*INDEPENDENT REVIEW DONE BY RACERZONE
JULY 2019 RSA R35.00
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THE MOST BRUTAL NAKED DUCATI EVER.
F I R S T L O C A L T E S T
FIRST RIDE ON ALL-NEW KATANA
I S L E O F M A N T T
FULL COVERAGE FROM THIS YEARS TT
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2020 is fast approaching and it looks like it’s going to be
another cracking year with some very tasty motorcycles
set to hit the market. On this month cover we feature the
new Ducati V4 Streetfi ghrer. This is the prototype model
which will be raced at this year’s prestigious Pikes Peak
event over in the US, but Ducati have said that it’s pretty
darn near to what the 2020 production model will be. This
is great news and not only does it look great but it also
looks like Ducati won’t be doing the usual when it comes
to one’s Naked Sportsbike and dull it down. It looks
like the new V4 Streetfi ghter will get the full brunt of the
gorgeous V4 Desmo power plant and packed with all the
electronic wizardry as well. Pretty much just a V4 Panigale
but without the fairing, and that’s exactly what the market
was asking for. Oh yes, and it also gets wings, which on
a brute naked bike like this will no doubt be a welcomed
edition to help tame the front end.
It looks mean yet has that typical Italian fl air and I for
one can’t wait to see it in action at Pikes Peak. We will
have that full feature in next month’s issue and although
not much info has been released on the specs of the
production model we do have as much info as there is
available as well as some stunning pics of the machine,
which is set to be released in production form at this year’s
Eicma show in Milan.
This year’s event is going to be one of the best yet
that’s for sure. Not only will we be seeing the new V4
Streetfi ghter, but also the likes of a new KTM 1290 Super
Duke R, which we have some news on in this issue, as
well as a new Yamaha R1 and Kawasaki ZX10R. Fingers
crossed this does happen!!!
Oh yes, and we might fi nally see a new Honda V4
superbike model. Rumours have been going around
for years about the V4 from the Japs but nothing has
surfaced yet, but it looks like there fi nally will be one
released soon and here is why I think that. It’s been said
that Honda are trying to lure Johann Zarco out of his KTM
MotoGP contract to come ride for them in WSBK. Alvaro
Bautista’s name has also been linked with the Wings logo.
Now, here is why I think there has to be an epic new V4
machine coming. There is no ways in hell that Honda
would even think of contacting these riders without having
a serious carrot to dangle in front of them. The current
bike and team setup wouldn’t lure many to be honest, but
a new Full Factory run team featuring a new V4 machine
just might. Ok, this might just be me doing some big
Wishful Thinking but I’m seriously hoping that I’m right and
that we will fi nally be seeing a big red Honda V4 beast hit
Staying with Honda and I know most of you reading this
are probably not big Jorge Lorenzo fans, but I just feel so
sorry for the guy. He just can’t seem to do anything right
at the moment. Sad to see such talent suffering like that
and I for one hope that he can get it sorted and throw his
name into the mix at the front end of the fi eld once again -
that will make things even more interesting!!!
Make sure you subscribe to my YouTube channel and
watch the Talking MotoGP segments I do after every race
with Donovan Fourie. The podcasts have really taken off
and I get some great interaction from it.
Staying with Don Fourie and as you all know he is part of
the team from The Bike Show TV series on Ignition TV.
Don has been doing some great articles for us over the
past couple of months and does so once again in this
issue where he tests the new and old Suzuki Katana’s.
Also joining us going forward will be his partner in crime
from The Bike Show, Mr. Mat Durrans, who will be doing
a column for us every month chatting about his ventures
around the world and locally. We feature his fi rst one in this
issue and it’s a cracker and I’m really looking forward to
As you can see by the main picture, (and from my
Instagram and Facebook page if you follow), I recently
went all Ducati Scrambler along with my brother Shaun
and new-found mate Jannie Krynauw, the man behind
the Originale Ducati Enthusiasts. I recently became the
ambassador for the JHB Originales crew and marked it
with our fi rst group ride up here in JHB. It was a ride from
the new Ducati SA HQ in Centurion out to Ridgeway
Racebar in Greenstone to enjoy the Catalunya MotoGP
race. It was a great success and I thoroughly enjoyed the
Ducati Scrambler experience. Jos Matthysen, the new
Boss Man at Ducati SA, handed my brother and myself
keys to a Scrambler 1100 and 800 along with Zeus piss
pot lids. He wanted us to take a break from the Sportbike
life and sample the Scrambler lifestyle. As I said it was
awesome and all three of us had an absolute jol!!! Big
thanks to Jos for not only accommodating us on the ride
but also for the big smiles and laughs we had on the day
enjoying the Scramblers.
You will see on our cover we have some pretty big
statements - over 500,000 happy readers last month and
Voted SA’s best motorcycle magazine. These are both
facts and I cannot thank each and everyone involved
for making both these facts a reality. The over 500,000
readers is worldwide fi gures from both our digital and
print mag. I was blown away by these numbers and
hope it continues for a very long time! As for the ‘Voted
SA’s best magazine’, this was after a survey was done
by the Racerzone website, who asked their fans to vote
which is the best mag in the land out of the three top ones
available. It was a resounding yes for RF and again I could
not be prouder!!! This is the 2nd time we have won this
accolade and results like the two mentioned on the cover
just inspire me and the team here to keep pushing and
working harder than anyone else in the industry to bring
you the best magazine out there!
Right, I must now leave you, as I type this out on my
phone while sitting in my van waiting to commentate at
round 5 of the Mayfair Gearbox Club MX series at Dirt
Broncos and I’m starting to get angry looks from those in
charge so let me go grab the mic and start working.
Hope you enjoy the mag, it’s another fantastic issue, as
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 1
J U L Y 2 0 1 9
PG4: DUCATI V4
Ducati give us a glimpse of what their
new V4-powered naked beast is
going to be like come 2020.
2019 ISLE OF MAN TT
PG34: FIRST RIDE THE NEW SUZUKI KATANA
KAWASAKI H2SX SE
MONOCLE SERIES KYALAMI
OUR CBR1000RR MAKE-OVER
2 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
RECEIVE A TRADE-IN BONUS WHEN YOU
TRADE UP TO A NEW KTM V-TWIN.
There has never been a better time to join the fast side. Trade up
to the 2018 KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R and we’ll sweeten the deal with
extra trade assistance and Track & Performance pack free of charge.
Visit your nearest KTM dealer for more info!
Discount of R 20,000.00 off retail price (incl. 15 % VAT) when trading in a vehicle (the vehicle must have been registered to the
purchaser for at least 6 months before this purchase) and purchasing a 2018 KTM 1290 Super Duke R model year 2018 during the
promotion period from 22 February to 31 June 2019 at all participating authorized KTM dealerships.
Discount cannot be redeemed in cash. Only one motorcycle per buyer. Terms and conditions apply.
Offer valid while stocks last. Further information can be obtained from your specialist KTM dealer.
All information with the proviso that mistakes, printing, setting and typing errors may occur.
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
All the NEWS proudly brought
to you by HJC HELMETS
Ducati strips the Panigale V4 for the ultimate Streetfighter
The prototype Ducati
offers a first view of
the 2020 production
model that will
be introduced in
November this year.
Since the Streetfi ghter 1000 was dropped by
Ducati in 2015, the only powerful naked bike in
its lineup was the Monster 1200. The arrival of
the new V4 engine offers a prime opportunity
to reclaim top honours in the class and now the
Italians have revealed a prototype Streetfi ghter V4
to debut at the 2019 Pikes Peak Hill Climb.
When Ducati rolled out the Panigale V4 superbike
last year, several supposedly well-informed sources
suggested that a naked version was in the pipeline
too. The fi re picked up a few months ago when
the Italians entered an unspecifi ed V4 for the
2019 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC),
where sportbikes originally equipped with clip-on
controls are banned for safety reasons. It couldn’t
be anything other than the rumored naked version
of the superbike and it was confi rmed soon after,
when the bike was spotted testing for the race.
No matter how
much Ducati is
trying to obscure
the Streetfighter V4
prototype’s lines, the
with the Panigale’s
nose is evident.
4 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
that the styling of
V4 prototype is
meant to accurately
the 2020 production
model will look.
Ducati is indeed reviving the Streetfi ghter, this
time built around the Desmosedici Stradale
V4 engine. The 1,103 cc road-legal version of
Ducati’s new motor powers the Panigale V4
and V4 S series with a stunning output of 214
hp and that’s just the base regime.
The 998 cc racing version of this engine in the
V4 R produces 221 hp and goes up to 234
with an Akrapovic racing exhaust system. If
any customer can do this with a simple add-on
off the shelf, imagine what a proper racing
team can get out of this powerhouse. In fact,
World Superbike fans already know that Alvaro
Bautista on the factory Panigale V4 R has been
ruining the competition consistently since the
championship took off last February, winning
most of the seven triple-race events until now
by vast margins.
Ducati hasn’t released any technical information
on the new bike, other than confi rming which
engine it bears and setting a formal unveiling
date as a 2020 production model at the EICMA
show in Milan, in November.
As expected, the prototype Streetfi ghter V4 will
make its fi rst public outing at the PPIHC “Race
to the Clouds” on June 30 in Colorado, at the
hands of expert American racer Carlin Dunne.
Supposedly the motorcycle is still in
development, but if Ducati is confi dent enough
to enter it in a race it probably is already very
close to production standards. At least in
The Desmosedici Stradale 90-degree V4 motor
produces 214 hp in the entry-level Panigale and the
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 is expected to enjoy the
same privilege - hell yeah!
terms of design it certainly is, as Ducati admits
that the prototype “is meant to suggest how
the bike will eventually look,” presented under
a livery that’s apparently intended to obscure
“The Streetfi ghter V4 will be one of the
stars of the Ducati World Premiere 2020,”
said Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati.
“Streetfi ghter V4 is the Panigale for road
riding; so there was no better stage than the
Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
for what will be the highest performance
Streetfi ghter ever put into production.”
Apparently for Ducati it is important to have the
most powerful naked bike in the market, just
as was the case with the Streetfi ghter 1000,
whose 155-hp V2 engine of the previous
Panigale generation was unrivalled at the time.
Should the Italians come up with the full 214
hp of the Desmosedici Stradale, they’d beat
by a slim margin the very exclusive MV Agusta
Brutale 1000 Serie Oro, which produces 212
hp from its 998 cc in-line four-cylinder motor.
Apart from its compatriots’ Brutale, the
competition in the class doesn’t come very
close, with the Aprilia Tuono V4 1100 Factory
and the KTM 1290 Super Duke R reaching
175 hp, and even less for the rest.
Ducati selected the Pikes Peak International Hill
Climb for the 2020 Streetfighter V4 prototype’s
first public outing. Full story on that in next
The new Streetfi ghter V4 will logically
come with all the electronic gadgetry of
the Panigale, a survival necessity on public
roads with such a fi re-breathing power plant
strapped to your right hand.
As for pricing, expect something lower but
probably not very far from the entry-level
Panigale V4’s price tag (R317,000), for
an extreme naked sportbike that should
dazzle crowds at every rare sighting without
cannibalizing the sales of the more down-toearth
Monster 1200 S v-twin. A little birdy has
told us the new V4 Streetfi ghter should arrive
here in SA around end Feb 2020.
For more info feel free to contact Ducati SA on
012 765 0600.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 5
All the NEWS proudly brought
to you by HJC HELMETS
The World’s Fastest
Using the motor from a CBR1000RR sportbike,
this mower can get to 100 mph faster than a new
Honda NSX car and keep your yard looking fresh.
When someone shops for a lawnmower,
face-melting acceleration isn’t typically very
high on their buying criteria. Then again,
most people don’t work for Honda UK.
The Japanese purveyor of motorized
goods has gone mad and fi tted a
sportbike engine into a lawnmower,
breaking a world record for the
quickest moving grass-cutter the world
has ever seen.
