RideFast magazine November 2017


RideFast magazine November 2017

9 772075 405004





For a good part of the last year or so there has been a

fair bit of negativity in the motorcycle industry, stemmed

mainly from the weakening rand. Panic sets in when

the word ‘recession’ is thrown around, and one of the

biggest industries to take a knock is the motorcycle


It has been a tough year, but as always we move on and

good times do make a welcomed appearance.

Over the past couple of months, I have seen a massive

boost in the market. The energy seems to be back and

everyone involved have pulled up their sleeves and given

it all they have. The spark is back in the industry and with

Spring now very much upon us, it’s that time again to get

out and ride!

I really enjoyed the month of October. I swung my leg

over some more mouth-watering machines, which we

feature in this issue. The biggest of them being three of

the latest ‘Elite’ models from the land of the rising sun.

I have been waiting all year to do this test - taking the

best sportbikes in the business and putting them headto-head.

Unfortunately, I could only get my hands on

three of the latest offerings, as Yamaha SA do not have

a demo of their elite machine, The R1M, and Aprilia’s

new RSV4 RF has not yet arrived, while the new Ducati

Panigale R Final Edition is very sort after. At R650,000

I am not surprised that Ducati SA don’t have a demo

model, and with the release of the highly anticipated new

V4 Panigale in 2018, there is no real point.

But the bikes I did manage to get are the three most

accessible on the market, and are now available on

dealer’s showroom fl oors as we speak.

It’s always a pleasure testing bikes like these, but also

very hard at the same time because there has to be a

winner and a loser at the end of the day. Our readers rely

on us to give our honest opinion, so we do.

In case you are still scratching your head wondering

what the hell I am blabbing on about, it’s our big

feature test in this issue where we put the new Honda

CBR1000RR SP, Kawasaki ZX-10RR and Suzuki’s

all-new GSX-R1000R up against each other. We have

tested the Honda SP and ZX-10RR earlier this year, but

now with the new Suzuki just having arrived in SA, it was

time to do battle!

The obvious thing to address in this test is that fact that

you really can’t go wrong with today’s superbikes. The

least powerful on the list is still wayyyy more power than

anyone could possibly need on the street or track. And

the heaviest is still on an absurd level of lightweight. So

it’s a win-win no matter which way you slice it. But that

doesn’t mean we aren’t going to crown a winner, quite

the contrary.

Manufacturers fl ex their muscles more than ever with

these machines. Ready to race machines splashed

with everything good from WSBK and MotoGP. The

battlegrounds for the test took place at Phaiksa in

Welkon, an ideal setting to go to war! I hope you enjoy

the test as much as I did!

On top of that, we have an abundance of everything

tasty in the motorcycle industry. There are some very

cool new releases form Kawasaki for 2018, which we

feature here, as well as an interesting new 3-wheeler

form Yamaha.

These machines were revealed at the recent Tokyo Show,

and we are the fi rst to bring them to you. Next month is

set to be even more exciting with the 2017 EICMA Show

in Milan set to kick off on the 9th of November.

Loads of brand new models are going to be revealed at

the show, but no doubt the most exciting will be Ducati’s

new V4 superbike. We will bring you everything you need

to know from the show and more in next months issue.

Back to the present and there is plenty for you to enjoy

in this issue. We once again have a massive variety for

you to delve into - from technical tips, to a ride with

some Distinguished Gentlemen. And a world exclusive

test on a very cool custom Kawasaki Ninja H2, which we

featured a couple of months ago. Oh yes, and I ride a

thing called a Zuell...

As I type this I have just fi nished watching the MotoGP

races from Sepang. Another epic race and so glad to

see that the championship will be going down to the wire

at the fi nal race at Valencia.

Dovi landed up taking the win ahead of team-mate

Lorenzo, who lead for most of the race. I was keen to

see if there was going to be any team orders, and if

Lorenzo, a 3 time-world champion, would obey those

orders and let Dovi through. Lucky for Ducati and Dovi,

Lorenzo made a mistake and Dovi got through. I do think

that Dovi did have extra pace and would have made

the pass eventually, but the team orders thing did spice

things up a bit.

In the Moto2 race, our man Brad Binder was at it once

again, picking up his 2nd podium in a week with another

world class performance to fi nish in 2nd behind his

team-mate Oliviera, making it another KTM 1-2 fi nish.

Brad is looking so good and very confi dant

on the KTM Moto2 bike and I think he will be

in contention for the win at Valencia, and a big

title contender in 2018.

It’s been a great year for KTM, who have really

impressed in their fi rst full season in MotoGP

and Moto2. They do have some big decisions

to make, as for me, Marquez will be on the

Red Bull KTM in either 2019 or 2020. But

who will his team-mate be? They are spoilt

for choice because they have both Brad and

Oliviera to choose from. Maybe a three man

team? How cool would that be? Either way

the thought of Marquez moving to KTM and

Brad in MotoGP is very exciting! And believe

when I say, both those predictions will happen!

Until next month, ride safe!

Rob Portman.



Rob Portman


082 782 8240


Kyle Lawrenson


071 684 4546





011 979 5035


Sheridan Morais

Brad Binder

Darryn Binder

Bill du Plessis

Gerrit Erasmus

GP Fever.de

Eugene Liebenberg

Niel Philipson

The Singh

Mieke Oelofsen

Copyright © RideFast Magazine

All rights reserved. No part of this

publication may be reproduced,

distributed, or transmitted in any

form or by any means, including

photocopying, articles, or other

methods, without the prior written

permission of the publisher.



2017 KTM 200 DUKE


2017 KTM 690 DUKE

R 79,999.00

2017 KTM 690 DUKE R

R 89,999.00


R 160,000.00

Photo: R. Schedl

Please make no attempt to imitate the illustrated riding scenes, always wear protective clothing and observe the applicable provisions of the road traffic regulations!

The illustrated vehicles may vary in selected details from the production models and some illustrations feature optional equipment available at additional cost.

KTM Group Partner


Contents NOVEMBER 2017










The power values indicated are measured using a chassis dynamometer.

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Bend the laws of physics with the new BMW HP4 RACE.

It’s the first superbike to be constructed with a complete

carbon frame and fully carbon wheels. Weighing in at just

146 kgs and packing an astonishing 158 kW, the HP4 RACE

represents the very edge of engineering advancement.

All 750 limited edition bikes are crafted by hand and built for

maximum performance. Science fiction becomes living legend.


Two new Kawasaki

models released for 2018

As we type this, Kawasaki have just taken the covers off

two new exciting models to hit the market for 2018 - The

reborn Z900RS and all-new sexy Ninja 400.

Kawasaki finally unveiled their new Z900RS

retro naked roadster and Ninja 400

supersport bikes at this years Tokyo Show.

The new Z900RS had been much

anticipated, and the release ends two

years of rumours and speculation that a Z1

homage was waiting in the wings. Not only

does it invoke the spirit of the legendary Z1,

it’s currently Kawasaki’s only retro offering

and looks set to have a serious impact on

the market with superbly authentic looks,

the engine from the Z900 – and an even

higher level of spec than its more modernstyled


At the heart of the new Zed is the liquidcooled

948cc Z900 engine, re-tuned to give

a slightly lower peak power, but a swell in

the midrange that means the RS actually

pulls harder than the Zed below 7000rpm.

The new RS has a few additional strings to

its bow, too – boasting traction control and

higher spec cycle parts like radial-mount

brake calipers, and LED lighting all round –

none of which feature on the Z900.

The centrepiece of the new Z900RS is

the 17-litre teardrop fuel tank that’s so

reminiscent of the Z1. Kawasaki say the

frame was completely redesigned to

accommodate the tank’s ideal position and

slim shape. Only after the fuel tank position

was fixed were the seat length and Z1-aping

tail cowl length all decided. The flat waistline

is particularly appealing for retro purists.

The exhaust system – which is a slightly

disappointing departure from the iconic Z1’s

four-pipe layout – is a simplistic 4-into-1

arrangement. The header pipes and collector

are one piece, with no connector pipes

or exhaust valve, allowing authentically

uncluttered retro styling. All are formed from

high-quality stainless steel, and treated to a

buff finish.

The wide, flat handlebar contributes to

the retro sport styling while offering a wide

grip to facilitate decent leverage. Relative

to the Z900, the bars are 30mm wider,

65mm higher, and 35mm closer to the

rider, also giving a more upright riding

position. While the seat height is reasonably

accommodating at 835mm, there’s also an

ERGO-FIT low seat available that reduces

the seat height by 35 mm. Compared to the

Z900, the footpegs are 20mm lower and

20mm farther forward, meaning an even

more relaxed riding position.

The dual clocks boast analogue-style

speedometer and tachometer dials, with a

multi-functional LCD screen tucked between

the two – which can be blanked off with an

accessory panel for a more 70s aesthetic.

The LCD screen features a gear indicator,

odometer, dual trip meters, fuel gauge,

remaining range, current and average fuel

consumption, coolant temperature, external

temperature, clock and the Economical

Riding Indicator.

Unlike it’s modern stablemate, the Z900RS

is equipped with traction control featuring

two modes, and an ‘off’ setting. Mode 1

prioritises maximum acceleration, while

Mode 2 provides a bigger safety net on

slippery surfaces. The system is also able to

distinguish between smooth torque wheelies

and ham-fisted clutch-ups. In Mode 1,

torque wheelies are allowed, but deliberate

hooliganism will cause intervention. Mode 2

allows neither, while you can always turn it off.

Pleasingly modern rim sizes mean that

owners will be able to spec a wild array of

tyre options, from the standard-equipment

retro styled Dunlop GPR-300s, to allweather

touring rubber, or trackday-friendly

sports tyres.

The one surprise yet to be revealed is the

café racer version, which MCN believes

is also in development. It wasn’t shown in

Tokyo, so the assumption is that the Milan

show will be the venue for its unveiling, in

early November.

Kawasaki are giving no word on the SA price,

or availability, or the Z900RS just yet – but

expect it to be in dealers by early 2018.

2018 Kawasaki Z900RS Specifications

Engine: 948cc liquid-cooled, 4-stroke inlinefour,

DOHC, 16v

Max. power: 110bhp @ 8500rpm

Max. torque: 99Nm @ 6500rpm

Frame: High-tensile steel trellis

Suspension Front: 41mm inverted fork with

compression and rebound damping and

spring preload adjustability. Rear: Horizontal

Back-link, gas-charged shock with rebound

and preload adjustability

Brakes Front: Dual semi-floating 300mm

discs, radial-mount, 4-piston Monobloc.

Rear: Single 250mm, single-piston


Tyres: Front 120/70ZR17 / Rear


Seat height: 835 mm

Kerb weight: 215 kg

Fuel tank capacity: 17 litres


2018 Ninja 400

The old Ninja 300 couldn’t haul itself

through Euro4, so was killed off to make

way for this new Ninja 400, boasting

greater performance than its predecessor

from an all-new engine and chassis – the

net effect being a claimed weight saving

of 8kg.

The 399cc engine delivers a decent

44.8bhp, its invigorated performance

credited to more capacity and the new

downdraft intake, which is accompanied

by a larger airbox offering increased

intake effi ciency. While the new engine is

comparable in physical size to that of the

2013-2017 Ninja 250, it’s actually 1kg

lighter than the smaller displacement unit.

It also gets a new Assist & Slipper clutch,

meaning much-reduced pressure at the

lever for light work in town, and greater

control when coming down hard through

the gearbox.

Offering considerable weight savings

compared to its predecessor, the new

chassis is claimed to offer improved

stability and manoeuvrability. The stiffer,

non-adjustable 41mm (previously 37mm)

fork had been developed to deliver better

action, and the brake hanging off it

features the latest ABS unit from Nissin,

clamping down on a 310mm semi-fl oating

disc. Star-pattern 5-spoke wheels similar

to those of the Ninja 650 contribute to

the weight-loss programme, while their

improved lateral rigidity benefi t sharper

handling and cornering stability.

While the seat height of just 786mm

should put the Ninja within reach of most

riders, especially as the seat is now 30mm

narrower, which improves stand-over.

Up at the sharp end are a pair of LED

headlamps, each featuring low and high

beams, as well as a LED position lamp.

In the rider’s view is the same instrument

cluster as the Ninja 650, contributing to

the high-grade feel of the package.

The 14-litre fuel tank is claimed to deliver

over 210miles of range, as the rider is

cosseted behind larger-volume bodywork

that is claimed to make the Ninja feel

bigger than expected in the 400/250

class. It even gets the little chin spoilers at

the bottom of the front cowl, just like its

Ninja H2 and Ninja ZX-10R siblings.

Accessories will include a larger screen,

power outlet, ERGO-FIT high seat (+30

mm), tank bag, tank pad, radiator screen,

frame sliders, wheel rim tape, pillion seat

cover, helmet lock and U-lock.

No details have been released on price or

availability just yet, but we seriously look

forward to testing, and seeing this bike hit

the SA market.

Kawasaki Ninja 400 Specificiations

Engine: 399cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin 8v


Power: 44.8bhp @ 10,000rpm

Torque: 40Nm @ 8000rpm

Seat height: 785 mm

Kerb weight: 168kg

Fuel tank: 14litres

Trailer Towing Tips

The name “Compact Trailers” might

be new, but Martin Liebenberg, the

owner of the company, has 20+

years’ experience in the design and

manufacturing of trailers. Martin also

held the patent for the easy loader

concept/design for the last 20 years.

We found that there is a bunch of

things people don’t understand/know

about maintaining, towing and servicing

their trailers. With this in mind, we

decided to share his expertise in this

fi eld with our readers.

This month we give you a small

checklist you can use every time before

you tow.

General Checklist before towing

• Hook the trailer

• Check safety chain/cable

• Check Lights

• Check Jockey Wheel

• Check Tyre Pressures

• Check Wheel Bearings

• Check Weight at coupler

• Check load is fastened properly

• Check wheel nuts/bolts

Make sure to check out their Facebook

page regularly for updates regarding

all there is to know about trailers and

everything that goes with it.

For more technical queries you can

email Martin martin@compacttrailers.

co.za or visit their website at www.



Yamaha Niken Leaning

Three-Wheeler Revealed

When we first posted a pic of the Yamaha Niken 3-wheeler on our

Facebook page a couple of weeks ago many thought it was some sort

of elaborate April Fool’s joke. Well, it’s not and Yamaha have officially

launched the new Niken to the public.

The Yamaha Niken is based on the

MT-09, and shares the same threecylinder

motor, but it’s the first leaning

production three-wheeled motorcycle of

its type. Yamaha has not revealed too

many details and specifications at Tokyo

about the Niken, but more details are

expected to be released at next month’s

EICMA show in Milan, Italy. The only

specification released so far is that the

Niken uses a liquid-cooled, fuel-injected,

four-stroke, DOHC, four-valve, in-line

triple engine. The three-cylinder engine

without question is the 847 cc triple from

the Yamaha MT-09.

In a press release on the Niken, Yamaha

said: “This large-displacement Leaning

Multi-Wheeler (LMW) is powered by

a liquid-cooled, in-line, three-cylinder

engine. This model is equipped with

LMW technology to reduce the effects

of changing ride environments and to

deliver a high feeling of stability when

cornering.” Is that some sort of Google

Translate code for “It can do double


They went on to say that; “It achieves

excellent performance for spirited and

sporty riding on various road surfaces

and the capability to freely carve through

the continuous corners on winding roads.

The body design makes full use of the

unprecedented front-end suspension

mechanism, pairing 15-inch front wheels

with dual-tube upside-down forks that

visually accentuate the machine’s sporty

performance and create a high-quality

look and feel at the same time. New

Yamaha NIKEN. Ride the Revolution.”

Three wheelers aren’t a new thing for

motorcycles, but they’ve mostly been

found in the real of scooters, trikes or


Obviously the extra tyre means an extra

contact patch, and therefore more

traction. But are there really a lot of

performance bike enthusiasts out there

clamoring for an extra wheel up front?

We guess it will just depend on how well

this thing really handles—and whether

your resident sportbike rider will be willing

to be seen in public with a bike like this.

The fact that Yamaha has chosen to

reveal more details and specifications

about the Niken confirms that the leaning

three-wheeled motorcycle will only be

released as a 2018 model, and will

possibly go on sale next summer. So far,

Yamaha has not commented on the price

and other details; and has only released

the dimensions of the Niken, which is

2150 mm long, 885 mm wide, 1250 mm

tall, and uses a triple-cylinder engine.

Indian Lifestyle Store

Indian Motorcycle will be opening a lifestyle

store in Melrose Arch in December 2017.

The new store will be situated at 5 High

Street, Melrose Arch Precinct, next to the

new Starbuck store.

Contact 011 823 8400 should you require

any additional information.


Introducing the Yamaha Tracer 700




Versatile and exciting Sport Tourer

Exciting sports performance with agile handling

Adjustable screen

Long-range 17-litre fuel tank

Outstanding power to weight ratio

www.yamaha.co.za • +27 11 259 7600 • Facebook: Yamaha Southern Africa • Instagram: YamahaMoto_SA • YouTube: YamahaMoto_SA

Madboxer: A Motorcycle with

a Subaru WRX car engine

If you love boxer-engined motorcycles, but not those made by

BMW, this awesome project might inspire you to build your

dream bike. Meet the MadBoxer Subaru WRX powered roadster

built in New Zealand.

