KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R
Packed with gut-wrenching performance and equally
evil looks, this BEAST 2.0 clearly isn‘t for the faint
hearted. If you think you‘ve got what it takes, finance
your brand new KTM 1290 Super Duke R now at prime
less 2%* and challenge yourself to see what real
power and precision can feel like.
Our KTM 1290 Super Duke R goes from
the the road road to to the the track track to to take take on on some some mighty mighty
Ducati Ducati race race bikes bikes around around Aldo Aldo Scribante. Scribante.
Foto: R. Schedl
Full details and fi rst ride on the new 765cc British racer.
New Kawasaki and
set to be released
TESTED: 2000KM ON KTM’S NEW 790 FEATURE: STOFSKOP 2018
TECH TIPS: BIKE NOISES LIFE AT LEAN: TRACK DAY RIDING TIPS
RACING: MATT BIRT MOTOGP COLUMN // RIDER FOCUS: FENATI
COMPETITION: 9 SCORPION HELMETS UP FOR GRABS!
* Promotion valid from 1 April 2018 to 30 June 2018 on all new, in-stock 1290 Super Duke R 2017 models, while stocks last, at all participating KTM dealers. All information with the
proviso that mistakes, printing, setting and typing errors may occur. Please consult your local dealer for further details. Terms and Conditions apply. Finance is subject to approval.
Initiation fee and service fee may be applicable. KTM Finance is a product of WesBank - a division of First Rand Bank Ltd. Registered Bank. An Authorised Financial Services and
Registered Credit Provider. NCRCP20.
OCTOBER 2018 RSA R35.00
Gezeigte Fahrszenen bitte nicht nachahmen, Schutzkleidung tragen und die anwendbaren Bestimmungen der Straßenverkehrsordnung beachten!
Die abgebildeten Fahrzeuge können in einzelnen Details vom Serienmodell abweichen und zeigen teilweise Sonderausstattung gegen Mehrpreis.
9 772075 405004
Dunlop Tyres SA
Voted South Africa’s Number One tyre brand
• 2010/2011 • 2013/2014 • 2014/2015 • 2016/2017
• 2017/2018 in the Icon Brands Survey by TGI TM
EDITOR & DESIGN:
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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.
Another day, another issue completed. Yes people, it’s
October already and the festive season is very much
underway. In this issue, we recognize that some do like
to get their festive season spirit and shopping underway
sooner than most, that’s why we’ve added some extra
specials in this issue. Firstly, we have the Scorpion
helmets competition, now in its second of three months
running. We had a great response last month with some
really good entries. We also received some very boring
entries, which we do not take into account. Please we
need you to get creative with your entries. There are 9
helmets adding up to R50k up for grabs, so no ordinary
entry is going to get you in.
On the fi nal page of the mag we also have some
vouchers for you to take into the selected stores and
get some discount off your purchase. So, if you are in
the market for some new Rossi or Vinales merch, a new
helmet, jacket, boots, gloves – you name it, now is the
time to take advantage of these vouchers.
We really want to encourage our readers to take
advantage of the advertisers we have that support us
every month. Without them, there would be no magazine
so please go out and support them and tell them you
saw their brand/business in RideFast Magazine – just
boosts us a bit more and makes our job of getting
advertising that bit easier.
There are so many great highlights in this issue – so
much for you to read and enjoy. Starting off with the
cover story for this month, where I take our KTM 1290
Super Duke R long-term bike and put it to the test
against some of the fastest Ducati machines and riders
in the country down at the Aldo Scribante circuit in
PE. What a time I had, really did get that unmatched
adrenaline feeling back, which I have not had in a while
and have missed so much.
The price tag of our SD 1290 R is up to around R280k,
that includes the full retail price of the bike and all the
added accessories. The test not only proved that you
don’t have to spend a complete fortune on a full-prepped
modern-day superbike to go fast and enjoy out on track,
but also just how versatile and impressive the KTM Beast
really is. I won’t give-away too much here, but I would
like to say a big thank you to Franziska, Riaan and the
team from KTM SA for getting the bike sorted and giving
me the opportunity to go race it. To Leroy and Vic Rich
from Adrenaline Powersport for all their assistance, Derek
Hall from Venture Sports and Motorex for supplying
me with all the lubricants needed. The team from Auto
Motorcycles in PE, especially Clayton Petzer for coming
to the track and helping me out. Steve Theron from
Metzeler tyres SA for the amazing slick tyres, really don’t
know why more track day riders are not using these
slicks – they are simply sublime! Ricky Morais for all the
setup and advise and, most of all, my wife and mommy
for letting me go race!
As you can see, budget was tight and I couldn’t even
afford a decent looking brolly-dolly for the grid. Luckily,
“The Voice of Choice”, Greg Moloney was on hand with
his RideFast cap to offer me some kind of shade.
On to another great event. I recently commentated at the
annual Stofskop event held at the Walkerville fl at track out
in the South of JHB and what an event it was yet again.
I had the privilege of commentating on the event for the
fi rst-time last year and was ecstatic when Chris Shelvey
called me up again to ask if I would do this year’s event.
A big jol was had by all and we have a full feature on this
not-to-be-missed event in this issue. Think we might
have to build and enter something even more special for
next year’s event…
Here at RideFast, we love nothing more than bringing you
world exclusives and have done so on many occasion in
the past, including our last two issues. We’ve managed
to get another exclusive test in this issue. Our mates at
Visordown, the UK website, very kindly let us use their
feature and test they did on the new Triumph Moto2
prototype racer. Alan Dowds writes a brilliant article on
what is a very exciting project. Can’t wait to see and hear
the new bikes in action next year and what I have heard
from Brad Binder and Steven Odendaal, who have both
sampled the new bike already, it’s going to be epic.
Staying with racing, we have a great feature on Romano
Fenati. Basically, the rise and fall of the Italian rider who
threw his career away at the Misano race. I’m sure you
all know by now how he did that and in this feature top
MotoGP journo, David Emmett, takes us through the
Fenati saga in detail. I met Romano back in 2016 when
I attended a private KTM Moto3 test with Brad Binder
at that very same circuit and while all the other riders
there on the day, Nicolo Bulega, Andrea Migno and Efren
Vasquez were polite and greeted me, Romano simply
walked straight past with his chest puffed out. A kid with
issues for sure and it’s sad to think that a rider with so
much talent and opportunity could just throw it away in
the manner he has done.
One young, talented rider that is doing things the right
way is our very own Jesse Boshoff. I have watched this
young man battle through adversity for many years now
and like most was so happy to see him fi nally get a crack
at his dream of racing overseas. When Jesse posted
up on Facebook about the opportunity and asking
people and companies to get involved to help get him
there I jumped at the chance to help out. Jesse had a
great time over in Spain and raised many an eyebrow
and I’m pleased to say he sent us a great article about
his experience there. RideFast prides itself of doing
everything we can to help expose and support SA talent
and we are proud to be part of Jesse’s journey and hope
this is one of many opportunities he gets to help further
We have the usual Matt Birt MotoGP column in this issue
as well, where he talks about the Suzuki MotoGP project
past and present. A brilliant insightful read as always.
Tech Tips, riding tips, latest news and bikes, a passionate
group of Ducati fans in Cape Town and an International
and local ride on KTM’s all-new 790 Duke all featured in
this issue, so there is plenty for you to enjoy!
We have also started our readers letters section again,
where we will publish some of the mails we receive every
month so get those letters in – email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To end off just a reminder to get your entries in for the
Scorpion helmets comp and to also take advantage of
the discount vouchers at the back of the magazine.
Until next month, ride safe! Cheers, Rob.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 1
O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8
Rob takes our KTM 1290
Super Duke R longtermer
and races it against some
trick Ducati racebikes.
DOWN & DIRTY
LIFE AT LEAN
TRACK RIDING TIPS
More news and pics of BMW’s new S1000RR
model and a first look at the updated 2019
Kawasaki superbike models.
DUKE 790 IN AUSTRIA
TRIUMPH MOTO2 RACER
MATT BIRT COLUMN
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Stand a chance to WIN 1 of 9
brand new Scorpion helmets.
2 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
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email@example.com | www.ducati.co.za | Ducati South Africa Official | @DucatiRSA | Ducati_SA
2019 KAWASAKI ZX-10R RANGE UPDATED
Kawasaki has unveiled the 2019 range of their flagship performance motorcycle – the ZX-10R, including
the ZX-10R SE and the limited edition ZX-10RR. Based on the KRT race machine that has so far amassed
three consecutive WorldSBK Championships, the trio of models in the Ninja ZX-10R range all offer greater
power, a more generous power band and a torque increase for 2019.
Kawasaki has given updates to its ZX-10R litre-class superbike range
for 2019, including a new valvetrain. This also gives the
2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R a power bump and ensures that engine
can rev harder for a longer time. With this, the company hopes to
continue its winning streak at the World Superbike Championship
(WSBK). The big change on the 2019 Ninja ZX-10R is the fi ngerfollower
valve actuation system in the engine, which replaces the
tappet-style valves. A similar system has previously been seen on
the BMW S1000RR and the new Suzuki GSX-R1000. This reduces
the valvetrain mass by around 20 per cent.
The fi nger-follower will be common on 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R,
ZX-10RR, and ZX-10R SE. The lighter valve setup allows the engine
to rev up faster and sustain the high revs more reliably. This coupled
with more aggressive cams takes the power up by 3.04HP, taking the
power output to 203HP. This move will focus more on track riding and
racing conditions, wherein the sustained high-revs will come in handy.
The 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR which will be limited to a run
of 500 units gets new Pankl titanium con-rods as well. These save
over 400gm over the engine of the ZX-10R and SE. The con-rods
also enable the ZX-10RR to rev 600rpm higher, while also adding a
HP to power output for 204HP. The RR also receives track-tuned
suspension, and lighter, forged Marchesini wheels. It will only be
available in the Kawasaki Lime Green colour.
The top of the line 2019 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R SE retains its semiactive
KECS suspension from the current motorcycle, the same
updated engine as the ZX-10R and also receives Kawasaki’s new antiscratch
self-healing paint job. Not sure if this model will make it to SA.
Kawasaki has not yet announced the launch date of the 2019
motorcycle range, but we are pretty sure we here in SA will be seeing
the new ZX-10R and limited edition ZX-10RR machines soon.
4 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
THE 2019 BMW S1000RR
IN ITS FINAL SHAPE
After a lot of teasing the first design patents of the BMW S1000RR
are finally here. The new German superbike is completely changed,
and BMW claims it will be a “game changer” once again. Ducati
Panigale V4 watch out!
So accomplished, the S1000RR has
survived with relatively minor tweaks
right to this day. There have been three
generations – the 2009-2011 version,
2012-2014 bike and 2015-2018 model
– but it’s been a case of steady evolution
rather than revolution.
But the revolution starts here. The 2019
S1000RR, shown in detail in these patent
images, is a completely new bike. Virtually
nothing is carried over from its predecessor
and every indication is that it’s set to be
as big of a leap forward as the original
S1000RR was back in 2009.
Let’s start with the engine. While a simple
set of pictures can’t give us much insight
into whatever technology BMW has
incorporated into it, there’s no doubt that
it’s an entirely new inline-four. Every visible
case and casting is noticeably different,
and major components like the water
pump have been repositioned. In short,
this is a new motor.
As such, it’s unthinkable that it’s going to be
anything other than a signifi cant step forward.
Given the existing BMW S 1000 RR already
knocks on the door of 200hp in standard
form, the 2019 model is is poised to soar
past that notional milestone. What’s more, it’s
likely to be among the fi rst new bikes to meet
the upcoming Euro5 emissions regulations
that are set to be introduced in Europe in
stages, starting in 2020.
That makes it all the more impressive that
BMW has managed to reduce the size of
the exhaust end can, which looks about
half the size of the one on the current
S1000RR. There’s a large collector box
ahead of it, of course, plus a pair of
catalytic converters, each attached to
two of the four downpipes.
The new engine has also allowed
or prompted BMW to create a
distinctive new chassis. It’s still
an aluminum beam frame, but
instead of the normal straight
beams on either side there
are Z-shaped rails that closely
follow the contours of the engine and
transmission. Presumably the unusual
chassis design helps keep the bike
compact; given that we know the wheels
are conventional 17-inch rims, the overall
size of the 2019 S1000RR appears to be
far smaller than its predecessor.
Another unusual aspect is the swingarm,
which is braced from below rather than
above. That’s the method favored in
MotoGP, but no rival road-going superbike
currently uses under-slung swingarm
bracing – not because it’s
a bad idea but because
it’s diffi cult to package
a swingarm like this
while leaving space
for the bulky exhaust
on road bikes. The
competition will be
taking a very close
look at how BMW
has managed to do it.
Higher up, the seat subframe adopts
a tubular, trellis design rather than the
square-section aluminium tubing used on
the existing S1000RR; a measure that’s
surely intended to save weight.
Given the new technical aspects of the
bike, BMW has clearly opted to take a
new styling direction. The Popeye-style
headlight arrangement that’s been a
feature of every S1000RR to date is gone,
replaced by a more conventional and
symmetrical arrangement. The side panels
are also more symmetrical than before,
although BMW is keeping a vestige of the
‘gills’ that have always been present on the
right-hand side of S 1000 RRs.
BMW is expected to launch the S1000RR
at October’s Intermot show in Cologne,
Germany, part of a massive model
range revamp that will also include the
new R1250GS, R1250GS Adventure,
R1250RT, and F850GS Adventure.
We really love the colours of the above illustration design.
Below looks a bit too much like the old colours.
Leaner and meaner - Nearly every shape
on the 2019 BMW S1000RR is different,
including the asymmetrical headlights.
6 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
THE BEST JUST GOT BETTER.
THE NEW RANGE OF HYPERSPORT, SPORT
TOURING & ADVENTURE TYRES HAVE ARRIVED
Your favorite corner will
look completely different
The S20 EVO loved by so many riders has evolved
again. Due to its superior agility, the S21’s ease
of handling and the contact feel when cornering
surpass even that of the S20 EVO. The rear tyre
was developed with Bridgestone’s ULTIMAT EYE
(TM) technology, while the compound succeeds
in generating better traction and while improving
abrasion resistance for longer life. This marks
the birth of a new premium sports radial, one that
brings out the best in machine performance in
pursuit of the joy of riding.
• Riders who mostly enjoy sports riding
• Riders of supersports motorcycles who want a
combination of performance in the wet and long life
• Riders who are thinking of starting riding on the
T31 Sport Touring
A significant improvements
in wet performance leads to a
feeling of safety.
The ideal sports touring radial, able to cope with a
wide variety of riding conditions.
Provides confidence in riding even in adverse
conditions such as rain or changing road surfaces.
The wet performance of the SPORT TOURING T31
has been greatly improved. In particular, shorter
braking distances on wet road surfaces and
enhanced cornering grip give the rider increased
confidence. Naturally, the tyre also offers handling
accuracy and high-speed stability on dry road
surfaces. The ideal sports radial, capable of coping
with the wide range of conditions that confront
riders over a variety of road surfaces.
• Riders who enjoy riding on winding road with a
• Riders who enjoy riding a super sports bike with
• Riders who want high performance in wet
• Riders who want to ride safely even when caught
in unexpected rainfall
An Adventure Type tyre that
has evolved in all aspects to
offer outstanding straightline
stability and performance
in the wet, in addition to
satisfactory wear life.
While preserving long tyre life, the ADVENTURE
A41 achieves the conflicting objectives of
performance in the wet, stability in the dry
and improved handling. In particular, shorter
braking distances on wet road surfaces and
enhanced cornering grip make for more
confident riding even in rain. This is a nextgeneration
Adventure type tyre that allows
riders to extract even more enjoyment from
the unique riding that only an adventure bike
can offer, whether it be long-distance touring,
highway cruising or riding on unpaved roads.
• Riders who have adventure motorcycles, and
enjoy on-road touring.
• Riders who want high wet performance and
long wear life.
Available at dealers Nation-Wide
BMW G 310 RR concept
makes an appearance
After much speculation, BMW has finally allowed
us a first look at the sporty variant of its 310.
The BMW G 310 R has been around
for a few years now and the brand’s fi rst
incursion into the realm of entry-level
models has been pretty successful.
Some, however, thought the tiny naked
model needed a sporty sister to hang out
with. Until now, BMW had given us very
little to work with regarding the possible
introduction of a G variant. The inquiries
had so far been met with the silent austerity
of a Bavarian secret keeper. It looks like the
seal has fi nally broken, however, and just
like that, without any grand reveal, or bells,
or whistles, Japan (and the world) got its
fi rst look at the G 310 RR.
The concept showed up during BMW
Motorrad Days. Modestly displayed on a
wooden stage, the G 310 RR-branded
motorcycle became a confi rmation that
BMW had heard us and that it was indeed
working on a fully-faired 310. The design
borrows heavily from the S 1000 RR—
the current design, not the one recently
leaked—down to the slit-like frontal air
intake and fairing gills.
The side-hung exhaust of the G 310 R
has been moved and can now be seen
peeking out from under the pillion. The
fairing and gas tank look entirely made of
carbon fi bre and the riding position has
been slightly radicalized. It really does
look like a baby S. The front fairing is
based on typical sportbike design, highly
inspired from their own liter class products
and getting a bigger than usual visor for
wind protection. The seat is fl at, and rear
gets a lightweight carbon fi bre cowl. The
components used here are mostly shared
with G310R, and thus, one can expect a
slight increase in price for the production
version. The addition includes clip-on bars,
dual headlight, and side fairing.