Powered by the 999cc motor from the
company’s CBR1000RR Fireblade SP
motorcycle, Honda’s Mean Mower V2 gets
from zero to 100 miles per hour (160kph)
in precisely 6.29 seconds. Verifi ed by a
Guinness World Records adjudicator at
Germany’s Lausitzring, it holds the honor
of ‘Fastest Acceleration 0-100 mph for a
Lawnmower’. That’s faster than the 2019
Acura NSX which, according to Car and
Driver, gets to 100 in seven seconds fl at,
possibly making the Mean Mower V2 the
fastest Honda with four wheels this side of
one of the fi rm’s old F1 cars.
The engine in the back of this thing makes
189 horsepower and 115Nm of torque.
Weighing around 140 kilos, this piece of
lawn equipment boasts a better powerto-weight
ratio than the mighty Bugatti
Chiron. It observed an average zero to 60
time of 3.26 seconds and topped out at
151 mph (240kph).
Piloted by stunt driver and racer Jess
Hawkins, Honda’s sophomore Mean
Mower was launched twice in opposing
directions within an hour to get an average
time—similar to that time Koenigsegg sent
an Agera RS down a Nevada highway in
both directions to prove it was the fastest
car in the world. In order for the record
to be offi cial, the Fireblade-powered
lawnmower also had to ‘intrinsically look
like a lawnmower’ and prove that it could
actually, y’know, cut grass.
wins both Pirelli
Bike Tyre Warehouse, one of the largest motorcycle
tyre traders in Africa has won not one, but two Dealer
of the Year 2018 awards. The first from KMSA for
the Pirelli tyre brand and the second from TI- Auto,
importers of the Metzeler tyre brand. The awards are
given to the dealer that sells the most of each brand.
To add a cherry to this cake, Bike Tyre Warehouse
also took the Runner Up Dealer of the Year 2018 for
SBS Brake pads, that is interesting because they
are more about tyres than brakes. Other notable
achievement is that Bike Tyre Warehouse was
also made the first Preferred Pirelli Partner Store in
Africa as well as Pirelli Test Division Italy’s Preferred
Technical Support South African Partner.
This is not surprising as Bike Tyre Warehouse stocks
as many as 3000 tyres on their premises at any time,
and very often moves more than 1000 tyres a month.
Bike Tyre Warehouse Group Holdings MD Bruce de
Kock commented on this success story: “It was only
achieved by consistently adhering to the company’s
mantra of #bestadvice #bestservice #bestprice for
every customer that has ridden a motorcycle into the
Bike Tyre Warehouse fitment centre or a dealer/tyre
trader purchasing bulk product from BTW’s Trade
Division.” More than achieving success from various
tyre brands, Bike Tyre Warehouse also stocks their
own Batt brand that has been producing tyres for the
ATV, off-road and motocross market for years, plus
has recently added a range of road going tyres and
slicks. De Kock continues: “I would personally like to
thank each and every BTW loyalist for their support
& my professional team without them winning these
awards would not have been possible.”
Bike Tyre Warehouse Tel: 011 205 0216
Cell: 073 777 9269
6 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Recommended retail price including VAT
FREE quickshift & Autoblip included.
Recommended retail price including VAT
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 / firstname.lastname@example.org / Toll Free: 0800 466 321 / Facebook - Honda SA / Twitter - Honda SA.
All the NEWS proudly brought
to you by HJC HELMETS
2020 KTM 1290
Super Duke R?
The KTM 1290 Super Duke is easily one of the maddest naked
motorcycles on the planet but that is not going to stop the
Austrian two wheeler giant from pushing the envelope further.
The naked superbike is up for a facelift and KTM will not pass an
opportunity such as this to make its flagship offering meaner.
An undisguised prototype of the 2020 KTM
1290 Super Duke has been spotted up close
in Europe. The test mule offers a clear idea
about improvements on board. Aesthetically,
the already sharp looking street fi ghter receives
an even sharper fuel tank extension and a
more aggressive tailpiece. The alloy wheel
pattern is also fresh.
The instantly recognizable LED headlamp too
appears to have undergone design revision to
have a meaner stance. The spyshots also clearly
indicate that the powertrain witnesses signifi cant
update, so much so that KTM felt the need to
completely redesign the Trellis chassis.
The existing motorcycle’s 1,301 cc V-Twin
liquid cooled engine produces 177 hp and 141
Nm of torque which makes for an outrageous
performance. One can expect KTM to make
things even more brutal with the upcoming
upgrade, especially with the likes of MV and
Ducati releasing new beasts. The updated
engine is supported by a new exhaust system
(longer and convoluted tubing with a new end
canister) which is aimed at complying with the
Euro5 emission norms.
The naked sportsbike continues to employ a
single-sided swing arm but employs a new
multi-link rear monoshock. The WP 48 mm front
fork appears to have been retained. The tyres
and braking system (320 mm front and 240 mm
rear discs with ABS) are carried forward as well.
KTM would equip the new 1290 Super Duke
with additional features. The updated TFT
instrument console is expected to incorporate
additional functionality and improved
In a nutshell, the 2020 KTM 1290 Super
Duke will emerge as a more mature and well
rounded superbike for experienced riders.
The super naked will lock horns with other
premium weapons such as the upcoming
Ducati V4 street fi ghter, Aprilia Tuono V4, BMW
S1000R, Kawasaki Z1000, and so on.
The new KTM 1290 Super Duke is expected to
make its fi rst public appearance at EICMA 2019
in November, in Milan, Italy.
8 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
All the NEWS proudly brought
to you by HJC HELMETS
World Of Motorcycles is Ducati
South Africa’s New HQ.
Any uncertainty that might have been felt with the announcement that Ducati
was once again changing hands was firmly dispelled at the beginning of June as
Ducati South Africa’s new showroom in Centurion opened in fine style.
New owner Jos Matthysen was there to introduce guests to
the new-look Ducati SA premises and impressed everyone with
his enthusiasm and commitment to the iconic Italian brand.
No less impressive are the new showrooms at the World Of
Motorcycles, conveniently situated in Centurion, right next to
the John Vorster off-ramp on the N1.
A brand such as Ducati deserves something special and it
now has it. Spread over four levels, it is a self-contained hub for
everything Ducati; the full range of 2019 Ducati models as well
as a select choice of used models and, for the first time, there
will also be the full range of Ducati apparel on sale, as well as
apparel and accessories from other major brands.
The service department is also fully operational and, with a full
inventory of spares, able to deal with any eventuality on any
model. In the off-chance that a spare isn’t held in stock, it can
be ordered and shipped within three days.
A brand is only as good as the people that work there and
Ducati SA has been fortunate to retain all the key players from
the previous ownership. Sales are handled by Roy and Bruce
and the whole entity is kept running smoothly by Bonitha. The
10 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
workshop performs its surgery under the
watchful and skilled eye of Zoki, overseeing
a team of fully qualifi ed Ducati technicians.
Jos is keen to make World of Motorcycles
more than just the home of Ducati SA;
visiting must be an experience and, to
help that, there is Outlaws Pub and Grub,
serving excellent food and drink. A liquor
licence has been applied for, meaning that
you never actually have to leave the place
from dawn to dusk, if you don’t want to!
World of Motorcycles will happily look at
any motorcycle as part exchange for a
new or used Ducati and will have a section
of the showroom devoted to the sales of
these trade-ins. But whether you’ll be able
to look past the gleaming Ducatis on offer is
Should you wish to try before you buy,
there are demo rides available for potential
customers. Current demo units include
Panigale V4S, 950 Multistrada, Scrambler
1100, Scrambler 800 Icon, Monster 797
and Monster 821 and there will be more
demo models available in the coming
Make your way to World of Motorcycles in
Centurion to get the full Ducati experience.
Head to Centurion Offi ce Park, Akkerboom
Steet & John Vorster Dr, Zwartkop,
Centurion, 0046. Tel: 012 765 0600.
Pics by Meghan McCabe
Bike and Apparel
Offers from Ducati
The Ducati Scrambler has always offered fantastic
style and now, thanks to a very special offer from
World Of Motorcycles in Centurion, style has become
They have seven brand new, unridden, zero-kilometer,
2018 Scrambler 1100s at unbelievable prices. The
Scrambler 1100 Special was R213,900 but can be
yours now for R179,000. For those of you whose maths
isn’t great, that’s a saving of R34,900!
The base model 1100 Scrambler is now R169,000,
down from R196,900.
At the time of going to press, there are four Specials and
three base model 1100 Scramblers waiting for good
homes. Why not give a Ducati a good home today?
If you need a jacket to go with your new Scrambler - or
any Ducati for that matter - then World of Motorcycles
has Berik and Madif leather jackets on sale for less than
half-price; R2950.00. Stocks are limited so hurry to
catch this incredible opening offer.
Tel; 012 765 0600
Track Day Special
for Ducati Owners
If you’ve ever been tempted by the thought putting your
Ducati through its paces at a track day, or if you are a
seasoned track day rider on your Ducati, then Ducati
South Africa has an important date for your diary.
Head to Zwartkops race track on Sunday 21st July
and, not only will you get a reduced rate for the track
day - R450, down from R570 - but there will be a
special area in the pits solely for Ducati owners, while
refreshments will be provided free-of-charge, courtesy
of Ducati SA.
All riders will be allowed out on track in one of four
classes - A, B, C, or D - depending on your skill level.
No previous track experience necessary but all riders
and pillions must wear full protective gear.
It’s the perfect way to give your Ducati the exercise
No need to register but please can interested parties
send an email to Albie at email@example.com telling him
you will be going so he gets an idea of numbers and
can make the Ducati area big enough!
For more information, you can email Albie or call him
on 082 698 8589.
Mat from Henderson Racing Products handing over
a signed Alvaro Bautista Scorpion replica helmet to
new owner Jos.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 11
All the NEWS proudly brought
to you by HJC HELMETS
Vision Run: Fund
raiser for the guide
Husqvarna’s Vitpilen 401:
Now even more comfortable.
Husqvarna SA now offer customers the option of adding
more upright handlebars for the Vitpilen 401 machine,
making it a more comfortable and suitable option for most.
If you are a regular reader of this here
magazine, you will be familiar with the
Husqvarna range of Pilens (Arrows) that have
added to the very cool variety of motorcycles
available from this famous brands stable.
The fi rst two bikes to hit our shores were the
401’s, in the form of the racy Vitpilen and the
more relaxed Svartpilen.
The Vitpilen comes from the factory with
a set of clubman styled handlebars and
ergonomically it is pretty superbikey to
ride. But there is a down side to this.
Over distance, especially for us slightly
larger South Africans, it can get a tad
Husqvarna took the initiative to now offer the
Vitpilen 401 in two formats, in standard trim,
or they will fi t some higher, more comfortable
bars for you.
As a bigger guy, this makes a lot of sense.
You get the head turning looks of the Vitpilen
with a more chilled riding position. And the
conversion looks standard. Great idea.
It turns this bike into a pokey machine that
you can ride all day long in perfect comfort.
Chat to your local dealer about the
Jacob’s annual vision run is here again and we are excited to
give you a brief overview of what this exciting day will hold!
This year’s event will be held on the 27th July 2019 at Plot
no 29 Hazel Rd, Benoni Agricultural Holdings. The gates will
open at 09:00 and a minimum donation of R50.00 per person
over the age of 13 will be required at the entrance which will
include a cloth badge and entrance into the lucky draw.
We would like to invite you, the community and all our
generous sponsors to join in what is to be a day filled
with good spirit and an exhilarating journey into the real
understanding of Jacob’s Vision.
Jacob Kruger was in an accident 13 years ago, leaving
him 100% blind but, Jacob being Jacob, decided to work
around his blindness and show all visually impaired people,
the less fortunate and most of all any people who do not
understand, that “There are no limits other than those which
you apply to yourself”.
