RideFast Magazine June 2019

RobRidefast

SA's best motorcycle magazine

JUNE 2019 TYRE TESTING GRIPPING STUFF BATT’S NEW UHP SLICK TYRES. BATT’S NEW UHP SLICK TYRES. AFFORDABLE GRIP FOR THE MASSES. JUNE 2019 RSA R35.00 9 772075 405004 19006 FOURPLAY 1100 V4S vs 1000 V4R ROSSI’S Rascals A CLOSER LOOK AT THE RIDERS UNDER VALE’S WING.


DUNLOPTYRESSA S594/A


THE TEAM: EDITOR & DESIGNER: Rob Portman rob@ridefast.co.za 082 782 8240 ROB PORTMAN PUBLISHER: Glenn Foley foleyg@mweb.co.za 072 177 0621 ADVERTISING: Sean Hendley bestbikemagazines @yahoo.com 071 684 4546 OFFICE & SUBSCRIPTIONS: Anette anette.acc@mweb.co.za 011 979 5035 CONTRIBUTORS: Sheridan Morais Brad Binder Darryn Binder Gerrit Erasmus GP Fever.de Eugene Liebenberg Niel Philipson Greg Moloney Daniella Kerby Michael Powell Brian Cheyne Donovan Fourie Shaun Portman 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. I type this as I’m about to climb onto a plane and head off to Port Elizabeth to commentate on some Endurance sport car racing – yes, I do 4-wheels stuff as well. Another busy month has come and gone and we have managed to cook up another top-quality issue for you. In a recent review done by RacerZone RideFast magazine was once again voted the best motorcycle magazine in SA. We are very proud of this and this is the 2nd time we have won this award. Big thanks to all that voted and supported and if you haven’t seen it go to the RacerZone Facebook page and check out the overall review – makes for a good read. What really sets us apart from the rest and puts us on top of the tree is the exclusive content we are able to get our hands on. I have now been doing RideFast (formally MCSA) since 2009 and along the way have been lucky enough to meet some readers with very special motorcycles. Over time those readers have become really good friends of mine and we have managed to build up strong, trusting relationships, something that is so vital in today’s world. Last month we were the only magazine to bring you the test on Ducati’s new V4R and this month, one month ahead of schedule, we bring you part 2 of a 4-part test. We test the V4R up against its bigger brother the V4S. A great test which I was able to pull off at the recent Ducati Day held at Kyalami. Speaking of Ducati, the Italian brand now has a new offi cial importer here in SA. Toby venter and his team have handed the reins over to Mr. Jos Matthysen, a very passionate biker and Ducati fan so the brand is very much in good hands. The new dealership will be situated in Centurion as part of a 3-level motorcycling paradise called “The World of Motorcycling”. The offi cial launch of the store happens literally as we go to print with this issue, so we will bring you all the info and pics from the launch in our next issue. It’s just great to see positive steps being made in the industry, despite the tough times. Our cover story this month comes from the ever-growing Monocle Racing Series, which is gathering more and more popularity by the day. It’s proved to be a wellworthy way to go racing that’s affordable, fun and most importantly, safe. We took our Honda CBR1000RR and fi tted it with the new BATT UHP slick tyres and let Shaun go have some fun out at Phakisa. Lots of things are happening on our CBR1000RR machine with some awesome new parts being fi tted. And just wait and see what we have going on for next month… As I said I am literally climbing on a plane so will have to keep this month’s column short and sweet. I will however have time to announce the winner of the Scorpion EXO Combat lid we ran in last month’s issue. Readers were asked to read the world launch test I did on the new Husqvarna Svartpilen 701 and name the 3 stores mentioned that stock the new Jet styled lid from Scorpion. I was overwhelmed by the response we got and very surprised that every entry got the answers right – well done all, proves that you can and do like to read this fi ne magazine. And the winner is… Mr. Justin Stevens. Congratulations Justin, no doubt you are going to love your new Scorpion lid. Big thanks again to all who entered and to Henderson racing Products for the awesome prize. Make sure you check out another really exciting comp we feature in this issue, where you could win a brand-new Yamaha R1, or a Rossi Replica AGV lid or VR46 hamper. Don’t miss it! Until next month make sure you subscribe to my YouTube channel and check out my product reviews, bike tests and Talking MotoGP Podcasts with Donovan Fourie, who by the way put together such an amazing article on the VR46 Academy – trust me you are going to love it!!! Ok I have to go, cheers! RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 1


J U N E 2 0 1 9 PG28: GRIPPING STUFF We fi t the new BATT UHP slick tyres to our Honda CBR1000RR and go racing at Phakisa. PG34: TESTED NEW YAMAHA MT07 PG52: FOURPLAY DUCATI PANIGALE V4S & V4R DO BATTLE PG42: FEATURE THE VR46 ACADEMY RIDERS PG62: WORLD LAUNCH TEST The all-new Indian fl attracker inspired FTR1200 tested in California. PG70: TESTED KYMCO 400 & HONDA GOLDWING 2 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


FIND ROADS WITH NO NAME - To call yourself a real adventurer, you need to lay claim to visiting places that few others have been before. Designed to provide explorers with real-world travel capabilities and deliver unrivalled offroad performance, the new KTM 790 ADVENTURE is made for you to go find these roads less travelled. 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. Photo: F. Lackner


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Triple XL 2019 Triumph Rocket 3 Fans of sheer largeness, pour yourself a bucket of champagne. The biggest, baddest production motorcycle in the world is back, and it’s bigger then ever before. The new 2.5-liter Triumph Rocket 3 TFC is a trailer-pulling beast of a thing that’ll dwarf just about anything on the market today. If bigger is better, than the new Rocket 3 TFC is the best. After teasing us a couple of months back Triumph have now satisfi ed our addiction for more info by releasing further stats and info on their latest beast - The Rocket III. Back in 2004, Triumph introduced the bike with the largest displacement engine of any production motorcycle. The Rocket III of that year, impressive as it was on the technical side, was nothing compared to what the British bike builder announced recently. As it returns for the 2019 model year, the Rocket gets named 3 instead of III, but more importantly receives an even bigger engine and the “highest level of premium specifi cation equipment,” as the company says. On the new bike, the size of the engine has increased from 2,294 cc to 2,500 cc, to make sure no other machine snatches its title way. The inline three-cylinder unit makes the Rocket 3 the most powerful Triumph ever, as it develops in excess of 170 hp and packs 221 Nm of torque, the highest of any production motorcycle. Even if the engine is bigger, the weight of the bike has been reduced by 40 kg compared to the previous generation. Emphasizing the slimmer body are all the modern design cues like LED headlights, single-sided swinging arm and a carbon fi bre body. Triumph went out of their way to make the bike a worthy platform for today’s available technology. It features a new set of TFT instruments, cornering ABS and Traction Control, four riding modes and Shift Assist. Optionally, customers can go for Bluetooth, Google navigation and integrated GoPro control. As per Triumph, there will not be all that many Rocket 3s made. The Brits are targeting a production run of only 750 units, 225 of which are to be shipped to North America. Each of the bikes will be offered with a numbered plaque, a branded rucksack, an indoor bike cover and, why not, a letter signed by Triumph’s CEO Nick Bloor, No confi rmed price yet for SA customers but we have been told that there will be limited stock arriving closer to the end of the year and customers are required to book and pay a deposit to confi rm orders. Triumph South Africa - 011 444 4441. 4 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


Pic by www.racepics.co.za ARE YOU UP FOR THE CHALLENGE? COME FULFILL YOUR RACING DREAM IN AN AFFORDABLE, SAFE AND COMFORTABLE ENVIROMENT. MOTORSPORT SA APPROVED! CHALLENGE ALL RIDERS ARE WELCOME! Catering for all trackday and street bike riders wanting to race around SA’s top racetracks. Affordable entry plus great pricing on Bridgestone race tyres. For more information or to join contact Johan Fourie on 083 375 6941 or email brunchrun@gmail.com. You can also visit www.zwratkops.co.za.


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Indian’s “Appaloosa” custom Scout build. Indian celebrates 100 years of the Scout with this bizzare custom Scout build which is set to race in the Sultans of Sprint series in Europe. Sultans of Sprint is a wacky and fun-looking event that wends its way around various European towns, celebrating the custom building scene. Points are scored not only on straight-line drag race results, but on “style, creativity and craziness” as well – a setup that encourages a very fun mix of machinery and an atmosphere all of its own. Indian Motorcycle has had plenty of fun with prior Sultans events, most memorably in 2017 when it put together a 185-hp, Nitrousbreathing Scout build it named after a famous headless chicken. But as quick as “Miracle Mike” was, this year’s entry will trounce it on style and creativity points. Built for Indian by Workhorse Speedshop and set to race in Italy, France and Germany over the next few months, “Appaloosa” – named for a famously fast American horse breed – also takes the 1200cc Scout as a starting point, to celebrate 100 years since the fi rst Indian Scout made its debut back in 1919. It’s hard to look at the open-nosed front fairing of this thing and not think of early jet fi ghters like the Mig-15 and F-86 Sabre. Behind that, the fuel tank has been chopped down into just a lightweight cover that sits over a tiny 2.5-liter fuel cell the provides just enough power for a burnout and a run down the strip. This time, there’ve been no internal engine modifi cations, but Workhorse has bumped the stock Scout’s 100 hp up to 130 hp with the addition of a nitrous oxide system, an Akrapovic exhaust, direct intake, a racing ECU and a Power Commander to manage fueling. The team has tossed the stock belt drive for a chain, and stuck on a quickshifter for fast gear changes at full throttle. Much of the back-end of the bike is custom, including a stretched aluminum swingarm designed to add length to the bike and help keep it from wheelieing on the drag strip. Likewise, there’s a new subframe and seat unit, with lower clip-on bars at the front, so the rider will lie stretched out over the tank with their butt up against a backstop to help keep weight forward. Suspension is from Ohlins – an STX 36 piggyback shock and Retro 43 forks with a steering damper to control headshake – while brakes are 4D Aerotecs on dual small 230- mm front discs designed to reduce inertia and aid acceleration. Beringer also helped out by machining the hand controls and buttons, as well as machining some of the other Workhorse-designed parts like the swingarm. Ready to roll in the Factory class after around 700 hours of design and fabrication by the Workhorse team, the Appaloosa will also sport a heck of a rider – indeed, possibly the best Grand Prix motorcycle racer never to win a championship. California’s Randy Mamola, who placed second in no less than four 500cc GP racing championships, has signed on to pilot this creation in Monthlery on the 22nd and 23rd of June, and Leonberg on the 31st of August and 1st of September. 6 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Aprilia SVX by Simone Conti Motorcycles. Simone Conti is a genius Italian custom bike builder and his latest creation takes one of the most impressive motorcycle engines ever produced and puts it into a custom-built chassis that will leave you speechless. In our mind, the Aprilia SXV 550 (and its smaller sibling, the Aprilia SXV 450) is one of the most impressive motorcycles made in modern time…with one caveat. The 77° v-twin SXV made headlines with its impressive power fi gures (70hp for the 550cc version), as well as its tendency to blow itself apart. A true race bike with lights, the SXV line was a bit of a disaster for Aprilia, in terms of customer reliability, and unfortunately that made the limited number of supermoto and dirt bikes produced by Noale very short-lived with their owners. So, it warms our heart whenever we see the SXV engine used for other projects, if for no other reason than it makes us wonder what could have been. Take for example this sport bike custom from Simone Conti Motorcycles, which turns the SXV into something that is quite far from the original design intent. Low and fast, SCM’s Aprilia SXV is a hard tail design with a doublewishbone front-end and sack of snakes exhaust system that exists under the seat. For bonus points, it tips the scales at a true 122kg. Everything but the motor is the work of SCM, with metal bodywork giving shape to the machine and helping to frame the v-twin engine in its custom chassis. SCM’s creation pleases us greatly, and not just because it uses one of the most intriguing motorcycle engines to come in the last 20 years. We thought you would enjoy it as well. Source: A&R 8 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Ducati SA gets new importer and exciting new premises. Ducati announces new distributor for South Africa, which will be situated in a massive dealership based in Pretoria. After a successful reorganisation of the Ducati brand in South Africa under the guidance of LSM Distributors, an agreement has been reached with MFE Motors (Pty) Ltd led by Mr. Jos Matthysen - to acquire the distribution rights for Ducati in the region. Jos is a successful businessman with a long time passion for Ducati brand. In a recent statement, Mr. Toby Venter, CEO of LSM Distributors said: “We looked closely at possible suitors to build on the solid foundation we have established over the past 5 years. We are confi dent that MFE Motors will build on this strong foundation, continuing the service and distribution network that Ducati customers deserve. Jos Matthysen has demonstrated enthusiasm and business expertise, a combination that is sure to succeed for Ducati”. “We look forward to developing the iconic Ducati and Ducati Scrambler brands in the South African market, proudly taking care of current and future owners’ community”, concluded Jos Matthysen, Director of MFE Motors. The new Ducati SA premises will be situated at the World of Motorcycling building in Centurion Pretoria - 120 Akkerboom Street (old Executive Cars building) - a three level massive all-in-one motorcycle dealership featuring Ducati as the main feature on the fi rst level, Kawasaki Centurion on the 2nd level and Sherco motorcycles and accessories on the 3rd level. The new Ducati importers have already brought in over 15million Rands worth of stock, including some more V4R’s. They will also feature the full range of Ducati spares, accessories and clothing while a nine bench workshop has been setup to cater for all service and repair needs. The offi cial launch of the new shop is happening as we type this (1st June) and we will feature the full review in next months issue. For now if you would like further information please contact MFE Motors (Pty) Ltd sales department: Roy 084 729 9452 or Bruce 074 261 6872. Primrose M/C turns 50. In this month of June 2019 Primrose Motorcycles celebrates its milestone 50th anniversary. The renowned dealership started trading in 1969 by Chicco Gasparini and Tony Liberatore. PMCC have had the honour in dealing with many brands over the years but in the last 30 odd year’s have been loyal to: Suzuki, Kawasaki, Aeon, SYM and including Puzey products over the last few years. They attribute their long history and success mainly to after sales service, relationships with old and new customers, of which they greatly appreciate. In the photo’s – PMCC in 1971, and current premises revamped in 2018. Some of the staff have been with them on average 35 years. They extend their gratitude to all their customer’s from past and present and hope to continue for more years to come. Pay them a visit to reminisce the years and check out any specials they have in store. Contact them on (011) 828 9091. VR46 merch now on takealot.com Finally, the new all Valentino Rossi fans have been waiting for. A full range of official VR46 apparel and merch is now available for purchase on takealot.com. There are some great deals on currently with up to 40% off selected items so we suggest you hurry along to the site and get some new gear now. If you feel like seeing and feeling the new range in person then pop into the World of Yamaha Concept store and see the full range, along with Maverick Vinales, SKY VR46 and Yamaha gear. 10 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


ducati.com Developed with Powered by New Panigale V4 A new opera Here it is, the new Panigale V4 with its MotoGP-derived technology applied to engine, frame and electronics. The most powerful V4 delivering 214 hp, the brand new “Front Frame” and the total control offered by state-of-the-art electronics. All this in a stunning, muscular, athletic body. The new Panigale V4 was born to deliver a riding experience closer than ever to that of a race bike. SOUTH AFRICA Tel: Roy 084 729 9452 or Bruce 074 261 6872. Centurion Office Park, Cnr John Forster and Akkerboom, Pretoria.