Considering the name plastered all over the
concept, we can expect the RR to use the
same 313cc, producing 34 hp of power
and 28 Nm of torque, block as its naked
counterpart. We’re not sure when we’ll
get any more info on the new 310, but we
guess we’ll see a proper production version
debut at this year’s Intermot or EICMA and
production to begin for model year 2019.
Strange as we would have thought they
would have increased capacity and power
to compete against the Kawasaki Ninja
400 in the very competitive Supersport
300 class. Either way, its looks really trick
especially in all that carbon delight. Let’s
hope that if/when the fully-faired version
comes out it looks similar to this and BMW
don’t tame it down too much.
Save R10k on new Yamaha R6
Yamaha’s all-new Supersport 600cc machine
was released last year and has since won
a World Championship and many National
championships. It’s the leading Supersport
machine on the market today and you can
now SAVE R10,000 on the normal retail price.
Now only R179,950. Available from all
Yamaha dealers Nationwide.
Valid while stocks last so hurry!
8 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
RK Chains are imported and distributed by AMP. To find your
nearest RK Chains dealer call 011 259 7750 today.
The Suzuki GSX-R1000 Ryuyo
A 209hp carbon-fibred out Japenese weapon for a lucky few
Some say the current generation Suzuki
GSX-R1000 is unfortunately neutered for the
market. Now our European friends get to see
what the Suzuki GSX-R1000 can do when
the Japanese brand cranks it up to 11.
Behold the Suzuki GSX-R1000 Ryuyo, a
209hp superbike that weighs 168kg (dry),
and is our answer to the teaser photos that
Suzuki has been sharing on social media.
The work of Suzuki Moto Italia, only 20
Ryuyo-spec machines will be made for
consumption, and they will cost €29,990 if
you want one.
An homage to the Ryuyo R&D center that
tests all of Suzuki’s new models, the Suzuki
GSX-R1000 Ryuyo is an example of the
technical prowess found at this Japanese
Teaming up with a bevy of other brands on
the project, we see the work of Yoshimure,
Öhlins, Dunlop, Brembo, K&N, Motual,
D&D, and others also embedded in the
Ryuyo model. As you can surmise too, the
bodyworks is all in carbon fibre.
Full details are still light, at this moment,
since the Suzuki GSX-R1000 Ryuyo
doesn’t officially debut until the EICMA trade
show in November, but that hasn’t stopped
Suzuki from releasing some basic technical
information and some cool photos.
10 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Beyond the Apex now up and running
Beyond the Apex and Lekka Racing Shop
have teamed up to bring you an all new
A fully functional website that caters for a
range of products - from helmets to tyres.
All the top brands at very competitive
pricing. They also offer delivery at a
small charge all across South Africa,
accompanied by a tracking number so you
know where your goodies are. Go check
out the full range of products they offer at
www.beyondtheapex.co.za and check
out their Facebook pages for specials and
Yamaha Concept Store open to public
Bike Kings Pretoria
workshop now open
The new biking accessory store in
Pretoria has now opened its workshop
- offering services on all motorcycles,
fi tment of accessories and tyre changing.
Visit them at Shop J1 Willow Way
Shopping Centre, Lynnwood Road,
Pretoria. Call 012 271 0070.
Situated at the massive World of Yamaha
building at 19 Eastern Service Road in
Sandton, the Yamaha Concept Store is any
and all Yamaha and MotoGP fans dream
shop. It’s fully stocked with all the latest VR46
merch - from shirts to keyrings - and also
stocks offi cial SKY VR46 Racing, Maverick
Vinales and Yamaha Racing apparel. The
store is simply mouth-watering and we can’t
help but drool every time we visit it.
The store has just unpacked the new
2018/2019 range of VR46 apparel and
merchandise. As the offi cial importer of
the VR46 and Maverick Vinales merch, all
stock is priced very well. The store is open
to public so get down there and do some
shopping. You can also have a look at the
stunning range of Yamaha motorcycles
and marine on display in the massive
showroom, or grab a cooldrink and a bite to
eat at the cafe.
Call 011 259 7604 for more information.
Check out later in this issue for a FREE
discount voucher where you can get 10%
off your purchase of any VR46, MV25
or Yamaha apparel or merch. Sale items
excluded. One voucher per customer.
Valid until the end of November 2018.
makes a move
MotoMate is the massive motorcycle
accessory chain stores situated in
Sandton, Edenvale and Boksburg.
A couple of years ago, MotoMate
Greenstone opened, situated right next
door to Ridgeway Racebar. That store
has recently moved to bigger and better
premises on the main strip in Edenvale -
123 Van Rieebeck road (the old Full Throttle
store). The new store is massive and
packed with everything you could possibly
need or want for you and your motorcycle.
MotoMate pride themselves on quality
customer service and we can give them
two thumbs up in that department having
experienced it fi rst hand.
The Boksburg store was recently opened
in conjunction with BikeShop Boksburg,
situated on the Golden Mile strip on North
Rand Road in the East Rand.
MotoMate Sandton - 011 234 5274
MotoMate Edenvale - 011 027 0545/47
MotoMate Boksburg - 011 025 8272
12 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Back in the saddle - Mick Doohan
races CB1000R on the Glemseck
Purpose-built Glemseck CB1000R designed by Honda Racing UK
Every year, swarms of two-wheeling enthusiasts,
motorsport superstars, bike clubs, companies, and
world-renowned builders descend on the historic
Solitude race track of Leonberg. There they watch
vintage motorcycles, café racers, and one-off
customs face off in 1/8th mile sprint races. It’s an
annual, adrenaline-pumping, very rock’n roll affair
at the Glemseck 101. The 13th Glemseck 101
motorcycle festival in Germany happened over the
weekend, from August 31 to September 2, 2018.
The Aussie legend and five-time 500cc GP
champ, Mick Doohan, participated in the Sprint
International 1/8th mile invitational race on a special
custom bike called the Glemseck CB1000R,
created by Honda Racing UK.
Honda Racing UK’s Glemseck CB1000R had to
be outfitted with a bespoke single-sided swingarm,
a custom clutch, and Rizoma accessories. The
Brits also gave it a full Akrvpovic exhaust system,
upgraded Brembo brakes, and Fireblade SP
14 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
The Big Boy,
GoMoto & Jonway
range - offering
“More Ride for
SA Motorcycles, importers and distributors of these
super-popular brands, provide a highly affordable range of scooters, commuters and utility
models, all with Factory Warranty and spares backup from around 80 dealers nationwide.
Whether for business or pleasure, we’ve got a model for you, so visit our website for
more info, specs and images on our
full product line-up.
FOR ROAD LEGAL MODELS
* Figures based on 15,5% interest x 60 months.
T&Cs apply. Instalments include VAT, license
and registration. Excludes insurance. E&OE.
LAY-BUY OPTION ALSO AVAILABLE!
REVIVAL 150- CASH PRICE R16,499.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R470 X 60 MONTHS
(WITH R5,000 DEPOSIT R350 P/MONTH)
ADVENTURE 150RS- CASH PRICE R15,999.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R460 X 60 MONTHS
(WITH R5,000 DEPOSIT R340 P/MONTH)
TSR250- CASH PRICE R23,499.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R640 X 60 MONTHS
(WITH R5,000 DEPOSIT R515 P/MONTH)
STRIDER 125- CASH PRICE R12,800.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R380 X 60 MONTHS
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VELOCITY 200- CASH PRICE R16,999.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R480 X 60 MONTHS
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MUSTANG 250- CASH PRICE R28,999.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R770 X 60 MONTHS
(WITH R5,000 DEPOSIT R650 P/MONTH)
The Glemseck CB1000R also rocked an awesome HRC
tricolor scheme, positively dripping with gold. Neither the
power nor weight seemed to have been altered, however, as
the bike was registered at the event with stock numbers (145
PS and 212 kg).
The Neo Sports Café roadster sang with all its bells and
whistles for an audience that was undoubtedly thrilled to see
Doohan launching a Honda once again. Remember, it was
a two-stroke Honda NSR500 V4 “screamer” that Brembo
engineers outfi tted with the famous thumb-operated rear
brake in 1993 for the injured Doohan. 25 years later, that tech
has reappeared in today’s MotoGP.
Honda fi elded six custom machines by different builders at
the festival. As the Glemseck 101 becomes more popular
(and commercialized), dealers and moto-culture companies
have been fi nding it increasingly important to faithfully show
up in full force.
D860 MAX- CASH PRICE R75,999.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT ,R1,900 X 60 MONTHS
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For the full scooter, motorcycle,
ATV and commercial range visit:
BOX LOADER- CASH PRICE R42,999.00
R0.00 DEPOSIT, R1,100 X 60 MONTHS
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Prices include VAT and pre-delivery inspection only. Prices exclude licence, registration and any service costs unless specified.
Prices are correct at the time of going to print and may change without notice due to currency fluctuations or at dealers who are
located in outer-lying areas. All advertised models are available at the time of going to print unless specified.
Brought to you by
AVINTIA MOTOGP TEAM
DIDN’T JUST SIGN ME FOR
MONEY - KAREL ABRAHAM
Karel Abraham insists the Avintia Ducati
MotoGP team did not choose to sign him until
2020 because of the budget he can bring.
Abraham’s future in MotoGP looked uncertain
for most of this year’s silly season as the
successor to his current Angel Nieto team,
SIC Racing, signed Franco Morbidelli and
Fabio Quartararo for 2019.
But in the end the Czech rider secured a
move to Avintia Ducati and, after racing with
two-year-old bikes for the past two seasons,
Abraham will ride a year-old GP18 in 2019.
He effectively replaces Xavier Simeon at
the team, with Tito Rabat expected to stay
While Abraham admitted that he does bring
money to Avintia, he is sure the team’s
decision was not solely down to that and
says all his rivals for the ride would have been
“It was very diffi cult because obviously there
were some points where it was looking really
bad, looking that next year there wouldn’t
be a place for me in MotoGP,” Abraham told
“But we tried to work very hard, I know that
this position that I got was between me and a
couple of other riders.
A lot of people say bad things about me on
the internet - that we paid for the place.
To be honest, of course we had to bring
money. But all the other guys were about to
bring the same money.
Actually two of them that were interested
were about to bring more money than I was,
willing to bring more than my sponsors.
They just took the decision together with
Ducati to take me, I can out of my pure heart
say this decision was not about the money
but [something] deeper down.”
Abraham revealed that while the plan is to
use a one-year-old Ducati in 2020 as well,
he has the chance to get an even better bike
should he get “exceptional results” in 2019.
“This [riding a year-old bike in 2019] is what it
says but the contract in this way is a little bit
open,” he said.
“Of course yes, we get the 2019 [bike] in
2020 but we have an option if we have
exceptional results to even upgrade to a
better bike or better parts.
“But this is just if the results are really supergood.”
Abraham added that before securing the
Avintia seat he was exploring options outside
MotoGP such as the World Superbike
Championship, but there were no options to
ride a competitive bike there.
TO RED BULL
Current Repsol Honda ace Dani Pedrosa
has been linked to a testing role with
the Red Bull KTM Factory Team when
he retires from competition at the
conclusion of the 2018 MotoGP World
Championship, according a report on
Interest from former long-time crew
chief Mike Leitner and the opportunity to
continue his partnership with KTM’s title
sponsor Red Bull is understood to be
a lucrative deal for the number 26, who
has collected 54 grand prix victories in
KTM’s regular test rider Mika Kallio has
been ruled out for the rest of the season
after sustaining knee ligament damage
at the Sachsenring, but the Finnish ace is
expected to work alongside Pedrosa in a
two-man test team as the Austrian factory
continues its development of the RC-16.
The 32-year-old is expected to forgo any
wildcard appearances with KTM.
KTM is set to boost its MotoGP presence
in 2019 as Tech 3 Racing will transition to
the manufacturer, while the factory squad
is set to fi eld talented contender Johann
Zarco alongside regular Pol Espargaro.
16 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
more confidence, in wet
and dry conditions, even
after 5000 KM *
even after 5 000
braking in the
Even after 5 000 KM, a MICHELIN Road tyre
stops as short as a brand new MICHELIN
Pilot Road 4 tyre* thanks to the evolutionary
MICHELIN XST Evo sipes.
With its dry grip, stability and best handling versus
its main competitors, thanks to MICHELIN’s
patented ACT+ casing technology, it offers even
more riding pleasure.***
* According to internal studies at Ladoux, the Michelin centre of excellence, under the supervision of an independent
witness, comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres used for 5 636 km with new and unworn MICHELIN Pilot Road 4 tyres.
** According to internal studies at Fontange, a Michelin test track, under the supervision of an independent witness,
comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres with METZELER Roadtec 01, DUNLOP Road Smart 3, CONTINENTAL Road
Attack 3, PIRELLI Angel GT and BRIDGESTONE T30 EVO tyres, in dimensions 120/70 ZR17 (front) and 180/55 ZR17
(rear) on Suzuki Bandit 1250
*** External tests conducted by the MTE Test Centre invoked by Michelin, comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres with MI
*** External tests conducted by the MTE Test Centre invoked by Michelin, comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres with MI-
CHELIN Pilot Road 4, METZELER Roadtec 01, DUNLOP Road Smart 3, CONTINENTAL Road Attack 3, PIRELLI
Angel GT and BRIDGESTONE T30 EVO tyres, in dimensions 120/70 ZR17 (front) and 180/55 ZR17 (rear) on a Kawasaki
Z900 giving best dry performance globally and #1 for Handling, #2 for Stability, #2 for Dry grip
to you by
ROSSI: YAMAHA MAY HAVE TO
CONSIDER V4 ENGINE SWITCH
Yamaha may have to ultimately
consider ditching its long-time inline four
engine confi guration in favour of a V4
layout to match MotoGP rivals Honda
and Ducati, says Valentino Rossi.
Having gone without a win since last
year’s Assen race, Yamaha is now
on the cusp of its worst ever premier
class losing streak, and will eclipse its
existing record of 22 races (between
1996 and 1998) if it fails to win next
time out at Aragon.
Along with Suzuki, Yamaha is one
of two manufacturers that uses the
inline four engine layout for its MotoGP
bike, with Honda and Ducati – along
with Aprilia and KTM – using the V4
Honda has used a V engine since
the dawn of the MotoGP era, albeit
switching from a V5 to a V4 in 2007,
while Ducati has always used a wideangle
desmodromic V4 design since it
entered the class in 2003.
Honda in particular has made strides
with its engine in recent years by
switching to a Yamaha-style ‘bigbang’
fi ring order in 2017 – a year on
from adopting the now near-universal
counter-rotating crankshaft, adopted
by Ducati in 2015.
Asked if Yamaha might have to
consider ditching the inline four layout
it has used since 2002 to get back
on terms with its rivals, Rossi replied:
“Yeah, it’s possible that also the engine
is a problem. It’s possible.
“We have to say that Ducati and
Honda learned from Yamaha, because
already the Yamaha three, four years
ago was very smooth, and Honda and
Ducati [were] screaming a lot, [they
were] more aggressive.
“It looks like in the last years Ducati
and Honda made [themselves]
more like Yamaha. They have the V
[formation], we have the four line... can
be [the reason].”
Rossi, who dropped to third in the
championship after an anonymous
ride to seventh in last weekend’s San
Marino Grand Prix also remarked that
Yamaha’s rate of development has
suffered in recent seasons, having
not stood on the podium since July’s
Teammate Maverick Vinales has
likewise dropped to fi fth in the
standings after following up a poor
run to 12th in Austria with a fi fth-place
fi nish in Misano on Sunday.
“In the last three seasons, we
start the season with a quite good
level but after during the season,
especially in the second part, looks
like that technically we suffer more,”
“In fact, if you take my results, I made
a lot more podium sin the fi rst half than
in the second half. And this happened
in the last three years already.
“Looks like the Ducati and Honda
are able to develop the bike in a
better way compared to us. So this
is a problem; they [Yamaha] need to
SMITH TO APRILIA,
FOLGER RETURNS TO
YAMAHA IN TEST ROLES
Experienced British rider Bradley Smith will join the Aprilia
Test Team for 2019, also set to complete a number of
wildcards in the MotoGP World Championship.
Smith has been replaced by Johann Zarco at Red Bull
KTM next season, however he will remain in the grand
prix paddock in a development role with the Italian
“Bradley showed us a very good attitude, he is a very
good tester and a very good rider,” explained Aprilia
Racing manager Romano Albesiano. “We are planning
different levels of testing next year.”
Earlier in his career, Smith fi nished second in the 125cc
World Championship aboard an Aprilia in 2009. He’s
been in the premier class for six full seasons, scoring two
podiums in his MotoGP career.
It’s also been revealed during the San Marino round that
German Jonas Folger will return to a MotoGP bike as part
of Yamaha’s newly-introduced European test team from
Folger exited his full-time seat at Monster Energy Yamaha
Tech3 prior to the beginning of this season due to severe
fatigue issues that had affected him through the closing
stages of last year, but has returned to testing in varied
18 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Now here is something that that we bikers could all use, especially race
teams and track day riders - the New Tork Craft 4 in 1 Multi-functional
Workbench, which has just been launched
The new unit comes with a great set of wheels for very easy steering
and mobility with the rear set being lockable. It’s perfect for a hand
trolley and a superb floor trolley for moving things around, transporting
your wheels and tyres, toolboxes and other stuff. The large top has all
that one needs for clamping your work piece to the table top plus the
added of the storage compartments for one bits, tools and screws etc.
The floor trolley is a great unit for getting under your car/bike to do any
checking and maintenance. This unit has a multiple number of uses for
the home owner, DIYer, workshop and all types of light industry work.