Jacob, an ambassador for the blind, thought, what better
way to demonstrate this vision than by getting on a track
bike at Redstar Raceway last year July 2018. He Completed
5 laps around the track, with the help of his all-seeing guide
dog, Ian Howard who helped guide Jacob on the basis of
trust and sensory abilities ensuring Jacob’s safety at all time.
This year, there will be a slight twist to the events, always
keeping to Jacob’s dream of educating and enabling all
communities, through technology, human interaction and
positive awareness that anything is achievable if you are
equipped with the drive and knowledge on how to achieve a
goal. The crew will also be setting up a few different kinds of
challenges, where people will be allowed to try understand
various forms of adaptation. The “Biker Re-Activation
Programme”, works at helping some of our biker brothers and
sisters re-equip themselves with protective gear, etc. when it
can help them get “back in the saddle”.
There will be plenty of food stalls, novelty shops and large
amount of entertainment for adults and kids to interact with
Jacob. There will also be a fully equipped cash bar and
generous prizes will be handed out on the day.
Please join Jacob on his journey by donating and raising funds
for the event to be legendary yet again. All proceeds raised on
the day will go toward Guide Dogs SA & Jacob’s Vision.
Let’s understand what it means to see without sight and to
keep our community growing in the full positivity of dreams!
Please contact the Jacob’s Vision team should you have any
queries on 064 072 2007.
12 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
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55,000 miles on his Ducati Scrambler Desert
Sled, across 35 countries in 381 days
Henry Crew, the young 23 year-old man who set off a year
ago to ride solo all around the world with his Ducati Scrambler
Desert Sled, has got back to England, establishing a new world
record as the youngest motorcyclist to complete a round-theworld
tour by motorcycle.
Henry, who left on 3 April 2018 from the
Bike Shed Motorcycle Club in Shoreditch,
London, had planned to ride 35,000 miles in
a year. On his return, on 19 April 2019, the
mileage on the Desert Sled which he rode for
the whole journey displayed a good 55,000
miles (over 88,000 km).
“The Scrambler Desert Sled was an
extremely versatile travelling companion,
capable of dealing with any kind of terrain or
climate. We have travelled the entyre 55,000
miles together, passing from the highest
altitude roads of the world with temperatures
of -7 °C to beaches, deserts, mountains
and rain forests at 52 °C,” declared Henry.
“The bike proved to perfectly equilibrated,
allowing me to deal easily both with sections
of motorway and with off-road riding.
Inevitably I had a few crashes, but thanks to
its low weight, I was always able to lift the
bike up on my own without ever having any
big problems or damage to the extent of
stopping me from carrying on.”
The young British motorcyclist, together with
the Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled which
accompanied him on his world tour, will
be present at the Ducati Scrambler stand
at ‘Bike Shed London 2019’, the event
dedicated to special bikes organised by the
London-based motorcycle club The Bike
Shed, which will take place in London from
24 to 26 May at the evocative location of
Tobacco Dock, a historic tobacco warehouse
converted into an exhibition space.
This will be the tenth edition of Bike Shed
London, which is one of the top European
events for fans of post-heritage motorcycle
culture and a key engagement for the Ducati
At the dedicated Land of Joy area there will
also be two original special versions. One is
a customised Ducati Scrambler 1100: the
‘Goblin Works Hooligan Hillclimber’ designed
and built by Anthony Partridge for the
Discovery Channel TV series ‘Goblin Works
Garage’. The other is a Ducati Scrambler Full
Throttle that has been personalised by Vikki
Van Someren, who is also the organiser of
the whole event.
For further information about Henry’s journey
see the official website dedicated to his
round-the-world tour: 35000miles.com
14 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Ride bigger, ride better. With the Ducati Scrambler 1100,
the Land of Joy greets the most demanding and expert
motorcyclists, to offer fun, style and freedom in an upgraded and
uncompromised fashion. Prices starting from only R169,000.
Tel: 012 765 0600
Centurion Office Park, Akkerboom Street
& John Voster Drive, Centurion.
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Motul Invests in
Youth and the Future
Originale Ducati Enthusiasts
JHB’s first MotoGP ride.
World of Motorcycles, the new home of
Ducati South Africa, celebrated Father’s
Day by hosting the fi rst Originale Ducati
Enthusiasts JHB ride from their store in
Originale Ducati Enthusiasts is a club
exclusively for owners and enthusiasts of
Italian motorcycles that was started by
Capetonian Ducati nut Jannie Krynauw in
2014. It began with him and a few friends
doing small events but has now grown to
nearly 200 members.
This ride marks the inaugural event for the
new Johannesburg branch of Originale, and
despite its infancy, saw 26 Italian motorcycle
enthusiasts in attendance. The day started
with coffee and greetings at World of
A quick briefing in the new Ducati showroom.
Motorcycles, followed by a riders briefi ng by
Krynauw who had fl own up from Cape Town
for the event.
The group then set off on their various Italian
machinery for an entertaining ride to the
Ridgeway Racebar where everyone was
shown into the VIP section to watch the
There will be more events and activities with the
new Originale Ducati Enthusiats JHB under the
leadership well-known motorcycle personality,
former racer, commentator and magazine
editor Robert Portman, who is a proud
ambassador for the group. With the success of
this fi rst event, we expect it will become more
popular and successful as it goes.
Check out the RF Facebook page for updates.
Rob and Shaun went all Scrambler for the day.
Motul may be a brand with a long and proud history, but the
company’s eyes are firmly fixed on the future of motorsports.
As South Africa commemorated Youth Day on June 16th,
Motul celebrated the achievements of some of its youngest
Motul Powersport Ambassadors: Megan Jonker, Tristan
Hedgcock and Jason van Breda. Each of them is making
a mark in the sport despite their youth, and they can be
justifiably proud of their achievements to date.
At just 13 years old, Tristan is currently competing in the
CSMX (Western Cape) Enduro Series where he has a 100%
win-rate so far. He has also been gaining some international
experience and recently put up a good fight in the AMA
Mid East Harescramble event where he ultimately finished
fifth. When he’s not riding, Tristan enjoys running cross
country and playing table tennis – which could help explain
his familiarity with off-road conditions and his impressive
Megan has emerged mentally and physically stronger
from some challenging injuries, and is also determined
to overcome the fact that her chosen sport is one that’s
historically been dominated by boys. At 18, she has
identified 2019 as her comeback season and will be working
hard to regain her composure and speed on the Motocross
track and to contend for the GXCC title. Megan credits the
massive support she has received from sponsors, family and
other riders with keeping her focused on her goals.
At a mere 7 years old, Jason van Breda (son of Greame
van Breda) makes even his fellow Motul Powersport
Ambassadors seem old. Currently competing in the Mini
Moto Stock Class, Jason is already a seasoned winner.
He’s getting used to being the youngest rider in his class,
and also to being on top of the log: at the time of writing,
he’s leading the championship in his Mini Moto class
and lying 4th in the Honda NSF100 Cup. Jason is also
a successful swimmer – further evidence of his ‘in at the
deep end’ approach to life.
”Motul is immensely proud to be associated with such
dedicated young sportsmen and women,” commented
Mercia Jansen, Motul Area Manager for Southern and
Eastern Africa, “and we will continue to support them as
part of our commitment to youth and to the future of the
motorsports industry with which our brand is synonymous.”
When it comes to performance, results are everything. It’s
an ethos that Motul is very familiar with, and through their
sponsorship of Powersport Ambassadors like Megan,
Tristan and Jason, one that will undoubtedly continue to
bear fruit in the future.
Jannie with new Ducati Boss man Jos.
Jannie with the 1299 Superleggera.
Johan from MX Alliance with Rob.
Gorgeous Italians lined up outside Ridgeway.
16 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Pic by www.racepics.co.za
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AFFORDABLE, SAFE AND COMFORTABLE ENVIROMENT.
ALL RIDERS ARE
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
firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit www.zwratkops.co.za.
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BMW Motorrad Concept R18
Harley still rules the cruiser marketplace globally, having sold 228,000 hogs last year, compared to BMW’s
worldwide sales of 165,000 motorcycles across myriad segments ... but the new BMW 1.8 liter boxer engine
seems to fulfill all the criteria required to give both Harley and Indian a run for their money.
“A picture is worth a thousand words” is
a well-known adage reflecting the notion
that a complex idea can be conveyed
with a single image, which more effectively
conveys its essence than does a
That adage came immediately to mind
when the new BMW Motorrad “Concept
R18” was shown at Concorso d’Elegenza
Villa d’Este on the weekend.
Whilst it is indeed only a concept for
the flying propellor brand, the “Concept
R18” is effectively the first shot in a war. It
represents the first offensive on Harley-
Davidson and Indian territory.
Harley still rules the cruiser marketplace
globally, having sold 228,000 hogs last
year, compared to BMW’s worldwide sales
of 165,000 motorcycles across myriad
segments ... but the new BMW 1.8 liter
boxer engine seems to fulfill all the criteria
required to give both Harley and Indian a
run for their money.
For starters, BMW has the credibility and
longevity to match the American brands,
but with the new engine, it has the cubic
twin-cylinder grunt to more than match
them in the cruiser category.
If 1.8 litres isn’t enough, rumors already
suggest a 2000cc version of the BMW
horizontally-opposed twin will also be
available, no doubt with Harley-Davidson’s
1923cc and Indian’s 1901cc V-twins in
mind as its primary targets.
The most remarkable aspect of the
Concept R18 is that the new big bore
BMW boxer motorcycle engine it contains
has been shown previously. We’ve seen
two custom motorcycles using the new big
bore boxer engine over the last six months
and the release of a new engine to custom
builders prior to its showing in a factoryproduced
motorcycle is unprecedented.
That’s the Custom Works Zon “Departed”
which was shown last December (2018) at
the fabled Mooneyes Show in Yokohama
in Japan. In the 27 years the show has
been running, it has become one of the
most important on the world custom
stage, and last year’s show attracted 300
18 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
show cars and 650 show motorcycles.
“Departed” won the prestigious Best of
Show Motorcycle award, at the same
time as creating a stir among BMW
afi cionados about the engine, which was
publicly acknowledged by the BMW
factory as a prototype for the fi rst time.
Dubbed the R18, which according
to BMW’s traditional nomenclature,
indicates it has a capacity of around
1800cc, the geometry and elements
present in the show bike were
reminiscent of much older BMW
Motorrad engines. The push rods
running above the cylinders in chromeplated
protection ducts were used in
BMW boxer engines in the 1960s, and if
you check out “Departed” in the image
gallery for this article, you’ll see the valve
gear covers were styled on pre-WW2
BMW engines, despite the equally
obvious modern day air/oil cooling.
Three month’s ago (in April, 2019), a
second custom bike using the BMW
prototype engine appeared at the annual
Handbuilt Show in Austin, Texas. Austin
is also the home of renowned American
custom craftsman Alan Stulberg’s
Revival Cycles, and the “Revival
Birdcage” show bike was clearly inspired
by Ernst Hennes’ speed record BMW
machinery from the late 1920s and early
1930s, which wore similar polished
aluminium teardrop valve-gear covers.
Those two custom motorcycles
somewhat disguised the sheer physical
size of the prototype engine by dressing
it in different contexts and with cylinder
heads that evoked different eras of the
company’s signature boxer twin engine.
This time, although the R18 Concept
bike also relies heavily on historic cues
in evoking the company’s near 100 year
heritage, the magnitude of the big bore
engine is suddenly evident because we
can see it in a relatively traditional BMW
Those protruding pots are HUGE, and
after 98 years of producing horizontallyopposed
motorcycle engines, BMW
has suddenly raised the boxer engine’s
capacity by a whopping 50 percent,
stepping it up from middleweight to
heavyweight class ...