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Huge new Yamaha dealership in Pretoria East. Wondering around Pretoria visiting dealers we happened to notice some huge new Yamaha branding on the corner of Simon Vermooten Street and Lynwood road in Pretoria East. Our natural curiosity gets the better of us and we stop in. Turns out Tuning Fork (Pty) Ltd is opening a huge new store in the old Lexus premises. We got there while they were still busy moving in and had a chat to Andre and Paul who took us for a walk around the new shop. It’s BIG, very, very BIG and beautiful with a state of the art workshop, huge parts and accessories department and monstrous showroom for the boats, jet ski’s and bikes. They have, or will have everything in stock by the time they open offi cially in June, with plenty of demo bikes to ride. They are currently head hunting some of the best people in the industry to staff the new mega dealership to give you the customer the best possible experience. Apart from all the bikes and boats our favourite part of the store is the fully stocked offi cial VR46 apparel and merchandise section, so if you are MotoGP and Rossi crazy you have to pop in and have a gander for yourself. Call them on 083 522 2966 (Paul Kersten SALES) - 082 834 6242 (Gerhard Moolman DEALER PRINCIPAL). Address: Lynnwood Rd, Die Wilgers, Pretoria. More news coming soon. New Husqvarna West now open. A Stunning store - the team hosted a launch to celebrate the opening of the store, complete with the full range of Husqvarna motorcycles, parts and accessories. They also had the official unveiling of the new Husqvarna Svartpilen 701 (which we featured last month), which is now available in SA. It really is an amazing dealership and a true haven for any and all Husqvarna nutters. Go check it out at Cnr Hendrik Potgieter Rd & Zandvliet Rd, Roodepoort, Johannesburg. +27 10 443 3776 info@husqvarnawest.co.za Redstar Raceshop now offers leather repair service The Redstar Raceshop is based at the popular race track situated near Delmas and they have a fully stocked shop with all the latest motorcycle accessories for you and your motorcycle. A big new addition to the shop is a leather repair service - offering all repair work to leather suits, gloves and boots. They can also stitch on badges, so sponsor logos or your name/nickname. The work is not done in house and is sent out to nearby repair centre but we can say the process is easy and the work is really good. For more info contact 079 219 3182. 12 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


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. Photo: R. Schedl www.husqvarna-motorcycles.com CHALLENGE THE STATUS QUO The SVARTPILEN 701 is simple, raw, authentic and thrilling to ride. Its design captures some of the original spirit that originally made motorcycling great, and that still fuels the imagination of riders today. Its flat track-inspired design exudes a timeless appeal that will continue to stand the test of time. Riding this powerful single-cylinder street explorer is an experience that recaptures the excitement of those first sparks of inspiration, while its SIMPLE. PROGRESSIVE. design is a paradox that challenges the status quo of motorcycling.


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Win a brand new Yamaha R1 with Ridgeway Racebar! The popular motorsports inspired sports bar out in Greenstone JHB is once again giving customers a chance to win a brand new motorcycle. If you have not yet experienced Ridgeway Racebar out in Greenstone JHB then you cannot call yourself a true motorsports fan. It’s every F1 and MotoGP nutters heaven with plenty of race memorabilia scattered all over the place along with some of the most exotic motorcycles you will ever lay your eyes on. Their service is great, food is more some and they offer every single beverage imaginable - from liquor to milkshakes. It has become the hub for many F1 and MotoGP fans over the years to enjoy all the racing action live on the many TV’s plasted all around the smoking and non smoking sections. They also have huge space outside for customers to relish the fresh air whilst enjoying their food, drinks and racing action. Last year, Ridgeway Racebar did the unthinkable and gave away 2 brand new motorcycles. They started off with a new Honda CBR1000RR and then moved on to a Triumph 765 Street Triple. For 2019 they are about to give away a third bike - a brand new Yamaha R1 valued at over R240k. This year they will also be giving out a 2nd place prize (a brand new Rossi Replica AGV helmet) and 3rd placed prize (a VR46 merch hamper). To enter, simply get down to Ridgeway Racebar, spend R350 or more and receive an entry form. Place your entry form along with paid bill into the entry box to qualify. The comp starts from 2nd June 2019 and winners will be announced on Sunday the 17th of November after the MotoGP race action from Valencia. Winners must be present to collect their prizes and if not a re-draw will be done until a winner is selected. We as RideFast Magazine are once again proud to be the official media partner for this great competition. Good luck to all and we will see you at Ridgeway Racebar for all the LIVE MotoGP action! Go Faster than ever with JR Racing. They say that going fast is a sickness and if that is true then John and Roland of JR Racing at Zwartkops racetrack are really sick, even their vacuum cleaner has a flashed ECU and a turbo on their fridge. They are also the official agents in South Africa for all WOOLICH RACING products including all their race tools packages and also supply and fit Quickshifters, launch Control systems and Auto blippers to any and all makes of superbikes. They are well known for their ECU flashing and onboard software engineering work but they are also the pro’s at doing turbo conversions and turbo upgrades, nitrous conversions, profiled cam’s, gas flowing heads, motor balancing, big bore piston kits, undercutting gearboxes and basically anything that makes a bike go faster. They can disable top speed limiters, gear restrictions, hard cut fuel limiters and can enable most functions hidden in your OE on board package such as shift assist and various mapping restrictions. So, over and above all the mad ass go faster stuff John and Roland do they also offer complete engine rebuilds and all motor engineering, accident rebuilds, general day to day servicing, brake discs and pads, tyres, chains and sprockets and even extended swingarm conversions, restoration projects and bike customisation. They are a one stop comprehensive workshop and go faster shop capable of doing anything you can imagine. If you want to make your bike run really fast, need prep on a race or track bike or just need a good service or some trouble shooting done go see them at Zwartkops racetrack, just off the R55, west of Pretoria or give them a call on the following numbers; Roland: 082 850 2882 and John: 082 643 3562. Or drop them an E-Mail: roland@jrracing.co.za, john@jrracing.co.za. 14 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


EYES OF DARKNESS Inspired by the Dark Side of Japan, the MT-07 has taken the world by storm – and is now one of Yamaha’s best selling bikes of all time. And it’s easy to see why so many riders have chosen to ride this exciting Hyper Naked. R114,950 Yamaha Blue Ice Fluo Tech Black Including VAT. www.yamaha.co.za · +27 11 259 7600 · Facebook: Yamaha Southern Africa · Instagram: @yamahasouthafrica AVAILABLE AT YOUR LOCAL YAMAHA DEALER. E&OE.


All the NEWS proudly brought to you by HJC HELMETS Limited Edition Super Katana coming? MV Agusta F3XX An 800cc cousin to the machine that secured a podium fi nish in the most recent World Supersport round, the MV Agusta F3XX sees its Imola debut as good timing then. Then when you consider the 160hp on tap, and 145kg sans fuel (156kg all fueled up), the spec sheet for the F3XX is certainly impressive. And honestly, the bike should be impressive. For those who don’t know, Reparto Corse is a separate entity in the MV Agusta family – a completely difference business unit from the bike-maker, in the same way that the Castiglioni Research Center (CRC) is separate from the Varese factory. For MV Agusta Reparto Corse, racing is their only business. So, while it is strange to see the group build something for public consumption, it is done not in a large manufacturing way, but instead in a hand-built, small-volume manner. In other words, it isn’t going to be cheap. In fact, Reparto Corse isn’t even willing to talk pricing, instead asking those so inclined to reach out to them personally for a quote, as what you see described here is only a starting point for what the race shop can build…and they can build whatever you are willing to afford. To get things started though, they have a motorcycle that drips in carbon fi bre, including the fairings themselves. Everything on the F3XX comes from a racing ethos. The wiring harness has been rebuilt, shortened, and has an integrated datalogger. An AiM MXS1.2 TFT dash is used, instead of the stock LCD unit, and SC-Project has built a 3-1 full system exhaust. The list goes on, of course. Our personal favourite touch is that the bike already has potentiometers installed and wired up, so you can begin breaking down your lap times by corner and study the performance of your suspension, throttle, braking pressure, and so forth. Of course the MV Agusta F3XX looks the business too, thanks to the incredible design that the Italian brand has created with the MV Agusta F3 street bike. But, if you live on the track, and want the ultimate expression of that idea, what Reparto Corse has built should be considered the only way forward. It is mouth-watering. Source: A&R. The rumour-mill in Japan is that Suzuki is planning a limited-edition ‘Super Katana’ that is effectively a ‘R’ version of the bike that was launched by the Japanese factory earlier this year. What’s being said in Japan and being shown here in this illustration from top Japanese outlet YoungMachine is this: the supposed new bike will appear sharing parts from the current GSX-R1000R at the front end (high-end suspension and brakes) and GSX-R1000R electronics (so, possibly more power than the current Katana’s 149bhp) the bike will still run with the standard Katana’s GSX-R K5- derived motor and frame. The swingarm will be considerably different on the 1135R though with a heavily-braced racing item. The riding position will be different too with clip-on handlebars that will sit lower than on the current bike and a lower front fairing to follow the sweeping line from the bridge of the petrol tank forward and down in an aggressive line. As for the small wings placed under the nosefairing? Time will tell. Motul SA announces new distribution partnership with Bikewise. Motul SA has announced that as of June 1st, 2019, Motul motorcycle products will be distributed throughout South Africa by Bikewise - who are part of the KMSA Group and also do barnds such as Arai and Pirelli. “We’re excited to have this opportunity to partner with Motul SA and make their quality products more accessible to more South African motorcycle owners,” commented Chris Speight – Managing Director of KMSA, the holding company for Bikewise. Mercia Jansen, Motul SA Area Manager for Southern and Eastern Africa, echoed these sentiments, saying that “In Bikewise, Motul has found a motorcycle distribution partner who shares our values and commitment to quality in all areas. They have a 26-year legacy of outstanding service in the market and we have no doubt they will deliver the service and support our customers expect.” Motorcycle accessory stores, workshops and dealers are encouraged to contact Bikewise (using the details below) to find out more about the Motul range they will be distributing. For more information go to http://www.bikewise.co.za/ or call Bikewise on: 011 566 0333 16 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


PADDOCK NEWS Monster Energy Yamaha signs MotoGP eSport world champion. The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team has signed double MotoGP eSport world champion Lorenzo Daretti to represent the organisation in the 2019 season, becoming the fi rst factory gamer in the sport. Yamaha made the offi cial announcement on the eve of Jerez, where 19-year-old Daretti joined Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales in the presentation led by Yamaha Motor Racing managing director Lin Jarvis. Jarvis introduced a video showing the highlights of Daretti’s career, securing the 2017 and 2018 MotoGP eSport crowns. Daretti then entered the stage, which featured a custom Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP replica YZF-R1, sporting his race number of 58 and personal logo, ‘Trast73’. “First of all, I want to say welcome to Lorenzo,” commented Jarvis. “This is a very special occasion for him as well as Yamaha – he has become the fi rst offi cial eSport rider signed by a MotoGP team. It’s a signifi cant step, as we believe eSports and MotoGP can have a great shared future. “We have kept an eye on the developments of the MotoGP eSport championship in the last two years and Lorenzo struck us with his talent and professionalism and obviously also with his two world champion titles. The fact that he is also the proud owner of an R6 that he uses for track days was really the icing on the cake that convinced us he had to be our eSports rider! “It won’t be easy to make it a hat-trick crown. eSports is a sector that is rapidly growing, so the competition gets fi ercer every year, but we have a lot of faith in Lorenzo’s abilities and are looking forward to a good championship year for him. He will also be joining us at several MotoGP races and other Yamaha promotional events.” Daretti later showed off his skills on the big screens, doing a lap around Jerez on the MotoGP 18 game by Milestone, before he went on to challenge any journalists that dared to take on his eSport skills. “I’m really proud to start this new season as an offi cial eSport rider for Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP,” Daretti beamed. “Being a part of this team, which immediately welcomed me with open arms, is an indescribable emotion. “After two world titles, this year it will be harder to repeat myself because my rivals are getting more and more professional and determined. But the fact that I am the fi rst offi cially signed rider in the history of the sport gives me an extra boost and I will prepare myself to the maximum to get ready for the challenge. “I would like to thank Yamaha for the trust they have placed in me since day one and I’m looking forward to starting the 2019 championship qualifying and beginning this new adventure on the track.” As Daretti is a biker himself, he will also participate in various Yamaha events on-track. One of the fi rst of such opportunities will be the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp in May, which was established as one of the highlight activities promoting Yamaha’s goal to support, encourage, and train young talents from around the world. Brought to you by Pedrosa testing return to offer boost for Red Bull KTM A number of test laps completed at Mugello last month have confi rmed MotoGP legend Dani Pedrosa will be available for testing with Red Bull KTM Factory Racing from this month after adequately recovering from a collarbone injury. Pedrosa faced a broad and demanding process of physical recovery from the complex double stress fracture of the right collarbone, undergoing surgery in January and ultimately preventing him from participating in planned pre-season testing with the Austrian manufacturer. Team manager Mike Leitner is confi dent Pedrosa’s return to track will offer the factory outfi t a boost in the current MotoGP World Championship, as the brand continues to develop its RC16 machine. “It was very positive and also quite exciting to see Dani riding at Mugello and able to make those laps,” said Leitner. “It means his shoulder recovery has gone well and he is almost ready to start his new job for us. “We can all see how close MotoGP is in 2019 so far and how high the level is now, so to have Dani’s experience and his knowledge coming into the team and to the technicians back in the factory will only help us even more.” After retiring from professional racing last year, KTM signed Pedrosa to a multi-year contract to fulfi l the role as its lead test rider. 18 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


more confidence, in wet and dry conditions, even after 5000 KM * even after 5 000 KM, experience braking in the wet* 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