This fantastic project started back in

2009, when a designer known as Ian

McElroy made a series of Solidworks CAD

drawings for a bike called “Kickboxer”,

which was based on the idea to make a

Subaru WRX 2.5-liter-powered motorcycle.

The idea was so cool, it made the news

all around the world, and Marcel van

Hooijdonk, a toolmaker from New Zealand,

decided to turn the project into a real,

working machine.

The fi rst thing he did was to grab the boxer

engine, the wheels, some wood, and a

couple of beers to clear his mind. After

laying everything in order and spacing the

parts up in his shop, he concluded the

project is doable.

The most complex thing he had to build

was the front swing arm and centre

steering, which also had to be approved by

New Zealand authorities to be road legal.

Next, the engine got mated with a

stripped and modifi ed two-speed

automatic transmission with torque

converter, which has a gear switch on the

left handlebar. The man didn’t want any

foot operated controls, so the rear brake

is also on the right side of the bars.

The front brakes and coil overs were

sourced from Buell while the tank and

seats were taken from various Japanese

motorcycles. Other components like the

guards, steering components, chassis,

swingarms and other small bits were

home made by the talented craftsman.

Another tricky part was the electrical

backbone of the whole system. All of the

electrics and the lithium ion battery had to

be put under the seat, where space was

very limited. Marcel said it took him over a

year to sort the electrics out.

Very cool indeed!


Unbeatable Hyper Sport &

Sport Tyre November Specials


Metzeler Sportec M3:

• 120/70-17 & 160/60ZR-17 R2,770, SAVE R630

• 120/70-17 & 180/55ZR-17 R2,880, SAVE R610

• 120/70-17 & 190/50ZR-17 R2,960, SAVE R625

• 120/70-17 & 190/55ZR-17 R3,000, SAVE R660

Metzeler Racetec RR:

• 120/70-17 & 180/55-17 (K3) R3,650, SAVE R1,252

• 120/70-17 & 190/50-17 (K3) R3,799, SAVE R1,285

• 120/70-17 & 190/55-17 (K3) R3,799, SAVE R1,285

• 120/70-17 & 200/55-17 (K3) R3,899, SAVE R1,230

• 120/70-17 & 200/55-17 (K1/K2) R4,225, SAVE R1,585

Metzeler Sportec M7RR:

120/70-17 & 180/55ZR-17 R3200 SAVE R2,000

120/70-17 & 190/50ZR-17 R3500 SAVE R2,000

Metzeler Racetec Interact:

120/70-17 & 190/50ZR-17 R3000 SAVE R2,800

Michelin Power RS:

• 110/70R-17 & 150/60R-17 R3,160, SAVE R300

• 120/70R-17 & 160/60R-17 R3,470, SAVE R400

• 120/70R-17 & 180/55R-17 R3,760, SAVE R300

• 120/70R-17 & 190/50R-17 R3,880, SAVE R350

• 120/70R-17 & 190/55R-17 R4,045, SAVE R300

• 120/70R-17 & 200/55R-17 R4,099, SAVE R300

• 120/70R-17 & 240/45R-17 R4,199, SAVE R380

Bridgestone RS10:

• 120/70-17 190/55-17 R3,620, SAVE R600

• 120/70-17 200/55-17 R3,665, SAVE R600

Bridgestone S21:

• 120/70-17 180/55-17 R3,700, SAVE R360

• 120/70-17 190/55-17 R3,780, SAVE R360

• 120/70-17 200/55-17 R3,985, SAVE R360

Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa:

• 120/70R-17 & 180/55-17 R3,680 SAVE R868

• 120/70R-17 & 190/50-17 R3,770 SAVE R890

• 120/70R-17 & 190/55-17 R3,845 SAVE R1,090

• 120/70R-17 & 200/55-17 R3,899 SAVE R950

Pirelli Diablo Rosso 111:

• 120/70R-17 & 180/55-17 R3,299, SAVE R1,078

• 120/70R-17 & 190/50-17 R3,599, SAVE R890

• 120/70R-17 & 190/55-17 R3,699, SAVE R948

• 120/70R-17 & 200/55-17 R3,699, SAVE R948

Dunlop Q3 SportMax:

• 120/70R-17 & 180/55R17 R3,599, SAVE R1,000

• 120/70R-17 & 190/50R17 R3,699, SAVE R1,000

• 120/70R-17 & 190/55R17 R3,699, SAVE R1,000

VISIT US FOR ALL YOUR TYRE NEEDS: • Bikes, ATVs & Side-x-Side • Best prices, widest range • Over 3000 tyres in stock • SA’s largest ‘bike’ tyre retailer • Shipping countrywide • Secure credit

card payment • Fitment & Balancing • Chains & Sprockets • Brake Pads • Wheels • Wheel Lacing • Tubes & Mousse Fitment • Puncture Repair On/Off Road • Tyre Equipment & Accessories

Tel: 011 205 0216 • Fax: 011 3127078 • Cell: 073 777 9269 • UNIT 9 Sable Park, 997 Richards Drive, Midrand

Facebook @BikeTyreWarehouse • Twitter @biketyrewhse • www.biketyrewarehouse.com


KCR Motorcycle Fanatix

24 years ago, KCR Motorcycle Fanatix was born. 24 years on,

and the massive dealership in Kempron Park on the East

Rand of JHB, is still going strong!

KCR Motorcycle Fanatix opened their

doors in 1993 under the ownership of

Alan and Sandy Linley. Alan was an

aircraft technician for 18 years before

he decided to follow his passion and

he strives only on doing the best quality

work for his customers. They have

been going strong for 24 years and are

always happy to share their experience

and know-how with clients. They have

been involved in all different aspects of

motorcycling from producing national

drag racing champions on a turbo

Hayabusa and GSX-R1000 to preparing

drag and race motorcycles for clients.

KCR has proudly built several concourse

winning motorcycles in different

categories. They do all this development

to give you the customer the best

product on offer. They strive to sell good

clean used motorcycles as well as all

the latest Suzuki models. KCR have

one of the biggest in house motorcycle

accessory shops combined with bikes

and workshop.

They have a fully equipped, world-class

workshop with dyno and dedicated

mechanics who will look after your bike

like it’s their own.

They do minor, major and fi rst services

on all major motorcycle brands as well

as most scooter brands, as well as

insurance assessments and repairs, and

are an approved repair centre for most

major insurance companies.

Visit their dealership at 20 Albatros

Road, Kempton Park, very close to the

airport, or call them 011 975 5545.


What is this Golden Mile?

If you happened to pick up last months copy of the magazine, you’d

have seen the Mark Wigget cartoon about South Africa’s Golden

Mile. We were at one of the dealerships a few months back when

Garith made the point that just about every single brand is available

in one street in the republic of Boksburg. ‘Strue!

We did the maths and took off to check it all out. We battled to

fi nd a local designer to draw up what we needed - who better than

Mark? He came up from his hometown of Knysna and the cartoon

you see on the right is the fi nal result.

One street, in Gauteng where you can get anything that your little

heart desires when it comes to motorcycles.

Over the next couple of months we will be featuring two dealers on

the strip.

Lets take a trip:

Gold Rand Harley (011) 823-3763

Full range of Harley’s, all of the lifestyle accessories and apparel - and they have a really cool diner next door where you can grab a nibble

and shoot the breeze. A Great place to meet and greet.

Cardinals: (011) 823-8400

These guys stock the Indian, Victory, Polaris and Linhai range of motorcycles, Side by sides and ATV’s. And you are looking for a bakkie or a

luxury sedan, go and have a gander.

Suzuki Special

Suzuki SA have heard our cries

and have now included a quickshifter

and auto-blip at no extra

charge on their GSX-R1000

model. The new base model is

now available at R239,900 with the

quick-shifter and auto-blip, and is

available at dealers across SA.

Pretoria Shadeports

We’ve just had shade ports fi tted

at the Dirt And Trail and RideFast

Magazine offi ces. Don’t let your bikes

and bakkies stand in the sun!

Guys what a pleasure - what a cool

bunch to deal with.

Pretoria Shadeports - ask for Dirk








38 North Rand Rd, Boksburg

Tel: 011 823 3763

New & Used Harley Davidson

motorcycles & accessories

40 North Rand Rd, Boksburg

Tel: 011 823 8400

Indian, Victory, Polaris new

and used sales.

Auto Alpina Motorrad Honda Wing East Rand Mall

Cnr North Rand Rd & Pond St, Boksburg

Tel: 011 418 3300

New and used BMW Motorcycle sales

and accessories

12 Jan Smuts Ave, Boksburg

Tel: 011 826 4444

New Honda Motorcycles.

Quality used motorcycles.

2 Wiek St, Boksburg

Tel: 011 826 4744

Best Quality Used Motorcycles

Shop 5 K90 Centre, Northrand Road, Boksburg

Tel: 011 823 5830

New Kawasaki, SYM, Triumph, Husqvarna &

quality used motorcycles. Full accessories

122 Northrand Road, Boksburg

Tel: 011 918 6666

New Suzuki motorcycle sales. Quality used

motorcycles. Full accessories

122 Northrand Road, Boksburg

Tel: 011 894 2111

Quality used motorcycle sales.

Full accessories

Unit 9, The Terminal, Cnr Trichardts Rd & Dr

Vosloo Rd, Boksburg

Tel: 011 362 2182

New Yamaha sales. Quality used & accessories

157 North Rand Rd, Boksburg

Tel: 076 158 3655

Quality used motorycle sales

& accessories

No. 6, V-Max Centre, Atlas Rd, Boksburg

Tel: 011 051 9104

Quality used motorycle sales

& accessories

Fire It Up Kawasaki

Fourways Motorcycles is no longer - Fire It Up the newly

appointed Kawasaki dealer in the Fourways area.

Fire It Up Fourways are proud to announce that they have been appointed

as the new Kawasaki Dealers in the Fourways area. “After visiting EICMA in

2016 I was really impressed with Kawasaki’s new line up and believe that

coupled with our unique value proposition ranging from finance packages

to lifetime warranties, not to mention our integrity and commitment to

motorcycling, we are ideally placed to bring out the best in this incredible

brand that has such a vast range” said Craig Langton. “After meeting with

the Kawasaki Management team it was immediately apparent that our

vision and passion for motorcycling was aligned”.

Whilst their current Premium Pre-Owned Division will remain untouched,

the exciting new division will be known as ‘Fire It Up Kawasaki’ and is now

fully operational, with fully stocked showroom, state of the art Liqui Moly

workshop with the country’s top technicians, parts and most advanced

Motorcycle diagnostics including Dyno Equipment. All Kawasaki’s sold

by Fire It Up Kawasaki will include innovative and industry leading value

propositions. Fire It Up Kawasaki will carry the full Kawasaki range including

KMSA’s allied brands such as SYM and AEON.

1. FREE Lifetime Warranty.

2. FREE 2 Year Unlimited Mileage Service plan.

3. FREE UBER Collection.

3. Bespoke Finance Plans in conjunction with our finance partners making

motorcycling affordable.

4. Guaranteed Buy Back.

5. Rider Training.

6. Kawasaki Café.

The Kawasaki range is so exciting that it has given the Fire It Up team

an opportunity to really be creative, and Craig believes that even though

we are faced with challenges such as a weakening currency, Fire It Up

Kawasaki has a finance and product offering that will make owning a new

Kawasaki affordable, exciting and too tempting to resist!

Give them a try. Call 011 467 0737 or visit their dealership at Shop 3 and 4,

Showrooms on Leslie, Cnr William Nicol Dr and Leslie Ave, Fourways.

VW Confirms Ducati

brand is not for sale

A recent report in the automotive industry claims that

Volkswagen has cancelled its plan of selling Ducati to

any other brand for covering its loss from diesel engine

emission scandal.

The Italian premium bike brand will remain in the same

family as employees raised serious objections regarding

its sale after such good performance in last financial

year. Labour union of Ducati protested against the plans

as this would lead to job loss for many full time, highly

dedicated employees of the brand.

After the news broke like wild fire, many renowned

brands like Harley-Davidson and Eicher Motors (Royal

Enfield) tried making a deal for Ducati. There were even

reports of Hero MotoCorp and Bajaj Auto considering

Ducati as an important deal for 2017.

We think this is great news, as Ducati really have been

on the up over the past years, and have produced high

quality motorcycles for all aspects.

Ducati Monster 821 goes

old-school for 2018

The Ducati Monster was first revealed back in 1992,

and, 25 years on, the Italian bike maker now wants to

go a bit back to origins with a new 2018 model that

tries to mimic the aroma of the oldschool variant.

The new Monster 821 has received an update that

makes it feature more of the original Monster 900

allure along with aesthetic and functional features first

introduced on the Monster 1200.

This includes a more streamlined, agile look with a

fully redesigned fuel tank and tail section, new silencer,

headlight, and other minor details like the rear passenger

footpegs which are now separated from the rider’s.

Also debuting on the 821 is the color TFT display which

can show selected gear and amount of fuel. You can

also have it with the optional Ducati Quick Shift system

that works both for up- and down-shifting.

The 2018 Ducati Monster 821 will be available soon in

three colour setups: Ducati Yellow with black frame and

wheels, Ducati Red with red frame and black wheels,

and Dark Stealth with black frame and black wheels.

Pricing information is not available at the moment, but

do check with your Ducati JHB or Ducati CPT to learn

more - www.ducati.co.za.


Teriza, Tristan and

Jayden Raymend of

Kommetjie Surg Shop

Bridgette , Jenna and

Mark Gurwicz

Angus, Elena,Toby, Gerhardo,

Anston, Chad, Johny and Louis

Ducati Cape Town opens

The Hottest new Bike Store in Cape Town is now officially

open, and our Renette Rauch went to check it out.

Daddy I want a Ducati...

The Ducati name and tradition carries

serious weight and who better than the

respected Kyalami owner Toby Venter

to be at the helm of Ducati SA who

with GM Johnny Araujo and National

sales manager, Angus Webber, have

been responsible for record sales in

South Africa. Until recently the lone

Ducati flag in Cape Town was carried by

Ducati fundi Anston Collins as sales and

service agent, who is now fittingly the

Cape Town branch manager. The new

Cape Town flagship store gives Ducati

owners a proper home at last where

all their needs are met from bike sales

and apparel to after-market service in

the state of the art workshop. Situated

on the historic waterways next to the

entrance of the Waterfront makes it a

magnet for Capetonians and tourists

alike, even more so when Porsche will

open up next door.

Craftsmanship of a different kind, Toby

Venter also owns Uva Mira Wine Estate

whose award-winning wines were

served at the Ducati opening by the

lovely Lara Shargey alongside a veritable

feast of eats.

However, the gems in the exquisite

setting remain the eye-watering and

ear-licious Ducati motorcycles. From the

popular Super Sport to the iconic café

racers, Ducati caters for city slickers

to nature lovers. Ducati owners are

amongst the most loyal to their brand

and for good reason.

The Originale Ducati motorcycle club

(www.originale.co.za) with over 100

members were well represented at the

opening and all guests were treated like

VIP’s. Manager Anston Collins’ skilled

team comprises of Jeandre, Chad and

Chris in the workshop, Louis and Chris

in sales , Lauren in admin, Irshad, the

driver and Charmaine the housekeeper.

Owning a Ducati comes with multiple

benefits, not just the pleasure of the ride

and enjoying the refined craftsmanship,

but also being part of the Ducati family

and it’s fun-orientated lifestyle. Come for

a cappuccino and leave with the lifestyle.

Address: 3 Waterway House South,

Victoria & Alfred Waterfront.

Tel: +27 21 000 2100

E-mail: anston@ducati.co.za

Toby Venter,

Mr Ducati SA

Jannie and Lucy of


Angus sharing

his passion with

his clients


Glynis and Ian of the

Italian MC Club

Ducati, a shared love, Pieter and Mari


Ducati happiness, Sylvester Black

Julian Neetling of


with daughter Leanne

Ducati CPT Branch

Manager and Bonita

from Ducati JHB

Ducati ‘s Cafe Racer with Spaggiari’s Nr 54

Martin Prinsloo;

I am here for the

bikes, really!

A lifestyle for

couples to enjoy


Honda Neo

Sports Café


After much teasing, Honda quietly debuted its

Neo Sports Café concept at the Tokyo Motor

Show. Releasing basic details about the simple

but modern motorcycle design, we are left to

draw our own conclusions about the machine.

We had hoped that the Honda Neo Sports

Café would lead to a retro-styled version of

the Honda CB1000R, much in the same vein

that the new Kawasaki Z900S is a hipsterfi ed

version of the popular Z900 street bike.

It’s not clear if Honda intends to produce the

Neo Sports Café concept, but its design is

intriguing, especially when you consider the

now ancient four-cylinder engine that resides in

its chassis, which is of course derived from the

previous generation Honda CBR1000RR.

For what it’s worth, we hope that Honda

eventually green lights the Neo Sports Café

concept. Its clean lines and minimalist design

please our senses, while also recycling one of

Honda’s more tired superbike engines.