The unit can be changed from a hand trolley to a floor trolley in seconds
or a legged scaffold unit with adjustable legs for height, that lock
safely into a fixed position, this gives one the 4th mode which is the
workbench with the optional height adjustment and mobile stand unit
for scaffolding work both indoors and outdoors. The perfect multiple
4 IN 1 MULTI-FUNCTIONAL WORKBENCH
use unit for all industry, mobile service and maintenance operators,
home owners, DIYers, workshops etc.
The TCWS002, 4 in 1 unit folds up flat for easy storing and transporting.
Work platform 11 x 47 cm
Work height 56 and extends to 80cm
Work bench 150 kgs when legs are fully extended to 80 mm
Scaffold 300 kgs when legs are extended to 56 mm
Hand Trolley 100kgs
Floor Trolley 150 kg’s
Net Weight 18 kg’s
Price: R2699 From: Vermont Sales - 011 314 7711
MELBOURNE AIR 2.0
Another perfect piece of protection for a hot summers day - the Oxford Melbourne
Air 2.0 Jacket is a versatile warm weather jacket with a removable waterproof liner
for inclement weather. It’s packed with some great features such as waterresistant
zippers on all air vents, reflective detailing for improved
visibility at night and adjustment points on arms and waist.
A brilliant jacket priced very well.
Price: R3000 From: Bike Kings - Donovan 079 219 3182
Heading into our hot summer days it’s not always nice to put on a
full pair of superbike riding boots. Here is a really ‘cool’ alternative.
The Forma Axel boots are the perfect short lightweight sport
riding boots that have the protection that you need without all of
the bulky extras that you don’t. A much better option for summer
riding, especially if you commute everyday. A lot more user friendly.
Price: R2400 From: Bike Kings - Donovan 079 219 3182
20 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
2.0 LEATHER SUIT
Rob has just received his new Berik 2.0 Kangaroo Racing Suit after
he destroyed his previous Arlen-Ness suit whilst trying to be Marc
Marquez at the BOTTS PE race (cover story of this issue).
While Rob’s old suit did its job of protecting him and keeping him
scratch free, sadly it is now a bit worse-for-wear, so an upgrade was
needed to keep Rob looking fresh and funky for future mag tests.
Berik launched a new range of 2.0 Kangaroo suits for 2018, equipped
with Titanium shoulder and knee protectors. The range is available in
a variety of colours - blue, green, yellow and black. Rob decided to go
with the Red suit, a nice change from his previous bright yellow - says
it makes him look slimmer and helps hide his gut.
Apart from that it also offers all the protection and style a racer,
trackday junkie or breakfast run hooligan could want or need.
BLUETOOTH HEAD SETS
The SCS Bluetooth head sets are new to the SA market, and our Kyle has
already mounted the S1 to his Just1 adventure lid and is raving about it. He
bluetooths Madonna and Kylie Minogue while he cruises around and he
can accept calls while on the go. He says that the clarity is really good - just
ensure that you mount the spacer that SCS provides. He phoned his goose
at least seven times at all sorts of speeds and she said that she could,
unfortunately, still hear him clearly in all situations... even young Siri worked
on this unit which is pretty cool - voice prompt, no need to even touch your
phone. He says that the system does not affect the comfort of his helmet
in any way. We also have the more advanced S3, which comes with an FM
tuner so that you can listen to Mix FM 93.8 while you are on the go. Glenn
will fit this to his helmet for the trip - and the boys will be able to chat as they
go along. We’ll give a more in depth review soon, but for the time being, they
appear to be great quality units - we are very impressed.
From: Visit www.scssa.co.za to see full range available
Price: R11,895 From: www.beyondtheapex.co.za
I enjoyed your reporter’s article on the Triumph
Tiger Sport 1050cc and was so glad to see a
road test and riding impression on that model.
The Tiger Sport must be one of the most
overlooked gems of motorcycling.
That triple engine fi nds its DNA (and in fact still
shares a lot of parts) with the second generation
955i triple engines that powered not only several
upgrades of the Tiger 955i of the early 2000’s
but also several Speed Triple and 955i Daytona
Although the 955i Tiger was Triumphs best
selling triple engine from around 2003 to 2006,
it was never popular in South Africa as it was
more road orientated and the market was
largely orientated towards the very capable
BMW GS range. The mistake that we often
make is to ignore the fact that although the
BMW was and maybe still is the benchmark, it
does not make the Tiger a lesser capable bike.
I was one of the lucky few that opted to own
a 955i Tiger (2003 “Grasshopper” green
paintjob-model) and toured the whole of KZN
and Mpumalanga as well as several trips to
Swaziland on that bike. At the time I lived in the
mountains of Mpumalanga , about 25km from
the famous Sabie-Hazeyview road and enjoyed
the bike tremendously. I must add that I’ve
owned many BMW’s and Japanese bikes since
1974 and the Tiger was a fantastic All-Rounder,
capable of doing gravel roads, some scratching
and great for touring. Never missed a beat and
at the time the +-106Bhp with 97NM of torque
placed it ahead of the then R1150GS in the
The European magazines rated it the best allrounder
bike and I must agree. The 2003 model
that I owned still had the spoke wheels with
tubed tyres and lazy steering geometry, making
it under steer when pushed hard in mountain
passes, especially tight 3rd and 4th gear
corners, so one had to work it hard. The tubes
also created some inertia that did not benefi t the
bike’s otherwise brilliant character.
Triumph realised this and changed the 955i
Tiger and sharpened the steering geometry by
tucking in the front forks a little and dumped the
spokes for nice looking light weight mag-wheels
carrying tubeless tyres. A vast improvement.
The Mapping was changed to the same
program as the Daytona and the Tiger received
Daytona heads and valves. The gearbox was
also upgraded to be more sporty (Daytona
gearbox). Good moves by Triumph but a bit too
late as by 2006 the Tiger had become dated
compared to BMW range and other bikes that
started competing in that class. Be that as it
may, the bike was still brilliant as it then came
with heated grips and panniers included in the
deal. The 2006 was the last of the 955i model
and the best of the 955i Tiger models. It was
replaced with the fi rst generation 1050 Tigers
with the upside down forks and 17 inch wheels
front and back.
Many years later in 2012,, after having moved
to near Cape Town, I stumbled across a low
kilometre (11 000 on the clock), 2006 model
Tiger 955i on Gumtree, for sale in Muldersdrift.
Serviced and maintained by Mike Davidson
(Traditional Triumph dealer at the time). The bike
was (and still is) in pristine condition and just
could not let it pass.
Needless to say, I still own that Tiger and it now
has 27 000km on the clock and gets ridden
every week. I commute on it in all kinds Cape
weather and wind and rain and it runs like a
Swiss watch and I have often drooled over
the TIGER SPORT 1050cc as the DNA is very
visible, especially in the engine layout, casings
, the radiator and oil cooler, all in the Triumph
Tiger trade mark way and look but since I also
own a nearly new BMW R1200RS LC, I just
cannot justify it to sell my 955i that is still so
capable with brand new panniers for the 1050,
although I’d love to own the SPORT as I know
from having owned two Tigers that they are
wonderful and very good all-rounder bikes.
Ogri du Plessis
Thanks so much for the mail. I was the rider
lucky enough to test the new Triumph Tiger
Sport and yes, it is an incredible machine that
is very underrated as I mentioned in the article.
I cannot for the life of me understand why we
do not see more of them riding around. They
make so much sense in so many ways. As an
all-rounder you can’t really get much better.
The proof is in the pudding as they say and the
new Tiger Sport has plenty of pudding to go
around so let’s hope more people catch on and
at least take it for a test ride.
Thanks again for the mail, loved reading your
story and I wish you many more happy miles.
Firstly, thanks for accepting my friend request on
Last month my fi ancé and I rode the entire
perimeter of South Africa (5700km in 20 days).
I know you probably don’t read unsolicited
articles for your magazine, however I would like
to take a shot and submit what I have written.
It’s the story of a normal, middle-aged couple
doing something I consider extraordinary. Also
the story of how I grew from a sometimes
nervous learner with only a year’s riding
experience to a confi dent rider. It might be a little
vain of me, but I have experienced how people
we have spoken to about this trip are either in
awe, or inspired by us. Maybe something your
readers may be interested in?
I have attached some photos of our trip (6 out
of the 2000 we took), as well as the day-to-day
blogs I wrote on Facebook.
Thank you for your consideration.
Yours in biking
Thanks for the mail and Facebook friend
request. This is brilliant! I think our readers will
love your story and I will defi nitely publish it in
our next issue (Nov).
Love hearing about our readers and their
adventures and always nice to expose what a
beautiful biking country we live in.
Thanks again, Rob.
22 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
SA’S DIRTIEST MAGAZINE
IN STORES NOW!
ALL THE LATEST NEWS & REVIEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD AND LOCALLY
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE
KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R LONG TERMER
It’s been a long road, but finally our KTM 1290 Super Duke R long-termer has been fullykitted
out with original KTM Powerparts. Rob put the “Ready to Race” tag line to the test
once again, this time against some very tricked out Ducati racebikes.
Words by Rob Portman Pics by Eugene Liebenberg and Paul Bedford
After a very successful fi rst outing at last year’s 24-Hour
race, where we fi nished 2nd overall on a stock standard
KTM 1290 Super Duke R, it was time to take it to
another level and see just how good the SD is.
For 2019, Riaan and the team from KTM SA once again
handed us the keys to a brand-new SD 1290 R. The idea was to
showcase the bikes versatility even more, to prove that KTM do
in-fact have a “Superbike” model in their range and so far, I think
we have proved just that.
Our idea was once again to take the bike racing, with some street
tests in-between. We’ve tested it on the streets on a few occasions
now and every time it has impressed us. We’ve got a taste of how
versatile the SD is and how well it can translate from street to track
at last year’s 24-Hour race and this year’s 8-Hour at Phakisa. But we
wanted more. We wanted to see just how competitive it could be
without throwing proper “Superbike” money at it.
So, with the help of KTM SA, we’ve really kitted the bike out with
all the goodness that is available in the offi cial KTM Powerparts
catalogue. The Akro titanium pipe was the biggest expense,
costing R36,200, but man did it add some bite and bark to the
already angry beast. The track pack was also added to give us
quick-shifts up and down through the gears as well as de-activate
all the nanny electronic aids – although we still use most of them to
help control all that anger.
There is a massive range of Powerparts available for the SD
1290 and we kind of went a bit crazy with it, but what we wanted
more than most was to get the bike in proper track trim. SO, the
complete race seat and front number board was ordered. To date,
we have dodged some bullets racing with the expensive LED light
on the front, so I really wanted to get that changed before heading
down to PE and entering in a proper sprint race.
As you can see by the pics the bike has totally been transformed
from street bike to street racer. I love the race sticker kit that was
added, really does give it that factory look. The team from KTM
SA did an amazing job at transforming the bike and getting
everything ready for me to go take on the bike’s biggest
My main plan for the bike at the beginning of the year was
to take on the mighty, very expensive and seductive Ducati
racebikes in the BOTTS class (Battle of the Twins). I penciled
in the PE round, at the Aldo Scribante track, as it is not only
my favourite circuit in SA, but also one that I thought would
lend itself perfectly to the naked bikes strong points.
So, with the bike fully prepped, new Metzeler K2 front
and K1 rear slicks fi tted, it was time for mine and
the bikes biggest test. The BOTTS class has been
going since 1901, by the very same riders that are still
contending in the championship. Yes, I’m kidding of
course, but the class is packed with some slightly
older statesmen, who, let me tell you can still get
around a racetrack very fast. 99% of the bikes
entered are Ducati’s, and not stock standard ones
either. Most are fully race-prepped 1299 S models,
so me taking my “street” naked bike with some
slight mods sounded like a crazy idea. But, that
was the whole point. If I could go to PE, stick it to
those expensive, fast, track-built Italian Stallions
then surely that would propel the SD 1290 R’s
popularity to another level and prove that it can
indeed be called a Superbike.
Let’s go racing
I arrived at the track bright and early on
Friday morning, ready to get the bike
prepped before heading out on the newly
surfaced Aldo Scribante circuit. I was
lucky enough to get some assistance
from the local KTM dealer down in PE,
24 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
“The idea was to showcase
the bikes versatility even more,
to prove that KTM do in-fact
have a “Superbike” model in
their range and so far, I think
we have proved just that.”
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 25
KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R LONG TERMER
Auto Motorcycles, who sent me one of their
top techs to help get the bike ready – let’s just
say I’m not the best at that kind of stuff, having
forgotten to tighten my brake calipers once
upon a time. Clayton Petzer was my righthand
man for the weekend, while Ricky Morais
was not too far away to help me get the bikes
setup as good as possible.
The bikes suspension was completely stock
standard, so I knew we had a mission on our
hands with regards to setup. Naked street
bikes are not exactly well setup to go around
a track. The front end tends to float with the
lack of weight and with no pre-load settings to
play with on the front, Ricky had to make other
plans. Leroy Rich from Adrenaline Powersport
had kindly set the bikes suspension up to
the guidelines sent to us directly from KTM
headquarters. Fork oil had to be added and
compression and rebound set a bit stiffer than
from off-the-showroom floor.
Immediately as I headed out on track I
could feel that there was still nowhere near
enough weight on the front, which around
the windy PE circuit was a big problem.
I knew that I just had to focus on getting
some laps in to get my mind back into
sprint race mode, having not done a proper
superbike race in over 3 years, and try to
get as much information from the bike as
possible to give Ricky feedback. On lap
three I had my first real scare. The brakes
went all spongy going into turn 2 before
catching again. After catching my breath, I
soon realized that I still had bike set in street
mode with ABS on. After a quick 8 lap stint
my first session was over and I returned to
From the word go the Metzeler slicks
felt amazing. Massive grip on the new
track surface - lean angle for days.
The Orange Beast
getting ready to take
on the Red Beasts.
pits with plenty of positives but even more
negatives to report to Ricky.
The floating front being the main concern.
I just couldn’t get the bike to turn as fast and
accurately as I wanted., especially through the
fast-flowing turns where you need weight over
the front. Ricky instructed us to pull the bikes
forks through 5mm, which we did, and also
adjusted preload up on the rear shock by 2
turns. This made an immediate impact in my
second session. I could feel straight away
that there was more weight on the front and
the front steering feeling more precise and
planted. I could feel the very grippy Metzeler
slicks were a bit frustrated in the first session,
as they just wanted me to push hard but
could feel I was not happy. In the 2nd session
they were much happier and I could not
believe the grip and feel I was getting out of
them now that I had a somewhat better setup
bike. I managed to improve my times by over
2-seconds and was now in the mix for a top
5 finish. I knew there was more to come.
One or two more setup up tweaks, plus the
bike set in race mode with ABS off and with
traction and wheelie control set on min.
I took all of 2 laps in the 3rd and final
practice session to get fully comfortable and
attack, believing that I could possibly pull
off the impossible and win the three races
the following day. Ricky, as he always does,
worked magic with the bike’s setup and with
the Metzeler slicks fitted on the new surface
I had one very competitive machine. I would
be lying if I did not say I was a bit worried
after the first session sitting down in 8th place
and 4 seconds off the pace, but heading
into qualifying I was sitting pretty in 3rd place
overall and only 0.5 of a second off the leader,
To mine, and many at the tracks disbelief,
I managed to lead just about the entire
qualifying session before Thomas pulled his
finger and set his fastest time on his final lap,
just pipping me to pole position for race one.
I would have the upper hand for race two,
starting from pole position thanks to having
posted a faster second time.
Straight after the qualifying session, I went
over to the BOTTS pits to congratulate all
the riders, Thomas in particular for his pole
position. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing and
calling most of these guys my mates for years
now, so was great just sitting back and chilling
with them. A great bunch of guys with the
perfect mentality to go racing – just have fun!
26 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Discover more: 011 437-4699
After being fed some kind of Peter Bosch
home-made poison by the guys – apparently a
customary initiation when racing in the BOTTS
class – it was time to head back to the hotel
and get myself ready for race day.
Starting from second on the grid, with fresh
new Metzeler slicks fitted I could not help but
get that old nervous, excited feeling I had felt so
many times in the past. I was back on the grid
doing what I love most – racing motorcycles!
I got a blinder of a start and lead comfortably
heading into turn one. My plan was to take
2-laps to feel the bike and the conditions before
pushing too hard. That all went out the window
when I saw I was out front, so my mentality
changed to “hang cable and go for it!”
I had no pit board or any communication
from pit wall so I just kept my head down and
went for it. With half race distance completed,
4 out of the 8 laps, I was held up-slightly by
a back-marker going into the tight right-hand
hairpin. I was waiting to hear and see a Ducati
attacking me but to my surprise there was
nothing. With 2-laps to go I started to hear and
feel a bike on my tail. A bit of panic set in and I
abandoned my nice fast swooping lines, instead
opting to go defensive for the remaining 2-laps.
A bit of arm-pump also set in, so I was really in
defensive “get it home” mode. Heading onto the
final lap I was waiting for the much faster Ducati
machines to bomb past me down the long
front straight. But nothing. Now I was excited.
Could I possibly win the race? Only a few more
corners to go. My wife will be so proud, Riaan
and the KTM SA team would love me, RF
readers would respect me even more. This was
all passing through my mind heading into the
final two turns, and that’s pretty much what cost
me the race.
Going into the final turn, another back
marker and instead of using my many years of
racing experience to get through the situation
I panicked, allowing James Harper to sneak
through and pick up the win – by less than
two-tenths of a second. I was gutted to say
the least, but once I returned to the pits the
excitement of it all took over. There is nothing
KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R LONG TERMER
Rob holding off the challenge
from James Harper at the start of
Race 1. Not bad for a street bike
with its side-stand still on.
better than racing a proper motorcycle around
a proper track – I was back in my happy place
and despite losing the race in the manner I did,
leading every lap but still crossing the line in
2nd place, I was one happy man!