... and the intention is suddenly clear
that it is going after Harley-Davidson’s
heavyweight crown in the cruiser class of
“Naturally we want to keep growing,”
said Timo Resch, Vice President Sales
and Marketing BMW Motorrad at the
unveiling of the “Revival Birdcage” show
bike. In the context of what we have
now seen at Villa d’Este, his words take
on much more meaning: “One step we
will take to do so, certainly in the US
market, is to enter the Cruiser segment.
BMW Motorrad is consistently pursuing
its growth strategy with the clear aim
of becoming the number one in the
Premium Big Bike Segment.”
Many who have owned and tested
Harley-Davidson and BMW twins over
the years have said that BMW twins
as more like a Swiss watch and Harley
V-twins more like Big Ben, despite their
similar engine capacities.
There’s something about the exquisite
primary balance of the BMW Motorrad
horizontally-opposed engine that makes
it feel more like a scalpel than a meat
axe, but the emergence of this new big
bore version of the age old design puts it
fi rmly into Harley-Davidson territory.
With Indian also providing a credible
alternative to the Harley-Davidson
cruisers, the stage looks set for a battle
royale in the coming years.
Honda Wing Centurions
Jacques is sales
manager of the year.
Our very good customer and great friend Jacques Robilliard,
sales manager at Honda Wing Centurion was recently
awarded Honda Sales Manager of the Year at Honda SA’s
recent prize giving acknowledging excellence within their
dealer network. Jacques runs a tight ship, but remains
humble and friendly and has increased sales significantly
during his time at Honda Wing Centurion. Pop in for a chat
at the dealership on the corner of Lenchen South & Heuwel
road, Centurion, Gauteng or give him a call on 012 663 8718.
Beat the cold or make
a withdrawal at the
bank with Oxfords
Oxford has introduced a
comprehensive range of under
garments for the new season, one of
which includes a Deluxe Micro Fibre
This Balaclava, which is made with
Micro Fibre material to allow the
comfort without cold or perspiration
on the body, also has flat lock seams
and a four directional stretch to
ensure perfect fit. The design of
the balaclava incorporates a long
sculpted pattern at the front and
rear and has extra ventilation
pockets for the nose and mouth.
Priced at around R225 RRP we
think it will be a good choice
for riders and pillions this cold
season. At dealers all over SA.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 19
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KTM’s 790 Adventure R
gets hardcore Rally edition.
A new Rally version gives KTM fans something
to wheelie about, as if they needed it.
The new KTM 790 Adventure R Rally builds on
the platform of the 790 Adventure R, keeping
the same frame and 95-hp parallel twin motor.
But it’s focused toward the gnarliest of off-road
duties with the addition of new, longer-travel,
high-spec suspension at either end.
With an additional 30 mm (1.2 in) of travel at
both ends, the Rally edition rocks WP’s latest
XPLOR Pro 7548 forks, with their almost
endless cone-valve damping adjustments
that let you do things with the clickers that
would previously have required you to open
the forks up and get the shim kit out. Likewise,
the shock is the XPLOR Pro 6746 unit, with
progressive damping that changes depending
on where in the stroke it’s at. This suspension
is built in the same department that manages
WP’s racing gear.
The overall effect should be a smoother,
more controlled ride that can handle even
bigger bumps, ruts and rocks, and that
should reduce rider fatigue over a long day
out hunting great spots to take ruggedly
handsome Instagram selfi es.
Other Rally edition add-ons include a
lightweight (and presumably fruitier-sounding)
Akrapovic exhaust, standard quickshifter,
carbon tank protectors, narrower rims, tubed
tyres, rally style footrests and a high, fl at, racy
seat that sits even higher than the standard R
model at 910 mm. That’s taller than a 1290
Super Adventure R, and the same height as
the highest setting on a BMW R1250 GS
Adventure, so this is certainly not a bike for
people with duck’s disease.
Pitched at the hardest-core adventure fans,
the 790 Adventure R Rally will be limited to
500 bikes, with details on pricing, availability
and how to get hold of one yet to come. We
suggest you contact your nearest KTM dealer
now and put your name down if you are keen.
Harley-Davidson to launch
its Smallest Displacement
Motorcycle ever in China
The booming Chinese auto market has been
the talk of the industry for the past few years.
It forced carmakers to change strategies and
create new alliances as means to tap into the
apparently inexhaustible hunger of the local
consumers. On a smaller scale, the same begins
to happen for the motorcycle industry.
As it seeks to expand its global customer
pool, American bike maker Harley-Davidson
announced on Wednesday (June 19) it is looking
to create a new “smaller, more accessible”
motorcycle for the Chinese customers.
By all intents and purposes, the new bike will be
a major departure from the Harley way of doing
business. First off, it will be powered by a 338
cc engine, the smallest it ever made. Secondly,
it will be produced locally, with the help of a
company called Qianjiang Motorcycle
Even if it will be made in China, the
Americans say the new bike will keep
true to the “rigorous quality standards
and testing processes,” that have shaped
No other details about the new product were
released, apart from the fact it will be on the
streets by the end of 2020. The bike will be sold
on other markets in Asia from a later date.
“Harley-Davidson has always been about
inspiring riders around the world. Our More
Roads plan is all about bringing our brand of
freedom to more people, in more places, in more
ways,” said in a statement Matt Levatich, Harley-
“We’re excited about this opportunity to build
more Harley riders in China, one of the world’s
largest motorcycle markets, by creating new
pathways to our brand.”
The American bike maker is currently in the
process of significantly expanding its hold on the
market. By launching new bikes, including electricpowered
ones, Harley aims to vastly increase the
number of customers it can count on.
20 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
All the NEWS proudly brought
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Big Eazy’s Custom
If there is pride in
what you do the end
product will show it.
“Why ride it if it’s not custom?,” is the philosophy
that Johann Claassen lives by, known to all his
mates as ‘Big Eazy’ and he is the owner of Big
Eazy’s Custom Bike Shop out in Little Falls on the
West Rand, in the same complex as Raceworx
KTM and Husqvarna West.
Just about everything in the shopfrom
the furniture to the displays and
even the bikes are all hand made
by Big Eazy and his long time mate
Gerry and everything has either a
hilarious or extremely interesting back
story. They do all the design and
fabrication themselves and only send
out for paint and leather work and
the like. They fi rmly believe that if they
have pride in their work it will show in
the end product.
“We are Gatvol of the run of the mill,
we’re going back to old school pride
in our skills,” says Big Eazy, “Beauty
is in the eye of the beholder, add
a bit of performance and a bit of
danger to it to make it awesome.” All
things you really want to hear from
your fabricator when designing your
dream ride. They do everything from
custom chops, café racers, trikes,
bobbers and vintage restorations. As
proof in point, Big Eazy has his Dads,
(Johann Claassen Snr), old Royal
Enfi eld on display in pride of place in
his shop fully restored to perfection.
Chatting to both Johann and Gerry
you are immediately struck by their
passion, pride and dedication to
their craft. They get so excited
talking about all their creations that
you cannot help but be inspired to
start looking at getting your own
dream bike built by them. Head
down to the cnr of Hendrik Potgieter
and Zandvliet roads in Wilgespruit,
Roodepoort and get inspired or give
them a call on 083 3396966 or look
for them on YouTube.
Fully imported stainless
steel tanks from the US
at great prices.
Hhmmm ...... I know
him from somewhere
.... just can’t put my
finger on it.
The Royal Enfield that used to belong
to Johann Claasens, (Big Eazy),
Dad (J.C. snr) fully restored and with
exactly 74 km on the clocks, the last
time Snr rode the bike.
Gerry and Big Eazy
sorting out theirn
Plenty of good used
stock for sale.
Gerry and Big Eazy
work on all the bikes
The counter is recycled
pallets and hand
beaten bits of various
types of sheet metal,
made in house.
High End Air Filters for your Harleys and
You gotta pay respect
to the gods ....
The New Galfer G1375R
Compound - For The Racers
GALFER launches the new Sport Racing G1375R brake pads made for sports
bikes, and for road or circuit use.
After a long development process, GALFER R&D department and its partners,
among them Moto2 rider Remy Gardner, defined a new brake pad compound for
sport bikes and for road or circuit use. The new G1375R are made of sintered metal
compound and stand out for their braking power, their high coefficient of friction
and for being suitable for all conditions, especially with higher brake temperatures.
As with its brother compound, the G1375, the new R brake pads will have
a special ceramic coating that serves as a heat shield and reduces heat
transmission to the braking system together with the slots on the friction material.
The new G1375R pads are available for 17 different front brake calipers of the
most new versions of R bikes (Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Ducati,
BMW, KTM, etc.)
Trickbitz are the official importers of the Galfer brand into SA and will have stock
of the new G1375R pads soon. For more info call them on 011 672 6599 or
check out their website www.trickbitz.co.za
22 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
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Race Shop Fourways just
keeps getting bigger!
We have brought you regular news and
updates on this very busy Accessory
Shop at the Buzz Shopping Centre in
Fourways. So here is some more good
news, they have become so busy that
they were bursting out of their seams and
desperately needed to expand. When
space became available they grabbed
the opportunity. The RACE SHOP team
have now doubled the size of their shop
to carry even more top brand accessories
and have also included a top notch
service and fi tment centre - So now you
can have your oil, fi lters, plugs and etc
changed at the same time as fi tting new
tyres, brake pads, chains and sprockets
and while you are waiting for all of that to
be done you can grab a complimentary
voucher and wander next door to
Smoking Aces for a lekker brekkie or
lunch or, if the notion grabs you, get some
ink done at Romans Tattoos based inside
RACE SHOP. What a cool concept - a
one stop Petrol Heads Lifestyle Village.
There is always such a lekker atmosphere
in the shop and they are driven towards
giving you the absolute best customer
experience possible, they are small
enough to care but big enough to get you
whatever you want. Pop in and speak
to Ryan (Boss), Dion (Manager), Shaun
(Sales) or Kenny (Technician).
Or give them a call on 011 658 0208.
STANCE socks now
available in SA.
STANCE turned socks into one of the world’s most exciting
accessories in less than five years. Their founders saw a
category that had been ignored, taken for granted, looked
over, and dismissed. By creating life into something that had
been overlooked, they’ve ignited a movement of art and selfexpression
that has drawn athletes, performers, and iconic
cultural influencers to the brand - a group they call the Punks
& Poets. By underpinning their creative roots with a relentless
focus on technical innovation, they have ensured that Stance
socks are now found in over 40 countries, now including SA,
on the feet of those who dare to be different.
STANCE SA offer a great range of radically cool socks for
lifestyle to Moto, running to golf, they have the perfect socks
MotoMate in Edenvale and Biker’s Warehouse out in
Randburg now stock a range of the Stance brand. Go check
them out, they are so cool...
MotoMate Edenvale - 011 027 0545/47
Biker’s Warehouse Randburg - 011 795 4122
From left to right: Kenny
(Technician), Shaun (Sales), Ryan
(Boss) and Dion (Manager).
24 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Brought to you by
A Satellite Suzuki team in
MotoGP for 2020?
MCN’s sources in the MotoGP paddock
have hinted that there could be big
changes coming to the 2020 grid, with
the Stop and Go Moto2 team reportedly
vying to take over Avintia Ducati’s grid spot
and switch to Suzuki machinery. Spotted
in talks with Suzuki boss Davide Brivio
over the weekend of the LeMans race, the
Italian denied that the Japanese factory
were ready yet to launch a satellite team
when questioned – but admitted that
series bosses Dorna have pushed them
to add two more bikes to their stable as
soon as possible.
However, while Brivio denied the
rumours, it’s also believed that Hafi zh
Syahrin’s management has been in
separate talks with Dorna about his
future. Representing the colossal South
East Asian market on the grid, the
Malaysian rider looks set to be replaced
at Tech 3 KTM by SA’s own Brad Binder
– but could be the perfect fi t for a new
Suzuki satellite outfi t. Not sure that will be
the right move for Brad on the struggling
Tech 3 KTM, but chances in MotoGP are
few-and-far-between so it’s an potion.