Brought to you by PADDOCK NEWS Andrea Dovizioso to Make DTM Debut 13-time MotoGP race winner Andrea Dovizioso will debut for Audi at the upcoming Misano DTM round this June 8th-9th. Having fi nished runner up in the top class of motorcycle racing for the past two years, 33-year-old Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso will switch to four wheels this month as the popular Italian makes his debut for the WRT customer Audi team in the German DTM category at Misano. Standing in for regular driver Pietro Fittipaldi for the Italian round of the predominantly German based series, Dovizioso will be further expanding his experience with four wheels following his class victory in the Lamborghini Supertrofeo race at Valencia back in 2016, and the currently third placed MotoGP rider is understandably hugely excited to be performing in the high level DTM series next month: “I love cars and I feel lucky to be able to race with the Audi RS 5 DTM,” said Andrea Dovizioso. “It’s tough to fi nd the time to prepare for it during the MotoGP season but I am really looking forward to compete in such a high-level context as the DTM.” ‘Dovi’ is no stranger to motor racing success, and it will be interesting to see how well the Italian fan favourite can adapt to such a competitive tin top category. With interesting guest drivers adding another element of intrigue into what is already a very attractive looking season for the newly refreshed DTM this year, Misano will certainly be an curious experiment for the series. Le Mans result proves KTM’s rivals are ‘not gods’ Pol Espargaro says fi nishing the MotoGP French Grand Prix just 5.9 seconds from race winner Marc Marquez in sixth proves KTM’s rivals are “not gods”. Espargaro - who trailed Marquez by 32s in last year’s Le Mans race - was unable to set a lap in qualifying due to a crash in Q2, but leaped up from 12th to sixth at the start and remained there for the entire 27 laps to secure KTM’s best-ever dry weather result. Hailing the result as “stunning”, Espargaro – though remaining grounded – believes KTM can be podium contenders this season if it can improve “a few things” with the RC16. “To see us there in that spot and see Valentino [Rossi] was in front of me, and he was pushing and he was not able to make a lot of gap to us - just in 27 laps two seconds – [and to see] Honda, Marc just pulling fi ve seconds on us is simply stunning,” said Espargaro. “We have seen they are not gods, and with a good bike, with a good performance all of the weekend, we can be there fi ghting. “Just we need a few things to be improved, and if we improve them I think we can fi ght for the podium even in other tracks. “But we need to keep our feet on the ground. In the next races we will try to do the same or similar and to improve the results of last races and last year.” KTM has taken a radically different approach to its chassis and suspension set-up compared to its rivals, in that it is the only manufacturer running a steel trellis frame design and WP suspension. Espargaro admits he is “happy to shout about” his Le Mans result to those who said KTM would have to alter its chassis and suspension philosophy to be competitive. “The improvements we tested on Wednesday at Jerez were really, really good,” he added. “Unluckily we couldn’t have it for the race in Jerez and couldn’t take profi t of it. But we’ve seen a big performance [gain] in testing on the Wednesday when we were alone. “I’m super pleased about that, and super happy to see this tubular chassis and WP suspension working. “I’m happy to shout out about it to those who said it would never work. It’s working.” 20 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


WIN A BRAND NEW YAMAHA R1 ROSSI REPLICA AGV HELMET & MERCH PACK ALSO UP FOR GRABS TO ENTER, SIMPLY SPEND R350 OR MORE AT RIDGEWAY RACEBAR AND RECEIVE AN ENTRY FORM. PLACE YOUR ENTRY FORM ALONG WITH PAID BILL INTO THE ENTRY BOX TO QUALIFY. DRAW WILL TAKE PLACE ON SUNDAY THE 17TH NOVEMBER AFTER THE VALENCIA MOTOGP RACE. WINNER MUST BE PRESENT. TEL: 011 609 0613 / ADDRESS: LOWER LEVEL STONERIDGE CENTRE, CNR MODDERFONTEIN & HEREFORD ROAD, GREENSTONE. Terms & conditions apply


PADDOCK NEWS Brought to you by Seven different winners from the seven races at the 2019 North west 200. After a week of glorious weather on the north coast for practice, qualifying and the Thursday evening’s superb race action, the heavens opened on the morning of Saturday’s race day at the 2019 fonaCAB International North West 200 in association with Nicholl Oils, creating challenging conditions for the event organisers. Delays caused by the bad weather were exacerbated by non racing incidents arising from the collision of a helicopter with power lines near Portrush. Despite the problems, the organisers battled on, eventually running four of the fi ve races in the scheduled programme. The Junction Retail and Leisure Park Supersport race was eventually completed at the third time of asking following red fl ag incidents in the fi rst two starts. Last year’s fastest newcomer at the North coast event, Davey Todd, claimed his fi rst international road race victory ahead of Derek McGee (B&W Kawasaki) and his Milenco Padgett’s Honda teammate, Conor Cummins. The Anchor Bar and Restaurant Complex Superbike race began on drying roads. Shortened from 6 to 4 laps it saw a huge battle develop between Quattro Plant Kawasaki teammates, Glenn Irwin and James Hillier with Irwin securing his 4th NW200 superbike victory in a row following a fi nal lap move at Juniper. Conor Cummins claimed his second podium of the day on the Milenco Padgett’s Honda Fireblade and Derek Sheils (Burrows/RK Racing Suzuki) had a brilliant ride to 4th ahead of Alastair Seeley on the PBM/Be Wiser Ducati. The JM Paterson Supertwins race produced a fairytale win for 55 year old Jeremy McWilliams (KMR/ Bayview Kawasaki) after a race long battle with Christian Elkin (Dynocentre NI Kawasaki). Another NW200 veteran, Michael Rutter took his second podium of the week on the KMR/ Bathams Kawasaki after fi nishing third in Thursday evening’s Supertwins race. The winner of Thursday’s encounter, Stefano Bonetti, crashed out of Saturday’s race at York. After a week that had already seen him claim a third place fi nish in Thursday’s Supersport race and a runner up position in the earlier Superbike event, James Hillier (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) secured the victory that saw him crowned Man of the Meeting in the CP Hire Superstock race. A newcomer to road racing and the North West, Richard Cooper put in a fantastic performance to claim runner up spot on the Buildbase Suzuki ahead of Davey Todd on the Penz13.com BMW. Dean Harrison (Silicone Kawasaki) was 4th with Swiss newcomer Lukas Maurer (Heidger Kawasaki) posting an impressive 5th ahead of Michael Rutter (Batham’s BMW). An extension to the road closing order allowed the parade lap of former North West 200 winning machines and riders to take place. With conditions deteriorating as the light faded on a long day of racing the race organisers decided to cancel the Merrow Superbike race after the sighting lap in the interests of safety. ‘I want to thank everyone who visited the 90th anniversary fonaCAB International North West 200 in association with Nicholl Oils this week.’ Event Director, Mervyn Whyte, MBE, said afterwards. ‘Despite Saturday’s less than perfect conditions we have enjoyed a fantastic week of road racing with unforgettable victories for the seven different winners in each of the seven races. Huge congratulations must go to all of the teams, competitors, sponsors, fans and volunteers who have made the running of the 90th event such a memorable occasion.’ 22 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


NOW ONLY CBR1000RR R209 999 Recommended retail price including VAT FREE quickshift & Autoblip included. SAVE R30,000 NOW ONLY R259 900 Recommended retail price including VAT SAVE CBR1000RR SP R40,000 CUTTING EDGE BLADES The CBR1000RR and SP Fireblades are significantly lighter, more powerful and feature cutting-edge electronics making them everything a Fireblade should be and more. Purchase any one of these models and enjoy free rider training and roadside assist. Find a dealer and book a test ride now! Visit your nearest Honda Dealer for full range: JHB: Honda Wing East Rand Mall: 011 826-4444 / Honda Wing Kyalami: 011 244-1900 / Honda Wing Sandton: 011 540-3000 / Honda Wing Westrand: 011 675-3222 PTA: Honda Wing Centurion: 012 663-8718 Honda Wing Menlyn: 012 470-9200 / Honda Wing Zambezi: 012 523-9500 VAAL: Honda Wing Riverside: 087 751-4023 KLERKSDORP: Honda Wing Klerksdorp: 018 468-1800 LIMPOPO: Honda Wing Thabazimbi: 014 777 1593 / Honda Wing Polokwane: 015 297-3291 PIETERMARITZSBURG: Honda Wing PMB: 033 345-6287 FREE STATE: Honda Wing Central: 051 430-1237 Honda Wing Bethlehem: 058 303-4864 NELSPRUIT: Honda Wing Nelspruit: 013 753-7324 RUSTENBURG: Honda Wing Rustenburg: 014 597-2550 KZN: Honda Wing Umhlanga: 031 580-7900 Honda Wing Pinetown: 031 714-3600 UPINTON: Honda Wing Upinton: 054 332-7759 RICHARDS BAY: Honda Wing Richards Bay: 035 789-6378 EAST LONDON: Honda Wing East London: 043 748-1017 GEORGE: Honda Wing George: 044 874-5435 CPT: Honda Wing CPT CBD: 021 487-5000 / Honda Wing Tygerberg: 021 910-8300 / Honda Wing East Cape: 041 581-0359 / Honda Wing Worcester: 023 347-2646 NAMIBIA: Honda Wing Windhoek: 00264 613-81600 SWAZILAND: Honda Wing Mmbabane: 00268 2505 2881 BOTSWANA: Honda Wing Gaborone: 00267 395 2652 www.honda.co.za / care@hondasa.co.za / Toll Free: 0800 466 321 / Facebook - Honda SA / Twitter - Honda SA.


LATEST ///ALPINESTARS HYPER DRYSTAR CAMO JACKET Just arrived at Fire It Up! accessories is the all-new Alpinestars Hyper Drystar Black / Camo / Red Jacket - A Sports style jacket designed for covering long distances as well as for general urban riding. With a practical, breathable and waterproof Drystar membrane, removable thermal lining and air inlets to easily adapt to different weather conditions. With homologated Bio- Armor protections on shoulders and elbows. From: FIU - 011 467 0737 Price: R5199.95 ///RICH SOLUTIONS RACING SKINS This is a product that every track day rider or racer should have in their racing bag. Undersuits or underskins are used by all top MotoGP and WSBK riders. It helps with sweating and more importantly helps you move around in your leather suit a bit better. Rich Solutions now offers a wide range of undersuits/skins. On the left Rob sports the standard black colour long-sleeve skin, which is also available in a wide range of standard colours, such as pink, green, yellow, orange, red, blue etc (pants also available in various colours). On the right is Rob sporting his new custom made RideFast undersuit - longsleeve top with long pants. “The quality is of high standards and the fit is great”, says Rob. Priced from only R380 for the top and R400 for the pants (standard colours) these really are well priced, high quality skins that all riders should have! From: Rich Solutions Price: Standard tops R380 / pants R400 - Custom top R950 / pants R400 ///FORMA ICE PRO FLOW Now here are some seriously good value-for-money track racing boots! Our test rider, Shaun Portman, has been handed a pair of the new top-of-the-line Forma Ice Pro Flow track boots to show off in tests and when racing. These are stylish Italian boots with massive amounts of protection and features. The Forma Ice Pro Flow boots are extremely technical and developed over a generation of MotoGP racing. Top riders such as Danilio Petrucci, Karel Abrahams, Simone Corsi, just to name a few, all sport these amazing style boots in the various MotoGP categories. Designed for maximum feel and performance, the vented micro-fiber construction provides maximum airflow and is protective and lightweight. The FCS system brings lateral stability and ankle support. A special compound race sole for feel and total control. Rebuildable for when you push the limits, comfortable like traditional Forma bloodlines.” From: DMD - 011 792-7691 Price: R5500 (Available in Flo yellow/wht & Blk/wht) OXFORD Premium Heated Grips Winter is upon us and all indications so far that it might be a properly cold one, here is a great product. As long time riders we have always noticed that no matter how good your gloves are your hands and fingers in particular get really cold. A lot of the high end bikes are coming out with heated grips which really make life a lot more comfortable, however some of the older bikes and entry level bikes do not. DMD has these really high quality heated grips at a very reasonable price. These grips have ergonomically engineered surface structures to optimise riding performance. Thicker rubber in areas of maximum wear, rhombus tread pattern for vibration absorption. Special block grip patterns with sipes for high levels of grip and diamond tread pattern where maximum grip is required. The grips features 5 heat settings, draws under 4A and has a battery saving mode. They are a universal fitment and work on most bikes with a stable charging system. Fitment is quite simple and with the clear instructions included can be fitted D.I.Y. if you have a little bit of technical aptitude, or you can have them fitted by the dealer you buy them from. Recommended Retail Price R1395.00 incl. VAT. Check out www. dmd.co.za or call 011 792 7691 to find your local stockist. MotoGP Replica Pocket Bikes Pocket Bikes SA have just released new MotoGP replica mini racers. Available in 50cc 2-stroke and 4-stroke 50cc, 3hp automatic air cooled machines with electric start. Prices starting from R6500. Call Pocketbike SA now on (021) 2027583 or visit their website www.pocketbikesa.co.za. 24 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


NOW AVAILABLE AT YOUR NEAREST SHOEI STOCKIST The answer for every condition. www.Shoei.com With the innovative and highly-acclaimed GT-Air as a baseline, the all-new GT-Air II was destined for greatness from the very start. Advancements in design, functionality and performance have further evolved SHOEI’s premiere full-face touring helmet, yielding even easier adaptation to the ever-changing conditions throughout your journeys. Featuring a lengthened internal sun shield for optimal sun-glare protection, all-new “first position” shield opening for advanced ventilation and defogging, enhanced aerodynamics and noise-reduction technology, and the ability to seamlessly integrate with the all-new SENA SRL2 Communication System, the GT-Air II is equipped to accommodate your every need. Shoei helmets are imported and distributed by AMP. To find your nearest Shoei dealer call 011 259 7750.


RACETASTIC Words by Rob Portman / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus & Daniella Kerby OVER 120 ENTRIES FOR ROUND 3 OF THE MONCOLE RACING SERIES AT PHAKISA Rivals on track, best mates off - some of the 300 Supersport Brat pack. Andre Senekel trying not to melt with all that hotness around him... The new Monocle Motorcycle Racing Series has so far been a huge success. Over 110 entries joined up for the first round at RSR, that was backed up with over 140 at round two. Heading into round 3 at Phakisa and over 125 entries in total – not bad for an all bike day! What makes the Moncole Series so special is not only the cheap entry fee of R1500 (that includes the Friday practice and enter as many classes on the day as you like) but also the fun, no nonsense atmosphere. Everyone involved just wants to take their bike as fast as they can around a racetrack, in a safe and comfortable environment. Every grid on the day was jammed packed with rider’s ready to enjoy the race day. Once again, the track action was world class. Riders young and old put on a great spectacle for all to enjoy. The Supersport 300 class kicked off the day’s racing action and it was young star Chris Wright who stole the show picking up his first wins in the class. He controlled both races from start to finish despite massive pressure from Nicole van Aswegen and championship leader Ryno Pretorius. It’s now neck-and-neck at the front end of this championship heading into the next exciting round at Kyalami and then down at the fastest track in the land – the East London Grand Prix Circuit. In the 1000cc SBK class it was Matthew Herbert who dominated both heats, with George Hjiphilippou and Darren Pillay putting in solid rides to round out the podium. Luka Gaspar picked up both race wins in the 600cc Supersport class with impressive newcomer Chase Hulscher finishing in 2nd overall ahead of Cameron Aitken. Once again the most exciting class on the day had to be the new Streetbike class. Over 24 riders lined up on the grid to do battle, and battle they did. All the way through the field riders jostled for positions. In the end it was Wayne Ludick who took overall honours ahead of Tim Green and first-time racer Colin Hume, yes, the famous EFC fighter. We as RideFast entered Michael Powell into the streetbike class on our Husqvarna Vitplien 701 just to show how streetbike the class really is. The gorgeous Dunlop girls helping keep Adriaan Van Dalen cool on the start line. Lafras Fritz holding off Guy Didcott and Ian Harwood in the Masters Class.


