alliance councillor has been suspended for making a few hateful averments on his social media page. This councillor, one Ockert Fourie, took to Facebook stating (in Afrikaans) that: “I wish I could just take pieces of steel [and see the] blood and intestines and brains [of motorcyclists] against lamp poles and on tar roads.”

Fourie claims that we bikers have no respect for the elderly and persons working night shifts, as we create excessive noise with our bikes. He further said that we can’t be educated as we tend to swear, gang up and just increase the noise level. “So, blood tissue and pieces of skull and intestines against lamp poles will give satisfaction for this hateful conduct and conscienceless people.”

The post has since been deleted and Fourie has posted an apology, stating that the post wasn’t aimed at “all motorcyclists”, but he apologises to all none the less. The Northern Cape Democratic Alliance has since condemned Fourie’s actions and he has since been suspended.

Some of South Africa’s bikers have also returned fire, informing him of charity focused bike clubs, most charity events such as the Annual Toy Run and that bikers are people with families too.

Although Fourie has apologised, the issue remains that the general public truly distrust motorcyclists, bikers, sometimes even Grangran on her power scoot heading to the supermarket. Shows like Sons of Anarchy, Outlaw Empires, Outlaw Bikers, Outlaw Chronicles: Hells Angels, etc. have given all motorcyclists a bad reputation. People see all motorcyclists as being the outlaws they see on tv. So all motorcyclists have to work overtime to try to improve the motorcyclist image. I’ve mentioned this in a previous post. But it doesn’t seem to be improving the situation, as can be seen from the above.

For those who feel like going the same road as Fourie and just airing dirty laundry on social media, here’s a few tips: Firstly, don’t do it. Secondly, remember that not all bikers/motorcyclists are the same. There are law abiding motorcyclists who love their families and do their best to positively contribute to society. Thirdly, if there’s a few bikers ticking you off, address them. Don’t go around proclaiming death to all motorcyclists.

Yes, we’re loud. Yes, we swear. Yes, we do more for charity than those who wish us death. For all my fellow motorcyclists, safe ride, and enjoy the journey.

 

2017 in Review

Hello to everyone in the vast reaches of cyberspace. The calendar year of 2017 has nearly met its end as we are enjoying the last few days before the new year. The riding season here in South Africa is starting to die down a bit as we approach the holidays. Therefore, I feel that this is the perfect time to have a little review of our year.

The bucket list

First things first. January 2017 I had posted a list of events that I wanted to attend in the year and a few solo rides that I wanted to do. Here’s how the list turned out:

I had been editing this post as the events took place in order to help everyone keep track of where we currently are on our shortlist. Therefore I find it useful to include a key to interpreting the list:

  • Events that have been stricken through = events that have been attended, including a post on the blog.

So here’s my shortlist:

  • Club voted day jols. 
  • The Impala Rally held at Hartebeespoort Holiday Resort from 10 to 12 March 2017.
  • South Africa Bike Festival. Held at Kayalami GP Circuit from 26 to 28 May 2017. 
  • Rhino Rally.
  • The Gauteng Annual Toy Run held in November at Benoni Northerns Sports Grounds
  • Poison Rally.
  • Along with all the above events I’ve planned a few solo/informal rides to a few interesting destinations. Some are quite new, others are old favourites waiting to be visited again. I’ve included maps to the list below, as some of these places aren’t that easy to find without a little help. Here’s the list:
    • The Upperdeck Restaurant.
    • Dukes Burgers.
    • Rim & Rubber Assembly, Greenside.

      Note: Rim and Rubber Assembly has relocated in the time since I wrote the original bucket list. I will add their new address in future

    • Historic Motorcycle Museum, Deneysville.

A sad, sad view, is it not? Out of 11 trips I was able to check off 5. This mostly being a result of my little yellow Honda spewing its guts all over my garage floor. It had reached the point where I was unable to ride for months on end. This problem has been sorted temporarily and I am back on the road for what remains of this season. If all goes to plan, next season will hold some exciting changes here at the Bike Addict.

Memorable moments

Now that we have mourned the death of the bucket list, let us celebrate the joy that the few checked off events have brought us.

Firstly, when you have a bad day and your bike decides to quit on you, you can always rely on family. This became evident to me around my birthday in March when the little yellow Honda died, and my personal responsibilities further soured my week and mood. As a birthday treat my family took me to Rim and Rubber. A bike themed restaurant I really wanted to visit. This was an awesome gesture that really lifted my mood.