Big Red has shown a number of attractive retrostyled

concepts over the past few years, but

the Japanese never quite seems able to pull

the trigger on bringing one into production.

Hopefully the Neo Sports Café bucks that trend.


BMW Pure & Crafted

Festival 2017

The 30th September saw the 2nd Pure & Crafted

Festival, hosted by BMW SA out in Muldersdrift, as with

any BMW event it was well coordinated, well organized

and well attended. Words by Kurt Beine

This year there were a few changes,

one day instead of two, less new bikes

on show than last year, but more stage

performances and more buzz.

The food court seemed bigger this year,

cuisine of all types, nothing ‘ordinary’,

refreshments of all sorts were the order

of the day.

Mattie Griffin, Irish world-famous stunt

rider aboard his very tricked out BMW

800 entertained the crowd, he battled

a bit with a smooth surface, stoppies

were not possible, nevertheless he put

on a stunning performance, ranked 5th

best stunt rider in the world, Mattie really

knows his stuff.

This year the bike concentration

was aimed more at the retro market,

various customized R NINE T’s, lots of

refurbished models from yesteryear,

GS Dakar 800 and 1000cc BMW’s, the

older RS and RT tourers and sport bikes

meticulously restored and on show.

There was a huge variety of stage

performers/bands that kept the party

going until late, or more accurately until

early in the morning, Uber taxis were on

hand for those not able to drive after too

much partying, which I understand there

was a lot of, after all, this was a BMW

Festival, for those not yet in the BMW

fold to see that the BMW biking fraternity

is indeed a nice place to be, nice people,

nice bikes, nice brand, always keen for

an adventure, be it on tar or dirt, or a

mixture of both.

Well done BMW, roll on 2018…..


CIT Husqvarna going big!

Things are happening in Hatfi eld - it looks to us like there is a regular little

motorcycle village springing up.

CIT Husqvarna in Pretoria has just opened a massive accessory division.

The very well known, Ryan Shapiro of Race Shop Vanderbijlpark fame, is the

man at the helm. Very impressive with a huge variety of road/dirt/adventure

accessories and the latest range of Husqvarna’s on the fl oor.

They also have a massive selection of quality used motorcycles, and a full

workshop and spares division. Call them on (012) 342-8571 or visit their

impressive dealership at 1222 Pretorius Street, Hatfi eld, Pretoria.

Batt Holdings to

Distribute ACTABAC

in Gauteng

This is not a spray on perfume to make your

sweaty kit smell nice. Think Probiotics – by

combining the power of nature and science, a

powerful PROBIOTIC bacteria attack sweat and

grime by producing other benefi cial enzymes

which detoxifi es and removes the odour from

your dirty equipment.

By spraying ACTABAC onto the desired

surface; millions and millions of benefi cial

microbes then fi nd the bad odour causing

matter and release the appropriate enzymes for

the substance to be cleaned.

The enzymes cut the organic matter into smaller units,

which are digested by microbes; the cycle repeats itself

until all the odour causing matter is eradicated leaving

your kit odour free.

For Trade Enquires contact Batt Holdings 011 205

0216 for more info.

New sales force at

Honda Wing Sandton

Honda Wing Sandton has a new Sales Force - Tim

Nicolson and Zane Zurlinden are driving the sales of

new bikes at Honda Wing Sandton. The dealership

is based on the corner of William Nicol Drive & Peter

Place in Bryanston/Sandton. They invite you to come

join them for a cup of Coffee on your way to work in

the morning or even on your way home. They have

a great range of the new Honda CBR 1000 RR Fire

Blades and Honda CRF 1000’s (Africa Twins), as well

as all the other models in the Honda Range. They also

specialise in fl eet deals on the Honda Elite Scooters

and ACE 125’s – come in and discuss refreshing your

old fl eet with them.

If you need your Honda serviced, they have a

professional workshop consisting of Philani, Terry

and Devon who are currently running a special of

R699.00 (incl. VAT) to do an oil change on your Honda

motorbike (excluding the oil fi lter).

Contact 011 540 3000 or visit www.hondasandton.co.za

or you can email Tim or Zane on tim@northmotorgroup.

co.za or zanez@northmotorgroup.co.za




1222 Pretorius Street

Hatfi eld, Pretoria

Tel: (012) 342-8571









Full range of 2018 MX &

Enduro bikes in stock!



to you by

Camier to Honda

Experienced contender to switch from MV Agusta

to new Honda Fireblade.

British rider Leon Camier has signed with Red Bull Honda for the

2018 Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK) to take charge

of development aboard the CBR1000RR SP2 next season.

Camier, 31, has been a constant front-runner with MV Agusta in

recent seasons, but has been lured across by the Ten Kate-run

Honda team as its fi rst signing of the pre-season.

“We’re extremely happy to have Leon on board for the upcoming

WorldSBK season,” said Marco Chini, Honda WorldSBK

operations manager. “He’s a great talent and an extremely

professional rider, so I’m sure it will be a pleasure to work with him.

“We’re confi dent that his expertise will help us raise the

performance of the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 to a whole

new level so we’re looking forward to the new challenge. Right

now, however, there’s still a season to complete, so we are fully

concentrated on the remaining rounds in order to improve our

package and fi nish the year on a high note.”

Camier will join the team at the end of the current season to start

the winter testing program.

KTM retain same line-up

for 2018 MotoGP season

Espargaro and Smith to pilot RC16 MotoGP

machine again in the new year.

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing has confi rmed it will retain its line-up

of riders for the 2018 MotoGP World Championship following its fi rst

year in the premier class.

Pol Espargaro will return for another season after claiming the best

result for KTM so far, fi nishing ninth at the Brno and Philip Island

grand prix’s, and has delivered a number of qualifying positions much

higher than the team thought of prior to the season commencing.

British talent Bradley Smith, a grand prix winner and a podium man

over the three classes he’s contested, will continue on with Austrian

manufacturer, clinching his best result of 10th aboard the KTM at the

San Marino and Philip Island rounds this season.

Mika Kallio will remain as the team’s test rider for 2018 with selected

wildcard rides in the works, the Finn has played an instrumental role

in the progress of the MotoGP project through his vast experience in

grand prix that extend back 17 years.

His three races so far this year have been some of the most

impressive for a wildcard in recent times with his commitment and

speed, with one fi nal appearance at Valencia later this year. The news

comes following ongoing speculation that Kallio could trade roles with

Smith for 2018, however that has now been offi cially ruled out.



Dual compound technology

The new reference

tyre in the sports


An incomparable sensation of grip


“In terms of safety, the front tire

of the MICHELIN Power RS sets


the standard.“

Exceptional straight-line

and cornering stability

Front tyre profile derived

from race competition

Rubber compounds

derived from racing

“The best stability during sequences of

curves, even on a simulation of a country


Pole-winning performance: agility and

handling when changing direction, under

braking and when accelerating hard!

“Extremely agile, with exceptional directional

stability and impeccable handling in

cornering; All this makes Michelin the winner


(and not only in terms of points).“

New technology

A new patented construction for exceptional straight-line

and cornering stability.

A single ply ensures a more flexible crown, while the side

ply back over itself.

Harder rubber underneath the softer rubber on the

shoulders gives better rigidity at lean, for more stability

when cornering, especially under strong accelaration.


Testing restrictions

GP Commission restricts MotoGP testing from 2018

MotoGP testing is to be further restricted

from next season. At the meeting in Motegi

of the Grand Prix Commission, MotoGP’s

rule-making body, the teams, factories, FIM,

and Dorna agreed to limit the amount of

testing which can be done next year and in


The 2018 testing season will look largely

familiar, with a two-day test at Valencia on

Tuesday and Wednesday after the race,

then three three-day tests at Sepang,

Thailand, and Qatar ahead of the start of

the MotoGP season, and one-day tests

after three of the European rounds (Jerez,

Barcelona, Brno).

In 2019, the number of preseason tests will

be reduced, with testing taking place only

at Sepang and Qatar before the start of the


Teams still have five days of private testing,

but in a bid to switch the aims of testing

from preparing for a race to actually

developing their motorcycles, fewer tests will

be allowed before a race.

In 2018, teams will be allowed to use three

of their five days at circuits before the race

has happened there, while the other two

days may only be used after the race has

been held.

In 2019, the teams will have to use two of

their private test days in November, after

the last race of the season. The remaining

three days can be used at any time during

the season. As is now the case, no private

testing is allowed at a track within 14 days

of the race being held there.

The reason for the testing changes is to

restrict the advantage factory teams were

gaining preparing for the races.

Private teams often don’t have the

resources to use the full five days of private

testing, but factory teams have been testing

ahead of races to prepare the ground and

get a jump on setup for the event.

There have been numerous examples:

Ducati at Barcelona and Misano, and Honda

at Brno and Misano, among others.

For manufacturers with concessions – that

is, new manufacturers and manufacturers

which have not scored a podium in 2017

they will retain the right to unlimited testing.

The GPC also reduced the number of

wildcards. From 2018, factories will be

limited to a maximum of three wildcards

each season. Factories with concessions

will be restricted to a maximum of six


What this means in practice is that Michele

Pirro will only be able to race for Ducati

at three events in 2018, while Mika Kallio

will be able to participate in six races next

year. Only three engines will be available to

wildcard entries for the entire season.

The GPC finalized a few other details. The

use of air bags is to be made compulsory

from 2018 for all riders, as had previously

been agreed.

And Moto2 chassis manufacturers were

granted 10 days of testing with the new

Triumph Moto2 engine to be used in the

class from 2019.

Liebenberg secures

start in 2018 Red

Bull Rookies Cup

Young SA star invited for

prestigious program next year.

Youthful SA star Aidan Liebenberg has

been invited to contest the 2018 Red

Bull Rookies Cup, being one of the 10

riders selected out of 109 entrants at the

selection event, which saw fellow South

African’s Taric Van Der Merwe, Max

Smith, Ricardo Otto, Dino Iozzo, Luca

Coccioni and Luca Balona also try out for

the prestigious program.

A complete mix of conditions over three

intensely competitive days in Almeria

produced 10 young riders who are invited

to join the Red Bull program, which has

produced a number of world champions,

including our very own Brad Binder.

From 109 riders invited for the opening

two days, 49 made it to the final day,

including 4 SA riders, and Thursday

dawned cold and soaking wet. After

the very testing wet morning sessions

the circuit dried for the afternoon with

another chance for the young riders to

show their abilities.

Liebenberg contested the Super600

category of the SA National Supersport

Championship this year, wrapping up a

very impressive first season in the class,

including the final victory of the season

at RSR.

He is certainly a talent to watch out for,

and we look forward to covering his

progress next year.


Brought to you by

Morbidelli Moto2 champ

From STK600 to Moto2 World Champion, it’s been quite a

journey for Franco Morbidelli

Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS)

is the 2017 Moto2 World Champion

after wrapping up the crown at Sepang

International Circuit. Following a stunning

season in which the Italian has taken eight

wins, fi ve poles and 10 podiums, the EG

0,0 Marc VDS rider becomes the fi rst

Italian Champion in the intermediate class

for nearly ten years – the previous being

Marco Simoncelli in 2008. From STK600 to

Moto2, Morbidelli has quickly risen to the

top and is the fi rst Champion to come from

the VR46 Riders Academy.

First making a foray onto the stage in 2009

in a one-off ride at Valencia in the FIM CEV

Repsol, Morbidelli would soon make a much

bigger splash in 2011 as he competed

in the Superstock 600 class of the Italian

national championship – alongside

four races in the European STK600

championship. The following year, Morbidelli

was runner up in the national championship

and took three wins – and took his fi rst

podium and fi rst pole position at European

level the same year.

That laid solid foundations for an assault

on the title in 2013, and Morbidelli made

good on his promise by taking fi ve podiums

– of which two were wins – on his way to

wrapping up his fi rst international crown.

2013 was also the season Morbidelli

debuted on the world stage, with three

Moto2 appearances.

That was the path the Italian would follow

going forward. A full-time ride in 2014 saw

Morbidelli gaining traction throughout the

season, with the latter half of the year full of

top ten results on his way to eleventh overall.

2015 got off the ground running with fi ve top

six results in the opening fi ve rounds, and

by Indianapolis the future World Champion

was on the rostrum for the fi rst time in third.

Missing some rounds due to injury, the end

of the year saw him rake in more points –

but 2016 was just around the corner.

The fi rst real taste of the 2017 World

Champion was more than evident in 2016.

After a slower start, Morbidelli took some

top four results and then his fi rst podium of

the year at the TT Circuit Assen. He followed

that up with another at the Red Bull Ring,

and was on the rostrum eight times in the

last eleven races. Just missing out on the

top three in the Championship by a single

point, it was evident that the Italian would be

a serious challenger in 2017.

Off to a fl ying start with a faultless win from

pole, Morbidelli was three for three by the

time the paddock arrived at Jerez. Then

crashing out of contention, he was back

on top next time out for a fourth win in fi ve.

Then followed victory at Assen and the

Sachsenring as well as another podium at

Silverstone, before the Italian crashed out

the lead at Misano World Circuit Marco

Simoncelli. Out to win next time out,

Morbidelli took on compatriot Mattia Pasini

at MotorLand Aragon in a stunning duel,

and put everything on the line for his eighth

win of the year.

An eighth at Motegi and a third in Phillip

Island saw the EG 0,0 Marc VDS rider

arrive at Sepang with a 29 point advantage.

Following a dramatic qualifying session that

saw key rival Tom Lüthi suffer a fracture in

his foot and get declared unfi t, Morbidelli’s

advantage at the top was enough to

declare him 2017 Moto2 World Champion

ahead of the race in Malaysia following his

stunning season.

Some facts about Morbidelli:

• Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) is the

first Italian rider to win a Moto2 title and the

first in the intermediate category since Marco

Simoncelli back in 2008.

• Morbidelli’s title is the 23rd in the intermediate

category for Italian riders.

• Morbidelli has won eight races so far this year,

equaling Johann Zarco’s total back in 2015 -

which is also the second-highest number of

Moto2 wins in a season after Marc Márquez in

2012 (9).

• He is the first Italian rider to do so since Marco

Melandri won nine times in 2002.

• Morbidelli equals Andrea Iannone on the

podium and win tally for Italian riders in Moto2,

with 19 and 8. With his pole position at Sepang,

he is now leading Andrea Iannone and Mattia

Pasini with five each.

• Morbidelli is the only Italian rider who has

won back-to-back races in the intermediate

category since Marco Simoncelli (2009).

• Morbidelli belongs to the list of the five riders

who have led more than 200 laps since the

introduction of the Moto2 class in 2010.

• He is the first intermediate class Champion

who has not graduated through the 125cc/

Moto3 class since Hiroshi Aoyama in 2009.

• He is the first intermediate class Champion

who has not graduated through the 125cc/

Moto3 class since Hiroshi Aoyama in 2009.

• Morbidelli took the lead of the Championship

when he won the first race of his career at

Losail and has remained at the head of the table

throughout the rest of the season.




to you by

Electric MotoGP

Dorna test the SP7 with Loris Capirossi

at the Aragon MotoGP

During the Aragon MotoGP, Loris Capirossi took the Saroléa SP7

around the track in a private testing session under the watchful

eyes of the Dorna CEO, Mr Ezpeleta.

Dorna’s plans for the new electric race series are for a one-make

cup which will take place in 2019 on a number of the European

MotoGP rounds. And this during the fi rst three years.

The Italian multiple world champion was delighted with

the control and handling of the SP7.

“Loris Capirossi seemed impressed with the motors character

and the relatively low weight of the bike.” said Bjorn Robbens. “He

already tested other bikes that qualify for this cup, and I suspect

they had heavier motorcycles.

We dare to say that we are on the shortlist, along with US

company Lightning, the Italian fi rm Energica, and probably another

player such as Mahindra or KTM.”

Joan Mir seals Moto3 title

Mir wrapped up this year’s Moto3

championship with two rounds to spare.

The Spaniard arrived in Australia with a 55-point advantage over

nearest rival Romano Fenati, after his lead was slashed dramatically

the previous weekend at Motegi following a dismal ride to 17th in the

wet - his fi rst non-score of the season.

Mir therefore needed a top-two fi nish in Phillip Island to guarantee

himself the crown regardless of what Fenati could do, or avoid being

outscored by the Italian by six points.

Starting third, Mir was in the lead group throughout the race, and was

running fi fth when it was red-fl agged with eight laps to go due to a

rain shower.

However, with the results being rolled back by a lap, it meant Mir was

declared the winner, three tenths clear of Leopard Honda team-mate

Livio Loi.

Polesitter Jorge Martin (Gresini Honda) was third, 0.008s behind Loi,

while Fenati (Snipers Honda) - who dominated at Motegi to keep his

faint title hopes alive - was only sixth.

Mir will graduate to Moto2 next season with the Marc VDS squad.



The Bike Tyre Warehouse Group



The right motorcycle tyres can make or break a bike and transform your riding

experience. We went behind the scenes at Bike Tyre Warehouse recently to

find out more…

Based in Midrand, Johannesburg, this very proactive

business has been making waves in the

motorcycle tyre market since it launched last year.