For race two I knew I had more pace. I had
bettered my time from qualifying by another half
a second and knew there was more to come.
The Metzeler tyres were still looking new and I
could not believe the grip I was getting out of
them. Again, I got off to a great start, leaving
the pack in my orange dust gaining close on
a second according to those watching in the
pits. This time I went into the race with a flat-out
gung hoe mentality. I wanted to destroy them all!
The bike and tyres felt so good, giving me all the
confidence I needed to burn the few butterflies
left in my tummy. I wanted so badly to break into
the one minute three barrier, which considering
the bike I was on and the track time I had had,
would be one heck of an achievement and
make one hell of a story.
The bike, tyres and my riding style were loving
racing on the new PE tarmac and track layout.
The powerful twin motor just powered-out of
every turn with such force and the bikes braking
capabilities were one of the best I have ever felt
on track. I knew I had the tools to dominate!
Crossing the line to complete lap one and I
was very much in the zone, yes, the zone does
exist out on track. I had not had that feeling in
a very long time - winning the Supersport race
on my Triumph Daytona 675 back in 2009 the
last time I felt it. Nothing could stop me now, I
was Marquez in full-flight.
Sadly, five corners later I was reminded
that I am indeed not Marc Marquez and that
I was not on a fully-fledged racing machine.
I attached the fast “Chevy” sweep a bit too
much and unlike Marquez was not able to
save the front end from tucking underneath
me. My weekend ended up in a cloud of dust.
That zone feeling was gone, replaced now
by a feeling of shame. That only lasted a few
seconds though. It didn’t take me long to get
over it and remember where I was and what
I had been doing. That put the smile back
on my face. That was until I got back to the
pits. Now, I was a little scared to message
Riaan and tell him that I had crashed the bike
and some more money had to be spent. I
was a little more frightened to message my
wife and tell her, only a week after the birth
of our gorgeous little daughter and getting
strict instructions to take it easy and please
not crash. The person I was most afraid of
messaging was my brother, Shaun, who
was supposed to race the bike the following
weekend at the Redstar 3 hour. Let’s just say
he was not too impressed…
Nevertheless, the bike had handled the
crash surprisingly well. It took two big tumbles
but had only damaged the handlebar, clocks
and all the switches and buttons. Other than
that, the bike was not that bad, but we did
not have the spares to fix the bike and make
race 3. My biggest concern was that of the
expensive Akro pipe. Luckily, not one scratch.
So, there you have it. Even though I
crashed, which I cannot blame on the bike or
tyres but only myself, I think I proved just how
good the KTM SD 1290 R is. It truly is a Lion
in Wolves clothing. Its versatility shone through
once again and tagging it a “Superbike” is an
understatement – it’s a “Super, Duperbike” in
I look forward to getting the bike all fixed up
and doing some more endurance and sprint
races in the not too distant future and yes
Shaun, I promise you will ride it again soon so
Oops... sorry Riaan.
a best time of a
1,4.4 - not bad for
a “Street” bike.
Powerparts Goodies list:
Akrapovič Kit “Evolution Line” - R36 200
Link pipe (done by Racetec) - R2 000
Track Pack - R5 000
Fuel tank Quick Lock - R2 150
Clutch/Brake Reservoir Cover - R360 / R710
Clutch/Brake Protector - R998each
GB Engine Protectors - R2 500set
Style Racing Graphics kit - R1 500
Racing seat - R3 200
Headlight replacement board - R3 400
Total cost - R275 415 (that includes the full
retail price of the bike at R212 999)
28 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Photo: R. Schedl
K TM 1290 SUPER DUKE
Let the LED headlight guide you as you embrace a
hell of a ride on this heavenly creature. Packed with
gut-wrenching performance and equally evil looks,
this BEAST 2.0 clearly isn’t for the faint of heart. If
you think you’ve got what it takes, challenge yourself
to see what real power and precision can feel like.
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.
If you have never been to witness
a Stofskop event - then next year
- you need to get off your asses,
onto your bikes and take a ride
out to the republic of Walkerville.
Words & Pics: Glenn Foley & ZCMC Media
This was the fi rst time that I was able to make it to
the event - after two years of Rob telling me how cool it
is. And he was quite right. Forget about the latest and
greatest seventeen zillion rand machine. Forget about
wannabe race stars all trying to look important.
This is the grass roots of why we all love bikes so
much. An army of old school and newer riders getting
together to have some friendly dices, on the most
ridiculous looking motorcycles in the most ridiculous
Bikes from all generations were there - we saw a
very rare old Penton, a Classic Husky, BSA’s Triumphs -
mixed in with more modern Japanese machines.
And of those, there were plenty - from classic 500cc
2-stroke Honda’s to old school XL185’s - all tearing up
the track. There was even an old school “Help My Trap”
motorised Bicycle, which actually went faster when the
pilot was peddling... Man Alive what a JOL!
But wait! There’s more.
In the road bike department, we saw an 80’s GS850
dicing a Suzuki 500 slingshot fi tted with what looked
like a B200 delivery bike engine. There was even a
very svelte MV Agusta Brutale 800 doing some laps
in the Inappropriate Road Bikes class - doesn’t get
more inappropriate than that. We sure hope that his air
fi lter did the job - and the good news is that the rider
managed to stay upright throughout.
We saw some great crashes too - lets face it, that’s
the reason that most of us watch racing like this in the
fi rst place - The Vesparados - a motley collection of
Vespa scoots from - and ridden by all generations had
a great big pileup on the 2nd turn. No injuries - and they
staggered off to complete the dice!
That rare Penton took a tumble in the same turn
when it’s 75 year old pilot was clipped by a younger
rider. But the medics were on hand to patch up bodies
and the racing continued without any serious injury.
Cole Aitken couldn’t help but get
it up when he saw the bras and
panties on the start line.
The Inappropriate Road bikes class had
some very inappropriate bikes in it.
30 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
The Inappropriate Road bikes class had
some very inappropriate bikes in it.
Arnold Olivier on his
custom SYM 300
Our Rob Portman was the
mic man for the day.
The Vesparados gate
crashed once again.
An AJS bike
from the 1940’s
The chap in the yellow
shirt was 72 years young
and took a tumble.
Half of an event like this is the
spectators. It was awesome to hook
up with old mates from the motorcycle
fraternity - and we were chuffed to see so
many dealers popping down to have a look
and let their few last few grey hairs down.
We saw Nick from The Traditional Motor
Co with some of his custom Triumph’s out
and about. RAD Moto’s Arnold Olivier came
to race on the ugliest Sym Scooter ever
built. Randburg motorcycles fi elded a weird
looking CB750 200 odd cc funny bike.
There was a team from Fast KTM - but
they were not on a fancy KTM at all. Dave
Gunning was in the mix on a ridiculously
tiny monkey bike...
Events like this are exactly what makes
people want to ride and race motorcycles.
Bench racing was the order of the day,
lots of laughs and great company. Ah and
did we mention that that very morning, the
Springboks pulled off a historic win over the
All Blacks IN New Zealand!
The highest score recorded in NZ by any
How much better could a day like
this be? It was awesome to see Motul
sponsoring this one - and they fi elded a full
team of lady racers and helpers- the Moto
Belles? With the Motul Big boss lady Mercia
Jansen leading the charge.
An actual motorcyclist in charge of a
motorcycle lubricant brand - and not just a
That is too cool.
Next year - we are racing. Between
RideFast and Dirt And Trail Magazine, we
are teaming up with Randburg Motorcycles
to build a top secret 400BHP machine.
As soon as we have the dates for next
years event, we’ll get them out. Roll on
Stofskop 2019! See you there.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 31
TWO CUSTOM BUILD
BUILT BY RANDBURG MOTORCYCLES
We here at RideFast we like to
sometimes get down and dirty on
bikes and Stofskop 2018 provided
the perfect occasion for one of
our reporters, Michael Powell, to
build two scramblers to hit the
oval dirt track.
Words Michael Powell Pics: Michael Powell & ZCMC Media
We heard about the Stofskop event and decided
that we should give it a try. We approached Motul SA
to see if they would like to team up and build a bike for
them and one for us to race in this year’s event. We
decided to build up two old delivery bikes that have
laying around - the one being an old Yamaha SR250,
that we would turn into a classic Kenny Roberts replica,
and the other a Honda CBX250 that would be turned in
to a Freddie Spencer Honda CB750 replica.
We worked day and night to get the bikes all done
up and looking just right. The Yamaha SR250 was
supposed to be ridden by top SA MX champ, David
Goosen, but sadly a knee injury forced him out so
Motul SA ambassador and legend, Brian Capper was
recruited. I would be tasked with racing the Honda with
both of us racing in the trackers and scrambler class.
I had never done fl at track dirt racing before, never
mind riding a custom delivery bike with no front brakes
- yes, we decided to go full dirt track style and remove
the front brakes on both bikes.
With 3 heats and no practice I was extremely
nervous going into it, but also very excited at the same
time not only about riding but also teaming up with the
legendary Brian Capper.
What an awesome experience it turned out to be.
I managed to holeshot 2 out of the 4 races and even
better managed to keep it on two wheels, although
there was a few moments where I nearly ate some dirt.
A massive jol at the end of the day and I am pleased
to say that both bikes held up really well. We will
defi nitely be back next year with some more awesome
bikes! A big thanks to Hot Zebra signage for doing the
sticker for our bikes, Motul SA for coming on board and
the whole team from Randburg Motorcycles for giving
me the chance to experience this.
The Team: Brian Capper with Oom Danie
and Michael from Randburg Motorcycles.
If it don’t work, spray
some Motul on it.
Capper gets the holeshot
with Michael not far behind.
32 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
HOW TO MAKE IMPROVEMENTS ON EVERY SINGLE TRACK DAY
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
Track Riding Technique &
Skill Order of Importance
I’ve spoken many times in the past about
riders who often focus on the wrong
parts of their riding as they work to make
In this article I’m going to share my thoughts
on the importance of the various skills that
make up performance riding to help give you
a little more direction as you’re searching for
your next avenue for progress.
But before we get into that I just wanted to
stress that this is by no means a categorical
order that you MUST follow. Different teachers
and coaches will likely have differing views on
what’s more important, for starters.
Also the importance could change depending
on the rider, where their current weaknesses
lie, and the extent of those weaknesses.
And finally, some skills shine more when other
skills are learned, creating a sort of chicken
and egg scenario.
So while I will be taking you through this list in
order of importance, use it as a guide within
the context of your own riding, where you are
most experiencing frustration and where you
can see you are furthest away from an ideal
Ok, onto the first and what I believe to be the
most important skill.
The reason I put visual skill as number one is
because of the overall impact it has on your
riding. Good visual skill will benefit you in all
areas of the track.
Things like braking effort, entry speed, lines,
steering, throttle control, exit drive and
consistency are all positively impacted by
good visual skill. And as a beneficial layer
above that it’ll have you feeling more calm
and in control too.
Now, in order to actually improve in all those
areas then the specific skills need to be
practised and improved first, but without
good visual skill they’ll be a limit to just how
“Things like braking effort, entry speed,
lines, steering, throttle control, exit
drive and consistency are all positively
impacted by good visual skill.”
much you can get out of them.
So for those reasons, visual skill is number
one on my list.
By steering I mean becoming conscious of
not only how you steer the bike itself, but
learning how different approaches to steering
can help or hinder the corner in question.
Meaning where you steer and how quickly
Once you gain control of your steering you
open up options for the approaches you
take for each corner and the lines you carry
It also directly opens the door for both higher
entry speeds and exits speeds. Entry speed
from a quicker rate of steering, and exit speed
by changing your angle of approach to the
apex which allows for a greater drive out.
Once again there’s also that layer of safety
that comes from being able to more
confidently put the bike where you want. A
valuable skill when mistakes are made and
time and attention is short.
#3 Throttle Control
Following in a very close third we have throttle
control. Good throttle control is as much
about safety as it is time saved.
In the middle of the corner good throttle
control creates stability and balance. As you
transition to corner exit, good throttle control
ensures the weight is transferred to the rear
more gradually for a smoother and more
progressive drive out.
This improves traction, means you’re sitting
more within the limits, and as an added
bonus will likely mean more miles out of each
rear tyre too.
Yes, good throttle control will gain you speed
in the middle of many corners and out of
most exits, but just as important as that is
the benefits that come in the way of bike
stability and all the positive things that brings
to the table.
Now really this could have been second or
third. From a safety standpoint it would be
second for many riders, but being that poor
lines created by poor steering can have a
big knock on effect to your throttle control
efforts, I feel steering should be there first as
it enables good and consistent throttle control
and drive out of corners.
Learning how to correctly brake gives huge
benefits in the way of time saved, along with
how we’re able to prepare for corner entry.
In the big braking zones in particular, as you
learn about correct braking structure and then
get more confident with using more braking
potential you’ll make huge leaps in terms
of how confidently you can drive down the
straights toward the point where you want to
begin braking, and you’ll also greatly shorten
your braking zones simply because you don’t
need them to be as drawn out as before.
This means big time saved.
Braking is also a key part of a good corner
entry too because we’re using the brakes to
set our speed for the corner. Spend too long
34 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
setting that speed by drawing out the braking
for too long and you’ll lose time.
On the other end of the scale you can try
to do too much in the braking zone, mainly
by braking later and/or overly attacking the
corner to the point where it costs you entry
speed and composure. It’ll likely spoil your
exit line too.
The reason this is number four is because you
need to have the other parts of your riding
working well to really maximise corner entry.
The main things being vision and steering.
#5 Body Position
Body position is an important part of being
a good track rider. Let me say that right at
There are three ideals we’re looking to
achieve with body position. They are…
• The ability to offset lean angle with the
body so we’re using less lean angle for a
• The ability to free up the front end so that
we let it do it’s job of stabilising the bike, along
with allowing you a great level of control of it.
• And finally to be able to reach a comfortable
position on the bike that doesn’t hold
you back as you work to do what you’re
supposed to be doing out on track.
These are all important things we want to
have in place when riding.
All of that being said, the reason it sits so
far down this list is because in terms of
increasing your level of speed and safety in
track riding, for the vast majority of learning
If you want to see all of the below
mentioned perfectly executed out
on track, then simply just watch
Jorge Lorenzo in action - he is
the master of fast, smooth riding.
riders everything I’ve covered to this point will
bring greater benefits.
Now, if your body position is way off the mark
then it is going to become a higher priority,
and for that matter that goes for any skill.
But in my experience riders are perhaps a
little too eager to start working, or continue
working on body position in order to see
improvements when they would likely see
more substantial and beneficial improvements
For those reasons, body position sits at
Ok, I have one last area I want to talk about.
It’s not as literal as the previous skills and
not really in this order, but rather it’s a trait
you should be looking to add to your riding
arsenal and something that should be
improved across everything you do on the
track over time.
Being Smooth & Consistent
Contrary to many rider’s opinions, being a fast
rider isn’t about being all-out aggressive. This
view probably isn’t helped by the introduction
of riders like Marc Marquez into MotoGP who
appear to be on the ragged edge at every
Now it goes without saying that he clearly
gets the job done, but on the flip side of that
coin is Mr Jorge Lorenzo.
His smooth, wheels in line style is something
to behold, and if anyone remembers his
qualifying lap at Valencia 2016 where his inch
perfect, totally undramatic lap smashed the
lap record by some margin, they’ll understand
the potential of such a style.
This is a style that is a lot more achievable
for learning riders, and one that is going to
be safer because you’re more in control and
not relying on bucket loads of talent to keep
a bucking and twisting motorcycle in contact
with the ground.
The best way to think of what you’re trying
to achieve when being smooth is how your
inputs affect the bike. The use of every control
and every body movement puts various
forces through it and alters weight distribution
Your job as a rider is to maximise potential
from the bike and tyres while upsetting that
stability as little as possible. Over time the
fidelity with which you use each control and
move your body around must be worked on
and improved in order to keep the bike more
happy, but also to set a platform to reach for
higher levels moving forward.
To be quick it’s about working with the bike,
not fighting against it.
Have a good look at your riding and honestly
answer which areas are most lacking.
Use the thoughts above to come to a
more sensible conclusion about what you
need to work on next. Approaching rider
development like this is likely to bring you
more suitable and substantial progress in a
shorter space of time.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 3 5
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Top 8 Strange Motorcycle Noises
and What They May Mean
Are you a good listener? Are you one
of those folks who hears things that go
“bump” in the night and wonder “what
the heck was that?” How about when
you’re riding your motorcycle; do you
ever hear strange sounds coming from
that machine and wonder if it is trying to
tell you something?
Words by By Gary Ilminen / Ultimate Motorcycling
If odd new noises, sounds or vibrations are
afoot, something probably is wrong and
in quite a number of cases, those sounds
may be a warning. While a brand new
motorcycle may sound the alarm with the
same kind of odd sounds, these noises may
be more likely to occur if you ride a vintage or
In any given situation, with any machine,
there are a number of possible sources of
sounds both routine and unusual, but some
may be distinctive enough to warn of specifi c
types of problems. Your common rattle is
generally some loose external component
where a fastener has gone adrift and just needs
to be tightened up or a new fastener put in.
But some of those problems may be
urgent and rapid response may prevent
or minimize potential damage. New clicks,
rattles or ticking sounds may be indicators
of things having more clearance than they
should as a product of normal wear—often
able to be adjusted.
1. Tick, tick tick:
For example, you are cruising along and
you notice a strange, rhythmic ticking sound
you’ve never heard before—not all the time,
but it comes and goes at certain speeds. I
had that happen a few years back and at
fi rst I suspected something in the valve train,
so I stopped and listened to the engine and
the noise went away, even when I revved the
engine, except at a certain RPM.