Suzuki have expressed interest in running
a satellite squad in the past to help with
development of the GSX-RR. They were
believed to have been close to putting pen
to paper with the Marc VDS team twelve
months ago, until the civil war that broke
out within the squad scuppered their plans,
and Briivo told MCN over the weekend that
it’s still a key target of theirs for the future.
“We want to do a satellite team and we
tried, but there’s no possibility for 2020.
We’ve said the same thing for a few
years, but it looks now like we need to try
the same thing again for 2021. We would
really like to do it, but we have limited
resources and we need to organise a
proper structure. Choosing the right
partner is another problem, but when we
decide to do a satellite team we’ll see if
there are some teams interested. Maybe
next year we have to work on this to
“There’s not been real pressure from
Dorna to have four bikes, but for sure
they’ve made it clear they would be
happy if we did. I imagine that if we
decided to do it, they would try to
support us and to make it happen, like
they’ve always done.”
However, Avintia themselves are also
angling for a better deal for 2020, with team
sporting director Ruben Xaus admitting
at the weekend that they’re hunting for
a Moto2 rider as well as investigating
partnerships with other factories when their
current Ducati deal ends.
“The fi rst option is Ducati because we
have a good relationship. I raced for them
for a long time, so I know the DNA of
Ducati and we are very comfortable with it.
But, as always, there are situations going
on in the paddock, other options are
already on the table but for the moment
we have a contract for two years, so let’s
see what happens in the future.
“It’s clear that whoever we ride with it’s
going to be really good material. Then
securing whoever joins the team in the
future as young talent, they will be with a
good machine. Moto2 is in our point of
view and there are two or three guys we
are looking at and hopefully within two
years we are going to have one on board.”
“It is important I stay with Ducati, even if it is
WorldSBK, than to be in a satellite team in
Alvaro Bautista has reiterated his desire to only
return to MotoGP as part of a factory deal,
confirming he will continue competing in the
World Superbike Championship with Ducati
until that occurs.
Speaking to our mates at Crash.net
exclusively as part of a wider interview
discussing his unprecedented form on the
Aruba.it Panigale V4 R and how his dominant
form has invigorated his passion for racing,
Bautista says the effort Ducati has made to
welcome him into the Borgo Panigale fold has
altered his perception of the series.
Indeed, having demonstrated misgivings
towards switching from MotoGP to
WorldSBK when the deal was first mooted,
Bautista’s sheer success already this season
– winning 11 consecutive races from his
debut – has reignited a passion he now
wouldn’t trade for anything other than a
return on a factory machine.
“For sure, it is different [WorldSBK],” he
said. “I think in MotoGP, it is more in the top
(bigger) than WorldSBK but for me it is better
to compete in WorldSBK with a factory team.
I feel more important than to be here than
MotoGP with a satellite team.”
Recounting a recent visit to the team factory,
where he was greeted rapturously, Bautista
says his priority is now to stay affiliated with
Ducati rather than simply finding any route
back to the top flight.
“Ducati made the feeling good, the
relationship with everybody. It is important I
stay with Ducati, even if it is WorldSBK, than
to be in a satellite team in MotoGP.
“It is clear, if I come back to MotoGP it is with
a factory bike, not a satellite bike.”
26 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
more confidence, in wet
and dry conditions, even
after 5000 KM *
even after 5 000
braking in the
Even after 5 000 KM, a MICHELIN Road tyre
stops as short as a brand new MICHELIN
Pilot Road 4 tyre* thanks to the evolutionary
MICHELIN XST Evo sipes.
With its dry grip, stability and best handling versus
its main competitors, thanks to MICHELIN’s
patented ACT+ casing technology, it offers even
more riding pleasure.***
* According to internal studies at Ladoux, the Michelin centre of excellence, under the supervision of an independent
witness, comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres used for 5 636 km with new and unworn MICHELIN Pilot Road 4 tyres.
** According to internal studies at Fontange, a Michelin test track, under the supervision of an independent witness,
comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres with METZELER Roadtec 01, DUNLOP Road Smart 3, CONTINENTAL Road
Attack 3, PIRELLI Angel GT and BRIDGESTONE T30 EVO tyres, in dimensions 120/70 ZR17 (front) and 180/55 ZR17
(rear) on Suzuki Bandit 1250
*** External tests conducted by the MTE Test Centre invoked by Michelin, comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres with MI
*** External tests conducted by the MTE Test Centre invoked by Michelin, comparing MICHELIN Road 5 tyres with MI-
CHELIN Pilot Road 4, METZELER Roadtec 01, DUNLOP Road Smart 3, CONTINENTAL Road Attack 3, PIRELLI
Angel GT and BRIDGESTONE T30 EVO tyres, in dimensions 120/70 ZR17 (front) and 180/55 ZR17 (rear) on a Kawasaki
Z900 giving best dry performance globally and #1 for Handling, #2 for Stability, #2 for Dry grip
Brought to you by
Garzo leads Granado
Granado wins FIM Enel MotoE
World Cup race simulation
Former Moto2 rider Eric Granado (Avintia
Esponsorama) took victory in the fi rst ever
FIM Enel MotoE World Cup “race” in Valencia,
with riders lining up for a race simulation at
the start of fi nal day of the preseason test.
The Brazilian missed out on pole by just
0.025 to Hector Garzo (Tech 3 E-Racing) on
Tuesday, but he fought back once the lights
went out to overtake the Spaniard on the fi nal
lap. Garzo took second, with Niki Tuuli (Ajo
MotoE) – another who has shown consistent
pace in practice so far – completing the
podium a few tenths further back.
Nico Terol (Openbank Angel Nieto Team) took
fourth, with Matteo Ferrari (Ongetta SIC58
Squadra Corse) completing the top fi ve. One
man expected to be in that tight fi ght at the front
wasn’t on track, however – Tuesday’s fastest
Bradley Smith (One Energy Racing) was absent
as he undertook testing duties in MotoGP.
The riders then got a chance to have a fi nal
30-minute session from 17:00, although
it ended prematurely in a Red Flag due to
crashes for Mattia Casadei (Ongetta SIC58
Squadra Corse) and Maria Herrera (Openbank
Angel Nieto Team), riders both ok. The
session was their last chance to test before
heading out on track at the Sachsenring for
the fi rst round of the season and it was Tuuli
who went fastest with the quickest time of
the test, a 1:40.127 and 0.486 quicker than
second place Casadei. Garzo was third on
the timesheets at the end of Day 3, and race
simulation winner Granado was 0.533 off
Tuuli’s benchmark in fourth. 2008 125 World
Champion Mike Di Meglio (EG 0,0 Marc VDS)
completed the top fi ve.
So that’s it from Valencia and winner Granado
heads home with an Energica Eva as his
prize. Now the E-Paddock gears up for the
28 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Sachsenring, which plays host to the opening
round of the FIM Enel MotoE World Cup from
the 5th to 7th July.
Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta: “It was very
good, from the beginning the way we wanted
to do it was makes races and I think today we
showed it was a real race, with all the riders
competing. I was talking to them and they
were very happy. And we’re happy because
I think it’s a way to enter into this new energy
and show we can do with it the same we’ve
been doing since 1992.
“As with everything we do, it’s very important,
MotoE just as any other category.
Everything we do is important for us, and
we’re trying to share with spectators how
good motor racing is.”
Q&A: MotoE simulation race
Answering questions on the
first-ever unofficial race.
Q: What is a race simulation, and why are
they doing it?
A: Basically, a race simulation is an unoffi cial
race that MotoE adopted on the fi nal day of
its three-day test in Spain. The bikes have
never been put through race conditions with
the current grid of riders, so the simulation
allows them to come to grips with the
characteristics of the bikes, while any
kinks can be ironed out from an operation
standpoint ahead of the season-opener.
Q: Did they do qualifying?
A: Absolutely! Along with a race simulation,
MotoE also completed a simulated qualifying
session called E-Pole. The qualifying format
differs from that of MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3,
where riders put in their fastest laps during
sessions, while E-Pole sees riders have just
one lap to put in their best performance. It’s
certainly going to make for some great viewing
once the season gets underway.
Q: What was the overall impression?
A: By all accounts, the MotoE simulation race
was a success. Organisers seemed thrilled
with how everything played out, and there
appears to be no major glitches with the
electric-powered machines and how they run
in race conditions. It’s incredible the category
is even at this stage, considering the entyre
fl eet and its equipment burned down in a
devastating fi re in March.
Q: When is the official opening race?
A: The fi rst round of racing will take place
at the Sachsenring in Germany on 5-7 July,
where it will run alongside round nine of the
MotoGP World Championship. The series is
starting later than initially planned following
the previously mentioned fi res, however it will
still boast a six-round championship with a
double-header at Valencia’s season-fi nale.
Simeon just won
the battle for sixth
Brought to you by
Another cracking Suzuka 8-Hour in store!
The Suzuka 8-Hours is around the corner.
Testing is already underway for some of the
leading riders, and it will only ramp up in the
Flying back and forth to Japan isn’t easy for
anyone, but it is what is needed if you will be
able to challenge at the great Japanese race.
The past weeks saw a host of
announcements for rider lineups, with some
interesting developments for what we will see
on the last weekend of July.
The 8-Hours is the biggest race on the
calendar for the Japanese manufacturers, and
still the race that has the biggest impact on a
rider’s fortunes with them. Yamaha, Kawasaki,
Suzuki, and Honda have now all announced
their top teams, but what does it mean?
Yamaha is the four-time defending champions
and they will have an unchanged lineup
for the third straight year, with Katsuyuki
Nakasuga, Michael van der Mark, and Alex
Lowes. The trio are the team to beat.
Their Tech21 Yamaha R1 may not be fastest
bike on track any longer, but the team is well
oiled and prepared to win. They will start the
race as the fi rm favourite because of their
sustained success. That being said they will
face a tough challenge this year.
Kawasaki claimed pole position last year,
and this year they’re even stronger. Team
Green brings back defending WorldSBK
champion Jonathan Rea and pair him with
Leon Haslam, the reigning British Superbike
champion, and Toprak Razgatlioglu. The
Turkish rider has been on the WorldSBK
podium for the last two rounds, and is fi nding
his form once again.
Suzuka will be a massive barometer of
his potential for Kawasaki in the world
championship. The ZX-10RR is a fast
machine in any trim and with the Provec
Racing squad running the operation, there will
be no stone left unturned this season.
Yamaha and Kawasaki will leave nothing
to chance. The resources will be there for
whatever is asked. Testing, development, and
preparation will all be maximized. Everything
is ready for the race. All the team has to do is
win. If they don’t? Don’t be surprised to see a
termination note in the your letterbox.
While the two favourites are doing everything
they can, the same cannot be said about
Honda. Instead there are a series of questions
about them. Why aren’t Leon Camier and
Takaaki Nakagami racing? Is Honda pulling
out all the stops, or are they waiting for a new
bike in 2020?
It had been thought that the recent
announcement that WorldSBK and the
Endurance World Championship would
share homologations could mean that Honda
would use Suzuka as preparation for a new
Superbike for 2020. But, the rider lineups
would indicate that is unlikely to be the case.
There was widespread surprise when the
riders were announced. Answers on the back
of a $20 note if you can explain the absence
of Camier and Nakagami at the expense of
Stefan Bradl has been reinstated to the 8
Hours lineup for the Red Bull supported
squad along with Takumi Takahaski. Bradl
is an offi cial HRC test rider and the former
Moto2 world champion is sure to be strong
with Bridgetone tyres underneath him.
He has plenty of good memories of that
rubber having taken his sole MotoGP pole
position with them. Takahashi is currently
leading the All-Japan Superbike series.
While the Team HRC Honda will be the
headline maker they will be hard pressed to
actually be the top Honda squad this year.