With a second store in Cape Town now under its belt

(and plans for even more expansion), it’s clear that

riders are paying attention.

Bruce de Kock, the man behind it all, is no stranger

to the motorcycle market. Over the last 15 years,

he has built Batt Holdings into one of the largest

distributors of quad, ATV & SXS off-road tyres on the

African continent.

Bike Tyre Warehouse offers the top brands in race,

dirt, street, dual purpose, ATV, SXS, utility and

specialized tyre categories. What sets the company

apart, according to Bruce, is that they operate a

“strict, no hidden costs” policy, retailing tyres at

wholesale prices. They also supply motorcycle tyre

equipment and accessories and offer OEM tyre

development for specialized commercial and race

applications. More importantly, they guarantee

professional service and advice.

Bruce’s emphasis on keeping costs real is

reflected in the Bike Tyre Warehouse space in

Midrand: no corporate frills here, just shelves of

race memorabilia, tyre samples and three large

computer screens which he uses to keep abreast of

international rubber trends and track local retail and

trade activity. His phones ring constantly as he fields

calls from local dealers and suppliers, retail clients

and guys wanting expert advice on rubber.

“When I decided to get into

the retail side of the market, I

knew I would need a completely

different approach to change

the perception of tyres from

a grudge purchase to a fun

purchase. If you can get excited

about buying a helmet or a pair

of gloves, why not get excited

about buying new rubber?”

Bruce believes the local, two-wheel motorcycle

market has been stagnant for years, with bike

dealers relying on importers to market their brands to

customers. As a result, tyres have traditionally been

considered a grudge purchase, with little leeway on

pricing. “When I decided to get into the retail side of

the market, I knew I would need a completely different

approach to change the perception of tyres from a

grudge purchase to a fun purchase. If you can get

excited about buying a helmet or a pair of gloves,

why not get excited about buying new rubber?

Our solution was to create an enjoyable shopping

experience that would allow customers to select from

a wide range of brands while receiving the best advice

on the tyre type and size specific to their unique riding

styles and requirements,” explains Bruce.

According to Bruce, too few riders consider their

bike’s actual needs when buying tyres. “Sadly,

many riders base their choices on what a mate said

at breakfast or on what they read in a tyre review


- forgetting that - that tyre was likely tested under

race conditions, not on normal roads where the

environment changes constantly owing to things

like speed, heat, obstacles, lean angles and road

surface. The variables are never the same… Dealers

often quote on cheaper tyre sets just to get sales,

without considering factors such as speed rating and

load index, and the customer’s actual bike specs. It’s

dangerous and unethical. Riders with the wrong setup

are effectively risking their lives every time they

get on their bikes.”

On their advertising blurbs, the Bike Tyre Warehouse

Group regularly punts #bestadvice, #bestservice,

#bestprice – in that order. “It’s the essence of our

brand,” Bruce explains. “I believe in helping clients

make informed purchases, in providing professional

service by qualified technicians at our fitment

centres and in charging advertised prices only, not

more (unless fitment is complicated due to the type

of bike, in which case we quote before purchase).”

Constant innovation and out-of-the-box thinking

seems to be part of Bruce’s winning business

formula. Just three months after launching his

retail operation, he became the first to negotiate

motorcycle tyre insurance for dual purpose bikes

– those that are used for both on- and off-road

applications. This insurance product is now a

standard offering for the Bike Tyre Warehouse

Group, included in the price of all tyre products

sold by their stores. Given the number of potholes

and amount of debris on our roads, it’s a valuable

inclusion that helps to cover the annoying cost of

unrepairable punctures, side wall tears and so on.

Another innovative concept is the Bike Tyre

Warehouse Big 5 Brand Campaign, which the

company ran in September as a way of connecting

customers directly with people from five of the

premium brands (Michelin, Pirelli, Metzeler,

Bridgestone and Dunlop) that they stock. Prizes and

product offerings were the order of the month and

the campaign will now become an annual event.

There are more projects in the pipeline too: a tyre

training school that will help motorcyclists across all

disciplines learn the basics of tyre technology, plus

weekly tyre info video clips produced by Bruce’s

Cape Town partner Henk Kotzee (of the Look What

You Missing movie series). This feature will be

available on the company website under the Online

Tyre Store section.

Then there’s the rapidly expanding Bike Tyre

Warehouse Online Store, run by partner Warren

Frazer of Direct Deal. It features a comprehensive

retail section with multiple products related to

the motorcycle industry that can be financed and

insured online in minutes. BTW Online will soon

also have a BTW Trade Section to make it easier for

trade clients to order online and get their tyres, tyre

equipment, parts and tyre accessories invoiced and


We’d heard rumours of a Batt road tyre brand too

and, after some nudging, Bruce confirmed there will

indeed be a product launch early next year. “Our

goal is to promote growth, obviously, but also to

provide the commuter market with a safe, valuefor-money

series of tyres that are appropriate for

all weather conditions. The on-road brand will be

exclusive to the Bike Tyre Warehouse Group, i.e. not

sold in outside stores, so that we can monitor and

maintain our national pricing,” he adds. RideFast

magazine will be putting the Batt tyres to a torture

test to check them out.

With another Gauteng store on the cards and rollouts

planned for Durban and Port Elizabeth, is Bruce

worried about competition? “No. There’s not much

when it comes to specialized motorcycle fitment

stores. We’re confident in our business model and in

the quality of product and service that we provide.

I just hope motorcyclists will come to realize that

buying a new set of tyres can be exciting – and that

because tyre technology is changing so rapidly,

it really does pay to use a specialist like Bike Tyre




RF Garage


Installing and replace a motorcycle’s fuel filter

You know about the filters you should be changing on the regular, like oil and air...

but what about your fuel filter?! This forgotten filter is like the “kidney” that cleans

foreign matter out of gas before it enters your engine, and it’s an important part of

your fuel system, so learn about how it works and how to install one here!

One day, we’ll probably all ride around

on electric motorcycles. Until then,

motorcycles require a bit of maintenance

fueled by their need for gasoline. In order

to propel you forward at those speeds that

you love so much, your motorcycle’s engine

needs to perform a fairly complex system of

controlled explosions. But explosions aren’t

exactly “easily controlled.” A lot of things

go into keeping your motorcycle exploding

smoothly and if those bits and pieces aren’t

maintained, disaster may follow.

So it’s always a good idea to add checking

your engine’s fuel system to your routine

maintenance. Every time you give your

engine a good once over to keep it healthy

and happy, check your fuel lines to make

sure that everything is properly connected.

The vibrations that your bike has to deal

with when you ride can sometimes cause

nuts and bolts to back off and a loose or

disconnected fuel line can really ruin your day.

If you do fi nd some loose lines due to a lazy

nut or bolt, apply some threadlocker before

tightening them back up to keep them from

coming loose again.

Unfortunately, fuel doesn’t just enter your

bike from the fuel tank and fl ow through your

engine without picking up anything on the

way. Foreign particles can manage to make

their way into your combustion chamber via

your fuel by taking with it rust deposits that

are sitting in your fuel tank or dirt or gunk

from the pump. These particles can really get

in the way of clean running fuel lines and even

clog your carburetor!

Enter the fuel fi lter. Many bikes don’t come

stock with fuel fi lters. Some engines have a

fi lter inside the petcock which should also

be cleaned every now and then to avoid

clogging. If your bike has no fi lter at all, we

recommend installing a fuel fi lter and keeping

it properly maintained in order to give your

engine the cleanest run possible.

Use your Brain

Before working with your fuel system on your

bike, we hope that it goes without saying to

do so with caution. It can be easy to forget

how dangerous gasoline can be since we

use it daily in our engines without a second

thought. But any time that you work with your

engines fuel system, be aware of your

surroundings. Make sure not to work around

any sources of heat or fi re that could ignite

the fuel. Just one spark can make you wish

that the only thing you singed off was your

eyebrows. We also recommend wearing

a pair of latex gloves to protect your

skin from any gas leakage. Not to

mention, the stuff doesn’t

exactly double as a good

fragrance to wear.

Installing a Fuel Filter

Whether you’ve had issues with a clogged

carb or not, fuel fi lters are great preventative

measures. You may maintain your bike like

it’s the difference between life and death

(because it could be) but you can’t control

what the gas you pump into your motorcycle

brings with it. We would like to think that

paying an arm and a leg for gas these days

means that you’re getting pure petrol, but

sometimes that just isn’t true. And when

your gas isn’t up to par, it’s better to have a

clogged fi lter that can be easily replaced than

a clogged carburetor.

Installing a fuel fi lter is both cheap and easy.

We recommend Mahle Fuel Filters, which are

easy to install and maintain. These little guys

are made of a clear plastic that allows you to

see what’s going on inside your fi lter with just

a glance.

In order to install a fuel fi lter, you’ll need to

run the fuel lines dry so that you don’t end up

getting gas everywhere. In order to do this,

leave your petcock in the “on”

position and start your engine. Let

your motorcycle

run for a

minute or

so before

turning the


into the “off”

position. With

the petcock

off, twist your

throttle a few times

to run the line dry before

shutting your engine back off. If

your engine is fuel injected, you can just skip

this whole step since your engine doesn’t

pump gas through unless the engine is

running. (If you are installing a fuel fi lter onto

a bike that is fuel injected, make sure that

you’re using one that is specifi cally made for

your bike.) There will be some gas still in the

lines that you’ll need to drain out into a catch

can once you cut the line free.

When installing the fi lter, you can do it two


Brought to you by

ways. The fi rst is to detach the entire hose

and work with it off of your bike. This method

is typically easier but it is possible to fi t the

fi lter to the hose without detaching it. Either

with the hose still on your bike or detached,

fi gure out where on your hose you would like

the fi lter to be placed (we like to put it right

in the middle). Cut out a section of the hose

that is slightly smaller than the length of the

fi lter. Be conservative while doing this. You

can always cut the hose down further but

you’ll need to replace the entire hose if you

get a little too carried away with the cutting.

The fi lter should then fi t in between the two

cut ends of the hose. The fi lter will have an

arrow on it that will show you which direction

the fl ow goes. Point the arrow toward your

carburetor. If there’s no arrow, the larger side

of the fi lter will go toward the carb.

Once the fi lter is fi tting well in the line, put a

clamp or clip around the hose on each end

of the fi lter and tighten them down to secure

the fi lter. This isn’t the time to turn into the

Incredible Hulk though. These fi lters are

plastic and too much tension will damage the

fi lter’s casing. Tighten the clamps or clips just

enough to secure the fi lter. Once it’s snuggly

in place, fi t the hose back onto your bike if

you had taken it off at the start.

With everything back in place and your new

fuel fi lter fi tted and secured to the hose, put

the petcock back into the “on” position, start

up your bike and check for any leaks. If you

don’t see any, take your bike out for a ride

and check once more when you get back to

your garage and then again after it has been

sitting for a while. Be sure to check your bolts,

clamps, clips and nuts often to make sure

that none of them have backed off.

Replacing your Fuel Filter

If you’ve already got a fuel fi lter on your

bike, it’ll need some slight maintenance

just as anything else on your bike. Along

with keeping an eye on fuel lines and their

connections in order to keep your engine

running safely, keep an eye on your fuel fi lter.

This is why we love the clear plastic fi lters. It’s

easy to check for clogs or build up without

having to detach anything. If you do happen

to notice any kind of build up or clogging,

it’s such an easy fi x. Simply replace the fuel

fi lter and toss out the clogged one. Even if

you never have a problem with clogs or build

up, we recommend changing out your fuel

fi lter once a year as the plastic can break

down over time and use. They’re inexpensive

and the process is easy but replacing your

fuel fi lter is a great way to keep your engine

running without any hiccups.

Once you’ve got the new Mahle fi lter, you’ll

want to run the fuel line and old fi lter as dry as

possible to save you from having to deal with

any excess fuel. This process is the same as

if you were installing a new fi lter. Just run your

engine for about a minute, put the petcock

into the “off” position, rev the throttle a few

times and then shut of your engine. This

should clear out most of the gas in the line

and fi lter but some still may leak out so be

prepared with some sort of catch can. If your

bike is fuel injected, skip the whole petcock

step as the fuel pumps will keep the fuel from

pouring out while the engine is off.

With your fuel line and fi lter fairly dry, loosen

the clamps or clips that are holding the two

ends of the fuel line hose to the fi lter and

remove the old fi lter. Some motorcycles may

have a fuel fi lter mounting bracket in order to

make sure that the fuel fi lter is secure. Before

you remove the old fi lter, you may need to

detach the bracket along with the fi lter and

then remove it from the fi lter.

The new fi lter should have an arrow pointing

in the direction of the fuel fl ow. Install the

new fi lter with the arrow pointing toward the

carburetor. If there’s no arrow, just install it

with the larger end toward the carb. If your

old fi lter had been attached to a mount, put

the bracket onto the new fi lter and secure it

to the mount. Replace the clamps and clips

that secure the hose to the fi lter and tighten

them without tightening them so much that

they damage the plastic casing of the fi lter.

Once the new fi lter is in place and secured,

put the petcock back to “on” and start up

your engine. Check the line and fi lter for any

gas leaks. A leak or loose bolt or nut can

really end badly so you want to make sure

that your lines are all secure. If there

seems to be no leakage, take your ride

out for a spin. When you get back

to your shop or house, recheck

the line and fi lter for leaks both

immediately and after it has

had a chance to sit for a

few hours. Now that

you’ve got the new

fi lter in place, you

can be sure that

your engine is only

getting the fuel it

needs and no other

surprises. But be

sure to check your

lines often just in


Mahle Filters now available in

SA through Autocycle centre

The filter brands MAHLE Original provide a

range of products that meet the demands of

workshops, garages and for home servicing.

Mahle offer a very comprehensive product

range that covers a number of applications.

The Mahle filter range includes air, oil and fuel

filters for most motorcycle models.

MAHLE manufactures OEM oil and fuel filters

for most motorcycle brands.

MAHLE filters have been everywhere: on

Route 66, at the Cape of Good Hope, on

Mount Olympus. And for a good reason: as a

development partner with a global presence,

MAHLE supplies quality products to a wide

customer group of renowned vehicle and

engine manufacturers. From now on, MAHLE

motorcycle filters are available in South Africa,

distributed by Autocycle Centre.

Like every product in the MAHLE Aftermarket

range, the motorcycle oil, fuel and air filters

are the result of a manufacturing process

tested in accordance with strict quality


For dealer enquiries call (011) 879-6470.


“They’ve taken the very boring and dull

looking stock red bike, and transformed it into

a sportsbike lovers dream machine!”




While on a dealer visit to KCR Motorcycles in Kempton Park, on the East Rand of JHB,

Rob spotted something all dressed up in Red and looking very sexy. Words and pics: Rob Portman

For the past 24 years, KCR

Motorcycle Fanatix have been

synonymous for building

gorgeous custom motorcycles

- especially sportbikes.

To do this one needs a very creative

mind and the ability/skills to execute that

creativity. Alan Linley, the owner of KCR

Motorcycle Fanatix, has all the tricks up

his sleeve, and this latest project proves

that he has not lost his touch, and that

his team know what they are doing.

Being a big Suzuki fan, and an official

dealer, Alan wanted to do something

special with the new GSX-R1000. He

didn’t want to just throw some existing

after-market products at it, that anyone

can go out and buy and do themselves.

Instead, he wanted to create and

manufacture custom made parts unique

to this bike.

The Yoshimura and Suzuki

partnership is world famous and

very iconic, so Alan wanted to make

something that would compliment that

affiliation perfectly.

Everything from the fully adjustable

rear-sets, mirrors, bar-ends, crash

protectors and filter covers are custommade

by Alan and his highly skilled

team. The splashes of red mixed with

carbon-fibre really do give the bike that

factory racing exclusive look.

A custom-made and designed sticker

kit on the front, side and back of the

bike also help give it that look.

Shorty brake and clutch levers have

been added, along with a carbon-fibre

rear hugger.

The best edition to the bike, and

one that had to be made because

of the hideous stock pipe, has to be

the Yoshimura Alpha T slip-on pipe,

equipped with carbon-fibre heel

protector. It not only looks the part, but it

sounds just as good.

The attention to detail on the bike is

second-to-none, and you can see and

feel the passion that has gone into this


They’ve taken the very boring and dull

looking stock red bike, and transformed

it into a sportsbike lovers dream


If you are keen on giving your bike a

face-lift, I suggest you give Alan and his

team at KCR Motorcycle Fanatix a call.

They can just about do everything you

would desire, and then some!

Call 011 975 5545.




Dan the man from lifeatlean.com will help you become that confident and consistent

track rider that you have always strived to be. Over the course of the year we will bring

you articles that will help you improve your riding style and lap times. Words: Dan Netting

Visual Skills Riding

on Track: A Key

Ingredient to

Going Fast

It’s no great mystery what ultimately

holds us back from going faster as track

day riders. In the end what we do on the

bike is governed mainly by the decisions

our brains make, in turn allowing us to

perform tasks based on the information

our five senses are feeding them.

Out of the five senses then, which is

the most important to have under control

in order to go faster around the track?