SA’s got talent - Chris Wright picking up the double win in the 300 Supersport class. The Classic racers put on a great show. Michael did an amazing job to mix it with the much faster bikes and both he and the Vitpilen 701 can be proud of the laptimes and positions they achieved. A 12th and 10th place finish in both races with a fastest time of 1,58.530 - not bad for a 690-single powered streetbike fitted with Metzeler M7RR road tyres. In the Battle of the Twins class it was Brian Bontekoning who took the wins, albeit it on his Ducati V4 powered machine (gonna have to change the name from Twins to V4’s) with Thomas Brown iand Mick Landi the only true Twins in 2nd and 3rd. The Masters Class has also proved to be a very popular class and it was Graeme Van Breda who took both wins on his first time out in the Monocle Series. Johnny Krieger picked up 2nd overall ahead of Jaco Gous. The Classic Racers were once again present with over 25 bikes taking part in both races. Paul Jacobs took the overall result ahead of Jaco Gous and Leon Van Den Berg. The Historic Bike Club were also there on the day and it was great hearing, seeing and smelling some iconic machines ride around Phakisa. So overall another huge success for the Monocle Series and we really look forward to the remaining rounds of the season. Next up is Kyalami on the 4th of June, in which I will be racing our Honda CBR1000RR machine in the Masters Class, followed by East London on the 27th of July. Make sure you check out the Moncole Facebook page for more details, race results and pictures from the events. Go to www.motorcycleracingseries.co.za to enter. George Hjiphilippou on his gorgeous BMW S1000RR. Our Michael Powell showing off just how streetbike the streetbike class can be. The BOTTS guys at it again - Hulscher, Bontekoning and Bosch.


Words by Rob Portman / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus & Daniella Kerby GRIPPING STUFF BATT’S NEW UHP SLICK TYRES. AFFORDABLE GRIP FOR THE MASSES. The best way to test any track-focused slick tyre is to go racing with it, so that’s exactly what we did with the new BATT UHP tyres (Ultra High Performance). In last month’s magazine Donovan Fourie did a great feature on the new affordable slick tyres from BATT. He tested them around RSR on a road going Suzuki GSXR1000. He very much approved of them saying that they are a very good option for track day riders looking for cost effective tyres that offer good grip and more importantly longevity. He did also go on to mention that they are very much aimed at the group B and C track day riders and that faster riders/racers would fi nd them a bit restricting. 28 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


Bruce from BATT tyres asked us if we could take the tyres and put them to the test in racing conditions. A chance to go racing? Hell yes! So, we fetched 2 sets of the new UHP slick tyres and fi tted them to our Honda CBR1000RR racer. We fi rst gave both the tyres and bike a run down at RSR, before heading off to Phakisa a week later for round 3 of the Monocle Racing Series, which you have already read was a huge success. We had fi tted some extra parts to our Honda CBR1000RR so wanted to make sure everything had been installed properly. A new high-rise Isle of Man TT styled screen from Powerbronze was fi tted, which gives us riders with big belly’s more room to tuck under. A new set of Domino race grips were fi tted along with a GFP carbon lever guard and a GFP shark fi n. We also went slightly shorter on the gearing so we fi tted a 46 rear Renthal sprocket. This would give us a bit more drive out of the turns. We also managed to get ourselves a set of GFP tyre warmers, which work like an absolute dream and priced at only R2999 they are seriously good value for money. In fact, the entire range of GFP products really are good value for money! The shakedown at RSR went really well. We had to do quite a few setup changes to the bike to accommodate the hard compound BATT slick tyres. Luckily for us we had the master himself, Ricky Morais, on hand to wave his magic spanner. Shez Morais was also on hand and his input also helped immensely. After a full days testing, completing over 60 laps, we were left pretty satisfi ed with the new rubber. They are designed to offer good grip and that’s exactly what they did, but the real highlight of these tyres are their longevity and price. At only R3450 (launch special) they are one of the best value-for-money track tyres on the market today. My brother, Shaun Portman, kitted out in his new MASS Custom suit and Forma Ice Pro boots, managed a fastest time of 2,03.2 around RSR. Not bad going on the new BATT slicks and a pretty much stock Honda CBR1000RR. Shaun did complain of one or two false neutrals on the day and a bit of brake fade, problems we tried to address heading into the Phakisa race. While we did not have time to fi t braided hoses, we did manage to fi t the new GFP rearsets and this solved the false neutral issues. A much more solid feel compared to the stock rearsets, so if you have a new Blade and have issues with the gearbox try getting a set of GFP rearsets, it solves the problem. As for the brakes, the standard ABS system fi tted to the CBR1000RR causes a bit of disturbance out on track, only when pushing really hard. It interferes way too much and results in a bit of brake fade, which ultimately hampered Shaun’s progress throughout the Phakisa races. We arrived at Phakisa on the Saturday raceday so Shaun missed out on the Friday practice, which put him a bit behind his rivals in the 1000cc Superbike class. He managed to qualify in 13th on the grid after only managing 4 laps, with a time of 1,49.5. Poor track conditions and brake fade being his biggest issues. Nothing we could do about the brakes and the track conditions would only get better as the day went on so we were not too worried about that. Heading into race one and Shaun got a blinder of a start and made up 5 positions going into turn 1. The CBR1000RR really is an easy bike to launch, a lot easier than most of its rivals… Shaun was able to mix it at the sharp end for a few laps before the brake issues crept in. Grip also started to fade as the tyres and track got hotter. He managed to settle into a good rhythm and set a best time of 1,48.1 ending up 10th overall in the SBK class. Tyre wear was really good, too good in fact so we decided to drop the tyre pressures to try help get a bit more grip, especially out of the tight turns. This did not help much and Shaun again couldn’t push as hard as he would have liked in race two and ended up settling for 11th place. The new BATT tyres held up well and looked like they could still do another two track days easily. The compound is a bit hard for fl at out sprint racing, especially at the pace Shaun would like to run, but they will offer the everyday track day rider the perfect amount of grip, support and longevity. More importantly they won’t cost a fortune and you won’t be needing to change them after only 2 sessions. Out at RSR they still had plenty of grip and wear left even after 60plus hard laps. Great value for money tyres aimed at the trackday masses. Make sure you take advantage of the amazing launch special – only R3450 for a set (120/70-17 front and 200/60-17 rear). Contact Bruce at Bike Tyre Warehouse on 011 205 0216 for more info or to purchase your set of BATT UHP slicks. As for our Honda CBR1000RR, we are loving it. Apart from the brake and neutral issues, which have now been sorted heading into the next Monocle race at Kyalami on the 4th of June, the bike is performing really well considering it’s pretty much a street bike racer against full blown race bikes. The bike is now at ETR with Ricky Morais getting some much-needed upgrades such as braided hoses fi tted as well as a GFP radiator guard. Ricky will also be tweaking the suspension a bit more for us and putting the bike on the dyno to help get some more power. A Sprint fi lter will also help in that department and just wait and see what Kallie from Syndicate Custom has done with the design of the bike – simply breathtaking! RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 29


ADVERTORIAL Re-tread’s & Second Hand Tyres in the Motorcycle Tyre Industry: We bet that 90 percent of us have been in the situation where you simply cannot afford to buy a new tyre. I remember wandering next door to The Bike Hospital to find a semi decent used tyre for my CB5504k (OK that bike was already old then!) years ago. It’s not ideal - but when times are tough you make a plan. The guys from Bike Tyre Warehouse sent us this feature on what to look out for... Used and retreaded motorcycle tyres: The proliferation of second hand motorcycle tyres is growing driven by economic factors & rider ignorance to the dangers of using them. The rider needs to ask him or herself what the tyre went through when used by the previous owner because it is not always just about the life and wear of the tyre; not many riders will get rid of a tyre at 50% of its life just because he can more often than not the tyre has experienced some sort of critical damage that is not always apparent to the unskilled eye. So - has the tyre with 2mm-3mm tread suffered impact damage? Or while buying the second hand tyre for example you ask if it has had a puncture you get shown a tyre that has no evidence of a puncture repair - but a faulty valve could have caused the tyre to deflate and the previous owner could have ridden the tyre while flat. So he naturally got rid of it after having it inspected by a tyre professional as the carcass is fatigued and it is not safe to be used any longer. You buy it for R500 what a deal, then on your Sunday run you run tight in a corner and the tyre collapses and delaminates which normally causes extensive damage to the tail end of your bike and in some cases takes the bike down with you on it... The sale of scrubs (used race tyres) by track riders after a race or track day is a common practice in the race market. This is all very well if the tyre is going back onto the track but when these tyres end up on road bikes used for daily commutes etc. it’s very dangerous - and sadly so many bike owners are ignorant to the fact thinking because it is a track tyre it has great grip. Sadly this is a big misconception. Slicks are not designed for road use. They require heat which they get with the use of tyre warmers to bring them to the required temperature for optimum grip. This is not possible when you are going to work, stop starting and filtering through traffic. Ask anyone who tries to sell you a slick for your road bike. “Retreaded motorcycle tyres” you say with a quick frown. “Why?” Because you have been racing for 10 years, you have ridden all the brands because as an experienced rider you know you need to try any & all tyres specific to your race discipline because it’s what you do; because you want to find what works for you. You need a tyre to give you traction & stability at high speed; straight line precision; braking stability; cornering stability; lateral support and durability. Tyre versatility for multiple terrains is critical now as a single race can cover several terrains, and you might need different levels of durability (tyre life). Yes, every brand works at this - during development to rigorous testing in-house as well as giving tyre products to globally recognized industry test centres like Tass International. And they do obtain an estimated tyre life for each product - but it’s never a definite. Why? Because there are so many variables - essentially how long is a piece of string? Trust me, the most asked question in 20 years in the tyre trade – “How many kilo’s or hours will I get on this tyre” proves without a doubt that the life of a tyre is one of the most important considerations made by a customer when buying a tyre. Racers are no different - they ask the same question as the everyday riders why because specially developed race tyres are expensive when you use a set per race or in the more extreme events 2 to 5 tyres - it adds up very quickly. A good example is the 140/80-18 extreme tyre which led to a war among the manufacturers with a literally overnight boom creating a high demand for this extreme tyre type The brands rushed to get product into the market; specially designed carcasses and compound offerings hard; medium; soft & the super 30 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


soft commonly known among this breed of racer as a sticky. Unbelievable technology which must deliver on capability and safety when pushed to the ultimate limit by the racer and, yes there are brands that have produced premium quality for this market but again durability is the one thing that plagues all. So back to the quick frown; motorcycle retreads - what’s this all about? We have all heard the word retread and the first thing that comes to mind is truck tyres, and the daily reminder is the retreaded rubber lying on our highways and roads from these truck tyres. So what are retreads; a brief synopsis. A re-tread is a used tyre that has been re-manufactured to extend its life. The old worn tread is removed and new tread is attached through a specialised process involving hot and cold curing. Retreads are widely used in the trucking industry because of the high cost of replacing truck tyres. Commercial jets also use retreads for the same reason. However, in the case of truck & aircraft tyres the carcass has been designed to take the extended life (mileage) of being re-treaded. In overseas markets, re-treaded tyres for passenger vehicles must have a maximum speed rating of 140 km/h and the original casing used must have a minimum rating of 180 km/h. Many motoring bodies and car insurance companies do not consider retreads safe and do not recommend their use in passenger vehicles for the following reasons: • The history of the original tyre is unknown (how often has it been re-treaded and under what conditions has it been driven). • Less overall structural strength than a new tyre and the potential for the retread to come loose from the tyre. • Potential instability at high speed. • Inferior wet grip, durability and braking performance. In South Africa, there are no quality safety standards that retreaded tyres need to meet only that the tread depth meets international standards. Why you should avoid retreads & used tyres. While retread tyres may be suitable for the transport industry due to the cost savings, they should be avoided in passenger vehicles simply because of the doubts that still hang over them. The bottom line is, these are not new tyres and, like anything used, they have a greater potential to fail. Given that most tyre retailers now carry very affordable new tyre brands at the lower end of their ranges, there is simply no excuse for bringing your family’s safety into question for the sake of a few rand. The situation is even more severe in the Motorcycle industry. Generally speaking a motorcycle tyre works harder than a car tyre due to more horsepower per square inch being generated into it, particularly under racing conditions. All tyre manufacturers will tell you that motorcycle tyres are not designed to be re-treaded under any circumstances - never use a motorcycle tyre that has been retreaded. They are not safe and more than likely will fail with dire consequences. None of the reputable premium brands will be responsible for any warranty claims relating to re-treaded or remanufactured tyres using any one of these premium brand carcasses. What is the standpoint on retreading, from a safety aspect? Technically speaking (best-case): re-baking the rubber affects the tyres structural property of carcass plies and sidewalls, the discontinuity between sidewall (baked and made of proprietary materials) and tread pattern (raw and of unknown source) layers may potentially generate circumferential joint opening. Structural reliability is therefore unpredictable at least from a theoretical standpoint. So - is it worth it? Retreaded tyres could be less expensive than the new ones, however, after the budget tyres have come into play, the scenario has changed to a large extent. Now, it seems that budget tyres are even less expensive than the retreaded ones and as they are freshly made tyres, they obviously have better quality than the retreaded tyres. Hence, a customer is more likely to prefer budget tyres to the retreaded ones. In retreading, a new lease of rubber is put on the casing of a worn out tyre without changing the cords of infrastructure. Hence, the quality of the retreaded tyres always stays a lot down than that of the new tyres. No matter how well it works after retreading, there has to be some issue with a retreaded tyre. Short term you might save a few bucks - but when you are cruising at mach 4 and the tyre delaminates... it wont be pretty. Even if a used or re treaded tyre looks good, there is a reason why it was removed by the previous owner and destined for the tyre graveyard.And on a bike especially - that is no joke! Bruce de Kock Bike Tyre Warehouse Group SA Tel: 011 205 0216


START YOUR MOTORCYCLE JOURNEY WITH THE CMA & SUZUKI Every motorcyclist can probably remember their first ever ride on a bike. I remember my first encounter on a Suzuki AC 50 back in high school and how I struggled to get all the controls right. So what do you do if you want to learn to ride a motorcycle, but you don’t own one, or even know someone who can help you? Help is as close as the CMA Rider Academy… Words & pics by Brian Cheyne I believe most people are familiar with the Christian Motorcycle Association (CMA). Their unmistakable colours are a familiar sight at rallies. To earn those colours though, riders have to attend some form of rider’s course to help them to be safer riders. CMA founded their own Rider Academy to make it easier for riders to get the right training. With an intermediate course firmly entrenched, they felt like expanding the academy by introducing a beginner’s course as well. This course is aimed at complete beginners or riders who want to convert some riding knowledge into practical experience. The CMA has training facilities at the Biker’s Church in Midrand, but to present a beginners course they needed bikes. Suzuki South Africa kindly stepped up. They donated ten motorcycles, two simulators and a container for safe storage. The simulators are bikes strapped to a platform and running on rollers. This gives rookies the opportunity to fluff the clutch as much as they want without them ending up in a hedge. There are also two scooters in the lineup. With the bikes secured, Phil Kruger from the CMA rider academy could start with this project. As Stuart Baker from Suzuki pointed out, having bikes is not what makes projects like these succeed. Having the support from CMA instructors is key. If no one takes the time to teach, the bikes will stand idle. For every training day the CMA instructors give up their time to introduce new riders to the wonderful world of motorcycles. I attended one of these days to see what this is all about. I arrived early and already the bikes were being organized and a nervous group of new riders were huddled around the coffee station. Some have ridden before, but mostly they were absolute beginners. One rider inherited her father’s bike a month ago and wanted to learn how to ride it. Two other students were there for intermediate training. Before they could go out and be motorcyclists, they had to sit through some important theory. It is mostly centered around protective gear and defensive riding. No matter how many times you hear this, there is always something you can take away from it. Safety is key. After a short break, the students all moved to the bikes. First up, new riders went on the small scooters. With no gears to worry about, the first step was to ride in a figure of eight just to get them comfortable on two wheels. Once they mastered the scooter, they were introduced to the intricacies of the clutch and changing gears. Within a matter of hours, brand new riders were circling the instructors and holding their own with their new found skills. So if you need a place to start your journey to becoming a motorcyclist, you can contact the Rider Academy and book your spot. Training is R250 per morning session. You do not have to be a CMA member to attend - anyone is welcome. Contact Phil at phil.rideracademy@cmasa. org or elsa.rideracademy@cmasa.org for more information. 32 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