Secondly, there was the South Africa Bike Festival. Probably the most memorable event for me this entire year. There we were able to enjoy everything motorcycle, and test drive the latest and greatest from all of the leading manufacturers. As part of the event, Mechanical MacGyver test drove the 2017 Suzuki Hayabusa and the 2017 BMW S1000R. I, on the other hand only had eyes for what I consider to Honda’s flagship litre bike. The 2017 Honda CBR1000SP, and what a ride it was. Anxiety on Wheels, was able to indulge his Harley fetish at their stand by gawking uncontrollably at these machines.

Thirdly, Anxiety on Wheels had a pretty interesting year. After the Dodgy Suzuki was stolen it took him quite a while to save up and buy his current set of wheels. The Honda NT 400 Bros, or Dusty Leafblower as we called it. Just after buying it, he had discovered an opportunity to buy a larger displacement Suzuki GSXR 750. This led him to frantically try to sell the Bros, but in the end sentiment prevailed, and he decided to keep it. We’ve had a lot of fun messing with it and trying to get a little more out of it. It seems that this tinkering will continue next year, as Anxiety does have a list of plans for this little machine.

Fourthly, the Toy Run. Always a mood lifting event. This year was exceptionally memorable as the little yellow Honda, Duiweltjie, and Dusty Leafblower, had to pull double duty as our riding trio turned to an octet. Sharing this event with close friends and family makes the ride a little more worth it. I’ve also received word that one of our passengers is also hankering to buy her own bike. I do hope this wish comes true, a good riding companion is hard to find.

Lastly, to all the trips that never got mentioned. Those two-in-the-afternoon-hankering-for-ice-tea trips, those quick-trips-for-good-burgers, those bike browsing trips and just the plain old commute. Basically, this last one is a dedication to all the friends and trips one comes across on a day-to-day basis. Those trips one does for the love of riding, or just to scare your passenger into doing chores. Those trips that feed the soul, little by little, every day.

We may not have accomplished all we set out for in 2017, but we had safe trips, and tons of enjoyable journeys. I wish the same for 2018 and to all of you.

 

 

The 35th Annual Gauteng Toy Run

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The 35th Anniversary badge for the Annual Motorcycle Toy Run.

Hello again from the vast reaches of cyberspace. I was hoping to have this post published less than 24 hours after the event, but unfortunately, the real world had other plans. So better late than never, as the saying goes. Even as I sit here, typing up this post it seems that distractions and obligations are ever-present.

The 26th of November 2017 9:00am marked the start of the 35th Annual Toy Run. It had us a little bit worried as the Thursday, Friday and Saturday leading up to the event were marked by heavy downpours. Luckily, Sunday was slightly overcast, but dry. The perfect weather to travel some distance and not get sunburnt (so some of us thought). As the day went along, the sun graced us with its presence, turning our cool morning to a hot afternoon.

We got of to a very early start on Sunday morning, around 7:00am, as we had to meet up with a few riders joining us, and pick up a few passengers. This year our little riding trio of Anxiety, Mechanical MacGyver and myself grew to octet, with four riders each carrying a passenger.

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From Left. Myself, (the parrot’s name is Steve), Quick Fix (our speedy paramedic), Mechanical MacGyver, Harley_Lover_248, Harley’s Daughter, Anxiety on Wheels, and Teddy’s. The woman behind the lens is One-way Ticket (who never returns from a run on a bike).

As usual, we gathered at Silverstar Casino around 8:10ish am. Here we had our morning coffee and prepared for the long ride to Benoni Northerns Sports Grounds. Also inside the norm, each of us carrying a special parcel to be donated to the cause of making an underprivileged child smile this Christmas. The mass ride set off just after 9:00am, with the boys in blue on our side blocking traffic as we set of on the N14 later to circle Kempton Park, and finally arrive at Benoni Northerns Sports Club.

Once more we travelled around a 100km from the start location to end, averaging around 80km/h. This meant that the ride felt so much longer than the previous year where we averaged 95km/h. This would also mark the first year of the Toy Run where I had a passenger riding with me. The slower traveling speed took its toll on all of us with cramps and spasms popping up every now and then. Every year that I attend this event I am reminded that sports bikes were never meant for riding on for extended periods of time.

On a different note. This year it seems that we had picked up a bit of a snag with our companions sporting the “blues-and-two’s” as traffic, which should have been stopped, ended up swerving through the more than a kilometre long mass of bikes. To my knowledge there were no incidents as a result of this, luckily.