The sound was diffi cult to locate at
fi rst, then I realized the strange sound was
emanating from above the chassis. Very odd,
but that highlights one of the problems with
troubleshooting by sound – the actual source
of the sound may be diffi cult to track down.
In this case, it turned out to be the lens in
the right hand rear view mirror had fi nally had
A ticking noise could be a number of things, but here
are the two areas to really foccuss on.
Start at the exhaust headers, especially if they’re old,
or have recently been fitted/disturbed. A small gap
in the manifold seal, a loose header collar or a small
hole opening up in rusty pipes can result in a ticking
sound. It’s best checked when cold – you might see
a bit of steam issuing or water dribbling out in the
first few seconds and you can hold a hand close to
feel for escaping gas without getting burnt.
If your exhaust is nice and sealed, and you’ve got a
tick that drops off as the bike warms but rises with
revs, check when your valve clearances were last
inspected, and if they’re due have them looked at.
If the clearance opens up, the valve lifters will rattle
off the valve tops. It’s not immediately catastrophic,
but very loose valves cost performance, and will
eventually put too much strain on the top end. A
stethoscope can help you narrow noises down to a
enough and vibrated loose in the backing
plate! At certain engine speeds, that created
the right frequency of vibration and the mirror
lens would vibrate against the backing plate.
When the mirror was fi xed, that particular odd
noise went away.
My first guess being the valve
train is usually a pretty fair place
to start, however. Tappets in need
of adjustment may send a service
reminder by issuing progressively
more noticeable ticking sounds
and the volume of the sound
may vary from barely audible
to prominent. In some engines,
clicking and ticking noises may
occur when something as simple
as low oil level is present, but
may also indicate a valve sticking,
loose cam chain or other valve
train problems. A clicking or
clattering sound while in motion
may also indicate a primary drive
chain in need of adjustment.
Locating the precise source of some
engine noises can be tricky, but very helpful
in sorting out what needs to be done. A
mechanic’s stethoscope can be helpful in
doing that. It works and looks much like a
medical stethoscope, but with a metal probe
replacing the diaphragm head. It can be
very helpful in sorting a cam chain in need of
adjustment from a tappet noise.
40 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Shake, Rattle & Roll
Top 8 Strange Motorcycle Noises
2. Bump & grind:
Perhaps one of the most ominous sounds
that can emanate from a machine is a
grinding sound—no matter how soft
or vague. A grinding sound, whether
accompanied by a vibration or not is one of
those sounds that not only tends to result in
immediate attention, it requires it.
An intermittent grinding noise, very often
inconsistent in occurrence and sometimes
accompanied by a new vibration in the
handlebars under braking may be pretty easy
to track down; front or rear brake pads in
need of replacement.
This can also arise from a caliper sticking
causing a brake pad to drag. This can be
diagnosed by just pushing the bike by hand—
if it doesn’t roll freely or if you stop after riding
a short distance and don’t use the brake in
question and find the rotor hot to the touch,
a sticking caliper may be the problem. This
may be an issue when taking a bike out of
storage, so checking for brake caliper sticking
by rolling the bike by hand and applying the
brakes to check for it is a good idea.
In some instances, though, certain brake
pads may emit that type of sound due to high
humidity or moisture on the pads. Checking
the brake lining thickness is in order and if
humidity or moisture is a possible cause,
simply using the brakes several times will
usually clear the problem up.
Grinding sounds from engine or
transmission may indicate a bearing failure
somewhere and requires immediate shutdown
and troubleshooting. Similarly wheel
bearings that are anything less than smooth
and quiet may be in need of attention. A
wheel bearing failure while underway can
cause wheel lock and a crash.
Another sound that may come up is
a peculiar grinding or clunking sound I’ve
heard in combination when the spline of
the rear drive gear on a shaft-drive bike is in
need of greasing. Remedied soon enough, it
probably does not indicate any damage, but
left unaddressed long enough, it may lead to
3. Creepy krink:
This is a sound I reserve pretty much for bikes
with metallic chain final drive. It is an odd
sound that may repeat regularly or irregularly.
It is not to be ignored; I’ve heard it in three
situations: first, on a bike that has not been
ridden in a long time and the chain is badly
In this case, it may be present very
noticeably when the bike is first being moved
around or the rear wheel is rotated on the
Noise when braking? There are three possibilities: your calipers have an anti-rattle plate and if it’s incorrectly fitted
the pads can move around. If all is OK there, lift the front end off the floor and feel for play in the head bearings;
a small amount of movement is enough to make a noise. Finally, check your forks – worn internals can result in a
knocking noise too.
A solid-sounding knocking emanating from deep in the motor is very bad news and is usually related to the engine’s
bottom end — the crankshaft and conrods. Worn big-end shells and collapsed bearings can and will seize your engine
if they expire as you’re riding along. As soon as you hear anything metallically clunky coming from the motor, hit the kill
switch, come to a safe stop, and prepare for serious investigation. And probably a serious repair bill. Don’t try and clear it
by revving it harder, it won’t magically improve things, it’s definitely not that sort of problem. Unless you are a competent
spannerman, this is one for your local dealer.
center stand. Lubrication of the chain may
make the sound diminish or even disappear,
but it may be a harbinger of early chain failure,
even after it is silenced by lubrication.
The second instance this sound may
occur in is when links literally get a kink
in them, usually indicating a severe wear
condition. Finally, this sound may be evidence
of misaligned sprockets after chain tension
Double-checking the alignment marks and
chain tension at no less than three points of
wheel rotation is in order. Properly adjusted
final drive chain in good repair running on
well-aligned sprockets also in good repair
should be relatively quiet, with only the soft
sound of the rollers engaging the sprockets
as the rear wheel rotates.
A healthy chain is noisy anyway, but you shouldn’t
be able to hear it yourself while you’re riding along. A
vibration or clanking (sometimes felt though footpegs
too) signifies tight spots or stiff links. You should
thoroughly clean your chain and inspect for stuck links,
loose rollers and excess stretch. If that’s all OK, make
sure it’s properly aligned and adjusted. Lubricate with
decent lube on the inside run first, preferably when the
chain is warm. If you find any tight spots, stiff links or
have run out of adjustment then the time has come to
ditch the chain and invest in a fresher (quieter) new one.
4. Boo hiss:
One of the most common sounds heard
around anything with tyres is the nauseating
hissing sound that emanates from a tire
deflating at the worst possible time. But
at least if you’re in the position to hear the
tyre going down, it means you’re probably
stopped making the situation more an
inconvenience than potential crash.
A flooded cell battery on a charger or
charging system that is seriously overcharging
the battery causing the electrolyte to off-gas
can also cause a hissing sound as the gas is
forced out of the overflow tube, out of a cell
cap or out a crack in the case. Stopping the
charging condition immediately is in order and
protecting yourself from potential battery burst
Other sources for a hissing sound include
a blown gasket somewhere, radiator leaks
and exhaust system leaks. A blown head
gasket, for example, may make a distinctive
“chiff-chiff-chiff” type of sound, depending on
engine type. Usually not immediately disabling,
these sounds suggest service is needed soon.
5. Ring, ding, ping boom:
A barely perceptible pinging or dinging may
be a sign of a potentially destructive condition
known as detonation; often referred to as
“spark knock.” Detonation is the pre-spark,
premature ignition of part of the fuel charge in
the cylinder caused by compression and high
fuel mixture temperature.
Left uncorrected, temperatures and
stresses in the combustion chamber can
damage or destroy pistons, crank bearings,
head components and cylinder walls.
Evidence of the condition may be when the
engine runs on for a few seconds even after
the ignition is turned off.
42 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Brought to you by
Detonation once was primarily a problem of
air-cooled high compression racing engines,
but it can affect modern consumer-oriented
engines, as well, particularly when a highcompression
engine is run on low octane
fuel. Contrary to popular belief, higher octane
fuel does not have higher energy content or
“power” than lower octane fuel; it does have
higher temperature stability and therefore,
more resistance to detonation.
Preignition can present with similar
symptoms but differs from detonation in that
it is an overheated engine component or
the spark plug itself that may ignite the fuel
charge prematurely instead of the fuel charge
spontaneously combusting as in detonation.
6. In-gear whining:
Whining under load usually signifi es a gearbox
issue. If it’s only doing it in one or two gears, it’s
probably isolated wear – gears work in pairs
and a problem in one gear often makes itself
known in another. If it whines through every
ratio, suspect a gearbox bearing is worn and
causing the shafts to run out of alignment.
8. Snap, crackle, pop:
A sharp snapping sound that may be irregular
or regular may indicate a leakage or “short” of
ignition energy to ground. This is particularly
likely to be the case when it is accompanied
by the engine “missing,” or hesitating.
The snapping sound can be caused by
ignition energy arcing from a crack or fl aw
in the spark plug wire insulation or spark
plug cap to the frame, engine or other metal
Careful inspection of the caps and wires
is in order. Some may suggest running the
engine in low light where arcing may be visible,
but this is an inherently dangerous practice,
since any fuel vapour present could ignite.
Since these components are low-cost items,
replacing them when in doubt makes sense.
The variety of sounds any given machine
can create is pretty much unlimited.
Familiarity with your own bike is a great
asset in knowing which sounds it produces
are normal and which are not. We hope this
discussion of some of the more common
ones is helpful in troubleshooting when you
have to play it by ear.
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Does your motor sound like Homer Simpson’s
guts after a night on the Duff? Time for a
look at your cooling system. Coolant should
circulate silently. Firstly, check the level, any
drop indicates an issue. If there’s an air pocket,
the pump won’t be able to circulate coolant
properly, and it can froth around and boil if
it can’t circulate away from hot spots. Top it
up – if it drops again you may have a leaking
seal or gasket. Bubbling coolant, or coolant
being forced into the header tank too readily,
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Castrol POWER1 Racing 4T
with Race Derived Technology is
specifically designed for bikers who
love the exhilaration of riding on
the limit. Race Derived Technology
is based on Castrol’s long and
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helps oil to flow fast and stay strong,
reducing internal engine friction
even under the most arduous riding
conditions. It has been tested
and proven to deliver exceptional
acceleration and power at a touch of
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 43
A DUKE, THE ALPS &
2000 km, 4 day round trip on KTM’S NEW 790 DUKE
It’s MotoGP weekend in Austria and the rain hasn’t let up since Thursday evening
and we’re contemplating swapping our brace of KTM 790 DUKES for jet skis.
Words & Pics: Shane Oosthuizen
WHO IS SHANE?
Shane is the Senior Copywriter at KISKA Design
in Austria, responsible for brand communications
for KTM, Husqvarna and WP Suspension,
among others. He also moonlights as the
occasional motoring scribe.
44 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
We’re heading to the Spielberg Ring the
long way round, starting at the home of
KTM in Mattighofen. Our route is a 2000
km, 4 day round trip which will take us to
Santa Maria in Switzerland, dropping into
Italy via the Passo Del Stelvio, before a
short flirt with the autobahn in Germany on
route to the track.
We’ve got two KTM 790 DUKEs at
our disposal. One is completely stock
standard, bar a factory-fitted USB outlet.
The other has been decked out with a
mono-seat, some bling bits and a glorious
Tanks brimmed, backpacks loaded up,
we decide to brave the rain and head out
towards Bergtesgarten in Germany. The
border is a mere stone-throw away, with
little more than a street sign to let you
know you’ve crossed over. A quick fact
- this is the same place you’ll find Eagle’s
Nest, Martin Bormann’s birthday present
to Adolf Hitler.
Our first road block is navigation. The
relentless rain means I’m reluctant to
attach my iPhone to the QUADLOCK bar
mount for fear of it getting damaged, so
we make do with reading street signs and
hoping for the best.
We’re cold and drenched through at this
point, with the equivalent of two kiddiessized
pools inside our boots. We make an
educated decision to hit the highway and
make up lost time.
After a few hours of fairly uneventful
bahn-storming, the clouds start to thin out
and the rain lets up. We’re near the Austria-
Swiss border and enjoying a very rare
glimpse of sunlight, swapping the multi-lane
motorway for twisty country roads.
The 790 is a joy on these ribbons
of tarmac which are largely limited to
80kmph. It swaps sides faster than an
ousted DA politician, slicing through
corners with dogged determination. I
notice the Traction Control light flash
enthusiastically on a few damp corners,
doing well to keep the rear end in check.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 45
While crawling through a few of the country
towns, the 790 reveals one Achilles heel - it is
not happy at low speeds. Throttle inputs are
jerky at lower revs and require some care to
keep things smooth. That said, when its on
the boil, banging up and down the gearbox
using the quickshifter is a fantastic mix of
audio and forward thrust.
Both bikes sound amazing even with
the banana-esque standard can. The best
when coming off the throttle and bouncing a
symphony of pops and crackles off the rocky
cuttings and passes. It’s worth noting too,
that the bike fitted with the Akrapovic and the
subsequent mapping had a much smoother
throttle response and seemed to find power
low down without much issue.
Needless to say, we cross into Switzerland,
find a beer and take a moment to thaw
out. We spend the night at the aptly named
Stelvio Hotel in Saint Maria. The lodgings are
perfectly adequate and they have an honesty
bar - winning!
Santa Maria is a tiny village, mostly used as
stopover for bikers and tourists. It also boasts
the World’s Smallest Whiskey Bar which even
features in the Guiness Book of Records. We
can’t resist and chat whiskey with the bar’s
owner. Sadly, the size of the pub doesn’t
reflect its prices. We pay the equivalent of
around R250 for two pipette-sized shots of
fairly average tasting scotch and call it a night.
We’re up early the next morning and ready
ourselves for the Passo Dello Stelvio. We’ve
been told to attack it as early as possible to
avoid the troves of tourist busses and suicidal
cyclists which frequent the area.
Almost immediately, we turn onto and
start climbing the Umbrail Pass which
connects Switzerland with Italy. The Umbrail
is a short squirt in terms of passes, but it
does take the accolade of being the highest
paved road in Switzerland, with a summit
elevation of 2,501 metres.
While the surfacing is infinitely better than
most South African roads, some sections
are merely a car-width wide, off camber
and littered with marble-sized pebbles. It
isn’t long before a 1st gear, gravel-strewn
corner nearly claims me, but I somehow pull
a Marquez and catch a vicious frontend slip
with my boot.
We get our first real
view of the serpentinelike
Stelvio as we crest
the highest point and
peer down onto the
pass through a haze
of low hanging clouds.
Pictures quite simply
don’t do it justice and
I can’t stress enough
that it should be on
every keen mototraveller’s
46 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 47
There has been a bit of work done to
improve the surface of the Stelvio in recent
months, but it’s far from perfect. Some areas
are badly cracked and pockmarked, with
rippled layers of tarmac adding some drama
mid-corner. That, however, doesn’t stop a
local on an older model Suzuki Bandit getting
his knee down just ahead of us. “He’s done
this before” I think to myself as I dip into the
fi rst of a series of steep switchbacks.
One thing that becomes eerily apparent
on the Stelvio are the scars left in the tarmac
by footpegs of pirouetting motorcycles.
That and bits of orange indicator and mirror
glass. Make no mistake - dropped bikes are
common place here.
Alistair - who rides a 1290 SUPER DUKE
R back home - has found his rhythm on the
little DUKE and tears off ahead, blatting out
of corners with the front hovering inches from
the deck. I do my best to hang onto his back
wheel, GoPro in tow. We later realise that the
battery had died on the Umbrail Pass, and I
swear at myself quite severely.
I’m a little weary as we continue down the
pass. You can defi nitely feel that the stoppers
fi tted to the 790 are not Brembo units. They
seem to run out of puff braking from speed.
But we quickly isolate this to being unique
to my test bike and write if off as badly bled
brake fl uid.
The difficulty riding in
this region of the Alps
is that you’re constantly
being distracted by the
the each vista being
prettier than the next.
The more we discover,
the more we’re forced
to stop to take it all in.
Regretfully, I elect to keep stops to a minimum
and miss many photo opportunities.
We’re on our way back towards Austria,
deciding to smash the next 600 odd-kms to
the track as quickly as possible. We bounce
between borders for a while, collecting the
German autobahn between Munich and
Salzburg momentarily and test the DUKEs
high speed stability.
It doesn’t disappoint. We settle in at
between 140 and 150 kmph and plow through
a few kilometers before re-entering Austria
and achingly chew up a the last few hundred
kms. With dusk slowly setting in, we arrive
at our pre-erected camp via the good folks
at GP Tents. It’s nothing special, but its clean
bedding, a roof and we get complimentary
beer at check-in. And it’s positioned only a
short walk away from the track.
That night, the conversation quickly turns
to the 790 DUKE, with the question - do you
really need the beastly 1290 SUPER DUKE R?
The answer is obviously a resounding
‘of course you do!’ Any self-respecting
motorcyclist would understand the need to
have the biggest, meanest, hyper-naked
hooligan machine parked in his - or her -
But the 790 makes a decent argument
for itself. It’s ample bike for the money and
really has impressed so far - besides for a
numbness in my backside after hours in the
saddle. This is no long-distance cruiser. That
said, it was never designed to be.
From a ridabilty standpoint, the 790 DUKE,
feels immediately familiar and not at all
intimidating. Adjust the ride modes to its most
aggressive RACE setting, and it livens up a
48 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
great deal, barking up towards the rev limiter
effortlessly, but never feels like its too much.
It’s not often that you fi nd a motorcycle
that straddles that sweet spot so well. It gives
you enough to keep things exciting, but just
not enough to scare you completely. It will do
what you ask of it, but you kind of feel like its
not as good as it could be.