The title is a bit of a give away, but if

you guessed vision then you are indeed

correct. If you guessed taste….well then

there’s no hope for you.

How fast you can go round a corner

is massively influenced by what your

eyes are communicating about the

space ahead of you and where you are in

relation to it. If your visual skills aren’t up

to scratch, your perception of your speed,

position and available space will be

negatively affected and leave you riding

well below your potential.

Having your visuals working to help you

is one of the most important aspects of

going fast, but it can also be one of the

most complex, and while I don’t hope to

perfect your visual skills in this guide I do

want to open your eyes (no pun intended)

to a few points that will get you going in

the right direction.

The Things to Combat

The first and most common trait that new

(and even some experienced) riders tend

to show is a tendency to ride “blind”.

This is from a combination of not looking

far enough up

the track through the different stages of

a corner, as well as not having any real

references for where they’re going and

where they want to be.

The lack of real reference markers

means that the rider is almost feeling their

way around the track and as such they

will be very inconsistent with their lines

through the corners.

Another downside to riding blind is

the fact that riders are often left feeling

rushed, typically as they reach the entry

point, because their brain is receiving all

the information about where they are and

what’s coming up in too little time.

As a result they are never fully prepared

for what’s ahead of them, and when

the time comes they have to deal with

something unexpectedly, be it an oil spill

on the track, a bike coming up the inside

and sitting them up harshly, or they find

they’re running wide, the panic buttons

are pushed hard and the consequences

are usually not so good.


Another common trap that riders get

caught in is target fixation, something that

is more often than not brought on from

the above – riding blind and then being

surprised by something. For example, a

rider will go flying into a bend then on the

exit realize they are starting to run wide,

as a result they look at the exact spot

they don’t want to go to – the outside of

the track.

You may well have heard the phrase

that when riding a motorcycle ‘we go

where we look’, and that’s exactly what

happens in this situation. The rider drifts

further and further to the outside of the

track because all of their attention is fixed

there, they then become frozen on the

bars and controls and sure enough end

up taking an off track excursion. Instead

if the rider was looking up the track where

they wanted to go, their visual skills

probably would have saved them.

Vision Skills that Can Help Us

Reference Markers – By using reference

markers around a corner, it gives us a

way to map out exactly where we want

to be and where we want to go, as well

as a way to gauge whether or not we

are correctly positioned for the different

stages of a corner. In the end you can

map out your whole corner from braking

marker, to turn, apex and exit markers.

You are almost giving yourself a dot to dot

map to follow around the track.

Looking Ahead – Moving your eyes up

and ahead of you to your next reference

marker is a sure fire way to have you

feeling more calm and collected at speed.

You can see where you are in relation to

your next reference so you know how

much time you have to get there, and

when you do get there you know where

the next one is because you are always

looking ahead.

This means that not only do you know

where you’re about to be, but where you’ll

be after that, giving you a much better

perceptive of the time and space you

have to work with, which not only helps

you ride faster but it also further goes

towards stopping those panic buttons

being pushed in the event of something

going wrong or surprising you.

Wider Vision – While I am advocating the

use of reference markers and focusing on

them to map out your route around the

track, it’s possible to be TOO focused.

Focus too much on one marker to the

point where you lose everything else

and you’re going to run into the same


By expanding your vision and using

your peripherals to monitor other markers

or other riders, you can take your ‘looking

ahead’ skills that one step further.

A great drill that the California

Superbike School teaches to demonstrate

a use of wider vision is the Two Step.

This teaches riders to focus on their turn

marker as they are heading towards it,

then when they reach a certain point,

move their heads and look in to the

corner to find their apex while they’re

still heading towards their turn marker,

using their peripheral vision to track it and

establish when they have reached it so

they know when to turn.

The benefit being that once you arrive

at your turn marker, because you are

already looking at your apex you know

exactly where you want to go and how

much and how quickly you need to steer

to get there.

More information about the Two Step

can be found in Keith Code’s: A Twist of

the Wrist II.

Once you start to practice widening

your vision, you will eventually be able to

“see” objects or markers without actually

looking at them.


All too many people head straight for

things like body position, braking and

throttle control to gain time on the track,

and while they are indeed important

aspects, your visual skills are arguably the

most important element to have in check

in order to become a fast, controlled

and consistent rider. It is not a skill to

be neglected if you hope to achieve true

speed (and safety) around the track.



RF magazine play.indd 1006

2014/12/27 8:44 AM



Johnny Rea was recently crowned 2017

World SBK champ for the 3rd time in the row,

becoming the first rider in history to do so.

Ducati rider Chaz Davies did everything he

could to stop Rea, including this...

Helmets worth a look

When it comes to buying riding gear, no piece of equipment is more

important than a good motorcycle helmet.

Protecting a motorcycle rider’s head is serious business, but with

so many styles and brands on the market, choosing a motorcycle

helmet can be as difficult as choosing the right motorcycle.

Since the early 1900s, motorcycle helmets have evolved nearly as

much as the bikes themselves. Crash helmets used to be simple

canvas domes covered in brittle shellac, but current lids are

comfortable, safe, and connected in ways never before thought

possible. The process of choosing one can be confusing, however.

The market is flooded with countless options with different styles and

price points, but fear not, we’re here to help. Over the next 2 months

we will bring you some of our picks for the best motorcycle helmets

on the market today.

Airoh Valor Helmets

This has to be one of the best looking, and well priced lids on

the market today! WOW!

The new Airoh Valor helmet is designed to appeal to those

who prefer a sporty look on the road. Available in a variety

of spectacular designs, the advanced and aggressive design

boasts a performance ventilation system, a visor that

maximises the available field of view and an EPS inner shell

designed to increase safety.

Price: R2400 From: Suzuki East - 011 918 7777

Shoei NXR Helmets

The Shoei NXR is a pure sports full face helmet for the rider

who demands amazing performance at an incredible price. The

NXR is new from the ground up and has been developed to be

extremely safe (of course) but to also have superb aerodynamics

and ventilation. The Shoei NXR comes with a Pinlock Anti-Fog Visor

insert in the box, which gives clear vision whatever the weather. The

airflow through the helmets when the vents are open is excellent,

having been designed and tested in Shoei’s wind tunnel.

The NXR is available in a wide-range of awesome graphics.

Price: R6200 From: Retailers Nation-wide


AGV K-5 S Helmets

AGV’s latest version of this premium sport helmet now features a new construction for

the inner liner, designed with high-performance fabrics and with no stitching in sensitive

areas, making for an extremely comfortable fit. The lightweight shell is made from a

carbonfiberglass mix, while stability and aerodynamic performance are maximized

thanks to an incorporated spoiler. The Integrated Ventilation System (IVS) has vents that

are hollowed into the shell, and there’s also an internal drop-down sun visor, a removable

nose guard and a new wind protector that keeps noise to a minimum.


From R6150 From: RACE! SA - 011 466 6666

Bell Qualifier DLX Helmets

The Qualifier DLX continues to deliver high performance and

comfort at great prices. With a Transitions adaptive visor fitted

as standard, the Bell Qualifier DLX also features an adjustable

ventilation system for cooling and comfort, a lightweight

polycarbonate shell, and a super stable aerodynamic profile to

minimize buffeting and lift.

Price: R5499 From: Full Throttle Edenvale - 011 452 2397

HJC IS-17 Helmets

If you’ve ever thought, “I wish I had sunglasses right now”

the HJC IS-17 might be the helmet for you. A centrally

mounted slide on the top of the helmet will lower a tinted

visor to keep the rays at bay. To keep the sun’s energy

in check, the IS-17 features a moisture wicking interior

liner coupled with generous intake and exhaust vents for

channeling cool air in and hot air out. The IS-17 is perfect

for the daily commuter or anyone else who doesn’t want

to fuss with swapping shields in and out.

Price: R3492

From: Randburg Motorcycles - 011 792 6829


Fixman F1 Series 7

drawer 140 tool piece

roller cabinet

The Fixman (FIX F1RP7) Professional series with its 7 draw

130 tool piece set on their new Roller cabinet, still leads its

sales worldwide as the most popular unit from their range

of 40 available modules. The Fixman modular storage

systems allows each tool to be easily selected and missing

tools are immediately noticed.

This comprehensive unit is the perfect Automotive unit

and has it all, the 12 modular trays include a 17-piece

combination spanner set 2 to 22mm, a 2 piece machinist

hammer and mallet, 3 piece adjustable wrench 6, 8 and 10

inch, 7 slotted screw drivers, 7 Phillips screw drivers, 7

Torx screw drivers, a 4 piece internal and external circlip

plier set, a 19 piece ¼ inch drive sockets and accessories,

a 22 piece 3/8 inch drive sockets and accessories, 22

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Exclusive Group Test

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

Max Power: 189hp • Max Torque: 116Nm

Wet Weight: 200kg • Price: R300,000

2017 Suzuki GSX-R1000R

Max Power: 199hp • Max Torque: 118Nm

Wet Weight: 203kg • Price: R275,000

This test proudly brought to you by


Discover more on metzeler.co.za

Call 011 437 4699

Discover more at www.metzeler.co.za


2017 Kawasaki ZX-10RR

Max Power: 290hp • Max Torque: 113Nm

Wet Weight: 206kg • Price: R289,000

Elite - The best, first-class, high-class. It’s an age old battle of warriors. We take three

of the Japanese Elite sportbikes on the market today and put them head-to-head to

determine just who is the ultimate warrior. Words: Rob Portman Pics: Gerrit Erasmus (Beam Productions)


f I had to choose one word that

best describes the feeling of

riding a modern day 1000cc

sportsbikes I would say Exhilarating -

making one feel very happy, animated, or

elated; thrilling.

Exhilaration is like a drug – once you’ve

had it you can’t get enough. The stronger

the drug gets, the less stimulating

everything else becomes. It’s that slippery

slope those cops taught you about in

standard one – only this is a drug you can

get without having to go down an alley.

Every kind of emotion is activated when

one rides anyone of the crop on offer

today. You can’t help but feel like a kid

at Christmas when just looking at these

pieces of motorcycle art.

Us sportsbike enthusiasts have truly

been blessed with the plethora of twowheeled,

road-going super weapons at

our disposal over the past 5 years, and in

2017, things got more intoxicating than

ever before! This year, more than ever,

we fi nd ourselves oohing and aahing

at the gorgeous sculpted lines of the

latest models, mumble with disbelief at

how much power is available at peak

rpm, establish what the latest set of

electronically-induced acronyms mean,


Exclusive Group Test

and how it’s all squeezed into a chassis

that now resembles weight figures of

supersport bikes from not too long ago.

This year especially we’ve been

treated to the most significant advances

in horsepower, torque and electronic

assistance than ever before. With great

power comes great responsibility, and

both those come at a price, and a hefty

one at that. Over the past 2-years, prices

have inflated faster than my 18-month old

sons’ nappy. It’s common to see price

hikes higher than inflation but if you really

delve deep into what goes into a new litre

sportsbike, you will understand and come

to accept why the price tags are that high.

Manufacturers have tried softening

the blow by releasing ‘base’ models, as

they are known, as well as the pricier and

higher specced ‘R’ or ‘RR’ models.

“This year especially we’ve been

treated to the most significant

advances in horsepower, torque

and electronic assistance than

ever before.”

We’ve already showcased how good

the base models that are on offer today

are, and in this test, we get our hands

on 3 of the latest top specced litre bikes

available to sportbike junkies.

It took a while, an eternity

it seemed, but Honda

and Suzuki finally

released new 1000cc

superbikes for 2017.

Not only one, but

two models from

Suzuki and three from Honda - Although

the 3rd from Honda, the SP2, will not be

making an appearance in SA so we won’t

go there. Both Jap manufacturers released

new versions of their benchmark models,

the CBR1000RR and GSX-R1000, which

we have tried, tested and highly rated

already. For those looking for a bit

more, Honda and Suzuki

offer brand new, highly

anticipated top-of-their

sports-range bikes


for 2017 in the form of the CBR1000RR

SP and, just arrived in SA, GSX-R1000R,

while Kawasaki took an existing brute and

gave us a limited-edition version that’s

lighter, faster and even more track-focused

– the ZX10-RR. Bear in mind the new

ZX10-R base model has already captured

our sportsbike of the year test, but that

was against the other base models,

how does the RR fair against it’s more

racy rivals? That’s the answer we went

searching for in this test…

Where we went

To test these modern day marvels we

ventured out 300plus km to Welkom in

the Free State and the Phakisa circuit – a

4.2km purpose

built motorcycle

track that once hosted MotoGP races. The

track features 11 turns, 7 right-handers

and 4 left-handers. A good combination of

tight and fast corners, hard braking zones,

double apex corners and two very fast

right-handers that not only test a machines

handling capabilities and tyres grip levels,

but also how big whose private parts are.

Especially on these 190hp plus animals

that we tested.


Exclusive Group Test

Suzuki GSX-R1000R

Let’s start with the latest bike to be released

on this test – Suzuki’s new GSX-R1000R.

Notice the extra R on the end. The bike

has literally just landed in SA, and we

were not only the fi rst in

SA to test it, but also the

fi rst to put it up against

two of its main rivals.

While growing up, I

often heard the phrase,

“GSX-R: too much throttle

equals too much hospital,

the bike is an animal.” That

phrase made the bike a very

popular machine around

the world, and here in SA,

there were more GSX-R’s

on race grids, at trackdays

and especially at Drag races than

others. The bug soon bit me and I

jumped at the opportunity to race

one in 2007 and 2008. I wanted that

hyped hooligan machine. Turned out

all the hype was true and yes, there

were a few trips to the hospital.

What made the early GSX-R so

popular and hooligan like was its

extremely direct throttle response with

a powerful engine. If you rode over a

bump in the road or on the track and

your hand twitched the throttle you felt

yourself hanging on to the bars when

they bike reacted almost instantly. The

bike was a great lesson in throttle control.

If you offered little respect to the power

delivery then it was your own dust you’d

be eating. Massive amounts of power with

acceptable handling, that’s pretty much

been all GSX-R models up till now.

The big news for 2017 is that the

new GSX-R’s still have the same pokey

power house engine producing a claimed

199 bhp and all the typical GSX-R

characteristics but now, like the new

Honda, it has caught up and has an

electronics package that works and a

much lighter, more responsive chassis.

I have tested the new Suzuki

GSX-R1000 base model on a number of

occasions now, and loved every second.

I was keen to see if the extra R on the top

spec bike would make any difference. I

was certainly looking forward to the quickshifter

and auto-blip, the only real thing

missing form the base model. I have never

“The bike was a great lesson

in throttle control. If you offered

little respect to the power

delivery then it was your own

dust you’d be eating.”


Exclusive Group Test

tested any Suzuki model with a quickshifter,

so was eager to see if it worked

as well as its competitors. The short and

simple answer – YES! In fact, I would go

as far as saying it is one of the best in the

business, certainly in the top 3. Smooth,

silky changes both up and down. This just

added more flavour to an already very tasty

riding experience.

The other differences to the base model

is the addition of Balance Free Showa front

forks, Showa fully adjustable rear shock,

LED strip lights on the front, an inverted

dash display and launch control added to

the electronics package.

The base model is a very good handling

package, with a front end that feels dialed

in every time I have tested it, so was

The more racy front forks do feel a bit

more stable in the turns, especially

through the fast corners, where they

allow you to attack with confidence.

inquisitive to see if the up-specced forks

felt any better. The only real advantage of

the Balance Free forks would be felt by a

fast Group A track rider or current/former

racer. To be honest, they did not feel much

different to the stock forks on the base

model. Still the same responsive, quick

“The new Suzuki GSX-

R1000R is certainly the

bad boy of the bunch.

It’s a reminder of

sportsbikes of the past,

which featured good

HP figures without

Mary Poppins Nanny

electronics interfering.”

turning feel. The forks are pulled through

a bit more than the base model, and this

does make the front end a bit more stable

in the turns. It also loads the front nicely

going through the fast turns.

The bike had standard off-theshowroom-floor

settings, and forks like

this do demand a bit of setup to get the

best out of them, and have a lot more

adjustment compared to the stock ones.

The Suzuki made easy work of the 11

turns at Phakisa. It was easy to change

direction both under acceleration and into

corners. I felt confident even when I was

offline making an overtake. It does get a

bit loose, and when I say loose I mean it

moves around a bit compared to the Honda

and Kawasaki, but once you get used to it

and understand that loose feeling, you really

start enjoying it. It certainly does offer a bit

more of a thrill factor compared to the other

bikes because of the movement.

The new Suzuki GSX-R1000R is

certainly the bad boy of the bunch. It’s a

reminder of sportsbikes of the past, which

featured good HP figures without Mary


Poppins Nanny electronics interfering. But

these days, rider aids are a must and the

new GSX-R1000 and GSX-R1000R is

Suzuki’s first real attempt at this and they

have got a very good balance.

While the engine just wants to break free,

and is in serious need of anger management

classes, the GSX-R1000R has a very good

therapist in the form of traction control,

which helps keep everything sane and

somewhat in control. It’s still very transparent

that Suzuki wants the rider to really feel and

enjoy the hooliganism that comes with riding

its big powered superbike. It’s like a female

praying mantis, very loving and enjoyable

until it bites your head off.