The end venue was overrun with motorcycles, parked everywhere around the venue. One of the larger turnouts I’ve seen in recent years. Mostly composed of bikes, but also including a few trikes, and what I would call the world’s most expensive quad bike. Which is a custom-built, V8 powered four wheeler. I’m not quite sure how I feel about four wheels joining the mass ride, which in my opinion is reserved for two wheels.

After gawking at the quad for a while, we set off to donate our toys and enjoy the entertainment, stalls, and scenery of the day.

Just before we set off on our journey homewards, we snapped an image of the toys gathered on this momentous day.

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The collection marquee tents filled with the take of the day. A little hard to see, but under the tent are rows and rows of bags containing donated toys.

Once again, one of my favourite events, gathering donations for a good cause. We’ll wait and see what this year’s bike and toy tally is, when the organisers make this info available.

I can’t wait to do it all over again next year.

The 35th Annual Toy Run Approacheth.

Hello to all in the vast reaches of cyberspace. Today marks one month to go before the 35th Annual Toy Run. As long time followers will know, this is an event very near to my heart.

Since 1982, men on steel steeds have hauled little parcels of joy across the country’s roads in order to bring joy to those who are not as fortunate as we are. These parcels, mostly toys, are hauled to designated collection venues. From there, these toys are given to those who otherwise wouldn’t have had a very merry Christmas.

This year, on the 26th November, marks the 35th rendition of the symphony of wind and exhaust as the Annual Toy Run kicks into full gear at 9:00 am. Men and women from all over South Africa gear up and take on the road with little parcels of joy to be donated. Will I be there? It’s going to take a massive feat of nature to try to keep me away.

I wish everyone who is able to attend to join me in this most enjoyable journey.

What the heck is a ‘day jol’?

Hello once more from the vast reaches of cyberspace. In my last post I hinted that I would be attending a day jol the previous Saturday. Just after the post was published I received a question from one of our non-biker readers: ‘What is a day jol? Does it differ from rallies? How is a run different from both rallies and day jols?’ The first of these questions I do get quite often, as the term ‘day jol’ seems to be unique to the Southern Africa biking community. So now I’ll try my hand at answering these questions per category.

Day Jols

The term ‘day jol’ seems to be a colloquial term used throughout Southern Africa, by biking communities to describe a specific form of gathering. It is usually an event hosted at a single venue where riders and non-riders gather to share food, drinks and stories. Although the larger percentage of participants are usually bikers. These events usually have live entertainment and boast an assortment of trade stalls usually selling food, drinks, and biking paraphernalia. In essence a day jol is like bike nights, only taking place during day time, on either Saturdays, Sundays or public holidays.

Day jols are usually held to raise funds, celebrate a motorcycle club’s “birthday”, or celebrate members being patched in.

Runs

The main difference between a day jol and a run is the fact that during a run, a mass ride takes place. All riders who wish to participate in a run, will gather at a designated starting point. From there, all participants will travel as a massive riding group to an end destination, following a specific planned route. At the end venue of the run, the event takes a similar form to a day jol. Offering live entertainment, food, drink, and trade stalls.

Runs are in most instances events with the aim of drawing attention, raise awareness and/or gather donations. It’s very difficult to miss hundreds of bikes roaring down the road. The most prominent run here in South Africa would be the Annual Toy Run. It’s aim is to gather toys for the less fortunate and raise awareness of the circumstances that these children grow up in. It’s an event that I hold very near to my heart and do my utmost to attend every year.

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Myself, Anxiety on Wheels, and Mechanical MacGyver at the start venue of the 2016 Toy Run. Each of us carrying our fluffy passengers who will be donated to needy kid.

Rallies

Once more an event held at a single venue. These events also offer live music, stalls for food, drinks, and riding paraphernalia. However the key difference between rallies and day jols is the time span. Day jols only take place during the course of one day, whereas rallies often occur during the span of a weekend, if not longer.

Rallies here in South Africa are predominantly held at camping grounds as most riders will set up camp for the duration of the event. In essence, a rally is the biker equivalent of a quiet weekend away.

And there you have it. The key differences between day jols, runs, and rallies. Those readers in or near South Africa can keep an eye on the right hand side of our website for upcoming events here in South Africa.

Ride safe, and enjoy the journey.

A Battle Between Man, Machine and The Road. A Beautiful Symphony Of Roaring Beasts.

There is a constant conflict between man, the machine and the road they travel on.. Always fighting for control. Each one trying to affirm control over where to gallop.