We fi nish our beers and retire just as the
makeshift bar in a dairy shed is suddenly
converts itself into an all-out Coyote Uglythemed
nightclub. The sound of Neil
Diamond’s Sweet Caroline echo into the hills
well into the early hours.
It’s Sunday morning and we’re up at
dawn’s crack. There is an unmistakable buzz
in the air, and already the campsite is a hive
of Rossi and Marquez supporter caps. We
devour a quick breakfast and make our way
trackside to avoid the masses making the
pilgrimage to get to their seats.
The vibe and
energy of hearing
and seeing these
machines in the
round a track in real
life is incredible.
Sunburnt and beer-rich, we trudge back to
the campsite, rather upset that the pinnacle
of our trek had come to an end. We both
decide that our next GP-adventure will be a
scooter-tour in Thailand in 2020.
The following day we take a relaxed ride
back to Mattighofen to drop the bikes off and
refl ect a bit.
From being completely rain-soaked on
day one, to cutting up one of the
world’s greatest roads, to ploughing
through hours of relentless
motorway kilometres, the little 790s
While long-distance comfort
was an issue with our, admittedly,
larger bodies, we cannot blame
the bikes for that. It delivered more than what
we could’ve asked from it, keeping us both
grinning from corner to corner.
Used for what it was engineered for, as a
canyon-carving mid-sized naked bike, the
KTM 790 DUKE is undisputed royalty. It’s a
DUKE through and through and deserves the
respect it’s moniker suggests.
KEY SPECS 790 DUKE
Engine: New 799cc Parallel-Twin Engine
Maximum Power: 105 hp @ 9,000rpm
Maximum Torque: 86 Nm @ 8,000rpm
Seat height: 825mm (adjustable)
Wet weight: 189kg
Available at KTM Dealers Nationwide
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 4 9
WHO IS MIEKE?
Mieke Oelofsen is from PE (where she never
fit in). She then did a successful stint in Show
Jumping, (where she also never fit in), she
decided to spend her time with bikes and cars
instead (where she began to fit in).
Now after working for years in the motoring
trade, she has taken a bold leap where many
fear to tread, motoring journalism with a
twist. She can ride, drive, create and write all
at the same time while texting on her cell
phone, updating her IG and doing 200 km/h.
So as a content contributor, food connoisseur,
coffee fiend and speed freak, our lovely Mieke
is bound to amaze with her lifestyle pieces on
what the bikes are like to live with and love
on a daily basis with an objective eye towards
WE SENT MIEKE ALONG TO JOIN RAD MOTO FOR THEIR DUKE DAY.
Just think how pleased Duke Nukem would be
to know a whole day is celebrated in his name?
Words & Pics: Mieke Oelofsen
After a winter slumber, and obviously too much food
gathering if my riding pants are anything to go by, it was a
scramble getting my butt to RAD Moto on time Saturday
morning for Duke Day. Add a U-turn after realising I don’t
have my license, indecisiveness about which t-shirt would
be politically correct to wear and which helmet would
compliment KTM orange, and I arrived somewhat on time
and dishevelled. I felt the disapproving stares as I desperately
tried to wipe my smeared mascara from below tearing eyes in
the mirror of my S1000RR.
People were milling about outside RAD Moto, showing
off what new trick bits they fi tted to their Dukes, all curious
to see how many Duke riders would pitch for the day’s
excursion. Andy Biram from The Adventure Academy had
kept everyone, even me, looking forward to the day with his
contagious enthusiasm which refl ected in his emails all week.
The Adventure Academy prides itself on offering bespoke
motorcycle tours to showcase our beautiful African continent
to adventure seekers on two-wheels.
50 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
After locating Andy and being introduced
to my stud of a ride for the day; Duke
Nukem we’ll call him, I had a few minutes
to awkwardly stand around and take selfi es
with all the Dukes. Only afterward, upon
closer inspection would I notice some rather
The rider briefi ng was done with an
equal amount of seriousness and humour,
requesting everyone to “Please obey the
rules of the road in a South African way”.
Was I surprised that almost everyone nodded
a complete understanding? Maybe, but
then I hadn’t ridden the Duke yet, so I didn’t
fully comprehend what hooligan means.
Something was also said about KTM riders
being nicer than ** riders and that they should
please wave back at the excited kids in cars.
And like a true organizer-guru, Andy thought
of everything and made sure every person
who was prone to hangry behaviour knew to
bring snacks to munch along the way. Once
stationery, of course. Determined to have my
riding pants fi t properly again, I threw caution
to the wind and did not load my pockets with
M&M’s at the fuel station convenience store.
What could possibly go wrong?
There were separate routes planned for
single cylinder and twin cylinder Dukes,
ensuring everyone enjoyed a well curated
route without the big guys complaining
about a lengthy wait for the small guys.
Detailed directions of the respective routes
were handed out to riders, and Andy
assured everyone that if you can read you’ll
be just fi ne. In hindsight, I’m grateful that I
was part of the special people who took a
direct route to the meeting spot, as when I
tried to map the directions on Google Maps
to get an idea of how far the participants
rode, I knew, just knew, that I would’ve
gotten lost and never been found again. I’m
sure the goal wasn’t to lose anyone, but
great care was taken to include detours and
roads less travelled. The ‘secret’ meeting
spot was no other than an abandoned
stretch of tar before the Pelindaba Toll
Plaza on the North West Province side of
the provincial border. Most will know it as
“Wheelie Strip”, but if you’re familiar with
this secluded spot for any other reason; just
know that we won’t judge.
I settled easily onto the KTM 790 Duke,
keeping it in Street Mode for a “smooth,
comfortable, controllable” ride through
midmorning traffi c as we went down
Witkoppen and Cedar roads and took a
shortcut to the meeting point. The mirrors,
positioned on the edges of the handlebars
on this demo, made me squeeze my eyes
shut whenever the gap between cars
appeared too narrow, fully expecting it
to clip an SUV mirror. The mirrors can be
mounted toward the inside of the bars, but
it depends on where you’re comfortable.
Perhaps the width of the handlebars is
accentuated by the narrow tank and front
end, with the riding position keeping you
fl ush against the tank. In Street Mode the
throttle is smooth, and the up-and-down
quick shifter performs beautifully, even under
RAD Moto has sent supplies ahead to the
meeting spot, to ensure we don’t dehydrate
in the scorching sun since we seemed to
have skipped spring and launched right
into summer. Once everyone arrived and
the line of orange, black and white Dukes
stretched well into the distance allowing us
to count halfway to 100 and then some,
we were treated to a display of true Duke
antics. Corrie and Mike dazzled us with their
wheelie skills, the crowd cheering them on
in a fashion not quite pub brawl-esque but
with enough camera fl ashes to keep social
media buzzing for days.
We set out in a very orderly manner for
a mass ride through Hartbeespoort to the
dam wall, with a stop to re-group at the
Harties Snake and Reptile Park, before
myself, Corrie and Mike went ahead to set
up for some burnout theatrics on the other
side for the tunnel. Andy, movie-producerby-night
wanted the riders to emerge from the tunnel
into the burnout smoke and I was to catch
it all on video. Of course, all the other car
owners at the viewing point gave the duck-
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 51
taped tail ends one look, wrapped up their selfies and made
a wise and speedy getaway. But not everyone heeded the
warning, oh no, a Ford driver stopped to admire the bikes,
missed his chance to re-join the queue of vehicles crossing
the wall and stayed for the performance. Luckily, he was a
sport, and didn’t mind the fact that afterwards his vehicle
resembled a Dalmation thanks to all the rubber chips that
were flung everywhere. All the meticulous planning paid off
and I managed to get some decent footage and photos of
the ghost-riders. As indicated on my Hazard Pay application,
I can now say I have tasted burning rubber and had to refrain
from letting my smile spread too wide afterwards as Duke
Nukem swept me off my feet (literally) and carried me at warp
speed over the dam bridge.
We arrived at Woody’s Family Grille to tables set up outside
in the shade, allowing us a fine view of the water and the
mountains. Since lunch signalled the end of the tour, and
everyone went back to being their own responsibility, the
speedy waiters rushed to quench the adult’s thirst with trays
of icy cold beers and the likes. Right before I broke out in
cold sweat as I stood staring at the rapidly filling tables, so
like 1st break in Highschool, I was saved by a friendly KTM
staff member and plonked down on a bench. All day I’ve
been amazed at how easily an outsider like myself just gets
absorbed into the group, with people ready to chat and
share their experiences astride their Dukes or ask about my
experience of the 790 Duke. Duke riders are from all walks
of life, some with different ideas on how riding gear should
be worn, but with a universal affection for anything amber in
colour. I was also surprised to learn how many Duke riders
have given up cages completely for a more adventurous
commute to work, whilst knowing exactly how many Woolies
packets fit in the panniers.
Lunch, in exchange for the red tags we were given, I
opted for beer battered Fish and Chips, and what a large
piece of fish it was. Silence descended on our table, which
I take as a sign that everyone was enjoying their meaty
choices. Woody’s Family Grille is biker friendly, and willing to
accommodate large groups, so make a mental note to stop
by on your next Sunday ride.
52 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
RAD MOTO DUKE DAY
For the ride back to RAD Moto I decided to turn up the
heat a bit as my date with Duke Nukem was to end soon.
Unfortunately, and much to my regret, I was not able to take
him home with me. With some help I was introduced to the
other riding modes and decided to give Track Mode a go.
The differences between each is easy to grasp, and even
easier to apply. Rain Mode, much like it implies, ensures
maximum grip with early intervention. Sport Mode will put
a spring in your step afterward with its more direct throttle,
whereas Track Mode allows you to adjust traction control and
even switch off anti-wheelie if you’re up for it. For the brave
and skilled, Supermoto mode keeps the ABS active on the
front, but allows intentional slide on the rear.
The KTM 790 Duke is
called ‘The Scalpel” in
ad campaigns for good
reason; it is precise, and
it will slice the riding
inhibitions out of you. It’s
light frame and spot-on
handling makes weaving
through crawling traffic
a breeze, until you look
at the uncluttered cluster
and realize they’re not
really dragging feet, just
that you’re hauling ass.
The KTM just soaks up the bumps as we leave behind
Pecanwood, taking the R512 into Broederstroom and the
Pelindaba road into Lanseria. The wind at speeds in excess
of 150kmh can become bothersome, but KTM does have
windshield options to remedy that. The brakes are superefficient
when utilized, but the engine braking perfectly
suited my riding style and the irregular traffic intervals we
encountered. Upon re-entry into an urban setting with
unmoving cages all around, the heat from the engine and
upper-right-side mounted exhaust did make me squirm in
discomfort at some tardy red lights. The 87Nm of torque
and an exhaust note to signal daring intent really spoke to
my inner thrill-seeker, and only after arriving home did I realize
why prison uniforms are also orange.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 5 3
IN THE MIST
THE ORIGINALES KILLARNEY TRACKDAY RIDE
Cape Town was depressed under dreary dripping clouds. But here at Killarney
International Raceway the air was dry and electric , the rain kept away by the fever
of excitement of the Red Boys raring to take on the race track. Words & pics: Renette Rauch
Jannie Krynauw is a man with Big plans.
Founder and President of the fast-growing
Originale Ducati Enthusiasts, he has now also
added quarterly Killarney Track events to their
repertoire. The Originales book and pay for
the entire raceway to be used exclusively by
Ducati Riders and offering them the best of
everything, even the best weather in Cape
Town on the day. Jannie’s been here since
crack of dawn posting weather vlogs and his
passion paid off and the riders could focus on
getting to know their bikes better and more
importantly themselves better on their bikes,
they would improve their riding skills and learn
from more experienced fellow Ducati riders on
a course with no obstructions.
Main Sponsor of the day, Quicksure’s
Andrea Hatton-Jones, Executive
General Manager, and Shaheen Rajab,
CEO flew down to attend. Quicksure
have provided the Originale Group with
the most competitive exclusive Group
Scheme offered in South Africa which
will be a cut above the rest.
In a reassuring talk Andrea explains
Quicksure’s partnership with the Originale
Ducati Enthusiasts and the group scheme
insurance benefits to them via JC Krynauw
brokers in Cape Town. Members no
longer face cold shoulders from Insurance
companies, but are whole-heartedly catered
to and covered, even for track days!
Lovely Yolanda Cook helps with entries
and covering mirrors, despite a broken leg
recovery. Capable Ebrahim Dahries, The Bike
Doctor from Maitland has taken the day off
to scrutineer the Ducati’s and experienced
member Mark Cooper explains the track
on power point, including interesting corner
theories. His audience are riveted as they
hook into little details that will give them the
edge in the corners.
Today there are no prizes. There are no
important spectators, the battle is between
each rider and his inner thoughts, his
hormones and his steed doing battle with
each corner. How fast he wants to ride, how
much he wants to test himself, how well
54 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
he knows himself and his ride. It is his own
demons that he is chasing.
As the riders gear up they are nervous, but
exhilarated, going into the zone, transitioning
into warriors that will push their skills and
powers to achieve mastery in that thrilling
dance between throttling up and selfpreservation,
with a bit of ego thrown in for
Its complicated, this adrenaline rush, this
athletic pursuit for perfection where the tools
used also involves Ducati art and pride of
Every second is maximized and frozen in
time. The Track is beautiful and not wet at
all. The only limits is oneself.
There are three groups and each group
have a gloriously full 20 minutes of riding
and on repeat, with total freedom to speed
around almost to one’s leisure. What
beautiful feeling to not have too many other
bikes crowding the corners, no one to slow
you down or breath down your neck. When
you leave the paddocks it is the open fields
to ganter at full gallop to experience that
zoned perfection where time stands still and
the adrenaline courses through the veins.
The only sound the Ducati’s singing around
the corners and the tyres whirring on the
tarmac. Nothing else matters.
No one had any mishaps and the smiles
are as big as can be, the day was a roaring
success and in the hearts of the riders they
have a secret that is between them and
their bikes, but shared with their Ducati
brotherhood. Next track day is set for early
December, watch this space...
Francois with his Hyper Motard
Dangerous Dave delights on his Diavel
Jonathan, reason to be proud
of his Ducati and son
Panos, perky on his Multistrada Pikes Peak
Shaheen and Andrea of Quicksure, sponsors of the day
Yolanda on admin, still
jolly despite a broken leg
Jannie, President of Originales with
Shaheen and Andrea from Quicksure and
Mark Cooper the Chief Trainer
Shaheen (Quicksure), Ebrahim (Bike
Doctor), Andrea (Quicksure) and
Sean (2 IC Originales)
Quivering with Excitement
Rapt Attention to the very pro Power
point demo of ideal corner lines
What a pleasing line-up
Silvester and Deon going into the Zone
Dijon and Panigale
Ronen and Panos, much - loved
Big Smiles from Sylvester and
Jannie from Originales and the film
crew Thomas and Dan
Ronen and Jannie with Ronen’s
Panigale V4 Speciale
Dylan, styling on
his 899 Panigale
Niki in good nick
on a 959 Panigale
Deon deft on
Dijon on 1198
Mark Foo on
Greg, hyper on
Ronen on his
Go join the Facebook page - Originale Ducati Enthusiasts
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 55
EXPOSED & TESTED
TRIUMPH MOTO2 PROTOTYPE
ON TRIUMPH’S MOTO2 MACHINE
Exciting times ahead as Triumph get ready to replace Honda as the sole engine supplier to
the MotoGP category from 2019 onwards. Our mates over at Visordown got a chance to
get up close and personal to the new prototype racer and even do some laps on it.
Words by Alan Dowds (Visordown.com) Pics by Gareth Harford & Triumph Press
56 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
WHAT DO you normally get up to on a bank
holiday Monday? If you’re anything like me,
it’s often a bit of an anti-climax. A bit of a
lie-in, a bit of a shout at the kids, and a bit of
self-loathing around 4pm when you realise
nothing’s been achieved, and it’s back to Das
Grind tomorrow. Booh. You might as well be
at work, getting triple time plus a day in lieu (if
you still live in 1978 obvs).
But not this bank holiday Monday. Oh no.
I’m up and showered and dressed and out
sharp, because I’ve picked up one of those
golden tickets which this job is kind enough
to bestow now and again. My name’s down
for a rather different triple time today; a ride
on a very special bike – Triumph’s Moto2
prototype machine. A tweaked-up Daytona
675 chassis, with a 765 triple engine bolted
in, which the firm’s been using to develop
the engine for race use.
Yep, the sweet roadbike motor out of
the latest Street Triple is being thrust into
action in a very different realm – the whitehot
arena of race development which is
the Moto2 championship. All those future
Valentino Rossis and Marc Marquezes will
be learning their trade on a bike powered
by an engine built just off the A5 – which is
enough to make you swell up with Brexity
British pride, sort of.
The Moto2 engine gig is an interesting
setup of course. Moto2 replaced 250 twostroke
GP bikes, which seemed a bit of a
shame at the time. The first contract was
with Honda, which supplied its CBR600RR
motor in a hopped-up form to Dorna, who
then sublet the motors to teams. They put
the engines in their own prototype chassis,
picked up a mental 19-year-old the size of a
starved Irish jockey to ride the thing, and set
off on the GP circus.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 57
The engine tech might have been less
exciting than a 250 two-stroke, but it was
much (much) cheaper to rent a posh CBR
motor than hire a factory Aprilia or Honda
stroker. But eight years on, the CBR600RR is
drifting away from public consciousness a bit
(there are schoolkids alive now who’ve never
seen one in the wild), and so there’s a new
motor in place. And what a surprise it was
when Dorna announced the winner. Not the
Japanese efficiency of Yamaha’s sweet R6, or
the exoticism of the MV Agusta F3 675 motor,
but the bluff, Black-Country-accented exhaust
bark of our very own Hinckley Triumph triple.