The new electronics allow you to be far

more aggressive on the throttle harnessing

that raw GSX-R power and converting it to

fast drive. You can get harder on the gas

earlier while the bike is still on its ear in the

corner and on exit making it easier to ride

faster. You do this though with eyes slightly

closed and squinting, as you know the big

kick that’s coming could end up badly. Even

though there is that ‘I’m sh#$@ing myself

factor’, you still come out of every turn

without one moment, praising the traction

control and, in this case, the very grippy

Metzeler Racetec tyres, which are a must on

bikes like the three we tested here.

The Suzuki’s electronics give you a bit

more freedom to get loose, and when you

get off you feel like you’ve been on a rollercoaster

ride – It’s wild, thrilling, somewhat

scary but, very exciting!

Once you have achieved ballistic speeds

you need to know that you can get it

stopped. Under hard braking the bike was

stable. Suzuki has upgraded the calipers

to Brembo so it’s a shame that they never

fitted a Brembo master cylinder too. On

track the Nissin master cylinder is not the

best and there was some slight brake

fade, but for the average rider they won’t

even really feel it, just former racers like me

complaining about the small things again.

Speaking of complaining, one thing that

does get under my skin and irritate me a

bit is the fact that ABS comes switched

on all the bikes standard. What makes it

worse, you can’t turn it off, only once you

buy the after-market chip that you plug in

then can you de-activate it. On the Honda,

it can be switched off without the chip

but it then switches all the electronic aids

off, so that doesn’t really help either. The

ABS, especially on the Suzuki, really does

interfere and took control away from me. I

could not brake as hard and late as I would

have liked to as the ABS would kick in, and

that feeling of the lever pumping in your

fingers is horrible. The brakes still work and

get the job done but it’s really not a nice

feeling. Surely on modern day sportsbike,

which let’s be real here, are more track

bred than anything else, should have the

option of turning ABS on for when you hit

the road? Or at least come with the option

of turning off without interfering with other

aids. I for one hope they all go this route.

Ok, that’s all for the complaints box.

The early GSX-R’s were bulky with a

long reach to the handlebars; you felt like

you were sitting on high top of the bike

rather than in it. The 2005 bikes were more

compact with less reach to the bars and

you sat lower in the bike which was a much

better riding position and while the 2017

version feels even more compact it’s still

more bulky than its competitors. First thing

I would have liked to do is widen the bars.

Slightly narrower than others, very much

classic GSX-R

Overall, very impressed with this new

bike, well worthy of the extra R. But I will be

honest and say only real experienced riders

will get the best out of and appreciate what

the R has to offer. So the base model is still

a very good option.

At R275,000, it’s the cheapest of the elite

bunch, which is another big tick in the right

box for this machine.

Pros: Best priced • Superb electronics

• Silky smooth quick-shifter and auto-blip

• Aggresive acceleration • Proper fast

Cons: Noah’s Arc exhaust • Plain Mirrors

• No braided hoses • Why no Seat Cowl?

• Same colours as base model

Overall Rating: 8/10 (combined vote)


Exclusive Group Test

The Ohlins electronic suspension

worked like a treat out on track

Honda CBR1000RR SP

Celebrating 25 years of Honda Fireblades,

the 2017 version is a beautiful bike that

keeps the silhouette of the previous

generations of Fireblade. Just like the

Suzuki, we have waited a long time to see

a new model from Honda, and just like

Suzuki, two new ones have now hit SA

shores. We have tested and rated both the

RR and SP version earlier in the year, with

the RR finishing in 2nd place in our base

sportsbike of the year test. Now how will

the SP do against its rivals?

The first thing to say about the SP is

that it’s properly gorgeous. It’s not quite at

the Ducati level of build quality and sexual

design as yet (despite approaching it in

terms of price). But it’s not far off. The SP

has some headline differences that stand

out – chief amongst them the electronically

controlled Öhlins suspension, superbikespec

Brembo brake calipers, and a singleseat

subframe and tail unit. And under the

exquisite tri-colour bodywork lies a titanium

fuel tank and lithium battery, all the better to

shave the weight off…

Unquestionably, the Fireblade SP is

the lightest of the three, has the shortest

wheelbase, the lowest seat height and

yes, is the most expensive but with the

most advanced of all the trick electronics

and rider aids on show. And it’s that

combination which instantly proves to

be successful as an easy-to-ride, welldeveloped,

friendly sportsbike. Designed to

look and feel at home on track the Honda

is, well, typically Honda, in the way the

“It’s a rewarding bike to ride and

the sense of build quality and

refinement is in abundance”

chassis, tyres, suspension, engine, gearbox

all gel so well.

It’s a rewarding bike to ride and the sense of

build quality and refinement is in abundance.

Honda has stuck proudly to the “Total

Control” mantra that’s been the fabric of

every CBR it’s designed. To accept these

bikes is to buy into the belief that an easy

bike to ride is a fast bike.

To a racer, that’s sometimes a tough

concept to wrap your head around. You

want power, and you want agility, and you

want it all wrapped up in a package that

makes mincemeat of any racetrack. The

Honda is not fully that bike. The CBR is

almost too friendly, with less bottom-end

grunt than any other bike in the group and

comparatively very little top-end power.

Part of the Honda’s user-friendly nature

stems from its lack of power, and we’ll

admit to nearly every test rider saying they

were hoping for more, espe cially at corner

exit. Here, the GSX-R and Kawasaki has

just a little bit more grunt. The gear ratios

also felt a bit taller, so had to be a gear

lower in every turn.











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Exclusive Group Test

The fl y-by-wire is new tech for the 2017

model and offers satisfying reward. Punish

the throttle and the front wheel will lift, just.

Trust the electronics though and keep the

gas on while the bike calmly puts the front

back down again. It’s all part of the refi ned,

smoothness of the Honda experience. On

the brakes and the lever, its master cylinder

and the Brembo-supported discs will do

everything required on the road and more.

On the track, I felt as though the lever

came back to the bar too quickly – and by

adjusting the lever, it just makes it too far

away for my liking. Just like the Suzuk,i the

ABS did irritate me.

Despite all the horror stories of the new

Honda’s gearbox, I have had nothing but

good experiences with it. Here again, the

SP’s quick-shift and auto-blip are easy and

effortless, very confi dence inspiring.

The Honda’s electronics package is top

notch, and unlike the Suzuki features EBC

(Engine Brake Control), which I really enjoy

as I am a rider that relies on lots of engine

braking going into a turn. The traction

control is a little bit to intrusive, restricting

what is very easy-to-handle power a bit too

much. You need the traction control set on

at least 2 on both the Suzuki and Kawasaki,

but the Honda’s easy, not-as-powerful

delivery, is very easy to use and I found it

best switched off. With top grade Metzeler

Racetec tyres fi tted, I was getting all the

grip I needed so didn’t need the traction

control interrupting my fun.

What really separates the SP from the

other two bikes, the base model RR and

makes the price tag the highest (R300,000),

is the addition of the Ohlins Electronic

Suspension. The settings adjust both the

compression and rebound damping force

of the fork and shock and can either be

used in accordance with the three pre-set

riding modes or using the two manual

mode settings can be adjusted for rider

preference. The set-up is hellishly good

too, gliding over the imperfections in the

run down Phakisa tar without so much as

a wobble or shake. Its sportsbike prowess

with road-going perfection were more than

up to the task making mincemeat of the

faster sweeping bends. This is where the

Blade had the biggest advantage over the

other bikes. Because of it’s slender weight

(around 3kg’s lighter than the Suzuki and

6kg’s than the Kawasaki) and brilliantly

setup suspension, it was the easiest to fl ick

through the fast turns, especially the two

fast right hander’s off the back straight. This

is where I felt the biggest gains, because of

it’s supersport like feel I was able to carry

maximum speed without any hesitation,

even at the end of the day when the tyres

were a bit shagged.

For me the SP’s ergonomics are perfect.

For my size and the way I like to ride

everything felt in the right place, from

the bars to the


There’s plenty of room to slide around the

tank and the seat has enough space to push

right back when assuming the racing crouch.

Out of the three bikes I felt the comfi est

and fastest on the SP. It suited my

riding style to a tee and its less-is-more

philosophy is something that I feel more

riders should be taking more serious. The

SP is such a fi ne machine, so easy to ride

and ultimately as rewarding. I believe the

bike has unfairly suffered in the dealerships

because of the race-oriented SP2’s lack of

immediate success on the racetrack. Try

it, you might just like it. I do and I can’t get

enough of it.

Pros: Best handling • Superb electronics

• Total control factor • Easy on the eyes

• Sounds amazing • Best dash

• Silky smooth quick-shifter and auto-blip

Cons: Needs a bit more power • Traction

control a bit too much • No braided hoses

Overall Rating: 8/10 (combined vote)

The SP was a bit more

exciting without the

electronic aids on, and

very easy to handle.





Discover more on metzeler.co.za

Call 011 437 4699

Exclusive Group Test

Get on, go fast, and enjoy

every second - that’s what

the ZX-10RR is all about.

Kawasaki ZX-10RR

After releasing the new version of the

ZX10R in 2016, Kawasaki decided to do

something they have not done in a long

time for 2017, and release a homologated

special of its flagship litre sportsbike. It has

an abundance of performance potential that

could (if your desire and pockets run deep

enough) sit you on the grid of a WSB race.

The obvious changes from the standard

bike are lighter Marchesini seven-spoke

forged aluminium wheels, no pillion seat or

foot pegs and styling based on the factory

teams winter testing livery. Overall, in my

humble opinion, the looks are stealthy,

poised and dare I say it, sexy. Aesthetics

aside, the ZX-10RR also has some new

goodies under the hood. KQS (Kawasaki

Quick Shifter and auto blipper), diamondlike

carbon coated cut tappets, highly rigid

crankcases and a modified cylinder head

ready to take a high state of tune.

We got a taste of the new RR at the

beginning of the year, and simply loved it.

Out of the three on test here, it’s the easiest

to get on and feel right at home. It’s a wellbalanced

machine that translates track feel

impeccably, with superior handling, power

delivery and electronics.

The RR feels like a typical ZX-10R with

widely splayed and low bars that are ideal

for racers who want to muscle a bike around

and also demand high pegs for ground

clearance. It’s one of those riding positions

that puts you quite forward on the machine,

over the front for ultimate grip. It’s a funny

kind of comfortable, hard to explain.

Hitting the brakes for the first time, it’s

apparent these anchors are seriously strong

as I find myself releasing the lever as I’m

scrubbing off more speed than intended

(hate that). Even though it also features ABS,

the feeling was so much better than on the

Honda and Suzuki. I could brake as late

and as hard as I liked, and there was a tiny

shudder but nothing like on the other two.

The better brake feel could also be down

to the fact that Kawasaki did not skimp

and added braided hoses to the ZX10RR

in stock trim. Find it a bit weird that Suzuki

and Honda did not do this on their top of

the range offerings?

The specs will tell you that the ZX-10RR

is the heaviest and longest of the bikes

tested here, and I could feel that going

through the turns. It was most noticeable

going through the fast turns 2 and 3 at

Phakisa, where you are flat out in 4th gear

and have to flick the bike from right to left.

It’s not as easy to get into the corners as

the other bikes, or flick through the fast

sweeps, but you only notice this after

having ridden the other two.

The Kawasaki takes the cake in the

traction control department. Not only does

it work really well, but it lets you know it’s

working, with a crackle and gargle that

sounds oh so factory. The ZX10RR also has

the most rock’n’roll sound track coming

out of the titanium exhaust, and the pop

sound you hear when shifting through the

silky smooth quick-shifter and bang down

through the auto-blip is contagious.

The gearbox ratios on the RR are more

track-focused, so the cassette-type

“Out of the three on test here,

it’s the easiest to get on and feel

right at home. It’s a well-balanced

machine that translates track feel

impeccably, with superior handling,

power delivery and electronics.”


transmission is close-ratio, with second

through sixth gears shortened to enhance

corner exit speed.

There’s not really much to fault on the

ZX10RR. It does everything you ask of it

and very well. Its planted all-round feel has

you in dreamland. It’s more like a limo ride –

ultra comfortable and seductive. If anything,

I would want the ride to be a bit more racy,

like the Suzuki and Honda, but it would be

a bit harsh to hold that against it.

The big question I get asked is should all

the 2016 ZX-10R owners be jealous they

didn’t hold out for the RR? Well possibly not.

In reality, the bike won’t feel much different

due to sharing the same power and similar

weight, but with the addition of the race kit

added, the RR can be taken to a whole new

level. Basically, think of this limited-edition

The ZX-10RR and new

GSX-R1000R are so

evenly matched in the

power department.

Kawasaki as a considered platform to build

an incredibly fast track weapon.

At R289,900, you get a lot of bike with

loads of potential waiting to be unleashed!

Pros: Loud and proud • Superb electronics

• It has braided hoses (YAY!) • Proper fast

• Aggresive acceleration • Brilliant anchors

Cons: Dash in serious need of an upgrade

• Same colours as base model (winter test)

Overall Rating: 8.5/10 (combined vote)



When ever we test big modern day 1000cc

angry beasts we make sure we fit only the best

rubber available to help control all that anger.

For this test, we decided to use Metzelers’ new

Racetec RR tyres, which are available in 200 size

rears, ideal for these bikes.

We chose to use the K1 compound on the

front, and the K2 compound on the rear, as the

Phakisa surface is not very forgiving.

Out on track front end grip was out of this

world. The only movement experienced was

progressive and telling. They’re very talkative and

it’s easy to feel your way in and around a corner.

The tyres feel stiff under load, so they don’t

squat under trail braking and have no problem

handling hard acceleration.

We managed around 45 laps on the tyres, and

the fronts still looked in good nick and had plenty

of grip left, while the rears looked very worn,

almost slick like, but they did job!

Metzeler tyres are back big time in SA, through

TiMoto the new importer. The Racetec RR range

is available in 120 front and 180, 190 and 200

size rears. Pricing starts from R4800 for a set.

Check out www.metzeler.co.za for more info.


Exclusive Group Test

There really is not much to fault any one of these

awesome machines. They are well worth their ‘Elite’

status and worth every penny!


We have raved about all these machines

when we tested them earlier in the year, and

this test once again showcased how good

all these machines are. When choosing

which is ‘the best bike’ we are left to split

the proverbial hair. So we are forced to go

through everything with a fine comb, and

find those little things that could cost each

individual bike at the end.

All three bikes have top grade electronics

packages, which are easy to operate

and understand. The Suzuki’s rider aids

and instruments are a little more fiddly to

operate and lack the slickness the rest of

the package has. And the dash could use

some colour and a little less information.

Does look a little crowded.

The Honda’s colour LCD dash is superb,

while the Kawasaki’s Night Rider display is

less desirable and in need of an upgrade.

The Suzuki wins out in the power

department, has more of a thrill factor, and

it’s the cheapest of the lot - R15k cheaper

than the Kawa and R25k than the Honda

SP. The Honda could use some extra

ponies, but for me was the best handling

while the Kawasaki just did everything

really well, and in the overall vote picked up

the most thumbs up making it the overall

winner of the test. Out of the 5 test riders

we had, 3 voted the Kawasaki as their

outright winner, with the Suzuki and Honda

getting one winning vote each, so it was

very close.

The fact is there’s not a bike that

deserves to be third and if you had

R275-R300,000 burning a hole in

your pocket (split over several years or

otherwise) then you would be foolish not to

test each rival and take into consideration

where and when you’ll ride it.

To sum up all three bikes I would

describe it like this:

Me and my three Japanese sportsbike freak

mates walk into a bar packed with tattooed

up, bearded Harley-Davidson nutters. Things

get a bit heated. My mate, Suzuki GSX-

R1000R, doesn’t ask any questions and

starts throwing fists wanting the thrill of a fight.


My other mate, Kawasaki ZX-10RR, tries

to negotiate first, and if need be will happily

jump in and fight, while my third mate, Honda

CBR1000RR SP, would like to calm the

situation down and offers to buy everyone a

drink and go their separate ways.

Robs winner

I personally chose the SP as my winner.

For a former racer like me I could really

appreciate and get the best out of the SP.

I just felt so comfortable with the bike from

the start. I could really use the power on

hand and felt a bit more in control on the

SP than on the others.

But I would still gladly have either the

Suzuki GSX-R1000R or Kawasaki ZX-

10RR parked in my garage.

The prices we have mentioned in this

test are recommend retail only. I happen

to know that if you ask nicely enough, you

could get some very tasty deals!

Michael Powell says

The Suzuki GSXR1000R, to me was the

better bike out of all 3 that we had tested.

However it was only performing well once

you go fast around the track! The traction

control works so well it does not feel like it

bogs the bike down, the problem with that

is you have a little voice whispering in your

left ear saying “Hey buddy, go faster, ride

harder” and you can do it but everyone has

their limit and every bike has its limit.

The shorter wheelbase and improved

forks helps the bike turn in so great and

hold the line you have chosen, whether it’s

a fast flowing corner or a short tight corner.