This past weekend I was at the annual SA Bike Festival along with The Motorcycle Addict and Mechanical MacGyver/Backyard Yoda, admiring great works of art and machinery as graceful and elegant and powerful as the works of Da Vinci, Picasso, Raphael and as enticing as a winter sunrise… You cannot help but stare and get lost in your own endulgement.

Unfortunately as arrangements went along I was unable to ride my own new Dusty Leafblower along, as we had not attained enough parking tickets, but Mechanical MacGyver was kind enough to allow me to ride pillion on his Bike (I am of course referring to his Honda Fireblade)

The Motorcycle Addict and myself went to witness some truly spectacular and jaw dropping stunts by stunt rider Jimmy Hill and his colleague, Alastair Sayer, later the day, and I could not help but pay my respects after the show for which Jimmy showed much admiration as he stood there sweating profusely, still calm and cool as a cucumber. You can check out a short video of the FMX show below.

The Motorcycle Addict, of course, tried out the new Honda Fireblade SP1 which took a larger chunk out of his gravity than we both expected as he seemes to float away to a nearby satellite as he danced around from sheer amazement. His direct words were “That thing has a lot of hate….”

Mechanical MacGyver also test rode the new Hyabusa and BMW R1000R, but I will let The Motorcycle Addict say a few words on that matter.

All in all I wish I could go to Kyalami every weekend.. But I imagine most bikers and even non bike riders from the weekend’s activities would agree on that. The sound of beasts riding around you passing you every few seconds is like poetry on a very dangerous scale.

Ride safe and stay tuned. And if you are living in SA and even if you are not I urge you on to keep your eyes opem for the SA Bike Festival next year, truly a bone rattling, foundation shaking experience.

2017 Honda Fireblade CBR 1000 RR SP1: Insanity, Black Magic and a set of bronze wheels.

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2017 Honda Fireblade SP1 on display at the South Africa Bike Festival

General

The Fireblade has been one of Honda’s flagship litre-bikes since the first model was introduced around 25 years ago. Since then the Fireblade has undergone several revolutions in its design and performance. From the sharp and angular design of the early 2000’s models to the round-nosed version, colloquially known as the Bullnose Fireblade, in the more recent models (around 2009). For some time Honda riders thought that this was it… the Fireblade could not get any better, until 2017. In late 2016 Honda announced that South Africa will see new models of the Fireblade in 2017. As expected, the base model CBR 1000 RR and the meaner SP1. Our focus will now be on the SP1.

The Specs

Frame & Fairing

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A narrower, aggressive looking front end.

No big changes are visible on the frame, however Honda holds that the frame is more rigid, and lighter than its predecessor. Furthermore, the incorporation of titanium into the making of the fuel tank reduces weight even further.

In addition, Honda succeeded in making the fairing of this bike narrower than its predecessors by shaving around 18 mm in width. In totality creating a 14 kg leaner and 11 BHP meaner machine.

The styling has also been completely changed. The bike looks extremely narrow and highly aggressive.

Suspension, Wheels & Brakes

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A sneak peek at the Ohlins TTX36 rear mono shock and titanium exhaust system.

The SP1 sits on a Ohlins NIX30 front fork and a Ohlins TTX36 shock holds up the rear end. Both front and rear integrate into the S-EC semi-active suspension system, which is controlled by a Bosch MM5.10 IMU. Choosing from a variety of riding modes ensures that the rider can get the most out of the new suspension setup.

 

With the amount of power created by the

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Big Brembo brakes linked to a beautiful bronze-coloured wheel.

engine, it’s clear that the bike needs to be able to stop as fast as its able to go. For this the engineers/designers have incorporated Brembo monoblock calipers. In addition the Bosch MM5.10 IMU also replaces Honda’s clunky ABS system, and adds a few features. Such features include cornering ABS, which measures all sorts of parameters to allow for safer trail braking; and Rear Lift Control, which keeps the rear end on the ground under heavy braking, very helpful in those blind corners.

 

The SP1 contacts the ground on a set of beautiful Y-shaped 5-spoke rims, wrapped in a 120/70 R 17 front tyre and a 190/50 R 17 rear. Not much change in the overall wheel dimensions of the bike, apart from losing some unsprung weight in the rim.

Engine

The Fireblade SP1 still uses the 999.8cc displacement engine block, but this is where similarities to the old bike end. All the other engine components have been tweaked to the point where the engine delivers 189 BHP at the crank, with a rev limit of 13 000 rpm. The engineers at Honda have also reworked several of the main components and substituted magnesium alloy engine covers and a titanium exhaust system. All this has achieved striping around 2 kilograms of weight out of the engine. Honda has essentially squeezed every ounce out of what the base infrastructure can handle.