I found out long before the announcement,
and didn’t really believe it until a frantic
Triumph PR man begged me not to run a
story on it, as the Dorna contract hadn’t
quite been signed. But when you think about
it, it makes perfect sense. Triumph’s been
going long enough and knows how to bolt
an engine together. The name is full of race
heritage too, albeit with a big old gap after
the 1970s. And in some senses, the Moto2
contract is more of an industrial supply
arrangement than a bleeding-edge prototype
deal. The organisers want a super-reliable,
moderately-high-performance motor, with
no fuss, that provides a level playing field for
chassis designers and riders to duke it out.
And Hinckley has definitely proved it can
do that over the past 25 years. Add in the
sweet sound of a triple, and the commercial
potential of promoting the engine out of a
big-selling naked bike, and you can see why
it makes all sorts of sense all round.
The engine itself hasn’t been massively
altered from stock, apparently (though I’m
not sure the Hinckley folk are giving away all
the secrets on what’s gone in inside just yet).
It’s had a decent old-school supersport tune
mostly – head porting, different valve springs,
titanium valves, smaller race alternator,
tweakable slipper clutch and different case
covers and sump, for better ground clearance
and better exhaust routing respectively.
“It’s had a decent old-school
supersport tune mostly –
head porting, different valve
springs, titanium valves,
smaller race alternator,
tweakable slipper clutch
and different case covers
and sump, for better ground
clearance and better exhaust
There’s also gearing mods – but it’s not a lot
of changes, especially for an engine which
Triumph claims was designed as a naked
roadster lump long before this Moto2 idea
came about. It will be bolted into the bespoke
chassis from the likes of Kalex, and controlled
by a kit ECU from Marelli, that has tuning
options for ignition, fuelling, engine braking and
throttle mapping, all for the first time in Moto2.
58 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
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RIDING THE THING!
SO HERE we are – only a few miles from
the A5, at Silverstone’s Stowe circuit, for a
bit of a rideout on the bike itself. There’s a
cloud over the Northants circuit as I arrive –
both literally and metaphorically. Less than
24 hours earlier, the British MotoGP round
here was cancelled because of an unfit,
waterlogged track, and the place is looking
a little bit bedraggled, the wind plucking at
the closed-up programme stalls and trade
stands waiting forlornly to be dismantled.
There was a hint at one point that the
race would be held over till the Monday,
but the powers that be obviously knew I
was coming up for a hoon on the Moto2
bike, and made the sensible decision to
let that happen instead. Well done the
Stowe is a mini-track inside the main
circuit, and is just over a mile long.
Essentially a wobbly triangle with some
esses and chicanes bolted on, it’s a far
cry from the main circuit, but is probably a
better option for a ride like this. There are
a load of people getting a ride today, from
Damon Hill and Charley Boorman to Alex
de Angelis and Simon Crafar, plus various
British and international journos, so we’re
only getting ten minutes each.
The bike’s parked up, waiting for the
riders, so I take a quick peek round it.
The basics are simple enough: one of the
firm’s Daytona 675s has had its motor
swapped out for the Moto2 lump, then
there’s been a modest race revamp
applied. So there’s K-Tech suspension,
OZ wheels, Dunlop slicks – but the brake
calipers are stolid-looking Nissin roadbike
parts, and even the dash looks just like
the one off a Daytona road bike. A small
orange ABS light flickering away frantically
as it realises the shenanigans that have
gone on here (there’s no ABS or traction
control, as a worried-looking tech tells me
as I jump aboard).
The Arrow pipe looks properly proper –
and sounds the business too – but frame,
swingarm, tank all seem straight off a 675.
No bad thing of course – the Daytona was
a cracking bike and won nearly every 600
group test I’ve done since it appeared.
And so it all feels pretty familiar as I jump
on for my allotted ten minute stint. As ever
with a gig like this, I’m a wee bit nervous.
There’s only one bike, and there are some
very big lads waiting for a ride after me,
so if I did crash and survive unscathed,
it’d only be until they got their hands
on me. On the other hand, think of the
“I’m not really here to
assess the chassis too
much of course, but it’s
fair to say the thing steers
like nothing I’ve ridden
in a long time. In fact,
it reminds me a bit of
the last thing I rode like
this – Dani Pedrosa’s old
RS250FW 250GP bike,
fittingly enough. I tip
into the long horseshoe
Damon’s turn, and nearly
fall off the thing, it’s on its
ear so fast.”
60 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Youtube hits were I to cartwheel the thing into
Towcester town centre live on tape…
Steady away then, regardless. The motor
sounds really sweet, and has much more
grunt low down than you might expect from a
tuned race motor. I’m not really here to assess
the chassis too much of course, but it’s fair
to say the thing steers like nothing I’ve ridden
in a long time. In fact, it reminds me a bit of
the last thing I rode like this – Dani Pedrosa’s
old RS250FW 250GP bike, fittingly enough.
I tip into the long horseshoe Damon’s turn,
and nearly fall off the thing, it’s on its ear so
fast. A reminder that I’ve maybe been riding
too many adventure and naked bikes of late –
even the litre bikes we rode last month feel like
supertankers compared with this beastie.
The Dunlop slicks and Oz wheels are
responsible for much of that of course, and it’s
a reminder of just how big an effect stuff like
that has on the feel of a bike.
Out of the turn and down the straight, and
the engine instantly makes itself felt. There’s
dollops of grunt – but not the nasty ones of a
big twin, or something like Yamaha’s R1. It’s a
more refined power delivery – and unique too.
Where a tweaked 600 four like the CBR600RR
would be all wailing revs and gnat’s-cock
midrange, this is a beefy motor. Just like the
675 did on the road, it offers a great balance
between a thumping twin or big bang four, and
a screaming four.
The race-shift quickshifter batters the gears
in a treat, but not for long before we’re onto the
brakes for the entry to Stewart bend and the
Surtees Esses, and I get another shock – the
calipers might be vanilla-looking Nissin units
but someone’s snuck some tasty pads in them
it seems. Together with the light weight of the
bike, and the obsessive bleeding and primping
of a proper race tech, they give stupendous
power, slamming the hot front slick down into
“Where a tweaked 600 four like the CBR600RR
would be all wailing revs and gnat’s-cock midrange,
this is a beefy motor. Just like the 675 did on the
road, it offers a great balance between a thumping
twin or big bang four, and a screaming four.”
the deck (and stopping me much earlier than
I’d planned of course, gah). Back on the gas a
bit, and have another go at the bend…
The motor is strong through here, and unlike
on the stock Street Triple I rode round on
earlier, you don’t need to drop right down the
gears. Wobble round the 180° Graham’s bend,
and then hammer down onto the pit straight,
to give all the pit-wall gawpers a clap of Triple
thunder. Then into Hamilton curve and do it all
As the session goes on, I’m more and more
impressed. Partly with what they’ve done
with the chassis of course – despite its road
base and supersport-spec components, it’s a
dream to ride round here. The brakes set me
off into a fit of giggles every time I hauled them
on at the end of the straights, albeit nervous
giggles when the back wheel started to lift up
off the deck and wave about like a white flag
of surrender. The slicks gave more grip than I’ll
ever need on the dry asphalt, and you felt like
you could lean forever and not fall off. If this
was your trackday bike, you’d never be away
from your local circuit.
But the engine is definitely a peach too.
Okay, the Moto2 guys will get on and ride
whatever they’re given to within an inch of
its life, regardless. And stuff like reliability and
ease of setup is probably more important than
anything else. But it really is something else –
super strong, yet controllable, friendly enough
for an old duffer like me, but with the feel of a
motor that has massive potential.
Ten minutes isn’t long enough to really work
out this bike of course – but I’m knackered by
then anyway. Stowe is small, but needs a fair
bit of effort. And those brakes plus that engine
take a lot out of you every lap. I come into the
pits, glad to be in one piece, and grateful for a
ride on this immensely sorted wee test mule.
There’s one last little sign of the road/race mix
of the bike as I stop though – my road rider
brain hits the back brake, normally a vestigial
affair on a racebike. But the stock Daytona
Brembo caliper locks up the lightweight Oz
rim, and the Dunlop slick squeals like the
proverbial stuck pig, eeek…
A great day out for me then. But the
obvious question is, will Triumph make one
of these for punters to buy? A 765-engined
Daytona sportsbike for the road? You have
to say they’d be mad not to, on the face of
it at least. Sportsbike sales might be down,
but this would be such a simple job to make,
they’d not need to sell too many to get back
the investment. They have the engines, and
the chassis all ready to go it seems, and if
it’s even half as good as the Moto2 bike,
it’ll be more than good enough to rock the
supersports world. With Kawasaki bringing
out a new ZX-636R, and Yamaha’s latest R6
still only a year old, it could mark a further
renaissance in the fortunes of the near-litre
sportsbike class – and be the replacement for
a new GSX-R750 which we’d all love to see
(and keeps not appearing).
Even if they don’t bother, expect a load
more crashed 765 Street Triples to be married
up with old 675 Daytonas to make homebrew
Moto2 reps (Tony Scott at T3 Racing can help
here we bet...)
But the signs are positive for an official bike.
Tight-lipped Triumph PR folk indicate that
there’s the real possibility of a road version – if
there’s enough interest from the market. So,
if you fancy one of these beasties as your
next sportsbike, or even as a posh Moto2
rep trackday tool, get thee down to your local
Triumph dealer and bend their ear! Getting
onto Twitter and Facebook to encourage the
factory wouldn’t be a bad idea either.
You could even spend your next holiday
Monday whinging at them about it – after all,
what else will you be doing?
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 6 1
EXCLUSIVE MATT BIRT MOTOGP COLUMN
62 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Steady, as she
It’s been four years since Suzuki made their comeback to the
MotoGP class and they seem to be getting better and better.
STEADY rather than
spectacular. That’s how I’d
sum up Suzuki’s fourth year
back in the MotoGP World
There’s been fl ashes of
inspiration and brilliance from
both Alex Rins and Andrea
Iannone, and the GSX-RR has
accomplished some newsworthy
moments already this season.
Top three fi nishes in Argentina,
Austin and Jerez was the fi rst time
that Suzuki managed podium
places in three races on the
bounce in a decade.
Its current points tally in the
Championship is the most
garnered at this stage of a
campaign since 2007.
And who can forget Rins
climbing off his sickbed
with a debilitating bout
of food poisoning to fi nish
second in the classic Dutch
TT, in which he dished out more
than his share of the mind-boggling
Yet neither Rins or Iannone look a potent
threat for a top six fi nish in the
fi nal rankings, and 2018 has
so far been another year
in which the Hamamatsu brand has
failed to jump out of the shadow of
Honda, Ducati and Yamaha.
One major positive for Suzuki this
year is it did at least arrest a sharp
decline after the heroics of Maverick
Vinales at Silverstone took them back
to winning ways in 2016.
The GSX-RR that Vinales rode
to glory was blessed with pinpoint
braking stability and razor sharp
handling that made its chassis
the envy of the paddock. What it
lacked was poke out of the corner
and drive grip, which Suzuki
hoped would be resolved with a
revised engine spec for 2017,
which fi gured experiments
with crankshaft mass. The
gains made on corner exit
though only weakened its
braking and turning prowess.
And having lost its
concessions owing to
the success of Vinales in
2016, Suzuki’s technical
staff were handcuffed for the
whole season by the engine
development freeze and couldn’t
throw money and parts at tweaking the
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 6 3
EXCLUSIVE MATT BIRT MOTOGP COLUMN
“Alex Rins will certainly
need to add consistency to
his armory in 2019 having
already suffered five DNFs
this year, which includes
four unforced errors.
And with a rookie joining
him next season, the onus
will be on him to steer
development of the GSX-
RR, which is a big burden to
bear for one who doesn’t
turn 23 until December.”
This year’s GSX-RR is back to the balanced
giant killer it became in the hands of Vinales,
though acceleration grip remains a key target
for further improvements.
I think a key area to help Suzuki relinquish
the iron grip Honda, Ducati and Yamaha have
held over MotoGP recently is to find a way to
put more GSX-RR machinery on the grid.
A larger talent pool means more data and
information which leads to faster development
and ultimately a faster motorcycle.
Suzuki has stuck rigidly to fielding a tworider
full factory effort for as long as anyone
can recall and its reluctance to expand its
involvement has been a fear of the unknown
as much as anything else.
It looked like Suzuki would abandon its
conservative strategy when negotiations with
Marc VDS Racing earlier this season reached
an advanced stage.
A deal to supply factory 2019-spec
machinery was almost over the line when
it collapsed at the 11th hour following an
internal rift that tore the heart and soul out of
the Belgian-based squad around the time of
the Le Mans round in France.
Another niggling doubt hanging over Suzuki
is whether it has the riding talent on its books
to knock the likes of Marc Marquez, Andrea
Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo off their perch.
Alex Rins will certainly need to add
consistency to his armory in 2019 having
already suffered five DNFs this year, which
includes four unforced errors.
64 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
And with a rookie joining him next season,
the onus will be on him to steer development
of the GSX-RR, which is a big burden to bear
for one who doesn’t turn 23 until December.
I personally think Suzuki missed a trick in
not pursuing Jorge Lorenzo more aggressively
when he popped up on the open market.
His smooth braking and high corner
speed style seemed tailor made for the GSX-
RR, and in the expert hands of a proven
racer winner and multiple World Champion,
we’d had fully understand the true potential
of the GSX-RR.
I think that conservative approach again
came to the fore again and rather than break
the bank and hire Lorenzo, they invested in
potential rather the proven pedigree.
Fast-tracked into the squad next year is
the prodigiously talented Spaniard Joan Mir,
whose career path is one already paved by
Vinales, who wasted no time in escaping
Moto2 just one season after being crowned
That’s the work of renowned talent spotter
Davide Brivio, who as manager of Suzuki’s
MotoGP project has always shown faith in
youthful promise and potential.
He saw immediately how much talent
Vinales was blessed with when he jumped
into Moto2 in 2014.
In his first two races in the cut throat
intermediate class, Vinales came from 14th to
fourth in Qatar and set the fastest lap of the
race on an eye-catching Moto2 debut.
He then went to Texas and destroyed
the field to win in only his second attempt.
Brivio pounced when nobody else was even
contemplating hiring Vinales at that stage.
Brivio made his mind up quickly about Mir
too. Like Vinales, he was anxious to bail out of
Moto2 at the earliest opportunity, and just like
his compatriot, he was determined to make the
transition into a factory team and nothing less.
Speak to anybody who has worked
with Mir and they will tell you he is a future
MotoGP World Champion in the making.
Comparisons are already being made to Marc
Marquez. Blindingly fast, self-assured, eloquent
and intelligent, Mir has all the attributes both on
and off the track to emerge as a big star.
It’s no easy task though. Yamaha is currently
stuck in its worst losing streak since it entered
the premier class in 1973. So, not even
Yamaha is finding winning easy in the face of
the current onslaught from Honda and Ducati.
The last time Suzuki was winning a decent
haul of races was way back in 2000.
At that time when Kenny Roberts Junior
was collecting Suzuki’s last premier class
crown. Mir had just turned three.
Will Suzuki return to winning ways on a
consistent basis soon?
Some may argue it’s a mere formality now
they’ve signed a certain highly rated Spaniard,
or should that be Mir formality.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 65
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
THE DECLINE & FALL OF ROMANO FENATI
He was tipped to be the next Italian hero, to be the replacement for Rossi, but
what started out as a bright career has now turned into a dark nightmare.
Words by David Emmett
Romano Fenati burst onto the racing scene like
a meteor, burning bright and lighting up Moto3.
In his fi rst race, at Qatar in 2012, he fi nished
second behind Maverick Viñales. In his second,
at Jerez, in diffi cult conditions, he won by a
fearsome 36 seconds. Here was surely a rider to
watch for the future.
His ascension to greatness did not run as
smoothly as those early races promised. A
couple more podiums in 2012 saw him fi nish
sixth in the championship on the underpowered
After a tough 2013, he rediscovered his form
when he was invited to become part of the VR46
Academy, and signed to ride a KTM with the
Sky VR46 Racing Team the following year. The
change did him good, winning four races and
fi nishing fi fth in the championship.
2015 saw less success, Fenati showing signs
of frustration. During the warm up in Argentina,
the Italian lashed out at Niklas Ajo inexplicably,
fi rst trying to kick him, then stopping next to the
Finn for a practice start, and reaching over a
fl icking his kill switch.
Things went from bad to worse in 2016. The
relationship between Fenati and his crew
deteriorated during the season, with arguments
becoming increasingly frequent. In Austria, an
argument with the team became so heated that
the Sky VR46 team sacked him on the spot.
The incident had been the last straw, with
Fenati already having been given two formal
warnings before the Austrian GP. Fenati had
refused to move to Pesaro and fi t in with the
ethos of the VR46 Academy, which includes a full
program of physical training both on and off the
bike, as well as coaching in other areas, such as
PR skills and English.
Missing half a season seemed to teach Fenati
an important lesson. In interviews, he showed the
kind of humility that had been missing previously.
He found a new home for 2017 with the Marinelli
Snipers team, and reaped the rewards of his new
attitude. He won three races, and was the only
rider capable of offering consistent opposition to
eventual champion Joan Mir.
66 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 67
Was Fenati finally back on the right track?
His move up to Moto2 proved to be a rocky
road. In the first eleven races of his debut
Moto2 season, he scored points only twice, his
best finish a seventh place at Le Mans.
Qualifying went little better, Fenati regularly
starting from the middle of the grid, or worse.