The quick-shifter and auto-blip is so

smooth and combined, it works like a

dream! This machine is by far the best out

of all three bikes.

The Kawasaki ZX10RR: I have tested

this bike earlier in the year and really

enjoyed it. The lighter wheels, titanium

header pipe, the quick-shifter as well as

the auto-blip on the bike are all together

great, however the quick-shifter on the

flick to right and then the left, was not

shifting as smoothly as the Suzuki.

You can feel it’s the longest bike of all

three when turning into corners, you have

to really work the bike. If you have a large

and proud dad pouch, it makes it easier

to move the bike around. One of the many

things I enjoyed about the bike was the

brakes! Yes it has ABS as well but you do

not feel them trying to work. The brakes on

this bike was the best of all three.

Honda CBR1000RR SP1: One of the

greatest things I enjoy about this bike was

the electronic suspension. It is by far the

best that I have ever tested! The brakes

to me are not the greatest and the ABS

system works too much, giving you the

feeling that you do not have proper brakes

or control. With the short wheelbase, it’s

effortless to turn in and hold a line but, on

the slower tighter corners, the bike does

not have the power or grunt to get you out

the corner fast enough. Yet, on the faster

corners, like coming off the back straight,

you’re able to go in flat out.

I just feel that Honda should have given

the SP model 10 to 15 more horse power

to make it the perfect bike, it lacks that.

So overall let me sum it up for you...

The Suzuki is like pushing the limit with

your wife - until - she snaps and you are

either dead or extremely sorry that you

pushed her to the edge!

The Kawasaki is a like a wife that will let

you know if she’s unhappy right away, by

screaming and making a noise faster and

louder than a 2 stroke hitting the rev limiter!

The Honda is the perfect wife!! The one

that just lets you do what you want, when

you want, how you want while standing

there smiling and loving you!

I don’t know about you guys, but I

love pushing the limit with my wife to see

where exactly that limit is and living for the

adrenaline pump of that snap! FYI.. I am

the Suzuki type of guy!

Morne Krynauw says

My winning bike: Kawasaki ZX-10RR.

At my level of riding the bike does

everything I would want for a track bike.

It sounds amazing, it handles like it’s on

rails, it’s mighty fast and most importantly

the brakes work really well. And to top it all

off the electronic package just works.

Second up: Suzuki GSX-R1000

I would say if I had more time tuning

the suspension and getting to know the

electronics it would’ve been better for me,

but with its awesome power delivery, it was

a lot of work and I was getting a bit tired.

A superb bike none-the-less and I am

loving 1000cc bikes these days.

Third up: Honda CBR1000RR SP

I would’ve loved to spend more time on

the track with the Honda, but the little time

I had on it felt light and nibble and narrow,

reminds me of a 600.

But for now, for what I want in a bike

is a bit of a bar fight, and I want to get off

a bike and be like “Yeah I’m alive”. The

Blade, although I can’t really fault it, just

doesn’t have the same ‘WOW’ factor as

the Kawasaki and Suzuki.


Sadly we were not able to round-up all the ‘Elite’

models for this test. Yamaha SA do not have a

R1-M demo, while Aprilia’s new RSV4 RF has

not yet arrived, and Ducati only take orders for

their Panigale Final Edition, as they are waiting

for the new V4 to come next year.

All three would have been worthy contenders,

and while we have tested, and raved about the

Yamaha R1-M, we have not yet had the honour

of testing the other two. So, if you are the proud

owner of one of the only 650 made Ducati

Panigale Final Editions, or plan on buying the

new RSV4 RF when it arrives, then give us a call

and we will gladly help run (hammer) your bike

in. Pretty Please!!!

Here is a general look at each of the bikes that

have that ‘Elite’ status:

YAMAHA R1M - R390,000

The R1M is as close to Rossi’s Yamaha M1

MotoGP as one could possibly get. The Ohlins

electronic suspension is the highest spec

available, and is complemented with loads more

top specced race parts.

It is a true track-bred machine that will make any

ordinary rider look and feel extraordinary.

APRILIA RSV4 RF - R319,999

Set to arrive at Cayenne SA very shortly, the Aprilia

RSV4 RF is kitted out with everything it needs to

be called a World SBK with mirrors and lights.

Top grade Ohlins suspension front and rear, with

a V4 engine that will make any man cry.

We hope to get the new RF model to test in the

next month or so, and not only see if it’s worth

all the hype, but also see how it compares to the

three we tested here.


The lightest of all the ‘Elite’ bikes, the last ever

V-Twin powered Ducati superbike is a true piece of

art. Just like the rest it brings MotoGP and World

SBK technology closer to the market than ever

before. 210HP of pure drooling material, wrapped

in to a gorgeous Italian silhouette. The double

Akrapovic pipes are worth the price tag alone.







The crew at Zeemans Motorcycles took the already unique looking

Buell and turned it into something very out of the ordinary - We

meet their very own ZUELL. Words: Rob Portman Pics: Kyle Lawrenson

Usually when testing bikes for RideFast

it’s all about power, electronics and

handling, all the good stuff. This test

was slightly different.

If you pop into Zeemans Motorcycles

in the South of JHB, you’ll be greeted by

something very aggressive on the showroom

fl oor, not a Rottweiler, but something far

more ferocious.

The Zuell. Yup - we’d also never heard of

one - and no surprise. This is a Buell that has

been - well - Zeeman’d.

When I was fi rst told about the Zuell, I

thought it was just another back yard custom

build. But when I walked into the dealership

and saw it in the fl esh for the fi rst time, I was

left speechless (something that does not

happen often). It’s very eye-catching and its

bad-ass persona gets the senses tingling.

So, naturally I asked the owner and

builder, Bradley Zeeman, If I could take it for

a test ride and do a feature on it. Well, I think

his answer is pretty clear…

How it all began

A few years ago, the Zeeman clan traded

in a 2003 Buell XB9-R, a bike that I am very

familiar with having raced one for Harley-

Davidson SA back in 1998, when I was a

skinny, snot nosed, fast 16-year old. I raced

it in the BOTTS (Battle of the Twins) Regional

championship and picked up a fair few

podiums, even up against the bigger, better,

and way more expensive Ducati machines.

The XB9-R is a very exciting bike,

and very much considered a bad-ass. A

hooligans dream machine. I still see some

pop up here and there, mostly being ridden

on the back wheel.

When Zeemans traded it in, it had a

few problems, like a seized gearbox. They

decided that rather than just fi xing it and

trying to sell it, they wanted to do something

a bit unique and special.

Both Keith and son Bradley have always

had a passion for building custom cars and

bikes, so this was right up their alley.


This build was inspired by Keith fathers old

AJS racebike. The bike was stripped down

and the Harley gearbox and engine was

overhauled. Interesting is the fact that none

of the Harley guys would help them with the

bike because it was a Buell… but master

builder and famous road racer himself, Keith

got it sorted.

6 Months and plenty of hours went into this

very unique build, and the result is stunning!

Loads of custom made parts, from the

integrated battery box, tanned hand stiched

leather seat with braided seams and Lauri

Zeemans race number 61, to the blade type

levers and headlights.

So it looks cool, but how does it go?

The ride

From the moment I hit the big red start

button, I knew I was in for a unique ride.

When the word ‘unique’ is used for a bike,

it generally means the word comfortable

cannot be used, and that’s very much

apparent for the Zuell. It is by no means

comfortable. I do however love the

nice wide bars, but that’s about it. It’s

stiff and very rigid. Typical streetfi ghter.

Everything about this bike is aggressive,

from the riding position to the brake and

clutch levers, which could easily be used

as weapons in a road rage urtication.

While the brake lever is sharp looking,

the actual brakes are old school. My

fore-arm got quite a workout, as I had

to really pull the lever to get any kind of

stopping power.

The throttle is also really tough, with a

very long stroke, something I have not had

to deal with in a very long time. No fl y-bywire

feeling here, very much the old school

cable. There is a lot to be said for more

modern electronics.

Once I got the throttle to the point where

it actually works, it awakens the beast that

is the Zuell motor. This bike is all about low

down power, and there is plenty of it. There

is a typical Buell vibration that shakes the

entire bike and your brain about. There is a

bit of relief in the form of the gearbox, which

is surprisingly smooth and a pleasure to use.

But that’s the only time the word ‘smooth’

can be used on this bike. Everything else is

tough, rugged and all about attitude.

Handling is pretty good, considering the

bike is fi tted with wet weather tyres. When

I asked Brad “why oh why”, his simple

answer to me was ‘because it looks really

cool, and it rains a lot now’. He does have

a point. While its completely imparatical and

ridiculous, they do really look cool and it is

rainy season after all. That did mean that

any kind of lean angle on the beautiful sunny

JHB day was completely out of the question.

There’s not much that makes sense on

this bike, especially for everyday use. But

that is the beauty of it. It goes against the

grain and rebels against societies popular

demands. Its rebellious nature makes you

forget about it’s imperfections and leaves

you craving more.

It’s got more attitude than a teenager,

more fl air than a WWE Superstar Wrestler

and will steals eyes faster than Jennifer

Aniston in a bikini.

The exhausts, or lack there of, are louder

than South Africa’s cries for a new President,

and I would hate to be Bradleys next door

neighbor. Hearing the Zuell start up and

ride out everyday must be quite painful,

but riding the bike, you can’t help but love

the soundtrack and feel like Billy Idol - The

original rebel!

Go and check it out. Attitude personifi ed

and a great custom by one of South Africa’s

most famous motorcycle families.



3 Boundary Lane, Oakdene, Johannesburg


011 435 7177




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We’ve come to learn a lot about the demands of MotoGP thanks to Red Bull KTM’s exploits through a 2016

of testing and now a maiden season in the Grand Prix paddock but we decided to ask Pol Espargaró’s Chief

Mechanic Christophe Leonce a bit more about having a job in the orange and blue shirt…

Words: Adam Wheeler Pics: KTM Images

KTM´s MotoGP team manager Mike

Leitner told us recently on the KTM Blog

about the challenge of constructing a race

team to slide directly into the competitive

maelstrom of MotoGP where the greatest

expense goes into the smallest detail to

make the tiniest bit of difference per lap.

Venturing deeper in the Red Bull KTM

garage, we wanted to find out a bit more

about the toil and hours put into the racing

effort on a MotoGP weekend. We find the

smiley and gregarious Christophe Leonce

willing to chat in a break between Free

Practice 1 and 2 at MotorLand for the

Grand Prix of Aragon before the teams

and paddock move to a three weeks

existence living and working out of freight

cases for the ‘triple’ in Japan, Australia

and Malaysia. “Looking on TV it seems

super-exciting but we are often in a loop of

‘hotel-track-bike’,” the

47 year old smiles. “It’s a

routine, and almost like

a normal job in the end.

You can only stay in this

world for a long time if

you have the passion for

it and if you enjoy it. It’s

tough and you need a lot

of patience to do many

years in racing.”

Leonce has been

wielding the spanners

for teams in Grand

Prix for thirty years and through a variety

of motorcycles and technology. The KTM

RC16 is his first Austrian charge and the

progress through the bike’s refinement in

the hands of Catalan Espargaró has been

nothing short of impressive: KTM cutting

down a deficit per lap of more than two

seconds at Qatar for the opening round and

are now top ten runners and semi-regular

runners in Q2 on Saturdays.

“The KTM is different because of that

steel tubular frame chassis compared to the

aluminium used by the Japanese,” he says

of the distinction of the fetching orange

motorcycle. “At this stage we are constantly

developing so it means a lot of new parts

and chassis’ and the bike can be tricky to

work on. As soon as we have the settled

base for 2018 we can then take care of the

tiny details and it will be easier. You have

to be able to work fast on a GP bike, and

everything is assembled the same way. In

the end it is a bike: chassis, engine and two



In between engines being started – the

KTM RC16’s rasping howl meaning we

have to exit the pit box and continue our

talk outside where we’re flanked by staff

moving in and out of race trucks and into

the generous garage space – we probe

more into Christophe’s day-to-day role and

that of the 30-40 crew around him …

OK, describe a typical Grand Prix

schedule and workload…

“So, we arrive at the circuit Wednesday

morning around 8-9am and start to build

up the pit box and we’re usually done

before lunchtime. In the afternoon, we start

on the bikes. It is then a day-and-a-half of

work doing maintenance. One of the two

bikes will be completely stripped, cleaned,

checked and updated with new parts. We

follow a spec sheet for the build and before

we start the bike on Thursday Jenny, our

data engineer, checks everything and all the

sensors. After firing up the bike we check

everything again. Always checking. On

Friday, Saturday and Sunday we go through

the same process: arrival at the circuit,

starting and checking the bikes – things

like the sensors and electronic parts and

bleeding the brakes and clutch every day

– then jobs like emptying and weighing the

gas tank for consumption. Thirty minutes

before practice we will start the bikes again

with race fuel but still with ‘transport’ tires,

which is rubber we use to move them

around; the race tires stay in the back of

the garage under the tire warmers. That last

check also involves the computer system.

Finally, we change the tires to race spec

and then the bike is ready to go.”

Which day tends to be busier

or more frantic? The build? The

stress of Qualifying? Or the nerves

of the race?

“Qualifying and practice can be a bit

more stressful because you don’t want

to make a mistake and you have to be

smart and alert to what could happen. You

almost have to be ready for things before

they happen! Wednesday and Thursday

are busier days and after that it is a matter

of maintenance and small improvements.

When you send the guys onto the track

you should have eliminated any problems

because of the checks but you can never

reduce that risk to zero; you can never have

everything under full control in motorsport.”


What about breaking the whole

structure down and packing

the bikes? Are they transported

in their entirety or are they


“The bike is transported as it is. We don’t

break it down but we have to be careful

because the engine uses a pneumatic

valve system so we have to use a transport

‘bottle’ which is a tank with some air

inside at low pressure to keep the valves in

position. If you don’t put the pressure then

maybe you drop the valves. That’s basically

the only measure we take. There is no fuel

in the bike but the water stays. Breakdown

is just a process. You assemble it one way

and disassemble it another. We usually do

it all together as a team, and that’s nice and


How is the relationship with Pol?

Do you have much interaction

with him?

“Pol is a young rider but he looks like he

doesn’t carry a lot of pressure. He seems to

eliminate it with little jokes and laughing and

it’s pretty cool to have that. I’ve had riders

that will come into the garage completely

serious and not talk to anybody. It is a

big difference for me. Pol is already very

experienced so he makes suggestions. It’s

good to work with him.”

The enormous Red Bull Energy

Station is also new for 2017. It

seems like the ideal place – it’s

certainly big enough – to take a

suitable break from the garage…

“It is fantastic because you can go there

and see different people who are not

stressed by the racing and the crew there

take great care of us. It’s a nice place to go

and relax when you have finished the job.”

Lastly, Red Bull KTM is a new team

so did it take some time to gel with

the people around you? To find

those processes?

“I’m happy about this because people have

been in place a short time and many are

new to KTM but have been busy testing

and developing the bikes. Everybody kind

of knows what he or she has to do and

there is a good ambience. The team is

young … but the people in the race team

have many years of experience so they

know the job. It is easier to take staff that

know this world. New people can bring a

lot of energy in the beginning but they also

get to a point where they are like ‘whoah’,

maybe because the results are not coming

or the quantity of work but like I said the

most important thing is to have passion for

motorcycle racing.”




Exclusive First Ride






This test brought to you by

Proudly imported by www.dmd.co.za




Riding the REVmonkee



If you thought it was impossible to make Kawasaki’s H2 even more spectacular,

then think again. Dutch motorcycle gear firm REV’IT! basically gave Danish

custom builder Wrenchmonkees a blank check to do just that, and they did not

disappoint; meet the REVmonkee. Words: Jarno van Osch Pics: Mark Meisner



seemingly random rental van

pulls up onto the massive

parking lot near the Mehliskopf

mountain. The ski resort ridden area in

Sand bei Bühl is abandoned this Monday

morning, but we hadn’t come all this

way to hit the slopes anyway. What we

did come here for is still sitting quietly

in the back of that Volkswagen Crafter

van. Blankets still cover its beauty as

the doors are opened. Once the bike

has been unloaded the morning sun


lights up every detail. It’s quite hard to

recognize what parts made it a Kawasaki

H2 once. Wrenchmonkees have really

gone to town on this one, taking over

almost every inch of the mean green

supercharged hyperbike. Asking why

that is, we soon discover it was all part

of the plan. ‘We never intended to make

any modifi cations to the frame, nor have

we touched the engine. Those two parts

are the essentials; the bits that house

the power of the H2. For us to dive into

that, would be pointless’, Per Nielsen

explains. Together with Nicholas Bech

he got going adapting the things they

could make their own. ‘They started

out with a simplistic and gorgeous

trellis frame, after which they’ve sort of

gotten lost in complexity, making the

H2 look something of a U.F.O.. And of

course, the design received acclaim, but

mostly because of that extremity, not so

much its beauty. Its over the top-ness is



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Many an influence


It should be obvious both Bech and Nielsen

aren’t the biggest fans in the world when

it comes to the original H2 design, so they

stripped it bare. Starting again with nothing

but the frame and the motor, the Danish

custom builders got to it. Bech: ‘Getting the

clay models just right to make the tank and

seat work was the biggest challenge. It was

terribly time consuming because in the end

it all had to work and fi t together perfectly.’