UB125 Now Available! FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT YOUR NEAREST SUZUKI AUTHORIZED DEALER! Bike Choice: 023 342-2757 Garden Route Auto: 044 874-6788 Grabouw Suzuki : 021 859-3132 Suzuki MadMacs: 021 852-4851 Maverick Sport: 021 854-6966 Overberg Suzuki: 028 424-1929 Suzuki South: 021 761-0157 Suzuki Vredenburg: 022 713-3585 Thruxton Motorcycles: 021 910-0535 @MotorcycleSA suzuki_motorcycle_s.a www.motocycle.co.za


“MT: if you’re wondering, stands for “Master of Torque,” as though the bike received a graduate degree from a university that’ll pretty much let you study whatever you want…” FunTastic Commuter At RideFast, we are always scratching around for content and motorcycles that we can ride and review. A call to Linex Yamaha the other day procured this little beasty – the Yamaha MT07. What a cool, fun to ride little bike. Glenn Foley and Jaun Delport put the bike through its paces… Words by Glenn Foley 3 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


Torquey parralel twin engine. We see some classic V-Max inspiration... The display tells you everything you need to know. Remember the time before all of the fancy electronics when you could simply hop on a bike and take off without worrying about what mode you were in, whether traction control was set to the optimum and all that other complicated stuff? Good times. You accepted what you got – and rode the bike as it is. This is one of those bikes – with ABS, the only sign of an electronic mergafter in sight. Where we rode: We decided that this would make the perfect urban bike. A bike that you can ride from our offi ces, call on all the dealers between Vereeniging and Warmbaths – and have a whole heap of fun while we did it. And we were quite correct. This is a bike that delivers smiles by the bucket load. Some features: We could run off features from the parts catalogue, but we fi gured you could do that for yourselves – so we’ll tell you what we noticed: Gorgeous: The MT07 is truly a pretty bike to look at. Sleek. Sharp styling and ultra-modern, it is one sexy little naked number with not one straight line or boring circle in sight. It’s smattered with cool modern LED lights and beautifully crafted headlamps. We’d probably chuck the number plate holder. This one has a mini Givi micro-screen to afford a bit of wind protection. Small: We love the small, compact feel – and this is largely thanks to the compact, fuel injected cross plain parallel twin engine that powers this one. This 270-degree cross plane crankshaft concept engine provides great power and combines throaty low- to mid-range torque with strong high-rpm pulling power. The handlebars are really narrow which feels strange at fi rst – but you get used to that quickly. Coupled with the slender tank, it makes the whole package feel slightly shrunken. Comfortable: We love the fact that you don’t need to crouch over the bars. Our riders are all pretty tall and everyone complimented the ergonomics – relationship from seat to bars to foot pegs is really well thought out, very comfortable– and the bike does not feel tall at all. Minimalistic: The clocks are simple, informative and easy to read. They include a digital bar-type tachometer display with gear position indicator, digital speedometer, odometer, dual trip meters, fuel gauge, fuel reserve trip meter, clock, instant and average fuel consumption and a range of warning and indicator lights. The bikes switches and controls are all logically laid out and simple to actuate. Ride Impressions: Every time I climbed off this bike, I thought to myself: “Everyone should own a bike like this at some stage in their life.” It is just so much fun. Simple, nimble, nippy, quick – all good words – and it’s such a little head turner too. At every traffi c light or intersection you see peeps stretching their necks to get a better look. “But”, I hear you say – “It’s only a 700!” Correct. 689cc’s to be precise - and for this kind of bike – it actually doesn’t need to be any bigger. On the previous models we had a little gripe about the fi nal gear which was more like an overdrive than a proper gear. This one makes fantastic torque throughout the rev range and will quietly rev along in top gear for the whole day. Quietly? Yup, that standard pipe is gorgeous – and this is one of the quietest bikes we’ve ever ridden. This bike makes you grin all day - torquey from off idle and with a strong midrange, it feels more powerful than the numbers suggest. Cane it in anger and the wheel heads skywards with very little clutch input. And the same applies to handling and suspension. It’s no secret that Yamaha’s intention was to build a bike that’s good at everything for a limited budget. And they have achieved that in spades with the MT07. They have dialed in the settings to get the best out of this one. We hit some pretty unexpected speed bumps Pretoria side, far faster than we should have. The MT, thankfully felt plush and controlled. We went as fast as we could through the twisties and she felt just as good. Straight line commuting on the freeways between 140 and 160kph? Same thing, always in control. The brakes perform just as well, with plenty of power and feel to authoritatively slow down the 182 odd kilogramme package. We saw a top speed at around the 180 mark but, thanks to buffeting, on a naked that’s not so comfortable… Conclusions: Not only is this bike a little head turner, it is also so accomplished and enormous fun to ride. Everyone should own one at some stage in their life. Now, I wonder if we could convert this one into a delivery bike and claim back from Uncle Pravin? This one - R114950 from Linex Lifestyle Centre. Phone (011) 251-4000. Readers opinion: Nick Barnes My buddy Gavin warned me that I might not use the right terminology when writing this as he doesn’t consider me to be a “biker”, while he might be right, I do spend +-45 minutes on the bike every day of the week so screw you Gav! Now that Gav knows how I feel I can briefly explain my experience on the MT07. Here is my abbreviated take on the bike - As I’m sure most of you realized the bike is used 95% of the time as a commuter and I couldn’t be happier. While the MT is nothing like an R6 there’s certainly enough to keep you entertained when you open the throttle, even when you are in the higher gears the bike is quick to respond when opened. The size, height, power and seating position makes moving in and out of traffic a breeze, whether you’re splitting lanes or just trying to catch that gap it hasn’t let me down once. The ABS braking system does its job well especially when you have those j-walking pedestrians jump out when you’re splitting lanes (tried and tested). You have to deal with a considerable amount of wind noise, which can be easily resolved by applying a windshield, but that does tend to break that naked look. After ridding similar bikes of the same spec, and maybe I’m just bias, but for me this is the perfect cross over between a commuter and something that can give you some fun on the weekend. RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 3 5


SA RACING HERITAGE LEGENDARY RACERS THE LEGEND OF THE FLEXI-FLYER In the quiet little mining town of Springs is one of the oldest Suzuki dealerships in South Africa, and in that dealership resides some true legends of motorcycle racing in South Africa, slowly fading away into obscurity in a ball mad country. If it isn’t soccer, rugby or cricket related, (sports that only require one ball), then the population as a whole seems to have no interest. But we at this magazine will not allow that to happen if we can help it. So here is the legend of a crazy ass motorcycle raced all over the world very successfully by a man with some of the biggest balls you can imagine.. Words and pics by Sean Hendley Born on the 4th of July, (think they made a movie with that name), 1949 in the sleepy coastal town of Hermanus and then got dragged up to Springs in 1953 when his father got a job on the mines in the area, Les van Breda has never had the inkling to call anywhere else home. Although he has travelled and lived wherever necessary on this planet to realise his need for speed and racing desires, he has always proudly called Springs his home. This is where he first learned to ride his motorcycle, a Puch 50cc, shortly followed by a DKW Hummel 50cc wildly modified by his older brother Dave. “En toe is die koel deur die kerk,” as they say in Afrikaans. Les was addicted to speed almost immediately and his racing career started a few short years after that. Les had to lie about his age because of the ridiculously strict bureaucratic regime at the time. He was 13 at the time, but had to be 16 … (some of the British colonies still enforce this rule, something to ponder before emigrating). Les raced club races etc. until eventually racing his first national in 1965 on a Suzuki 250cc 2 stroke, finally of actual legal racing age. A couple of years later he was conscripted into national service which slowed his racing career a bit. Les realised that racing was expensive and that he would never be able to afford to race at any reasonable level on his own earnings. So after being discharged from the army in 1967 he joined Suzuki Distributors in Springs as an apprentice mechanic with a couple of other youngsters that also went on to become racing legends in their own right. 36 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


This is the exact same building his Suzuki dealership now occupies, and thus his affiliation with Suzuki started. Les went on to race the Suzuki 500cc and 750cc 2 stroke GP bikes very successfully all over the world and occasionally showing the likes of Mick Grant, Barry Sheene & Giacomo Agostini the fastest way around several tracks locally and abroad. Alot of the time Kork Ballington was in the mix as well, placing higher on the podium once or twice than “Ago” in the early 70’s, much to his chagrin. Then in 1974, Suzuki Distributors imported Les a fully factory built TR750 – XR11, not a replica bike but the real McCoy factory prepared racer, just like the one Barry Sheene hurled down the track at Daytona in 1975 nearly killing himself and breaking just about every bone in his body in the process. The bike was based on the Suzuki GT 750 Water Buffalo, but modified beyond recognition and made way too fast for the chassis technology at the time. So much so that it became known affectionately as the “Flexi-Flyer” because it used to buck and weave and change shape under acceleration, braking and cornering. In fact the bikes were so fast that they were initially quite unreliable. Destroying clutches, shredding tyres and brakes. “At 125bhp and 100nm of in the mid 70’s in a chassis that was kak and brakes that were sh_t, it was f”%cking horrible to ride …. Honestly”, verbatim quote from the man himself. The engine was at least 10 years ahead of the Leading calipers .... you can understand why Les was less than complimentary of the brakes, especially at 300kph into a bend Beautiful from every angle Racers had to be mental to dive into corners, elbow to elbow with other nut jobs, on this set up The oil tank was moved to behind the rider to get the bike lower in corners So much so that it became known affectionately as the “Flexi-Flyer” because it used to buck and weave and change shape under acceleration, braking and cornering. The standard motor is incredibly wide and required some serious modifcations to loose a bit of weight and girth The middle exhaust pipe had to be moved from under the bike and run over the back of the engine and through the frame for better ground clearance. Reckon that must have warmed up the Mrs’s dinner RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 37


Wire wheels, some shady looking shocks, 25mm round tube swing arm and chassis ...... Hhmmm, wonder why it flexed Stone and Splash gaurds over the carburettors because there were no air filters of description on the Flexi Flyers chassis and the brakes; it is a 738cc, 2 stroke, 3 cylinder, water-cooled motor putting out 125bhp and 100nm of torque. Wild power for a 750cc, even by todays standards. Even so, Les has managed to hang on to his original Suzuki TR 750 XR-11 that he used to race back in the day, and it holds pride of place in his Suzuki dealership. You must bear in mind that these XR race bikes were never meant to be sold and end up in private ownership being full “Works” race bikes. We were invited around for a cup of coffee and a chat and to take some pic’s. The Suzuki GT 750, on which the TR750 is based, is a heck of a wide bike, with long slung exhaust pipes and an even worse chassis, so some of the modifi cations included tucking the out pipes up as tight as possible underneath the engine, then running the third pipe up and over the motor and through the frame. This gave signifi cantly better ground clearance for cornering. The sump was moved up onto the sub frame with gravity feed to the engine for the same reason. The end of the crank were lobbed off and re-machined to make the motor narrower. In fact, just have a look at the piccy’s to get an idea, to list all modifi cations will take way too much space. Eventually Les dialled back on the racing for a bit to raise kids with his wife Lulu and build his business, but in2010/ 2011 he just couldn’t stand it anymore and built a Suzuki 1100 Katana to go classic racing. Les raced until 2014 and eventually had to stop because his eyes weren’t as good as they used to be, “I can’t go slow, so I rode pretty hard and at my age I can’t see where I’m going and didn’t see an oil slick on the track and went down, injuring my shoulder again. My son Graham, along with my surgeon convinced me to stop racing.” The next generations, son and grandson carry the family fl ag at the races now. This is the bike that the TR 750 XR11 is based on, a legend in it’s own right. This is the Suzuki GT 750 Water Buffalo Les only uses new OE Suzuki parts on his restorations At 69 years old, (he turns 70 in July), Les still gets to work everyday, mostly running the workshop and restoring old 2 stroke Suzuki road bikes. The Flexi Flyer in full flight Retire ...... HELL NO! The youngest Van Breda racer, Jason, swinging spanners already At his age Les can’t race anymore, so his Son and Grandson are now proudly keeping the family racing heritage alive 38 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


YAMAHA YZR-M1


ROSSI’S A closer look at the students who attend the greatest academy on earth - The VR46 Academy. Words by Donovan Fourie 42 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


Valentino Rossi is the most famous motorcycle racer that has ever lived; the massive grandstands of yellow at each MotoGP round, even now ten years after his last title, lay testimony to this. In Italy, his legend is growing further, not just because of his racing, but because of his VR46 Academy, an institution that is single-handedly saving Italian racing and producing its own legends. Donovan Fourie looks into this new phenomenon. Picture the scene – it is 2013 and Italian racing is in dire straits. This is a nation that has seen racing success for decades. The most successful motorcycle racer in history, Giacomo Agostini, stems from the foot of the Italian Alps. They have also seen such names as Ubbiali, Locatelli, Dovizioso, Simoncelli, Melandri, Uncini, Lucchinelli, Gresini, Capirossi, Cadalora, Biaggi and, of course, a certain Rossi rise to prominence waving their flag. This is a nation of proud motorcycle winners that leads the table for world championships with 77 titles between their various stars. The Moto3/125cc showed particular success with the Italians taking 23 titles, and it is in this class that prominent future MotoGP champions are grown. In 2013, however, there are just four Italians on a grid of 28 riders with the top Italian, Romano Fenati, finishing the year in a soul-destroying tenth place. Moto2 is a similar affair with only three riders flying the Tricolore flag, the top finishing in a dismal 11th place, and the MotoGP class shows a glimmer of hope with Rossi ending his tragic two years at Ducati and finishing fourth on his return to Yamaha. RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 43