At Silverstone, he got the worst of the weather
and qualified 31st before the race was washed
out. At his home race in Misano, he could get
no further than 22nd.
When the Going Gets Tough
Perhaps that explains why his frustration boiled
over at Misano. During the race, while he was
in the group fighting for eleventh place, he had
a couple of run-ins with Stefano Manzi of the
Forward Racing team. Manzi, with a reputation
as something of a reckless rider, pushed Fenati
wide a couple of times, making contact at one
point with both men ending up in the gravel.
Fenati lost his cool. He chased Manzi down,
and as the pair went along the back straight,
Fenati pulled alongside Manzi, reached over,
and gave the Forward Racing rider’s front
brake lever a tweak. It was only for a fraction
of a second, but it was hard enough to have
produced a brake pressure of 20 bar, Manzi
later told the Italian press. The average braking
pressure a Moto2 rider uses at Misano is 9 bar.
Manzi’s Suter twitched, but the Italian did not
crash, a minor miracle at 217 km/h.
Unfortunately for Fenati, the cameras around
the track caught what he had done on video.
The FIM Stewards reviewed the tape, blackflagged
Fenati, and later handed him a ban for
the next two races.
That, at least, is the phrasing used in the
penalty notice: “For the above reasons and
considering the seriousness of the infraction,
the FIM MotoGP Stewards Panel has
imposed on you a penalty of suspension from
the next two (2) FIM GP World Championship
The next two Moto2 races are at Aragon,
Spain and Buriram, Thailand.
“Fenati lost his cool.
He chased Manzi
down, and as the
pair went along the
back straight, Fenati
Manzi, reached over,
and gave the Forward
Racing rider’s front
brake lever a tweak.”
68 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
The battle with fellow Italian
rider Manzi at Misano could
be Fenati’s last ever.
On Sunday afternoon, in the aftermath of the
race, many hot words were said about Fenati’s
actions, and the leniency of the penalty. The
general consensus was that Fenati’s actions
were outrageous, and his penalty was
nowhere near stiff enough.
“I think he should never race a motorcycle
again,” said Cal Crutchlow, among the fi ercest
of the critics. “He should have walked back
in his garage and his team should have
just kicked him straight out of the back.”
Motorcycle racing is dangerous enough with
madness such as this, Crutchlow felt.
“You can’t do this to another motorcycle
racer. We are risking our lives enough. If
somebody grabbed your brake – sure, maybe
there was contact before, but there is contact
all the time. I don’t think from the replay what
Manzi did, he tried to pass. Fenati ran wide, he
tried to go under him, and they made some
contact. This is racing. But to grab the brake
lever on the straight he deserves to just be
kicked straight out.”
Pol Espargaro went so far as to apologize
on behalf of all motorcycle racers. “This is
something that we hope to never, ever, ever
see again in racing,” the KTM rider said.
“This is not racing. I feel shame if someone
sees the races and sees a professional rider
do something like that. I mean, you can be
frustrated. You can be really angry. But this
is something that the riders can never do
because after people see on TV and as I said
this is a shame. I apologize in the name of the
riders because this was a shame.”
Whatever punishment the FIM Stewards
came up with, it would not go far enough for
Pol Espargaro. “There is no punishment, even
one or two races. A professional rider cannot
do something like that. I mean for sure Race
Direction will take the measures they think. It’s
their job. But whatever they do, it’s not going to
be enough because somewhat who does that
is not a professional rider and if a rider that is
not professional is racing here it’s not good.”
Maverick Viñales pointed out that Fenati has
previous form for this type of behavior, pointing
to the incident with Niklas Ajo in Argentina. “I
don’t know,” the Movistar Yamaha rider said.
“I never thought about grabbing the brake of
someone on the straight.”
“I don’t know what is wrong, but many times
he does things, also to my friend Niklas [Ajo],
he did stupid things [in Argentina]. I hope these
two races make him think. For sure he has a
lot of talent, but if you don’t work, you don’t
think, you don’t try to work more on the track,
I don’t know.”
This was just the start of a Luciferian fall from
grace. At fi rst, the Marinelli Snipers Team
issued a press release expressing their anger
at the actions of Fenati, but on Monday
morning, a second followed, announcing they
had released Fenati from his contract. Or to
put it another way, they had sacked him.
A few hours later, a press release followed
from the Forward Racing Team, who had
signed Fenati to ride for them in 2019,
alongside Stefano Manzi, ironically. They, along
with MV Agusta, who are building the chassis
for the Forward team, did not want to continue
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 69
with Fenati. Fenati was left without a job this
year, and without a job next year.
Earlier in the day, Fenati had released a
statement that struck almost exactly the right
tone. He had not been acting as a man, he
said. A man would have waited until the end of
the race, then taken the matter up with Race
Direction. The fact that Stefano Manzi also got
a six-place grid penalty suggest that they were
aware of Manzi’s reckless riding.
Yet the statement also contained hints
that Fenati had not learned from the incident.
“It’s true, unfortunately I have an impulsive
character, but my intention was certainly not
to hurt a pilot like me, but I wanted to make
him understand that what he was doing was
dangerous, and that I could have made some
mistakes as well as he had just made them to
me!” Fenati wrote.
Though he then insisted that this was not
meant to try to justify his actions, his words
certainly smacked of justification, rather than
What Is Enough?
Was a two-race ban a strict enough penalty?
The FIM Stewards try to base their judgments
on some kind of precedent. The problem is,
this behaviour is pretty much unprecedented,
so what to do? I have contacted Race Director,
along with Dorna, for an explanation, but I have
as yet to receive a reply.
To an extent, the situation has already
resolved itself, Fenati having lost a job for both
this year and next, as well as his racing license
being taken away from him.
Fenati has since said he will be quitting
racing, saying “Now, I’m going back to school.
With a cool head, I say that I will not race
anymore, but I do not really know how I would
see myself in five years. At the moment, I just
want to put all this behind me.” he said.
Though grabbing the brake lever of
another rider is so far beyond acceptable
as to be outrageous, it is worth pointing out
that Manzi did not crash when Fenati pulled
that stupid stunt.
Fenati may have squeezed the brake lever,
but he didn’t grab it for long. He didn’t jam it on,
he squeezed and released. Had Fenati really
squeezed the lever, Manzi would have been
down. And probably, Fenati along with him.
“Now, I’m going back to school. With a cool
head, I say that I will not race anymore,
but I do not really know how I would see
myself in five years. At the moment, I just
want to put all this behind me.”
This is the crux of the matter. Romano
Fenati is clearly an immensely talented rider,
but he has two serious flaws. He is young, and
he is impulsive, which taken together produce
an explosive mix. The former quality will take
care of itself. The latter needs a prolonged and
committed approach to change.
Fenati’s biggest problem is that he does
not have the environment around him to help
him manage himself emotionally. He is not
surrounded by people who can help ground
himself, and help bring him down to earth. He
has no one to help him manage the tension,
and as a result, the tension can cause him to
explode in unpredictable ways.
Does Romano Fenati deserve a life ban? Life is
a very long time. Fenati is just 22-years-old, old
enough to know better, but still young enough
to struggle with self control.
I know that my 22-year-old self was a
walking disaster of a human being. It took me
a while to find my feet, and become a little less
of a disaster. With age, and with guidance,
perhaps Fenati can learn to control his inner
demons and channel his aggression. It is hard
to change a person’s underlying character. But
with time, you can learn to manage it better.
The trouble for Fenati right now is that other
riders may simply refuse to ride with him, after
Out of Control
The problem is not even that Fenati grabbed
Manzi’s brake lever, but that a) the idea
popped into his head; and b) he couldn’t stop
himself actually carrying out the idea. If you
banned every rider who had such an idea pop
into their head, you would have a pretty empty
field. But racing, like life, is about self control,
managing your emotions, and choosing the
best course of action. Anyone who gets to b)
deserves to be banned.
70 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
what he did. Any team signing Fenati may
have to not only persuade sponsors and
the federations to give him a chance, but
also to contain a baying mob of riders and
fans calling for his blood.
And all this talk of Romano Fenati
glosses over another serious problem. If
you thought the battle was fi erce at the
front of the Moto2 and Moto3 classes, in
the middle of the pack, it is relentless and
The battle for a podium could involve
bonus money for positions scored.
The battle for the fi nal point can be the
difference between racing next season,
and having to raise another €200,000 or
more to pay for a ride. Or worse, the end of
a career as a professional motorcycle racer.
Why doesn’t Race Direction catch all
this blood and gore further down the
fi eld? They are reliant on the footage shot
by the Dorna cameras around the track,
and by the many CCTV cameras which
line the circuit. But all those cameras
don’t necessarily capture every crime and
misdemeanour which happens on track.
Hard passes, physical contact, and
deliberate attempts to run each other off
the track can slip between the cracks,
as the cameras switch back from one
group to another. This is where so many
real battles are fought. And this is where
poor behaviour is learned. Intervening here
would be a big help.
What does the future hold for Romano
Fenati? In the short term, a period of
inactivity. And unless something changes in
his surroundings, more of the same in the
But, with coaching, guidance, and the
right approach, he might be allowed back
into the bosom of a racing paddock, and
he might even start to perform up to his
To be frank, Fenati is not the only
rider who would benefi t from such an
approach. Most young motorcycle
racers grow up learning that the only
thing that counts is riding the bike,
and being fi t enough to do so.
But so much of motorcycle
racing is about mental control,
emotional control, and
managing yourself as a
human, that professional
coaching is required.
As long as young
kids are being throw into
the shark pool of World
without any idea of what
awaits them, riders like Fenati
will continue to be a danger
to themselves, and to
other riders. Time for a
new, more professional
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 7 1
Jesse Boshoff gets his
It’s every young motorcycle racer’s dream to get a shot at
racing abroad, but reality is not many get the chance. Jesse
Boshoff is a very talented young SA rider who got a dream shot
and went over to race in Spain. Jesse tells us his story.
Words by Jesse Boshoff
To me racing has always been
something I’ve always dreamt about.
Unfortunately, it’s a very difficult
sport to get into and make a career out of,
especially if you are from SA.
I’ve been fortunate enough to have had my
Dad and a few true friends and supporters in
my corner. This has helped me stay motivated
and keep working at the dream.
So, how does one make the dream a
reality? Small steps, countless hours of
training and a lot of tears. Well, that’s how I
achieved my dream of racing in Spain.
It wasn’t an overnight task. I personally
have been trying to make my International
debut since 2014. We were invited back
then to do the Triumph Triple challenge.
Unfortunately, we had very little time to plan
with only a weeks notice before the race.
I tried again in 2015 with EJC (European
junior cup). We decided to rather race National
SuperGP with Emtek on a Yamaha R6. This
didn’t last long as our main sponsor pulled out.
Lucky for us we didn’t commit to EJC.
From then till now I have sent countless
emails, have had some communication issues
with teams in Spain, due to the language
barrier and have had several offers in BSB, but
they could not provide me with the information
I needed to make the race a possibility.
This time I tried a different tactic. Instead
of looking for a team to race in, I asked for
help and advice. I couldn’t think of anyone
more experienced in racing around the world
than Australian rider Anthony West #13. He
has raced in over 10 different championships
around the world, so who better to ask I
I emailed Anthony asking advice, as a
South African racer with a small budget, a
huge passion and a very limited amount of
track time. “Where would be the best place to
go to make one’s international debut?”
I honestly thought the message was going
straight to his spam box. Not minutes later
did he reply, Via Instagram... honestly I think
Thumbs up in the pits
from Jesse and Ant West.
he was stalking me, but non-the-less he
His advice was to race in Spain. If I wanted
to test myself against very talented riders, be
in a country with many circuits and live in a
similar climate and time zone then Spain was
the only option. Well, that and the fact that
he runs a team in the Spanish RFME CEV
This was great advice, but the real shock
was him inviting me to come and race as a
wildcard at Valencia.
Now this was all great news, the only
problem was I didn’t just want to go race.
72 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
After a few difficult seasons in racing, a rider
starts to doubt their own ability. Blaming ones
equipment can only set your mind at ease
for that long. I needed to know if there was
any chance I could make it as a racer, not
necceseraly as a high earning MotoGP star.
I needed to know if it would be possible
with the right coaching, training and
guidance that I could make a success out of
this career choice.
Anthony agreed that I would be assessed,
given the team had all the necessary tools.
Data logging, telemetry, a group of ex-riders
as the pit crew and one of the best riders in
the world as a team mate. What better way is
there to fully test a rider’s ability?
So now that you have the background of
this whole trip let’s get to the fun part - the
We landed in Spain on the Wednesday
before the race, arriving at the circuit later
that night. We had a casual meeting with
the team, setting up of the bike and walking
around the pits to take everything in.
Thursday was an Unofficial practice
day. Our first session was amazing. I could
honestly not stop smiling. Riding around such
an iconic circuit was unbelievable. The layout,
the grip levels, the upkeep of the facility and
professionalism of the teams and riders was
After my first 12 laps the team were
already blown away. I had managed a 1,43.8
in my first session.
Throughout the day I kept improving. The
team and I had not expected me to be on
such good pace so soon. I ended off day one
on a 1,41.8. this was only 4 seconds off the
fastest pace of the day.
Friday morning the team made a
huge setup change, as they adjusted the
bikes setup for the pace we were doing.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t the right change and
after 6 laps I ended up in the kitty litter. The
bike was a little worse for wear.
Ant West showing Jesse
the way around.
The team worked flat-out to repair the
bike but were unable to get it ready for any
of the remaining 3 sessions. With a total 38
laps around Valencia I would start Saturday
morning, right after a crash and complete bike
rebuild going into my 1st Qualifying session.
Now, if the crash, Rand-Euro exchange
and my first time out of Africa weren’t
already stress enough, imagine 30 small
Spanish men and women all on fully
prepped STK600 bikes flying around you as
you try settle into a rhythm.
All I can say is that it was madness. I
managed to get back onto my pace just before
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 73
the crash. 1,41,5 was my Qualifying 1
time. Now in Spain you get 2 sessions.
The best time set in either of your 2 x 25
minute Qualifying sessions gets used as
your grid position.
Improving from 25th on the grid was
not to be as it rained for the second QP
session. This was great news as I really
enjoy the rain. I went out right behind
Anthony, with him being a wet weather
expert I thought I might be able to learn
something. To his surprise he learnt that
it also rains in SA, I managed to stay
relatively close. Anthony was sitting in
P2, I was in P4.
This was a huge confident boost for
me. The rain stopped and the circuit
then began to dry. Most riders pitted
and went out on intermediates as the
dry line started to form. Anthony and I
couldn’t as Dunlop only make wets and
cut slicks for our class. This pushed
us down to P11 and P19. Obviously
the team were ecstatic with this and all
started to dance… Rain dance.
Sunday, literally, was such a beautiful,
clear day. Perfect for racing, but
unfortunately not for us. Our race started
at 2pm and by that time there were a
few intermittent clouds, but nothing
that spelled rain. Starting position was
25th on the grid, made up of 34 riders,
majority on Yamaha R6’s.
I got off to a decent start, until turn 2
when I got bombed by about 6 riders. I
knew it was a long race so I maintained
my composure and settled into a rhythm.
I made up a number of positions getting
up into 22nd, from there it became a
bit more challenging. Every time I made
up 1 or 2 places in the turns I would
religiously lose 2 to 3 on the straights.
Our Kawasaki ZX6R had no answer for
the power of the Yamaha’s. Stuck in a 5
rider battle for 20th, I started getting really
frustrated as the group ahead pulled
away. All I could hope for was to finish
ahead of the 5 riders I was racing with.
On the last lap, I worked on getting as
close to the front of the group as I could.
74 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018
Sitting in 22nd. After 18 laps of fl at-out
racing. A lot of heart. Two corners to go.
Don’t crash. Finish the race.
With all of that on the mind fl ying through a
4th gear rev limiter corner I saw the two riders
ahead of me brake for the fi nal turn. I didn’t.
Then I did, timing the late braking to
perfection, I stormed up the inside of both
riders executing a block pass, I put my head
down and elbows up with my sights set on
the fi nish line. Knowing the speed of the
Yamaha’s, I was sure it was going to be a
photo fi nish, it was and I was in front of both.
20th Overall on track and 17th in the stock
class. That, for us, was a win on its own.
We came to Spain, rode around the famous
Riccardo Tormo Circuit de Valencia, crashed,
came back, qualifi ed in wet and dry conditions
and managed to close the gap to only 3
seconds off my team mate’s lap time with a PB
of a 1.40.7. It was truly the full experience.
I cannot thank Anthony, The DR7,
MaxiGass, Dani Rivas and the rest of the
guys in the team, enough for this life changing
Now for the cherry on top. This was
supposed to be a once off wildcard ride, but
with the impressions we made on, and most
importantly off circuit, we have been invited to
continue racing with the team and participate
in the fi nal round of the championship at
Jerez this month.
We now have a foot in the door for next
season. I am honestly at a loss for words.
Thank you to my Mom and Dad for giving
me the chance to chase my dreams, to my
family and friends that have always been
by my side, everyone that believed in me,
supported me and to everyone that bought
a raffl e ticket to help us take our fi rst step
towards this dream.
Lastly thank you to all my sponsors, without
your help this would never have materialized.
• Ridefast Magazine
• Dynamic Crago Solutions
• Lebrock Logistics
• MVC – Marketing Vision Captured
• Rehab Racing
• MotoMate Edenvale
• We Sell Parts
• GFP International
• Henderson Racing Products
Roll on Jerez!!!
Right: The post Anthony West put out on his Instagram
about Jesse’s time in Spain.
Jesse Boshoff gets his
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2018 75
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