The MuSASHi HARC-PRO squad will have
Ryo Mizuno and Xavi Fores in their lineup,
with a third rider set to be added. Make no
doubts, this Suzuka speciality team will be
expecting to contend for a podium spot.
Moriwaki, who will once again be running
Pirelli tyres, will fi eld a squad with former
Moto2 race winner Yuki Takahashi and former
Grand Prix racer Tommy Koyama. The Teluru
SAG squad will have Moto2 racer Tetsuta
Nagashima alongside a strong All-Japan
Superbike pairing of Akiyoshi and Hada.
While Honda has a host of strong riders
in their stable, it is hard to say that any trio
will be particularly strong. There are weak
links in almost every squad fi elding Honda
Fireblades, although with some squads still to
add a fi nal rider, that can still be corrected.
Yoshimura Suzuki has always used the
8-Hours as the centre point of their season.
This isn’t just a big race for them. It’s the
only race that matters. That was why it
was a surprise to see the squad add Yukio
Kagayama to their lineup.
The Japanese legend has been a regular at
Suzuka in recent years racing for his own
team, but he has rarely looked like turning
back the hands of time.
With Takuya Tsueda having been dropped
from their lineup the remaining spots are taken
by MotoGP test rider, and former WorldSBK
champion, Sylvain Guintoli and Kazuki
Watanabe. The Japanese rider, a former All-
Japan GP2 champion, has also raced on the
world stage in World Supersport.
With Tsueda, regularly the outright fastest Suzuki
rider in recent years, but one who has also
made his share of racing mistakes, and Bradley
Ray not having been announced it remains to be
seen if they will fi nd a seat for 2019.
Last year Tommy Bridewell, now racing a
Ducati in BSB, raced for the S-Pulse Suzuki
squad so maybe there will be a home to fi nd
for Ray and Tsueda.
The English rider arrived at Suzuka and
instantly adapted to the bike and Bridgestone
tyres, but he did plateau during the tests
and race weekends and since then his
results have been very patchy in the British
Sitting out Suzuka maybe a good option for
Ray but it’s also an opportunity missed to
impress the Japanese bosses.
SA riders Shez Morais and Bjorn Estment
look to tackle the tough 8 Hour race on-board
their Yamaha and Suzuki machines. Make
sure you follow their Facebook and Instagram
pages for updates during the race weekend.
With the primary seats all fi lled, testing
underway for some squads and the race only
six weeks ago the ramp-up to the Suzuka
8-Hours has truly begun!
30 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
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32 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
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RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 33
S U Z U K I K A T A N A
In Japanese the word Katana means swords, here in SA it means iconic, historic, even godly some would say. In fact, just the
mention of the word Katana in some parts of SA will have men crying tears of joy and women throwing themselves at your feet.
It’s been a long time since the first Katana and last Katana came to SA, but now, it’s time for the legend to be reborn...
Words Donovan Fourie / Pics Meghan McCabe
34 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
They say that the universe is designed using
the language of mathematics, that everything
can be fundamentally broken doing into logical
equations, pragmatic policies and numerical
values. Everything happens because a series
of numbers have dictated thusly.
I’m not so sure about this. There are little
incidences where you think to yourself: “this
makes no sense at all”, and the newest
example of this will soon be adorning Suzuki
It’s the new Katana, and it should not
be much of a big deal because, frankly, it is
essentially a GSXS1000 naked sports bike
with a set of shoulders pads and a perm from
the ‘80s. The GSXS1000 is a peach of a
motorcycle, and we at The Bike Show know
this more than others because we raced the
GSXS1000F – the fully-faired sport-tourer
version – for two seasons of endurance racing.
Our Big Girl Racer had its neck wrung for
close to 60 hours per year around some of
the most demanding circuits in South Africa,
where it was raced, crashed, scraped, fl ung,
chucked, spurred, slid, wobbled, dropped and
set on fi re once, and it took all this in its stride.
It handles better than a bike of its size and
intent should, the motor – a 1000cc, in-line
four lifted out of the 2005 GSXR1000 – pushes
a commendable 150hp. It’s an odd sensation,
because in-line four motorcycles have a
tendency to be a little soul-less, and yet this
particular motor feels beefy, manly and rugged
like it hangs out in smokey pool bars and feels
nothing to break the neck off their beer glass
and stick you with it.
Of course, all this malevolence comes in
the genre of a sport-tourer, that suited us and
our endurance ambitions perfectly because
48 hours cramped in a superbike position
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 3 5
sounded like pure, liquid hell. It was an
excellent two years of racing – we didn’t break
any lap records, but we achieved times and
positions a bike of this type should not, and we
did it without breaking our backs, especially
Mat who is nearly 300 years old.
And now we have this same magnifi cent
motorcycle dressed like a Katana, a bike from
the ‘80s. Essentially, that means that to the
rider, who cannot see what the bike looks
like while riding it, it should be just like riding a
Except that it isn’t. That’s because you are
not riding a GSXS1000. You are riding a Katana.
The year 1981 is globally known as the
Year of the Katana because that’s the year the
planet changed. The ’70s was the decade
when the Japanese completely conquered
the motorcycle world, replacing the British and
Italian monstrosities with fast, capable and
reliable motorcycles. It sounds like it might be
unexciting, but it was anything but that.
The factories were all about the numbers,
and those numbers were horsepower
output, top speed, race wins and, lastly,
units sold. Engines grew bigger and more
powerful, while frames, suspension, brakes
and tyres stayed more or less where they
were, meaning everyone rode high-powered
machines that were utterly incapable of
controlling these speeds.
Engine type: 999cc In-line four, 4-stroke
Power: 148 HP @ 10000 RPM
Torque: 108 Nm @ 9500 RPM
Front suspension: Inverted telescopic,
coil spring, oil damped
Rear suspension: Link type, single shock,
coil spring, oil damped
Seat height: 825 mm
Kerb Weight: 215 kg
Fuel capacity: 12 litres
36 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
It must have been such a fun time.
The ‘70s got old and died, and the ‘80s were
born. It was here that Suzuki took this madcapped
legacy into the new decade.
The Katana was designed by the Target
Design House in Germany, the same people
that had designed various BMW motorcycles
before, and this is where that uncanny
resemblance lies. It was 1980, the proper
start of the new era when the fi rst Katana
was unveiled to a sea of awe. It was narrow
and compact, adorned with a skimpy fairing
that resembled a quasi-Darth Vader helmet
and bulging out of the middle, like a set
of Terminator pecs, was an 1100cc fourcylinder
motor, the most powerful production
motorcycle engine the world had ever seen.
It was so striking, so different and so
aggressive that even its most prominent critics
couldn’t help but feels a strange attraction
to it. When it was released to the public, it
soon achieved a cult status followed closely
by its own religion. It raced on race tracks, on
roads and while parked outside cafes, and it
won everything. It became a legend and will
forever be loaded in the mythical chronicles of
Even today, nearly 40 years on, the old
Katana growls and snarls its way through the
revs, and the punch it backs would leave even
some modern bikes stumbling.
“It was narrow and compact,
adorned with a skimpy fairing
that resembled a quasi-Darth
Vader helmet and bulging out of
the middle, like a set of Terminator
pecs, was an 1100cc four-cylinder
motor, the most powerful
production motorcycle engine the
world had ever seen.”
And now Suzuki has re-released the
Katana name. Obviously, it doesn’t set the
same bar that it did in 1981, but then the
people who praised the Katana at the time
are probably no longer interested in strung-out
sports machines and would prefer the sporttourer
But it looks like a Katana, and that has
power. When you walk up to it, you see a
Katana. When climbing aboard it, you know
you are climbing aboard a Katana. People that
see you see you on a Katana. And you can
tell who knows the Katana over who doesn’t
because the Katana pundits will give you a
respectful nod. You are most defi nitely alright in
This is where mathematics makes no sense
– this bike is, for all intents and purposes, a
GSXS1000, and should feel like one in every
way. True, it is a little taller than the GSXS,
and the seat is a bit different, plus there is a
full-colour dash, but this shouldn’t be enough
to make a massive difference to your riding
experience. Mathematics still dictates that you
are riding much the same bike.
But you are not. You are riding a Katana,
and that changes everything. And you are so
much cooler than everyone else because of it.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 37
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provides maximum visibility and enhanced safety. A perfect goggle fit shell design: dual positions for goggle band to provide comfort and perfect
goggle fitment. Superior ventilation: 9 intakes, 4 exhaust ventilation channels to keep head cool and comfortable. Spacious chin area enables rider to
breathe comfortably. Especially relevant is the SLID (Sliding Layer Impact Distribution) Softens impact effectively and manages multi-directional shock.
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50081406/L SCOOTER CARB CLEANER 400ML BELTS 50.00
50201414/L FROM TERMINAL PROTECT R114.00 RED 50.00
50201415/L TERMINAL PROTECT BLUE 50.00
50320400/L BRK,CLTCH,CHAIN CLEANER 44.00
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ZEEMANS GAUTENG MOTORCYCLES 011 435 7177
BIKING ZEEMANS ACCESSORIES MOTORCYCLES 012 011 435 342 7177 7474
FAST BIKING KTM ACCESSORIES 011 012 867 342 0092 7474
GAME FAST KTM MOTOR SERVICES 011 849 867 7000 0092
MOTO-MATE GAME MOTOR RIVONIA SERVICES 011 234 849 5275 7000
MOTO-MATE EDENVALE RIVONIA 011 234 027 5275 0545
MOTO-MATE KCR MOTORCYCLE EDENVALE FANATIX 011 975 027 5405 0545
PRIMROSE JUST BIKING MOTORCYCLES 011 016 828 421 9091 1153
RANDBURG KCR MOTORCYCLE MOTORCYCLES FANATIX 011 792 975 6829 5405
OFF-ROAD CYCLES 012 333 6443
PRIMROSE MOTORCYCLES 011 828 9091
011 792 6829
013 244 2143
BIKE CITY 013 244 2143
BIKERS NORTHWEST PARADISE 018 297 4700
INSANE BIKERS PARADISE BIKERS 014 018 594 297 2111 4700
MOTOS INSANE @ BIKERS KLERKSDORP 018 014 468 594 1800 2111
WATER MOTOS RITE @ KLERKSDORP MOTORCYCLES 018 771 468 5050 1800
WATER RITE MOTORCYCLES 018 771 5050
015 297 3291
K.R.MOTORCYCLES 015 297 3291
ROCKET RACING PINETOWN 031 702 2606
PERRY’S M/CYCLES BALITO 031 110 0056
ROCKET RACING MARITZBURG 033 264 3240
ROCKET RACING PINETOWN 031 702 2606
RBS YAMAHA 031 701 1311
ROCKET RACING MARITZBURG 033 264 3240
UMPLEBY SUZUKI 031 303 8323
RBS YAMAHA 031 701 1311
UMPLEBY SUZUKI 031 303 8323
RIDE HIGH WITH YAMAHA 035 789 1851
RIDE PERRY HIGH M/CYCLES WITH YAMAHA GLEN ANIL 035 031 789 566 1851 7411
PERRY’S M/CYCLES UMHLANGA 031 566 7411
CAPE PERRY’S PROVINCE M/CYCLES HILLCREST
CRAIGS M/CYCLE FITMENT
031 765 2560
021 939 8944
TRAC-MAC CAPE PROVINCE BELVILLE 021 945 3724
TRAC-MAC CRAIGS M/CYCLE PAARDEN-EILAND FITMENT 021 510 939 2258 8944
BELVILLE 021 761 945 4220 3724
NEVES TRAC-MAC MOTORCYCLE PAARDEN-EILAND WORLD CC 021 930 510 5917 2258
WICKED TRAC-MAC CYCLES WYNBURG 021 510 761 2968 4220
MIKE HOPKINS MOTORCYCLES 021 461 5167
NEVES FREESTATE MOTORCYCLE WORLD CC
021 930 5917
051 430 3326
SALLEYS YAMAHA 051 430 3326
Words by Rob Portman / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus & Daniella Kerby
On Tuesday the 4th of JULY 2019 round 4 of the Monocle
Motorcycle Racing Series took place at Kyalami and over
190 riders participated - yes, on a work day Tuesday...