Combine this with the ride-by-wire system that Honda uses on the engine, and one has access to one of three power modes, nine levels of torque control and three levels of Selectable Engine Braking. This allows the user to “play” with different output settings and find one that suits your riding style.

The integrated quick-shift works beautifully with this setup, allowing for very quick, and smooth gear changes under heavy acceleration. Shifting down is also assisted by a redesigned slipper clutch and an auto-blip. The only oddity that I could find is that Honda has opted for a cable-operated clutch instead of a hydraulic clutch found on other models dating as far back as 2006.

User interface

As one can see from all the above, there are quite a few things that must be communicated to the rider, from engine revolutions to riding modes. Honda have devised a beautifully designed LCD display to assist with this. Neatly “packing” all the related information together, without drawing too much attention away from the important measurements.

The Ride

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Test riding a SP1.

This is where my path crosses that of the SP1. At the recent South Africa Bike Festival, several of these machines were available for test rides around the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit. I seized my opportunity and booked myself a time slot.

As our returning readers may know, I’m a big bloke, with average riding skill and a daily ride of 400 cc. Not even a few rides on Mechanical MacGyver’s modified 2006 CBR 1000 RR Fireblade could have even remotely prepared me for what the SP1 offers.

The first thing one notices is the acceleration. As I’ve said before, I’m a big bloke, and because of that, it’s rare to find a bike that really accelerates aggressively with me on it. Nothing compares to the SP1. Gunning it as I exited pit lane, I was shocked at how this bike is trying to pull away from underneath me. The clever electronics kept both wheels firmly on the ground, but this didn’t stop this bike from trying to leave me in the dust. Wide eyed and holding on for dear life I powered up to the first corner.

With the braking markers mere meters in front if the bike it was time to bring the machine to a crawl, going into a tight hairpin corner. Once again, I’m almost flung from the bike, this time under heavy deceleration. Those Brembo brakes clamp on with enough force to pull your breakfast back into your throat. Once again, the clever electronics keeping traction on both wheels, as there’s room to spare before entering the corner.

Ohlins have prided themselves in creating suspension systems for some of the world’s best handling bikes. The Fireblade SP1 is no exception. As aggressive as it may accelerate and decelerate, it’s a real softy when it comes to handling. The cornering ABS and fantastic suspension makes it very easy to get this bike into a corner at some extreme lean angles. “Getting a knee down” is a breeze on this.

The rest of the lap is pretty much a repeat of the above, clinging on as the bike roars out of corners and trying not to go over the handlebars while braking. Yes, going around a bend on this bike was the easy bit. Coming out of the last corner leads one to a pretty decent front straight. It’s here that I found out that this bike really accelerates like a bat out of hell. Doubling the speed I exited the corner with in a just over a hundred meters.

Even when I misjudged a corner, the SP1’s electronic brain comes to the rescue. Entering a corner way to fast, I had to clamp on those brakes to keep me out of the kitty litter. The cornering ABS and Rear Lift Control meant that I could just clamp on and the bike came to a halt with enough force to pop eyes out of your skull.

By extrapolation, if the bike performs that well in stock form on a track, it should make a pretty awesome road going bike. Being very forgiving and having more power than one would ever need on city streets.

As an after thought, it has a pretty comfortable seat, should be okay to ride it for medium distances without stopping. The riding position isn’t that bad for a sports bike either. There’s more than enough room for a 6’3″ bloke such as myself to sit comfortably, without having to squish bits in order to find a reasonable riding position.

Final Thoughts

This is the point where I have to ask myself, would I buy one? To answer this we have to consider what an SP1 would put a potential buyer out-of-pocket. The SP1 retails for around R 320 000 (ZAR), £ 19 125 (GBP), or $ 24 600 (USD). This puts the SP1 at the expensive end of the motorcycle spectrum. Take into account that even Mechanical MacGyver’s ’06 Fireblade is too much bike for city streets , and you don’t need more than 2 gears. It’s reasonable to think that the SP1 would be similar in the city streets.

So back to the question, would I buy one? My answer is absolutely. I can see in my mind how many readers gasp. “What am I thinking?” “Didn’t I just say that it won’t be any good in the city?” And that’s exactly what I said. Why would I buy one then? The answer is simple. As soon as that bike hits the highway or a winding back road it will once again come into its own. On these types of roads it’ll be like being on the GP circuit again. Running beautiful back roads and speedy highways with a bike that handles and performs like nothing I’ve ever ridden before. That’s why I would buy one.