Always up for a selfie. The Spanish, on the other hand, are thriving. The top four riders in that class are Spanish with Maverick Vinales taking the top honours but, more so, every single race that year is won by a Spaniard and every podium, bar three, were an all-Spanish festival. The Moto2 class sees Pol Espargaro take the top honours, and the MotoGP class sees the top three spots taken by Spaniards led by rookie sensation Marc Marquez. All this Spanish dominance makes sense, however, because the Spanish have invested heavily in their up-and-coming riders. They have talent spotters swarming all over mini-moto kiddie races hoping to snatch potential talent, there are coaches grinding youngsters at go-cart track, flat tracks and gyms and sponsors, including big players like Repsol, are throwing truckloads of money into the pot. Indeed, this investment has worked, with MotoGP resembling a Spanish National Championship rather than a world stage, the most famous graduate of this system of ruthless nurturing being Marc Marquez. Christmas happens followed dutifully by New Year, and 2014 sees a change of fortune. The Italian Titan himself steps forward and announces a Moto3 team, the SKY VR46 team, owned by him with his backing, signing up only Italian riders. More so, he also announces a VR46 Academy where Italian talent is recruited, trained and mentored by Rossi. Since then we have seen an Italian resurgence. Italian hopefuls like Fabio Di Giannantonio, Marco Bezzecchi, Enea Bastianini, Lorenzo Dalla Porta, Andrea Migno, Niccolò Antonelli, Dennis Foggia, Tony Arbolino, Celestino Vietti Nicolo Bulega, Stefano Manzi and Rossi’s half-brother Luca Marini are now challenging for top spots. Also, old Italian hats like Mattia Pasini, Lorenzo Baldassarri and Simone Corsi have shown a ROSSI’S Always time for a good chat. 44 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


The Moto3 brat pack - Mignio, Vietti, Foggia and Antonelli The Moto2 boys - Baldassarri, Marini, Manzi, Bezzecchi and Bulega The MotoGP men - Morbidelli, Rossi (the Boss) and Bagnaia Students trying to catch the master at The Ranch. RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 45


revival of form. A cherry on the cake is that Franco Morbidelli and Pecco Bagnaia have both won Moto2 championships and are now swapping paint with their mentor in the premier class. The Italian nation has undoubtedly seen a rise in form since the doldrums of 2013, and it is all down to one man – Valentino Rossi. The actual academy in which these riders are recruited, while famous in racing tongues, is quite elusive. We know that it is run, from an organisational point of view, by Rossi’s good friends Albi and Uccio, with help from friends and family of Rossi’s that were with him growing up. Apart from some social media pages, that’s it. There is no website for it, no Wikipedia page, no press releases and no joining form. The meagre social media accounts are designed to give the riders extra exposure rather than punt the academy. This is not a business venture aimed at taking coin for lessons, but the passion of an individual who loves Italy nearly as much as he loves racing. Possibly to his own detriment, he is training young riders that stand a real chance of beating him one day, all because this is what he loves. It began not with youngsters, but with Rossi’s friend and “brother” Marco Simoncelli, the flamboyant star who lost his life in a crash at the 2011 Malaysian MotoGP round. At the time, Rossi’s reclusive training regime was shared only by Simoncelli whom Rossi mentored, shared ideas with and used as extra motivation. His death left a void in his racing and life between races, one that needed filling. This is where the idea of working with and training other riders stemmed from. At first, it was a casual affair with riders Rossi was already friendly with, like Franco Morbidelli. In 2014, it became an official institution, and other youngsters with potential were recruited. The academy is based in Tavullia, a sloping town in the rolling hills near the East coast of northern Italy, a mere 27km from the Misano race track. It’s also the home town of Rossi and doubles as a shrine to the nine-times world champion. Near the town, on a piece of land owned by father Graziano, is the famous VR46 Ranch, a three-kilometre flat track built out of special white sand that forms a double dirt oval with stadium Celebrating his brother Luca Marini after his first Moto2 win. The Doctor with Franco. ROSSI’S Compulsory English lessons every week. 46 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


The boys at Misano practising on Yamaha R6 machines. Lorenzo Baldassarri Nicolò Bulega Luca Marini Andrea Migno Niccolò Antonelli Stefano Manzi Marco Bezzecchi Dennis Foggia (7) and Celestino Vietti (13) Franco Morbidelli Francesco Bagnaia RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 47


lighting for night riding and an optional loop that leads off up the hill. In typical Rossi fashion, the Ranch is stylish but also simple, consisting of the track with a building that is little more than a barn which is used as a pit complex. Every Saturday that they are not racing, the VR46 Academy meets here on motocross bikes that have been modified and styled for flat track use. The benefits of this are that it teaches excellent motorcycle control, with the riders having to control slides on both the rear and the front end, with relative safety as flat track riding offers less risk of injury than motocross, enduro or motard. They ride, they race and then settle down afterwards for a barbecue. The Ranch is the most famous of the VR46 Academy’s training techniques, but they also train on go-cart tracks with mini-motos, at full-sized tracks like Misano and Mugello with Yamaha R1Ms or contract equivalents and, of course, at the gym. During all of these activities, Rossi assumes an active role, taking part in the races but also giving advice, tips and motivation to the riders. Even on MotoGP weekends, he often takes his racers for a track walk on the Thursday before. He is affectionally known as “The boss” to the academy riders who often make comments about him being a friend to them. While there is much on the way of physical training, there is also a huge social aspect with riders talking about everything, including girls. Aspects of the academy go beyond riding aid, and into the bits between riding. These riders are all Italian and grew up speaking Italian, making it difficult for them to talk to sponsors, the media and participate in promotions. To help, they are treated to English lessons inside the VR46 offices near Tavullia. The VR46 Academy is an honour for those who are chosen. Their riding improves, their attitude improves, and they are readily snapped up by the competitive teams who know the advantage they have. It’s a benefit to Rossi himself, who not only gets to share his passion with the future of Italian racing but also finds that he is pushed further also. He is not training on his own but is being always motivated by the hungry youngsters he is training. It is something, no doubt, that is crucial to his current competitiveness, even at the tender racing age of 40 years old. More so, Italian racing has been saved. From a sport that was becoming increasingly dominated by Spanish riders, we now see a massive influx of Italian talent ruining the Siberian winning monopoly. Pundits have even predicted that we could soon be in for a complete turn-around in the sport with the melodious Il Canto degli Italiani being played at every podium ceremony. Never before have we seen such a resurgence in the racing scene, and it is all down to one man – Valentino Rossi. Racing, like all sports, is dependent on talent but this talent is often wasted when not nurtured, given support and given encouragement. There is no better proof of this than the VR46 Academy and its impact on its riders. Rossi changed the entire landscape of MotoGP, and now he has singlehandedly saved Italian racing. ROSSI’S Every rider has to pass a fitness test. 48 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


Room-mates Baldassarri and Bagnaia RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 4 9


Words by Rob Portman / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus & Daniella Kerby KYALAMI On Saturday the 11th of May, Toby Venter and his team from Ducati SA held a farewell “Ducati Day” to say thank you to all their loyal customers who have supported them over the past 6 years, a period in which they managed to put over 1600 new and used Ducati’s on to SA’s roads and racetracks. Riding a Ducati around Kyalami - there is nothing better on this planet to do! There is no bigger bragging rights than having a picture of oneself riding their Ducati around Kyalami framed and displayed in ones house, bar or man cave. Ducati SA is going through a transition period with Toby Venter and his team now handing the reins over to new owner Mr Jos Matthysen. Ducati owners from all over the land were invited to experience the thrill that is riding the Kyalami circuit on their own Ducati machines. Hundreds of die-hard fans and owners rocked up and lit up the Kyalami pits and track with a sea of gorgeous red Italian machines - a truly breathtaking sight and sound! A wide range of machines turned up - from Cafe Racers to Multistrada’s - but no doubt the 3 new Panigale V4R’s stole all eyes and ears the most. I was amazed to see so many V4 machines - base, S and R models. I thought times were tough...? In the end it was a great day filled with great people on their great bikes. A truly exotic day enjoyed by all that were lucky enough to crack an invite. I was one of those lucky few and what made it even better was the two machines I got to test on the day... (Parental Advisory advised over following 8 pages). 50 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


V4’s for as far as the eye could see. The BOTTS boys were on hand to help instruct for the day. Ducati’s of all shapes and sizes attended. 1299 Final Edition vs V4S. Toby handing Desmo valve trophy over to Jos. Left: Toby Venter addressing the loyal Ducati owners one last time before handing over the rein to the new importer, Mr Jos Matthysen. It was an emotional hand over and both Toby Venter and Johnny Araujo did so much for the brand over the past 6 years but knew it was time to hand it over to Jos who will take it to the next level. A really nice touch from Toby as he handed a Desmo valve trophy over to Jos to seal the deal. RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 51


52 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


D U C A T I P A N I G A L E V 4 S V S P A N I G A L E V 4 R FOURPLAY Two modern day Gods of motorcycling do battle at Kyalami. The Ducati V4S 1100cc by RACE! SA against the new Ducati V4R 1000cc - A true battle of the Gods! Words by Rob Portman Pics by Gerrit Erasmus RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 5 3


Last year saw the greatest production superbike ever released – the Ducati Panigale V4. Worldwide sales showed that it was well received by the public, while the lucky few journos that got to swing their legs over one heaped nothing but absolute praise over it, that includes myself. It won just about every sportbike shoot-out and bike of the year title around the globe, including the Pirelli Bike of the Year title here in SA. It’s a seriously good machine and after testing it, myself, and many others scratched our heads in awe, wondering just how it could get any better. Every year we find ourselves saying ‘what could they possibly do next?’. How do you improve on 100%? The Panigale V4 and V4 S models had everything a rider, even an astronaut, could possibly want – massive amounts of power, top-grade electronics to make even the most average rider go like Dovi and styling that could make even Chuck Norris himself cry tears of pleasure. And it was comfy. How could it get any better? Well, that’s what the team from RACE! SA do best – make the best even better… The Ducati V4S by RACE! SA Marco Casciani is the man behind the genius that is RACE! SA. Some of SA’s finest cars and motorcycles have passed through their doors, going in as WOW and leaving as fu#@$ WOW! Their latest project is this Panigale V4S, which has had a serious case of the RACE! SA effect. It has been transformed from Super model to Super, duper, trooper model. I mean just look at it. You can’t help but want to sneak off to the bathroom for a bit of that alone time… if you know what I mean? (I did say Parental Advisory was advised) The bike has been fully dressed up in last year’s Ducati MotoGP colours, which too me are divine. RACE! SA are the official importers for aftermarket brands such as Ducabike and LighTech, as well as many more top products that will be found on most WSBK and MotoGP machines. All the right parts fitted in all the right places and just have a look at those gorgeous twin Arrow slip-on pipes. Trust me when I say this thing growls louder than anything! Real value-for-money as they cost half the price of the R80k full Termignoni system and tested only 4hp less on the dyno. The boys from RACE! SA attended the Ducati Day held at Kyalami and brought along a few of their master-pieces to show off, including the first Desmo V4 from back in 2006. What a beauty that thing is, but sadly that is one bike I was not allowed to swing my leg over. No problem, I had the ultra-seductive V4S to thrash around Kyalami. Climbing on the bike and the riding position Is pure Ducati superbike – comfortable yet set to go fast. This bike had a carbon fibre tank extender fitted, so I was pushed backed a bit more than I would have liked. My midget arms were extended more than usual so I wasn’t as comfortable as I would be on a stock bike. Looking down and seeing that Ducabike GP edition triple-clamp and I nearly rode right off the track. Man, that thing is gorgeous! The only parts that have been left on from standard are the dash, Brembo brakes and the Ohlins electronic suspension, just about everything else has been upgraded. The LighTech rearsets are solid and shifting through 54 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


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the gears using the quickshift and autoblip was a smooth as silk exercise. Accelerating out of the turns was perfection in motion. No flat spots or slumps, nothing but pure thrust. The 1100 V4 defiantly has more squirt initially compared to the V4R and carries it through 2nd, 3rd and 4th gears as it should with its extra 12Nm of torque thanks to the extra 100cc. From there onwards the V4R feels like it snorts a certain white substance and goes into overdrive - the overall extra 7hp comes into play. The V4S model is fitted standard with the Ohlins electronic suspension, and while it’s one of the better systems I have felt I am still not 100% convinced I like it. Yes, it’s ideal for the mass market rider and that’s why most modernday bikes are fitted with them, but for a former racer and decent track rider like myself, nothing beats self-adjustable conventional suspension. Before testing the new V4R for the first-time last month I couldn’t find any real serious gripes with the V4S other than the slight float and unstableness. This was again made apparent testing the bikes back-to-back here. The V4S model still offered precise steering and handling both in-and-out of the turns, but again that floaty feeling was there, especially through the fast turns like Sunset and down the Mineshaft and that’s the last thing you want to feel at those high speeds. The V4R for sure was a lot more planted, whether or not the wings have anything to do with that I cannot 100% say for sure but the facts state that they do offer more downforce so… Braking is probably one of the highlights of all Panigale machines. These things stop faster, sharper and harder than anything else on the market. I often found myself cursing having jammed the brakes on so hard thinking I was braking late and then having to release to carry more speed. Hate that feeling! Overall the Ducati Panigale V4S by RACE! SA rides just as good as it looks. A true workof-art by the team and a big thanks to them for letting me test their amazing creation. 56 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


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The Ducati V4R Last month I tested this exact same bike at Redstar Raceway along with my mate Donovan Fourie. We were both left overwhelmed by its sheer awesomeness. It’s surged to the top of the all-time great sportbikes ever released and for sure it the best production bike on the market today, although we still have to test it back-toback against BMW’s all mighty new S1000RR M Sport model, which is no slouch either. The biggest question I have been asked since the test, other than ‘how does it compare to the new BMW S1000RR and BMW HP4 Race?’ is ‘how does it compare to the V4S 1100cc model? And ‘is it worth the extra R300k compared to the V4S model’. Tough questions and with regards to how it compares to the BMW’s that will have to wait a few months until we put that test together, but with regards to how it compares to the V4S and if it’s worth the extra money I can happily answer yes. Is it faster? Not on initial drive out of the turns at low rpm, as I mentioned earlier, but once past 4th gear and 11,000rpm, yes, it is. It’s also way more stable in every aspect and the riding position also feels more comfortable. To the naked eye not much seems different from the S model, but once parked side-by-side you can see that the front nose is more flared up and bulkier compared to the S. Nothing major, but for sure it’s got more muscle. Does that contribute to more stability? I can’t say for sure, just like the wings, but I do think most of the stability comes from the conventional Ohlins fitted to the V4R as appose to the electronic system on the S model. These are as-closeto WSBK suspension as you will see on a production bike and they work! Leroy Rich has 58 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


The V4R loved playing around the Kyalami track. It was able to express its full capabilities and show off all its talents, which it has plenty of. This thing was seriously fast! A top speed of 292kph down the Kyalami front straight. Will easily hit over 300kph with shorter gearing and a fresh new Pirelli SC1 rear tyre fitted. SA SBK champion Michael White on a race-prepped Ducati 1299 chasing down Rob on the V4R. Michael’s exact words were “F#$% me that thing is fast!”