It was a normal workday Tuesday for most, but for the 194
riders who entered round 4 of the Monocle Racing Series it
was by far the best Tuesday ever!!!
The race day was held on a Tuesday as track rental for
during the week was a bit cheaper than a prime weekend spot.
Despite Kyalami being the most expensive track rental in the
land, the powers that be behind the Monocle Series decided
to keep the entry fee at the standard R1500 per rider - enter as
many classes as you like and pay only 1 entry fee. That made
this race day by far the cheapest entry to ride around the world
class and iconic Circuit.
As I said over 190 riders took advantage of this exceptional price and
entered the various categories on the day - Superbikes, Supersport 600,
Supersport 300, Masters, Streetbike, Classic racers, BOTTS, Historics
and DOC (Ducati Owners Club).
It was an amazing sight to see the pits jammed packed with beautiful
bikes and not so beautiful men with big smiles - thank goodness there
were some gorgeous lady racers and the sexy Dunlop promo girls who
helped make the pits a bit more attractive....
Up fi rst on track was the combined 1000cc and 600cc class with
an impressive 31 riders lining up on the grid. Some top names entered
to do battle on the day and it was SA Superbike champ Michael White
who stole the show in race one with another top National rider Nicholas
Grobler in 2nd. The ever-impressive young Matthew Herbert held down
3rd spot holding off the charge from last year’s BMW RR Cup champion
and most improved rider so far this year Mr. George Haji. The leading
600cc rider, Dian Nelson, crossed the line in 5th place overall with top
National Capetonian rider Jared Shultz not too far behind in 2nd and
championship leader Cameron Aitken in 3rd.
Grobler went on to take the race two win ahead of Damion
Purificati and Herbert again rounding out the podium.
Schultz would this time take the win in the 600cc class ahead of
Nelson and Aitken.
We as RideFast had entered our Honda CBR1000RR streetbike
Racer in the 1000cc class once again with rider Shaun Portman. He
did a sterling job to end up 9th overall for the day. Full run down on
that a bit later on in this issue along with how I faired on the same bike
in the Maters Classm which was out on track next.
Ricky Morais proved why he is considered a master in the trade,
both on and off the track, by taking both wins on the day and by
some margin. Appanna Ganapathy picked up 2nd overall with Andre
Senekal in 3rd.
The booming Battle of the Twins class was up next, with plenty
of new Ducati V4’s lining up on the grid, so think it’s time for a name
change? It was however a KTM V-Twin powered machine that took the
race one win in the capable hands of Beaumont Levey, who had an
almighty battle with Ducati V4 mounted Brian Bontekoning, who would
later get his revenge by taking the win in race two and overall win for the
day. Levey would settle for 2nd overall with Alan Hulscher in 3rd.
The Supersport 300 class once again proved to be one of the
most exciting classes on the day. Race one was all about Chris
Wright and Nicole van Aswegen. They battled hard all race long and
at the end crossed the line 0.015 seperating them, with Wright taking
the win by a whisker ahead of van Aswegen. The fastest Mom in the
world would have her revenge and pick up her first win of the season
in race two, getting the better of Wright. Ryno Pretorius would go on
to pick up two 3rd place finishes for the day making the championship
table very tight between all 3 riders. Conor Hagan picked up a very
impressive 4th place finish in race 2 after problems in race one.
Twenty-five streetbike racers lined up on the grid for both races on
the day, with new Yamaha R1M mounted Corrie Goosen going on to
take both race wins. He was pushed hard in race one by 2nd overall
for the day Colin Hume, who’s looking very fast already after only 2 race
meetings. Dave Gunning would pick up 3rd overall with our entry, Darren
Mortimer, on the stock road going Triumph 765 RS (numnerplate and all)
ending up 16th overall after both races. More on that after this.
Jaco Gous dominated both heats in the Classic class with Paul
Jacobs on his Next IT Solutions and BlindTime Window Innovations
sponsored machine picking up both 2nd place finishes. Leon vd
Berg on his custom-built Yoshi inspired Suzuki would round out the
podium in 3rd.
It was great once again having the Historic Bikes part of the days
racing action, as they, along with the Ducati Owners Club got to ride
around the Kyalami circuit in their 4 sessions on the day. Not racing,
just out to enjoy some track time.
Overall another huge success for the new Monocle Series and
we look forward to more awesome racing action at the fastest track
in the land down in East London for round 5 on the 27th of July. The
25th and 26th of July will be open practice days, all included in the
R1500 entry so make sure you go to www.motorcycleracingseries.
co.za to enter now!
If you work at Triumph Motorcycles SA do not read this following article. We as RideFast magazine kindly asked for a new
Triumph 765 Street Triple RS to do a “test” on, we didn’t however specify that the “test” just happened to be on a Tuesday,
racing around Kyalami in the Street Bike class at the Monocle Series. We entered a short-circuit racer into the big leagues and
here is what he had to say about it... Words by Darren Mortimer / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus & Daniella Kerby
Having fi rst swung my leg over a racing
machine at the age of 27 I was way behind in
my child hood dream to be a bike racer. Racing
is a family thing with my uncle Geoff having won
the SA National Rally Championship in 1987,
the DNA was awakening albeit on 2 wheels!
There is a seed of something amazing living
in all of us. All it takes is to put a little water
on it, see it grow and it becomes something
My racing career was short lived with only
a year on track before a big road accident
nearly saw me racing on the highways in the
sky! Recovery was slow and the next time I put
rubber to the race track was on a short circuit
bike in 2016, now following the lead of my boy
who had started racing pocket bikes.
The fi re was back, there are very few
things in life like motorcycle racing. It’s a
bombardment of the senses, everything goes
into slow motion, lap after lap as you chase
down that chequered fl ag.
Racing motorcycles has put me in contact
with some of the most amazing people and I
have built friendships far outside of my circle.
One of these being the privilege of meeting Mr
Ride Fast himself, Rob Portman. I am stunned
at the openness, generosity, professionalism,
skill and passion that Rob, Shaun and the entire
Ride Fast Team possess for all things biking!
Out of this passion rose a partnership with
like-minded bikers to kick off the Monocle
Racing series! This is what true, love of the
sport racing is all about! Motorcycle Racing
in South Africa has an amazing heritage and
we have produced a number of champions
on the world stage - Kork Ballington,
Jon Ekerold, and of course, Brad Binder.
48 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
However, the path to greatness is never easy
but this new racing series has paved a way
for the Golden Era of Motorcycle Racing in
South Africa to be revived!
The Kyalami round was held on a Tuesday
to keep costs in check, as weekend circuit
hire costs are astronomical! “Who hosts a
race day mid-week” I thought! Monocle does,
and the racers were not deterred with over
190 entries - the pits were buzzing! Bikes and
classes ranged from the 2-Stroke Smokers
of H.M.G, Classic Racers including some
hyper fast Suzuki Sling Shots, emerging stars
in the Super Sport 300’s and the roar of the
Unlimited Class featuring world class riders like
Michael White and Nic Grobler! The day was
superb and ran with clockwork precision from
the easy online entry, smooth riders briefing,
exceptional Marshalling and Paramedics,
Teams and some slick live commentary by
Rob to keep everyone dialled in.
Rob had entered me in the Street Bike
Class and I had full confidence knowing I
was going to have a weapon underneath
me. The range topping Triumph Street Triple
RS comes stock with a quickshifter on the
up change to minimise the lack of forward
thrust on swopping cogs, slipper clutch to
mitigate the rear end wanting to overtake you
on over enthusiastic down shifts, Brembo
M50 monobloc 4 piston calipers paired to
310mm discs and switchable ABS capable
of producing serious negative G’s and an
awesome set of Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP
After a frustrating tussle with my seriously
under sized tyre warmers, which left a good
portion of rubber unheated, it was time to
qualify. Having NEVER ridden the new Kyalami
circuit in anger and NEVER even seen the
bike until an hour prior, this was going to be
a classic “trial by fire”. After joining my other
“street bike” rivals on track I soon realised that
I was going to be needing every single one of
the 123 ponies at my disposal. The Triumph
impressed from the get go and for a 765cc
pulled hard through every gear as the gusting
breeze at 220 km/h down the main straight
threatened to part my 6ft 2in frame from the
saddle! While I thought I was on it, two 1000cc
race pedigree beasts blasted past and pulled
another 50m on me by the braking zone!
Suddenly, the session was over, red flagged
due to an over enthusiastic novice on less than
enthusiastic, cold rubber. Between warm up
and qualifying we only managed 4 laps due to
incidents and that’s all the experience I took
into race one.
The Triumph RS is such an inspiring
machine. It turns out those four laps were all I
needed to get acquainted. With fully adjustable
41mm Showa forks up-front and Ohlins rear
suspension both including preload, rebound
and compression dampening settings, the
track is your friend. And with four preset
electronic aid settings including; traction
control, mapping and ABS adjustments this
machine moulds to your DNA almost instantly.
Given, there were moments when it
whispered in my ear, “remember I am a naked
road bike” with a consistent but predictable
front end shimmy into the insanely fast “mine
shaft”. Also having standard gearing and a
conventional gearbox layout of 1 down and 5
up was a challenge in coming out of the long
double apex left hander called Leeukop as
2nd was too short with 3rd being too tall and
no chance of shifting mid corner with the boot
scrapping merrily on the tar mac!
Weighing in at an impressively slim 166kg
this Triumph is only 39kg heavier than my
regular ride, a 150cc 2 stroke, which produces
all of 20 hp! This was a big factor in launching
the RS off the line from my 16th place grid
position in a field of 25 “street bikes”! Funny,
seems I was the only chop with mirrors, lights,
indicators, number plate and road tyres in the
street bike class, possibly because Triumph
SA had released the bike to Rob under the
pretences of a road test, lol. That 16th position
soon became 11th after lap one as the
The new 765 RS features the same
motor as used in the Moto2 class,
so it loves to be ridden hard and fast!
“Funny, seems I was
the only chop with
mirrors, lights, indicators,
number plate and road
tyres in the street bike
class, possibly because
Triumph SA had
released the bike to Rob
under the pretences of a
road test, lol.”
Triumph was eager to please. However, lap
after lap I lost positions on the main straight
and as good as this incredible machine is in
the twisties I could not grow the balls to do it
justice. 14th was a respectable finish with a lap
time in the 2.08 mark, although this machine
even in full road trim is fully capable of a top 5
finish with the right pilot.
Race 2 saw an even better start thanks to
the ride ability and 77nm of Torque of the RS
claiming 9th into turn 1. At half race distance
I had an enthusiastic competitor show me a
front wheel, trying to share the same piece
of tarmac, and with scenes like the infamous
Lorenzo playing ten pin at the Catalunya Moto
GP flashing through my mind I knocked back
the pace. Any day in a “road” test that you can
hand back a bike with a big grin and a clear
conscious is a win in my books!
A BIG shout out to Triumph SA for having
the guts to promote their spectacular machine
in this way! It got a lot of thumbs up from guys
in the paddock who just could not believe the
on track performance. It’s a real head turner
too, with paint, plastics, graphics, and overall
finish being top drawer. The RS is definitely
one of the most versatile, electrifying and
thrilling motorcycles you could ever own. If any
other manufacturers have the boldness to do
the same with a demo, my hand is up guys!
RideFast Magazine, the Monocle Racing
Series and the Triumph Street Triple RS are the
real deal! Darren Mortimer.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 4 9
Words by Rob Portman / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus
OUR HONDA CBR1000RR MAKE-OVER
It’s been a couple of months now
since we received our Honda
CBR1000RR and the transformation
from stock standard to streetbike
Racer is just about complete.