Getting the esthetics just right meant certain

technical parts had to be rearranged, if only

just to make room. The original gas tank,

for instance, was removed entyrely. Its fuel

now houses in two smaller reservoirs stored

under the seat unit.

Another change they made is more

obvious, since the iconic fairing is missing. If

you know your stuff, you’ll know right away

what other Kawasaki bike Wrenchmonkees

borrowed a fairing from. That frontend

should instantly tell you a ZX-7R donated


its fairing to the project. ‘We really like those

late eighties, early nineties superbikes, like

Honda’s RC30, the Ducati 888, and the

Kawasaki ZX-7R.’ And to be honest, the

fairing they stole off of that green nineties

superbike does not look out of place at all.

One of the iconic air intakes was sealed,

while the other feeds the supercharger

through an alloy intake, welded by hand

entyrely. On the opposite end of the fairing

you fi nd another aluminum tube that houses

some of the masses of wiring.

The rear of the bike no longer shows

much of the H2s lines either. The massive

single sided swingarm with its eye catching

star shaped wheel had to make way for

an alloy trellis double sided swinger. This

wasn’t necessarily done to keep within

the trellis theme, but more so to add even

more performance to the equation. GIA

Engineering from Nottingham in the UK

lent their expertise to the project, making a

lighter and even stiffer rear swinging arm.

All for looks

But apart that made to spec swingarm,

there’s even more performance brought

in elsewhere. The Danish custom builders

swapped out frontends, ditching the

Brembo calipers. The French brake

magicians at Beringer shipped over radially

mounted Aerotec four pot calipers gripping

330 millimeter Aeronal discs. ‘It looks

purposeful; it looks race. Like an endurance

racer’, Nielsen claims. Look more careful,

and you’ll spot Hyperpro stickers as well,

as the Dutch suspension fi rm sorted out

the suspension on the bike. ‘They didn’t

just work on the internals and lower the

front, but they reanodised the forks as

well. All in all they managed to shave off a

kilo and a half off the front alone.’ The rear

was treated to a made to measure shock,

as the custom swingarm limited space.

But nothing the folks at Hyperpro couldn’t

handle. ‘At fi rst glance it nothing looks to

challenging, but the custom rear shock



absorber has completely different mounting

points; to get that to work…’

Not just show…

After that evasive bit of surgery,

Wrenchmonkees and REV’IT! showed their

bike to the world at the annual Bike Shed event

in London, England. Onlookers seemed to love

its looks and the incredible craftsmanship that

had gone into the project, but still any and all

compliments were based on looks alone. It was

at this year’s edition of Glemseck 101 where it

got to prove a point; it’s not just show – it’s just

as much go! It annihilated the competition, and

with Per Nielsen at the throttle it won the eighth

mile sprint during the Sunday of the Beast

sprint races.

Within 24 hours of that sound victory,

the REVmonkee is now standing out in the

sun near Schwarzwaldhochstrasse. The

photographer makes most of the large

parking lot, taking in every square inch of the

customized H2. You can try all you like, but

it gets increasingly more diffi cult to make out

a Kawasaki here. People who own or have

ridden an H2 before might recognize the

engine, the frame, and perhaps the dash, but

apart from that you’ll have a hard time getting

your head around it. It’s a matter of taste of

course, but if you ask me they’ve done a great

job in draping a sweet design over the big,

blown straight four. It works, especially looking

at the new rear swingarm that adds an extra

line to it, emulating the lines in the main frame.

This is one tasteful homage to the nineties


Though Wrechmonkees haven’t taken a

single cover off of the engine, they did manage

to make some extra power by fi tting a sprint

spec air fi lter and SC Project exhaust system.

According to the builders it’s churning out 198

horsepower at the wheel, which should come

down to roughly 210 at the crank. Bech: ‘But

don’t forget we’ve put the bike on one hell

of a diet, too. It weighs well over twenty kilos

less than stock.’ Meaning it should be quite bit

quicker than a normal H2, as far as you could

describe any H2 Kawasaki as normal.

Any way you put it, it at least sounds like a

monstrously fast motorcycle. The SC Project

silencer was shortened quite a bit and then

they removed pretty much all of the sound

proofi ng material as well; fi lling the German

Swartz Wald with a deafening noise with every

touch of the throttle.

The tiniest blip reawakens the sheer

excitement of standing next to an H2 in me.

The needle shoots across the tacho, as the

chirp from the supercharger pierces the air.

What an incredible sound! It’s hard to put down

into words how good the raspy four cylinder

motor growls, with compliments of the good

people of SC Project. Deafeningly beautiful just

about cuts it.






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Explosive package

The orgasmic soundtrack fi lls me

with mixed emotions. It’s a cocktail of

excitement and a hint of fear, knowing I’m

about to open up an exclusive machine like

this. The explosive package is intimidating

to say the least, but it is an opportunity you

can’t pass up on. The heavy clutch lever

is pulled and with fi rst gear selected I roll

onto Schwarzwaldhochstrasse; a stretch of

road worthy of taking on this beast. Where

I get on, the road is still straight, so I pin

it, instantly experiencing what it must feel

like for an astronaut being launched into

the stratosphere, clinging to the clip-ons

as best I can. Putting the quickshifter to

work, I hit second. It looks as though the

tachometer needle is having as hard a

time to keep up as I do. At just over 200

kilometers an hour I roll off, as it sets in

the REVmonkee really goes one up on the

H2. The 20 kilo weight loss, that ear drum

shattering SC Project pipe; it all pitches in.

All of it add to feeling like you’re getting off

the line on Jonathan Rea’s championship

winning race bike. Not the worst of

feelings, obviously.

On the next bit of straight road I realize

I don’t have time to focus on the rev

counter. I try to divide my attention from

one to the other; tacho, road, tacho. White

digits light up; 6, 8, 10. I pull her straight

into the red, before I put the Beringers to

work. At these speeds it doesn’t feel like

you get instant full-stoppage, but as you

shed more speed, the brakes do their work

increasingly more effi ciently. It really shines

through these France made stoppers are

worth their weight in gold. Comparing

them to the stock Brembo’s is diffi cult, but

they’re as good if not better.


Special tread

The impressive power output starts to

grow on me to a point where I can almost

say I’m getting used to it, but as far as

handling I’m still left in the dark. Knowing

there’s countless turns up ahead, I should

start focusing on that by now. Returning

the bike to the Wrenchmonkee boys in one

piece would actually be nice. The tires on

the REVmonkee are something special,

but not made for the road, at all. The

laser cut Dunlop GP Racer slick tires were

somewhat of an attraction when the bike

was on display at Glemseck 101. If I got

paid a single euro every time a passerby

touch the special looking hexagonal tread…

Though the tires are all but made for

road use, once they start to get up to

temperature, they start to give confi dence

more. The customized H2 actually handles

turns quite well, mostly because of the

lightweight Dymag CH3 wheels. The





Exclusive First Ride

This test brought to you by

Proudly imported by www.dmd.co.za


Dunlops allow quick a lean angle, but really giving it my all isn’t

on the cards just yet. Even if it was, that notion went out the

window then the bike went sideways accelerating out of a tight

right hander. I try to calm myself, resetting the goal of returning

the bike to that VW van in the parking lot by the end of the

afternoon. In one piece, mind you.

What makes the biggest impression, has to be the weight

loss. It feels unearthly light, which must be maybe ninety

percent of the performance boost. The suspension is bone

shattering, but still gives plenty of feedback. A little bit of

fettling with a screwdriver could see a lot more of that.

Above all, I’m incredibly impressed by the REVmonkee,

especially considering they’ve ditched pretty much the

entire H2 package. Well, almost. Luckily the boys of

Wrenchmonkees left the beautiful pearl in the oyster

untouched. That supercharged straight four comes out even

better in this Danish custom incarnation; it impresses beyond

belief. It isn’t the best motorbike I ever got to right, but is sure

the most imposing one. Dismounting the REVmonkee I realize

I’ll probably never get to ride it again, but that one Monday

morning will forever stay with me. That I am certain of.

Not just customizing

Exactly ten years since Wrenchmonkees was founded, they’re

a well-known name in the business. Per Nielsen (45) and

Nicholas Bech (44) are the main forces behind the Danish

company. The in Kopenhagen stationed custom builders

rose to fame with their collaborations with Yamaha for the

YARD Built programme. It’s not just customizing, by the

way. Nowadays they’re also the go to shop for bolt-ons and

clothing. Curious about their work? Check out their website!



A bike like this needs proper suspension, and it got it!

Where the correct spring rate is essential for a correct performance of

the motorcycle, the hydraulics, the shock absorber, needs to control the

spring. That’s where Hyperpro Suspension Technology comes in. Due to

their experienced engineering team, they offer a range of products for a

wide range of motorcycles, for a wide range of purposes and for all kind of

different riding styles - just like this bike.

Hyperpro offers a basic emulsion shock with rebound adjustment, to give

you maximum comfort. The next step in our product range is a shock

which is fully adjustable. Due to the reservoir it is possible to also adjust the

compression damping on high and low speed settings. This will give even

better performance to the shock and as a result of this the best performance

of the motorcycle. Customized to your wishes!

All Hyperpro shocks are supplied in the motorcycle’s standard length, but

can also be ordered in a different length. This is possible when the technical

specifications of the motorcycle allows this.

Hyperpro in SA are most popular in the following:

• Performance street spring kits (progressive, make a big difference with our

road conditions)

• Lowering kits, especially with BMW (Spring lowering as well as dog link

depending on the application)

• Street Box kits (progressive front springs with an emulsion rear O.E

replacement shock)

• Steering dampers both progressive and linear

DMD is the official importer of the Hyperpro brand in SA. Visit www.dmd.

co.za or call (011) 792-7691 for more information.












Imported by Formula Friction Automotive

Distributed by Daniel Mulder Distributors

Call 011 792 7691 for your nearest dealer




Dapper and on board the Ducati Scrambler Café Racer.

Words: Wayne van Tonder Pics: Wayne van Tonder & Bonafide Moto Co.

I have been thinking about participating

in the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride for

a couple years now and finally, I’ve done

it. Not only was it a great day out, but

it was for a great cause too. I was also

lucky enough to be able to take part in

this fantastic event on board a gorgeous

Ducati Scrambler Café Racer, all thanks to

Ducati South Africa and Rob Portman.

The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride was

originally founded down under, in Sydney,

Australia. Mark Hawwa was the man who

started it all, inspired by a photo of Don

Draper of the show ‘Mad Men’, on board

a classic motorcycle and wearing a fine

looking suit.

The idea behind it is something all bikers

can relate to. Bikers tend to catch a lot

of stick. People tend to associate bikers

with bad behaviour and other stereotypes.

Now while there are those out there that

give bikers a bad name, these guys - and

the 92,000 other participants - are not

them. Donning your finest suit and riding

with style is a great way to get a different

image of bikers out to the public.

However, that’s not all it is about. The

event is aimed at raising funds and

awareness for men’s health. Prostate

Cancer awareness, men’s mental health

and suicide prevention the main focus.

On Sunday morning, the 24th of

November, I woke up, got my finest attire

out, polished my shoes, stuck on the open

face helmet and goggles and hit the road.

Now, as much as my personal fundraising

campaign did not go to plan, it was still

a great feeling to be a part of this event

and all that it stands for. There was a real

sense of community on the day and just a

great vibe about the ride in general.

The starting point and first met up would

be at the Vintage and Veterans Club

Joburg. It was quite an unexpectedly cold

a windy morning and so it took a little

time for everyone to start arriving, but

when they did, they poured in. Hundreds

of classic and modern classic bikes


everywhere you looked and everyone

dressed in their finest attire. Not just men

either, the ladies joined in too, some riding

bigger bikes than the men. The sights and

sounds were just wonderful!

After a short briefing by the organisers

for the day’s proceedings, where all

who hadn’t registered and/or arrived

on modern bikes were told they were

in for a day of ridicule, we were off. The

sound of hundreds of engines being

fired up followed by a line of motorcycles

that seemed to cover the roads of

Johannesburg as we rode out, it was a

sight to behold.

The next stop was the Randclub in

Marshalltown, one of South Africa’s oldest

bars. Arriving in the city with a mass

of motorcycles was really something

else. The sound of revving engines

reverberating off the side of the buildings

in the heart of town.

After some refreshment’s - and more

drooling at motorcycles you wish filled

your garage - it was off to the National

Museum of Military History where the

group photo would be taken. Now I have

to admit, it was a day of me struggling

to juggle covering the event and taking

photos and also wanting to be a part of

everything that was going on.

We were then off on one last ride through

the city to Melrose Arch, the final stop, for

lunch and entertainment.

The entire day was just fabulous after

a slow start in the cold weather, that

eventually disappeared leaving us all riding

in glorious sunshine. The event itself was

well organised, with the marshals for the

day doing a brilliant job of leading the mass

of motorcyclists through the busy city.

The ride did not only take place in

Johannesburg but all over South Africa.

Bloemfontein, Cape Town, East London

and Durban all joining in on this great

event. Globally, 92,000 riders took part

in 581 cities and 95 countries. Over $4,4

million USD has been raised on behalf of

the Movember Foundation, all in aid of

prostate cancer and men’s mental health.

A massive well done to all the organisers

and sponsors! A fine event for a great

cause. Well done!


It made me look cool - Ducati Scrambler Café Racer.

I read up and watched quite a bit about

the Ducati Scrambler Café Racer before

I picked it up. It was released earlier this

year, so there were some reliable sources

to choose from to get some opinions on

the bike.

The more I read and the more I watched,

it was nothing but good review after good

review. Even Jay Leno had a go on ‘Jay

Leno’s Garage’, and his opinion was that

if you were only going to have one bike,

this was the one to have. A good allrounder


What is it all about?

First of all, it’s a retro style Ducati! What’s

not to love?

“The Ducati Scrambler Café Racer,

Scrambler’s interpretation of the legendary

bikes that created a revolution in the

motorcycle world, is an expression of free

spirit and an emblem of style. Its “Black

Coffee” colour brings back the 60s to

today’s Land of Joy.” This is how Ducati

themselves have described this gorgeouslooking

motorcycle. (scramblerducati.com)

Key Specs

The Ducati Scrambler Café Racer,

produces 75hp from its L-Twin (90

degrees 2 cylinder), air-cooled engine. The

bike comes standard with a Termignoni

exhaust, that adds to its style.

My personal opinion

Now I know a lot of the time, journo’s and

other publications and forms of media

tend to have a bias. They say what they

need to say, let people hear what they

want to hear to keep the relationships

good with brands. So I couldn’t wait to

see if what everyone was saying about the

bike was true.

You know what? It was!

What you see is what you get. This is not

your fancy, fully electronic, wind-tunnel

tested Ducati. This is a Café Racer, meant

to bring back the feeling of ‘pure’ riding,

and it does just that. You get on, you start

it up and you go.

What was it like to ride?

What I really loved about the bike, is

that for a guy like me, who is not tall and

chiselled by ‘muscles ‘r us’, it was light,

nimble and confidence inspiring.

You not going to break any speed records

on the bike, but it most certainly invites

you to grab a handful of throttle when the

light turns green and there’s a sporty Alfa

revving it up next to you. Not that I did that

of course.

The power to weight ratio comes into

play here. The 803cc 90-degree L-Twin

engine produces 75hp, which is more than

enough for a motorcycle stripped down

to almost nothing. It stops pretty well too.

It was just pure fun to ride, and as always

with a Ducati, music to the ears as you

open the throttle.

Is it more for a cruise around town?

I rode in different scenarios over the

course of the day. From the highway,

opening it up and letting the bike breath,

to back roads at 60 km/h, and even

cruising in a mass ride at 20 to 40 km/h.

The Café Racer proved more than capable

in each of the scenarios, taking everything

in its stride, looking and sounding good

while at it.

Is it comfortable?

Well, I was on the bike from 6:30 in the

morning, right up to 18:00 that night

and I was expecting to be much more

uncomfortable after such a long day of

riding, considering I was on a Café Racer

with a sportier riding position, although

not quite supersport or superbike territory.

Honestly, I felt really comfortable on the

bike for most of the day, only really feeling

it in the hands and between the legs in the

last hour or so of the day.

Worth the price tag?

The only real big negative that I could find

was that for a motorcycle with a price tag

of R164 000, the gear shifts started to feel

a bit “clunky” at times. I felt Ducati could

have done a bit better there. Also, the

indicator switch was a bit annoying…okay,

maybe that’s just being pedantic. It is a

Café Racer, after all. It doesn’t even have

a fuel gauge.

Honestly, I did not want to return the

bike. I had completely fallen in love with it

over the short time I had it. It really does

give you that pure riding, Café Racer

experience. If I had that kind of money to

spend, I would have one in my garage for

sure, and it is damn good to look at!



Joan Mir


2017 WORLD




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Always ride responsibly. Always ride within the limits of your skills, your experience and your machine. Wear an approved helmet and protective clothing. The actions depicted here took place under controlled conditions with professional riders.

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