had his hands in the setup of this bike and it is planted and steers effortlessly. So easy to handle this bike and put it exactly where you want it. I climbed on the V4R after testing the S model first and straight away I could feel it was a lot more responsive, especially on initial turn in. No persuasion was needed getting into tricky turns like the Bowl at Kyalami, whereas the V4S model did need some persuading. The owner of the bike went 2 teeth up on the back sprocket to make the gearing a bit shorter, which definitely gave it a bit more response out the turns but it was still too long for the Kyalami track. One tooth down on the front sprocket and this thing will launch properly out of the turns. If you go check out my YouTube channel I will be posting some onboard footage of the V4R in full flight at Kyalami and you will see that 2nd gear coming onto the front straight is a bit long. You will however really appreciate the speed and sound that this machine produces – it’s simply spectacular!!! Conclusion So, can I confidently say that the V4R has now surpassed the V4S model at the top of the production sportbike tree? That’s a resounding yes! It’s just 10-20% better in every aspect and so it should be with a price tag of almost R300k more than the S model. Listen, take nothing away from the S model, especially this one done up by RACE! SA, it’s a seriously good machine that is a steal at around R390k, but the V4R is just on another level – a machine built by God himself it seems! This was part 2 of our V4R test and we now look forward to parts 3 and 4 where we will put the Desmo R up against the new S1000RR M Sport and HP4 Race carbon clad beauty. The owner has since fitted some more go faster, look better goodies on his V4R all done by RACE! SA, so I know it’s going to be even more spectacular. More awesomeness coming soon and EXCLUSIVELY through RideFast Magazine – the home of seductive, awesome, exotic, exclusive sportbikes! THE KEY NUMBERS: RRP: V4R R669,900 (no pipe) / V4S R395,900 Claimed Horsepower: V4R: 221 hp @ 15,250 rpm V4S: 214 @ 13,000 rpm Claimed Torque: V4R: 112nm @ 11,500rpm V4S: 124nm @ 10,000rpm Wheelbase: V4R: 1471mm / V4S: 1464mm Kerb Weight: V4R: 193 kg / V4S: 195kg Seat Height: V4R: 830mm / V4S: 830mm Fuel Capacity: 15 litres Visit www.ducati.co.za or call Roy 084 729 9452 or Bruce 074 261 6872. RACE! SA - www.race1.co.za 011 466 6666 60 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


WORLD LAUNCH TEST INDIAN FTR1200 CALIFORNIA USA FORNICATION INDIAN FTR1200 FLAT TRACKER FOR THE STREETS Indian has gone to great measures to position themselves as a premium American brand, and so far they have achieved exactly that, showing growth in the USA last year despite overall motorcycle sales plummeting, and attracting the sort of customer with whom you wouldn’t mind sharing a drink, or even some inheritance. While they have already secured themselves a place in American cruiser, touring and bagger folklore, they are now finding their feet as an independent motorcycle creator, and they begin this journey with a bombshell – the FTR1200 flat tracker for the streets. Donovan Fourie went to Santa Monica in California to behold it for himself. The apt words when describing the Indian FTR1200 are “hell yeah!”. There are similar words (rhyming with “duck bear”) that are more befi tting, but we would prefer not to upset anyone. “Hell yeah!” will do. When the fi rst image of the Indian FTR1200 was released nearly three years ago, we were sitting in The Bike Show offi ce and Harry, the most web-attentive of the group, turned his laptop around and said: “look at this!” The overwhelming reaction from the wide-eyed team was “hell yeah!” At the EICMA Show in Milan last November, the FTR1200 was unveiled for the fi rst time, and we saw it in the fl esh. Often photography has a way of fl attering subjects that are harsh on the eye, and yet our live reaction was an even bigger “hell yeah!”. Now here it is, in the fl esh again, with me sitting on it while the motor hums. “Hell! Bloody! Yeah!” 62 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


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WORLD LAUNCH TEST INDIAN FTR1200 Indian FTR1200 the Californian way This turn of phrase casts an even better image when this motor is humming in Los Angeles, the very place where that apt phrase was most likely coined. More precisely, we are in the glitzy Santa Monica, an area bordered by Beverley Hills and the Pacific Coastline, where the buildings are famous, the people are groovy, and Arnold Schwarzenegger occasionally pedals past on a bicycle. And the FTR1200 fits in beautifully with everything; even, perhaps, Arnie. Indian Motorcycles are the stuff of legend, dating back to their street and racing successes from the early 1900s, and their modern incarnation couldn’t be in better hands. They are one of more than 30 brands within Polaris Industries, a company turning over $6.1 billion annually. Since the brand relaunched in 2014 they have grown steadily, now selling the same number of units in Europe as Triumph and, despite overall motorcycle sales in the USA tanking, they still showed a modest growth last year. That was solely with cruisers, tourers and baggers, the traditional American way. Now Indian heads down the path of independent thinking, and at the same time throwing in a more global appeal. Indian FTR1200 energy The team behind Indian show the same character we have seen from all the passiondriven brands; an energy and enthusiasm for their models that is infectious. As we sat mingling at dinner, they approached their guests with an amiable grin and a gleam in their eye, asking excited questions all about our thoughts on the bike, the ride, the look and everything we can tell them, showing an eagerness for information and a willingness to improve the model however they can. The design leader, Matt Fronk, even shared a story about them completing the first working test bike at three o’clock one morning, not because they were frantically trying to meet some deadline but because the team was so eager to see their design in the flesh. And here it was, indeed in the flesh, idling excitedly in the parking lot of a Santa Monica hotel. Indian have dubbed this model “a flat tracker for the street”, something that started with them looking back to their flat track racing roots in the 1940s. The first thing they did is build a modern 750cc flat track racer and enter it in the AMA Flat Track Championship where, last year, they won 17 of 18 races, despite the brand having not competed for more than 50 years. Next, they built the street bike. Indian FTR 1200 – Born on the dirt, built for the street. Flat track racers have always had an appealingly mad energy about them, with that angry V-twin howl, the cheeky naked style and those semi-dirt tyres that are ready to fling gravel as their riders wrestle these machines around the ovals of America. And here was 64 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


WORLD LAUNCH TEST INDIAN FTR1200 “The motor comes across as burly and intimidating, the trellis frame and swingarm look like veins wrapping around a muscle, the twin silencers of the exhaust slant upwards in a sting position and the plastics are kept to a minimum.” a line of them, in California, with number plates and LED lights. The initial hurdle beautifully overcome by Indian – these bikes look the part; they are gorgeous to behold and yet hint at that underlying insanity. The motor comes across as burly and intimidating, the trellis frame and swingarm look like veins wrapping around a muscle, the twin silencers of the exhaust slant upwards in a sting position and the plastics are kept to a minimum. The first part of our trip had us ascending the Pacific Coast Highway, a road that has been made famous by literally every single Hollywood movie ever made. As the name suggests, it follows the Pacific Coast, with the clutter of Los Angeles on one side and the vastness of the ocean on the other. The ride started at a chilled pace, giving us some time to look around the bike and play with its toys. The seating feels surprisingly neutral, and we say this because bikes of this kin tend to be more laid back, even with their racing inspiration. The ProTaper bars are relatively close to the rider, and the footpegs are straight down. The tank has some stunning artwork, and fuel cap sits close enough to the rider’s, um, bits to ensure a dismount when refuelling for fear of violation. The seat is excellent, and this is again down to the Indian staff paying attention to comments and opinions. Last year, they invited selected members of the world media to try out the preproduction model and give feedback, and this is not the first time a company has done this, as it makes perfect sense. Motorcycle journalists have experience with all sorts of models and all kinds of brands, so are possibly the best kind of development rider. One of the prevalent comments was the seat being was too hard, so the design team swung into action, redesigning the shape and replacing the cushioning. Now it is a seat that can happily accommodate your backside all day. Indian FTR1200 – look, dirt and now technology Indian is releasing two base versions – the FTR1200 and the FTR1200S. The significant difference, apart from paint schemes and adjustable suspension on the S, is the electronics with both featuring cornering ABS and cruise control, while the FTR1200S has the addition of lean-sensitive traction control, stability control, four rider modes and the ability to turn off the ABS. The big break-through for motorcycling found on the FTR1200S is the LCD dash. It has two rather fetching themes, it is simple enough to understand, and it has Bluetooth connectivity with a USB charger. These functions are somewhat hum-drum in the modern motorcycling era, but what makes it unique is the three methods of navigating through these functions – you can push the buttons on the side of the dash, you can toggle the handlebar joystick or, get this, you can use the touch screen. It works both with gloves and without, and it saves having to fumble switches. 66 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


Indian FTR1200 growl As we settle into the ride, the pace hotted up, something that is a mercy; often American launches tend to be a delicate affair, with the launch hosts wary of the American tradition of throwing lawyers at every situation, and they dare not stray into anything risky thus participants follow the leader in an agonising procession of law-abiding uniformity. Our hosts on this occasion were British, and within ten minutes of turning onto the Pacific Coast Highway, thoughts of bloodsucking lawyers were cast aside, and we were blasting away from each traffic light in a delightfully Hollywood fashion. The motor is a traditional 60º V-twin hosting 1203cc, with a radiator, that pushes 123hp and 120Nm of torque. These figures might not be the stuff of nightmares, but Indian has joined the likes of Triumph by somehow making spec numbers dance far more in real life than they do on paper. The motor feels peppy and just a bit angry, lifting the front wheel in first gear and roaring to a redline of 9,000rpm. Indian also has a knack of building motorcycles that are somehow sublimely smooth and yet, at the same time, dripping with character, two traits that are usually mutually exclusive. Indian FTR1200 in Paradise Los Angeles is annoying in an enviable way because they have the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, exciting and friendly citizens, a beautiful coastline, and the Santa Monica mountains a mere click north of the city. As the buildings end and the roadside turns into a cliff, you can take any turn-off and be greeted with some of the most magnificent roads anywhere in the world. There is a veritable race track in Los Angeles’ backyard, and yet for some daft reason, Hollywood keeps focusing on a bunch of muscle tractors blasting down straight desert roads. We took one of said turn-offs, and a paradise beyond any stupid desert greeted us. Choosing these kinds of roads in itself is a bold move by Indian because, while the FTR1200 does flirt with the idea of racing, it does still give off an aura of cruiser-ness. It has a dry weight of 222kg, some 60kg heavier than the likes of a Ducati Panigale V4R. The aluminium wheels have been adopted from a flat tracker, with an 18-inch in the rear and a 19-inch in the front, a configuration that would suggest handling that tracks beautifully, but it not too keen on changing direction. “...while the FTR1200 does flirt with the idea of racing, it does still give off an aura of cruiser-ness.” RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 67


WORLD LAUNCH TEST INDIAN FTR1200 This is Andrezj Simpsonowics, a Polish journalist that Rob and I more conveniently call Simpson. We find him incredibly annoying because he can wheelie and drift on any motorcycle, including the FTR1200, and we can’t. Look up his Facebook page “Simpson” for more wheelie and sideways annoyingness. While I subconsciously braced my upper arms for the strain, we dipped into the fi rst series of turns and it, well, turned. Yes, it tipped into the corner and went through it, easy as can be. Even as we delved into the depths of the mountain passes where such dangers as fl ick-fl acks and nasty blind hairpins, it took it all in its stride, turning on a dime and glueing itself to the line like a freight train, it’s not going to break any lap records around Kyalami, but the lap will be an outright giggle. More so, the torque of the motor meant gear changes were optional with no hint of snatching. The FTR1200 is fi tted with speciallydeveloped Dunlop tyres that are based on those of a fl at tracker and resembled an old-school rain tyre. They gripped remarkably well for tyres intended to take on the dirt oval, however, the torque of the motor did occasionally overcome the rear, but this just meant that it stepped out slightly and a mild adjustment of the throttle set it straight again. And that was only while the traction control was off. It was kinda fun. This uncharacteristic handling is an enigma until you begin uprooting the inner workings of the chassis and motor. Indian has concentrated on the mass, keeping it as low and as centralised as possible. The fuel tank has been placed under the seat, like on a MotoGP bike, a feature that allows a better air-induction directly above the motor, and a far better mass distribution. The wheels are lightweight, and there is a very little mass in the outer extremities to upset the handling. The suspension is from Sachs (fullyadjustable on the FTR1200S) with 43mm forks and an offset monoshock both offering 150mm of travel further adding to the all-day comfort. The brakes are by Brembo, meaning there is not only stopping power but great feel for the more daring trail-braker. Indian FTR1200 for the win The FTR1200 is undoubtedly a new deviation for Indian. Until now, they have produced sedate motorcycles that oozed charm, sophistication and class. A hooligan machine seemed a distant notion, and yet here it is. You’d be forgiven for thinking this might detract from its previous demeanour but, if anything, it has done nothing but add a fresh, youthful bundle of joy, like a new baby born into a royal family. When you meet the people behind the project, you fi nd a group of keen bikers who will surreptitiously check the practice results from that weekend’s racing in-between their design work. With this lot at the helm, you have wonder why the FTR1200 didn’t come sooner. Hell yeah! The Indian FTR1200 also will be available in four other stylistic versions, including Tracker, Sport, Rally and Tour, all with their own parts from the custom catalogue and paint schemes. There is also a Race Replica with its race-inspired paint scheme and an Akrapovic exhaust. They are estimated to arrive in July 2019. Pricing (subject to currency fluctuations): Indian FTR1200 – R209,900 Indian FTR1200S – R229,900 Indian FTR1200S Race Replica – R259,900 www.indianmotorcycle.co.za 68 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


THE LONG & SHORT OF IT... A 450km plus ride out to the NAMPO show on two very capable machines - one very long and heavy and one very short and sweet. Words Glenn Foley & Sean Hendley Pics Glenn Foley, Sean Hendley & Jaun Delport (Appy) 70 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


So, sitting around the office the other day the conversation went something along these lines, Me: “4..5..6!? I can’t get hold of anyone… mutter… mumble… grumble.” Glenn: “Why? Where is everyone?” Me: “Bothaville in the Free State, at some show called NAMPO.” Glenn: “Well we’ve got the Wing and the KYMCO scooter in the garage, let’s go check it out.” Me: “It’s about 300 kays there, gonna be a long ride for you on the scooter, Appy and I will be lekker comfy on the Goldwing ….chuckle.” Glenn: “Humph! …. mutter, grumble.” And thus the scene was set and we all met at the office just on six bells the next morning. With the sun just starting to drag itself over the horizon on quite a chilly late autumn morning we fired our steeds into life and aimed southwest down the highway. At this point I must mention that I was expecting the KYMCO Xciting 400 scooter to be quick through the early morning traffic, but I wasn’t expecting to have to chase it like I did. The Goldwing is quite wide and is a bit of a handful trying to carve through the traffic (especially with a pillion) and Glenn was soon through Gillooly’s and heading up the N3 with us trailing well behind on the Wing. I eventually managed to catch up just before the split onto the N12 with the very wide eyed and pale faced Appy’s knees digging into my ribs as he desperately clutched onto the back of the Wing. Once we were on the RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 7 1


R59 and clear of the traffi c both the Kymco and the Wing cruised along happily at 3 cokes over the speed limit. Pulling into the Block House One Stop on the R59 a little bit later Glenn, riding the Xciting 400 Scooter, commented how the temperature had suddenly dropped just past Kliprivier. For some reason he didn’t appreciate my response about not noticing the temperature change lounging behind the Goldwings big screen and fairing listening to tunes bluetoothed from my phone to the Wings juke box with the seat warmers and grip heaters set to max, and Appy agreeing with me did nothing to soften his scowl. A lekker Wimpy brekka and coffee soon had us all in better spirits and then it was out past Parys, with a quick fuel stop in Sasolburg, then open country roads through the beautiful Free State autumn landscape passed Vredefort, Viljoenskroon and onto Bothaville. Where, just before Bothaville, we found a short cut to NAMPO along a dirt road and that being our forte soon had the scooter and tourer bouncing along happily. Glenn and the scooter seemed to be in their element immediately and disappeared off into the distance in a cloud of dust at break neck speeds. The Goldwing did require a bit more judicious management, especially in the thick sand and wash boarding, some frantic toggling of the ride 72 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019 mode button got it into ‘RAIN’ mode and suddenly the big lump became quite light on its feet and stabilised in the dirt. We eventually got up to about 90 kays per hour happily and caught up with Glenn on the scooter, who had gotten so far ahead he had pulled over to take a couple of photos. A couple of minutes later we joined the queue of white double cab bakkies at the entrance to NAMPO. As it turns out, NAMPO is the biggest agricultural trade show in South Africa and is the annual “How’s your mother?” for all the farmers from around the country and neighbouring states… hence all the white double cabs. Everybody and anybody who is anybody goes to NAMPO - all the major brands catering to agriculture had a stand there. Tractors, trucks, combine harvesters, solar plants, water pumps, canopies, 4 x 4 accessories, spanners, cattle, irrigation, plants, chainsaws and… and… and the list goes on. It also seems to be the place to put the motorcycle industry on exhibition properly. We visited the exceptionally impressive stands of Polaris, Linhai, Kubota (side x sides), John Deere (side x sides), Suzuki, KTM, BMW, Yamaha, Kymco, Big Boy, Country Trax, Honda and Maxxis, all good mates of ours and excellent clients. The brands not on display were very notable in their absence. After having spent a good 5 or 6 hours walking our feet broken Above: Yamaha SA, Kymco SA, Suzuki SA and BMW SA all had very impressive stands at the NAMPO Show.


around NAMPO and barely seeing less than half of the exhibitions, this does seem to be the place to be if you want to increase your turn over. After a pie and a coke and a good ogle at the pretty ladies it was time to head back home with the sun hanging low behind us. Glenn, our boss, pulled rank and took the Goldwing keys off me … but I had a sneaky plan lined up. Although, I wasn’t unhappy riding the Kymco Xciting 400 scooter. I had been on the press launch a few months ago and was really impressed with Kymco’s entire range of scooters. The suspension is quite fi rm, but doesn’t bottom out at speed over rough roads even with my 115kg’s on it. Accelerating passed slower traffi c does require a bit of forethought and planning. Especially at speeds well over the national posted speed limit. At just under 2 meters tall the cockpit is a bit snug for me, but a quick adjustment of my sitting position sorted that out. Running along the country roads from Bothaville with a quick fuel stop in Viljoenskroon into Parys I soon got ahead of the traffi c and way ahead of Glenn and Appy on the Wing. The Xciting ran along happily at 3 to 4 cokes over the speed limit for an easy hundred and fi fty, hundred and eighty kays without so much as a hiccup and even with my extended chassis I had plenty of protection from the elements at those speeds, no fatigue set in, no cramps or serious stiffness to mention just a very lekker blast through the countryside on a great little bike. Once back in Parys I had to hang around a bit for Glenn and Appy to catch up on the Wing. We refuelled for the last time. Now you might imagine that at the speeds we were running and carrying a pillion that we burned through an unreasonable amount of fuel. Not so, the Xciting 400 gave us an average of 20 kays per litre, not bad for a little 400 cc, automatic, single cylinder scoot that had its throttle cable stretched for 600 odd kilometres with 115kg riders on it. The Wing with its big 1800 cc, fl at six cylinder engine did almost equally as well at 18 kays per litre with a pillion all the way. I’m sure that if we had adhered to the speed limits all the way we would have achieved signifi cantly better fuel economy, but we would still probably be on our way back now. With the sun setting and the temperature dropping it was time to put my evil little plan into action to wrestle the Goldwing away from Glenn. The conversation went something like this; Me: “Bud, we’re going to have to slow down to about sixty or seventy kays an hour.” Glenn: “Why?” Me: “I can’t see through my dark visor at night and am going to have to ride with it up, so sixty or seventy max.” Glenn: “But .. but … we’ll only get back after midnight.” Me: “Uh huh.” Glenn: “Take the Wing and ride with the screen up … for fu ..mutter, mumble.” Me: “(innocently but with a sly grin inside my helmets) You sure?” Glenn: “BRRAAAAAPPPP!!! …..(off into the twilight on the Kymco).” Me: Quietly adjust seat warmer and grip heaters to max, get the tunes playing on the juke box, set the windscreen just so. Listen to the Barry White–esque burble of the fl at six exhaust note grinning to myself, I’m probably going to get a karmic bitch slap somewhere along the line for that... 74 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


NEW AT RSR LAST SUNDAY OF EVERY MONTH CAR TRACK DAY ONLY NORMAL R A C E SPORTS VINTAGE BRING IT, LET’S lap IT! Club Race Dates 15 JUN FUN & ENTERTAINMENT 6 JULY 24 AUGUST 28 SEPTEMBER 30 NOVEMBER 082 757 3138 GPS CO-ORDINATES S26 04'30.9" E28 45'20.0" entry@redstarraceway.co.za www.redstarraceway.co.za 2019


Glenn says: Another hare brained ride and I have to say that NAMPO really impressed and well worth the trip, one of the biggest trade expo’s I’ve been to in S.A. in a very long time. Having attended an agricultural high school as a kid and living on an agricultural small holding I was like a kid at Christmas, NAMPO is my kinda expo. Catching up with a lot of our customers there was a real treat, all of them commented that this is one of the best trade expo’s on the calendar and they never miss a year. The Kymco is really a fun to ride scoot, happily burbling along at 150kph for most of the day. I saw more than one bakkie driver shaking his head in disbelief as we zooted past on a little scootertjie. Very comfy too, I did at least 450 kays for the day without any major discomfort barring the sore bum, which is standard with a long day in the saddle on any bike. Well laid out clocks and controls that are all natural and instinctive to use make the little scootertjie a real joy to ride and it feels like great quality machine, which is important for the price that you pay. The Goldwing is everything that it sets out to be, big, comfortable and reasonably fast with just about every conceivable luxury that you can bolt on to a motorcycle. What a beautiful engine, perfect for the bulky mass of this machine. One small note however is the fact that the top box and paniers don’t open and shut quite as smoothly as I would have liked. We had to give the top box a good thump a couple of times, which you shouldn’t really have to on a bike of this calibre. Also, the windshield vent kept getting jammed until we squirted a bit of Q20 into the mechanism. Am I ready for one of these? Not quite yet, but I am busy restoring an old 1980’s version. I did enjoy the bike and I would love to pop the Mrs on the back and take it on a trip to a far flung place, but in JHB rush hour traffic and things like that it is a mighty big bus to wangle around. I did enjoy all the amazing on-board tech. Great big yank tank. KYMCO SPECS: RRP: R99,500 Engine: 399cc SOHC 4-Stroke, 4-Valve, Single Cylinder w/EFI Claimed Horsepower: 35hp @ 7500rpm Claimed Torque: 35nm @ 6000rpm Front Suspension: Full-Length Telescopic Fork Rear Suspension: Twin Shocks with 5-Step Preload Adjustment Front Brakes: Dual Rotors with Four-Piston Calipers, Bosch ABS Wheelbase: 156cm Claimed Dry Weight: 192.5kg Seat Height: 81cm Under seat Storage: 42.7 Litres, Lighted Fuel Capacity: 15 litres Visit www.kymco.co.za GOLDWING SPECS: RRP: R367,000 Engine: 1,833cc horizontally opposed, liquid-cooled, six-cylinder four-stroke Claimed Horsepower: 118.00 HP @ 5500 RPM Claimed Torque: 167.00 Nm @ 4000 RPM Front Suspension: Double-wishbone front-suspension system w/ Showa shock absorber, 4.3 in. travel Rear Suspension: Pro-Link system w/ Showa shock absorber, 4.1 in. travel Front Brakes: Radially mounted 6-piston Nissin calipers, electronically controlled combined ABS Wheelbase: 170cm Kerb Weight: 378kg Seat Height: 744 mm If adjustable, lowest setting. Fuel Capacity: 25 litres Visit www.honda.co.za/motorcycles 76 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


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Words and pics by Paul Bedford A battle we have seen many times before here in SA - Clint Seller vs David McFadden. MCFADDEN AND SELLER SHARE A COUPLE OF THRILLERS Killarney International Raceway hosted The Liqui Moly Cape Town Round, the third in the 2019 SA SuperBike series, on Saturday, 11 May. A pair of races that were in doubt until the fi nal metres saw Cape Town’s David McFadden power his RPM Centre/Stunt SA Yamaha R1 to a narrow win over Clint Seller (King Price Yamaha Racing R1) in the opening SuperBike heat, while in the next McFadden had to settle for second after Seller was able to repel his late charge. In the SuperSport 600 class, Kewyn Snyman (Hillbilly Racing Team Yamaha R6) had a comfortable win in the opening heat but defending champion Blaze Baker (King Price Yamaha Racing R6) bounced back in the second to take a narrow victory. SuperBikes Friday’s qualifying sessions saw Seller just get the better of Hayden Jonas (WP Motors/Samurai SA Yamaha R1) to claim pole position with Nicolas Grobler (Adrenalin Powersport/Meanwraps Yamaha R1) joining them on the front row of the grid. An all Cape Town second row was headed by Lance Isaacs, who had David McFadden (RPM Centre/Stunt SA Yamaha R1) and Ronald Slamet (PLM Motorsport Yamaha R1) alongside him. Row three was occupied by Garrick Vlok (DCCS Coring Cutting and Sealing Yamaha R1), Morne Geldenhuis (Race Craft Motorcycles Yamaha R1) and Byron Bester (Hi-Tech Racing Yamaha R1), who missed out on the chance to improve his time in the fi nal session as he had to return Local hero Hayden Jonas leads Clint Seller, Lance Isaacs and David McFadden.


to Johannesburg for a matric dance. Dylan Barnard (NPL Yamaha R1), Karl Schultz (ASAP World/FFC/Browns Property Suzuki GSXR1000) and Aran van Niekerk (Appleberry/7 Stars Kawasaki ZX10R) filled the final row. When the lights went out at the start of the opening race, Seller grabbed the early lead, but he had a Cape Town trio in his wheel tracks. Isaacs, Jonas and McFadden pressured the former champion with Jonas taking the lead shortly before the half-way mark. Seller regained the lead a couple of laps later and McFadden then took up the challenge while Jonas kept a watching brief. Just as Jonas started closing the gap to the leading pair, electronic gremlins saw him coast to a halt at the exit to turn three. Seller and McFadden were never separated by more than a couple of bike lengths as they pulled away from Isaacs. McFadden bided his time and pounced on the final lap, taking the win by just over a quarter of a second. Isaacs ended in third with Grobler in fourth. The race-long dice between Bester and Vlok went the way of Bester with Barnard and van Niekerk in seventh and eighth. Race 1 was a thriller, but the second heat was even better. The same four broke away at the front with Isaacs taking the lead from Seller on the fourth lap. A couple of laps later Seller was back in front and again had McFadden chasing for all he was worth. Jonas and Isaacs dropped back slightly as they fought for the final podium position. McFadden again waited until the dying moments to make his move, but this time Seller was able to hang on, taking the win by just eight tenths. Jonas managed to stay ahead of Isaacs to claim a podium on his return to the national stage. Bester took another fifth place, this time without the attention of Vlok who crashed out in the early stages while battling with the leading group. Van Niekerk took sixth ahead of Barnard. Grobler, who had high expectations in the second race was disappointed when the crank sensor on his Yamaha failed as they were preparing to head to the grid. While his crew were able to get him out after effecting repairs, he was too far behind to mount any challenge. He did, however, claim eighth. In the day’s overall standings, McFadden took the win from Seller and Isaacs. SuperSport It was a Cape Town lockout of the front row in the 600 category. Kewyn Snyman (Hillbilly Racing Team Yamaha R6) led the way from Jared Schultz (ASAP World/FFC/ Brown Property Yamaha R6) and Brandon Staffen (AJH Cooling/RPM Centre Kawasaki ZX6R). Defending champion Blaze Baker (King Price Yamaha R6) headed the second row of the grid with Ricardo Otto (Otto Racing Team Yamaha R6) and JP Friederich (GR Tax/Johnny Fox Kawasaki ZX6R) alongside him. Donovan le Cok (RPM Centre Kawasaki ZX6R) set a time that gave him seventh on the grid but a crash shortly after setting his best time brought his race weekend to a premature end. Gareth Gehlig (Gareth Gehlig Racing Kawasaki ZX6R) and Luca Balona (Armadillo Construction/Fibre Technologies Kawasaki ZX6R) completed the third row. Otto and Staffen were the quickest to react when the lights went out to signal the start of the first race, but it wasn’t long before Snyman moved into the lead. He was able to pull away at the front and go on to take a comfortable win. Baker had to settle for second while Schultz was also able to get past Staffen and Otto to take the final podium position. Friederich, Gehlig and Balona rounded out the top six. In race two, Snyman took the lead but couldn’t pull away as he did in the opening heat. Baker didn’t let him get away and in the second half of the race, they swapped positions a couple of times before the final lap. Snyman led over the line going into the final lap but Baker made his move and was able to take victory by just over a tenth of a second. Schultz again claimed the final podium position with Staffen not far behind. Friederich took fifth ahead of Otto with Gehlig and Balona again in seventh and eighth. The overall win went to Snyman with Baker and Schultz joining him on the podium. The SA SuperBike series in association with Metzler now moves up the coast to Port Elizabeth where round 4 will take place at the Aldo Scribante circuit on 14 & 15 June. Blaze Baker. McFlash back to winning ways. Local man Kewyn Snyman. Brandon Staffen had another great outing.


RACE COLUMN AIDAN LIEBENBERG A POINT TO PROVE! The first race of the 2019 Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup season is already done and dusted and I am quite satisfied with the results I achieved. After a challenging pre-season test at Jerez, I had a lot of work to do if I wanted to be in the points at the first round at Jerez. It is definitely one of the best MotoGP races and the atmosphere is incredible. We had 2 free practices’ and a qualifying on the Friday, with race 1 on Saturday and race 2 on the Sunday. Although I was not very happy about my lap times during the test, the bike setup was not too bad. I felt comfortable from the first lap in FP1 and this was a big relief for me. FP1 was a positive session, but I battled to make an improvement in FP2. We made a few changes to the bike before qualifying and from the start of I was already faster and improved my lap time from the test. I qualified 14th, which was my best qualifying result at the Rookies Cup so far. Race 1 just did not go as planned. I made a terrible start and lost a lot of positions. I then had to overtake and fight my way forward fast, because I knew that if I did not tag onto the faster group they would start to pull away. I made up the positions lost quite quickly, but then I outbroke myself at turn 6 and lost all those positions again. I started fighting with that group and missed out on the points. We made a few changes on the bike for race 2, which was a bit risky, but the bike did not work well when riding a little bit more aggressive and in a bunch. My start of race 2 was better and I managed to follow a few faster riders, helping me to pull away from the riders behind me. Thankfully the setup changes worked better and race 2 was a big improvement for me. The faster riders in front of me started pulling away slowly, but I pushed to try and stay with them the whole race. It was not the most exciting race, but I managed to finish in 15th place and to score my first point! The next race is Mugello and I will try my best to improve my results there. We only have 1 race in Mugello, but I will make the most of it. A big thanks to you all for the support! 80 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JUNE 2019


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