Last month we promised you a big
reveal on our bike, which has been
given a complete make over. We
wanted to change the livery and liven
it up a bit, so we contacted one of the
best in the land to help us transform the
livery into something a bit more striking.
Gone is the standard Matt black and
replaced with a fresh new red and white
custom Honda Racing Livery. Kallie
from Syndicate Custom is the man
behind the genius spray work, which is
simply stunning and flawless!
So, our bike is almost complete -
the Arata pipe, Renthal sprockets, DID
chain, Domino grips, Powerbronze
screen and a host of GFP International
parts (rearsets, radiator guard, shark
fin and carbon lever guard) have all
been fitted and work like a charm.
Going into the Kyalami round we
were worried that the gearing we had
fitted being too long, but it turned out
to be spot on. Changing the front from
a 17 to 16 and the rear from 43 to 45
We also managed to secure a deal
with Pirelli for the rest of the racing
season, it was time to highlight just
how good the CBR1000RR really is
by fitting it with top Italian made grippy
50 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
tyre’s. We opted to go with a SC2 compound on the front and
a SC1 200/55 rear. We knew this was risky as we would be
competing in both the SBK 1000 class with my brother and
the Masters Class with me (yes, I’m a Master!).
An early morning warmup was followed by qualifying
and two races each - a lot for bike, riders and tyre’s but we
managed to pull it off.
To make things even more stressful was the fact that
our races were back-to-back. My brother would race first
followed immediately after by my race.
After nursing the bike and tyre’s a bit in warmup and
qualifying, while still trying to learn the bike around Kyalami, it
was time to go racing.
We fitted a brand-new rear Pirelli SC1 rear for the first quali
sessions and two races, opting to keep the slightly used front
tyre on as it was wearing really well and to help minimize the
My brother managed to qualify in 15th place overall (out
of 33 bikes) with a time of 1,57.0. I ended up 5th on the grid
(out of 19) with a time of 1,55.3. We both knew we could find
more time with new rubber and more time on the bike.
Shaun managed to get a great start as always and found
himself battling hard for top 10 honours. His progress was
halted by a loose left handle bar, which forced him to back
off and nurse the bike home. He still managed to finish an
impressive 15th out of 30 riders and 11th overall in the 1000cc
class. He also managed to improve his time to a 1,56.7.
After rushing back to the pits and with the help of Riaan
Fourie from Honda SA we managed to tighten up the bar and
send me out in the nick of time to line up on the grid. I won’t
lie, I was feeling a bit nervous about the bar coming loose
while racing, but all my concerns were thrown out the window
after I got a blinder of a start, which saw me lead the field into
turn one. The Blade is such an easy bike to launch and both
mine and my brothers starts proved that fact.
I managed to hold onto the lead for a lap and a half before
being passed by the hard charging, real Master himself, Ricky
Morais, who threw his R1 on my inside going into the Essays.
I held onto his tailpipe for all of 3 corners before he cleared off
into the distance. I then held onto 2nd place for a while before
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 51
eing passed by Appanna Ganapathy going
into turn one. I looked on course for a solid 3rd
place fi nish before disaster struck. The bolt
from the gear lever came out making the lever
fall off and dangle on the side. My race was
over and with only 1 lap left - a kick in the balls
if ever I had!!!
Despite the bad luck I was over the moon
with how the bike was going. The week before
Ricky Morais had done a basic setup on the
bike for us. What that man can do with a screw
driver is mind blowing. By simply pushing down
on the front and rear Ricky was able to give us a
great base setting, which felt solid out on track.
The ultra-grippy Pirelli tyres also making a big
difference. The standard suspension did suffer a
bit towards the end of the race with that spongy
feeling coming into play.
Tyre wear was looking a bit torn up on the
rear after two qualifying and race heats, so it
was time for another tyre change.
We fi xed up the gear lever and headed
back out for our fi nal 2 races, both keen
on improving positions and lap times more
importantly. Shaun once again got a good
launch but was boxed in going into the tight
turn one. That put him a bit further back and
he did an amazing job fi ghting back to end up
in 12th overall and 8th in the SBK class. What
impressed me was his consistency, lapping in
the low 1,56s all race long. He did manage to
dip into the 1,55s (1,55.8) which was also really
impressive for a kid that hardly gets to ride.
Job done from Shaun, it was now time for
me to impress. I again got a fl yer of a start and
launched from the 2nd row into the lead before
making the error of trying to shift up thinking
I had a race box shift (so push lever down
to change up). Rev limiter activated and in
spectacular fashion! I eventually got it right but
fell behind Ricky heading into turn 1. I would
push hard to try and hang onto Ricky and
managed to do so for a lap and a bit before he
cleared off. Unknown to me I had pulled a gap
over Appanna and was comfortably running in
2nd place. With 4 laps to go I had the feeling
of the lever coming loose again so backed off
a bit. This allowed Appanna to catch and pass
me. I managed to hold onto 3rd place and pick
up my fi rst podium fi nish in years and the fi rst
for our Honda CBR1000RR streetbike racer.
We had some assistance from Alan Lawlor
in between the two races with regards to
suspension setup. He helped us get a bit
more traction from the rear which proved to
be spot on. The bike felt great and I managed
a personal best time of 1,54.3 - a testament
to how good the Blade is and the setup done
by Ricky and Alan. Also, a massive shout
out to Chris vd Merwe who assisted us with
changing wheels. Big, big thank you bud!!!
At the end of the day the Blade not only
looks amazing but goes like stink as well and
raised plenty eyebrows in pit lane and out on
track. It’s a versatile machine that adapted
well to both mine and my brothers different
riding styles and body weights. It’s the perfect
superbike for the masses and our aim with
this exercise is to prove that you don’t have
to spend millions to have fun and achieve fast
lap times. This is a bike still fi tted with a side
stand, rear passenger seat, stock air fi lter and
motor and all-in-all, even with all the extras
added costing around a mere R250k in total.
At the new low price of only R209,000, with
quickshift and autoblip fi tted standard, it has to
be the best value-for-money superbike on the
market today. That low price allows one to add
some extra go-fast bits to make it even more
enjoyable, or even give it a new custom livery
to make it even more gorgeous!!!
Big thanks to Pirelli and all our suppliers for
coming on board and helping make this bike
so good. To Kallie from Syndicate, your work is
We look forward to fi tting some new EBC
brake pads for some extra strength stopping
power and wear heading into East London.
Can’t wait to see what the Blade, myself and
my brother can do at the fastest track in the
land! Should be fun!
3D PRINTED MIRROR BLANKS
We had battled in our pursuit to find decent mirror
blanks for our bike, until we were told by one of
our readers about a new 3D Printing company
based inside the new Builder’s Warehouse mega
store in Boksburg that could make some up for us.
So, we gave it a go. A simple and easy process -
take a sample in, they design it up and a few days
later we had our perfect custom made mirror
blanks. The whole exercise cost around R550 and
you can go as crazy as you like with the design.
Great value-for-money and a great way to print
up your own designs. (logos, name, etc.)
Visit the Termitelabs desk at the new Builder’s
Warehouse in Boksburg and check out what they
can do for you. Tel 010 300 9389.
52 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
In a day and age where everything has to be bigger, meaner, faster and more powerful especially when it comes to motorcycles the
question is, “Can you have just one smaller cc bike to commute on, tour on, do track days on or just have fun on?”
Words and Pics by Glenn Foley & Sean Hendley
54 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
For those of you out there in your forty’s you can
recall that the 650cc and 750cc class is what a
lot of us aspired to, they were the bikes to have
and only the a few tough okes would buy the
Kwak Z13 or the Honda CB 1000 6 cylinder
or the Katana 1000 Stryker and they were the
bikes of myths and legends. Then let’s talk to
you folk in your sixty’s and seventy’s and when
you were young guns dreaming of motorcycles,
anything above 500cc was practically unheard
of and were rumoured to have been sold with
coffins or so my Dad told me.
Which brings us back to our question,
“Can you have just one smaller cc bike to
commute on, tour on, do track days on or
just have fun on?” Well we decided to put
that theory to the test and laid down the
criteria as such, they must be mid-range
road bikes – each must be 750cc or less and
above 500cc. They all have to cost less than
R150.000 brand new. For a single bike, you
need a bit of excitement and the bike must be
fast and comfortable enough to use on our
highways and byways. You also need a bike
that you can take off on for the weekend.
We contacted all of the importers to see
what they had for us to use.
Yamaha has that brilliant MT07 that we
rode last month, they also have the MT07
Tracer (R124 950), Let’s get that.
Suzuki has the SV650 (now on special at
R90200, WOW!)… why not, we’ve ridden it
before and that bike is just so much fun.
Honda has the NC750 (R114000), which
is one of the best-selling motorcycles on the
globe, so let’s get one.
Our exotic long term Husqvarna 701
Vitpilen (R149.699) was leering at us through
the window, so we decided to chuck that into
the mix too.
There are some other bikes on the market
that would fit the bill, like Kawasaki’s Z600 but
we had to go along with what the importers
had on offer for us to ride.
There are 600 and 750cc superbikes
available, but remember our sub 150k clause?
Four different bikes, three twins and a single.
But even the twins are different. The Yamaha
and Honda are both powered by parallel twin.
The Suzuki makes use of their legendary
V-Twin 650cc – this also makes it the smallest
capacity bike for the day. Husqvarna makes
use of the legendary 701cc single cylinder. All
of the bikes are fuel injected. Honda supplied
us the slightly more expensive CVT (Auto
Real world ride:
This was no track test – in fact if you put most
of these testers onto a track, you’d probably
fall asleep watching them, excpet for the
Husqvarna Vitpilen 701, which Rob and Shaun
have put to the test out on track and landed
up loving every second.
Our motley crew comes from a variety of
motorcycle backgrounds, with the lady rider
Michelle, the only one with any real track
cred. The rest of us just simply ride and love
We opted for a cool (It is winter after all),
ride from our spot at the offices, all the way
out to The Brauhaus Am Dam for lunch – and
back. A perfect breakfast run route with road
conditions that would tell us exactly what each
motorcycle can do. Some urban commuting,
some fast freeways and that beautiful
mountain pass down to Hekpoort.
Michelle says: (Lady Rider with real
Very comfortable and the big utility box up front
is cool. The DCT is something new for me,
and I love the fact that you can still shift gears
yourself via the switch on the bars. The bike
is pretty responsive. Brakes are fine – I found
the turning took a bit more body language
than the other bikes – probably because it’s a
bit bigger than the other bikes on the day. All
the switches well laid out. A great day to day
runabout – and handy for people who are not
accustomed to clutch and gear actuation.
Husqvarna 701 Vitpilen:
This bike is so much fun. It reminds me
of my track bike – mean streetfighter look.
More comfortable than a superbike and the
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 55
suspension and seat is pretty hard. You do
lean on your wrists, but that can quickly be
sorted by just adjusting the clutch and brake
levers. No wind protection, so sustained
speeds get quite windy. This bike is also quite
tall, so short people might be a bit intimidated.
Really enjoy the handling, point, squirt and
lean…. The engine is torquey and exciting for a
single, but you need to ride it a bit harder than
the other twins on the day.
Yamaha MT07 Tracer:
Comfortable. Very similar to the Honda in
terms of handling and all that. The fly screen
does a great job at giving just a bit more
rider comfort. Power delivery is good and
I enjoyed the roll-on power – overtaking
slower bikes and traffic was effortless without
hunting for gears. The narrow bars take a bit
of getting used to, especially turning around
for photos and manoeuvring the bike in tight,
slow situations. Easy and comfortable. Good
looking. A really lekker bike.
Great handling, lekker power, goes where you
want it to. The controls and layout is excellent.
My only gripe is the fact that the brakes are a
bit on the soft/spongy side, I prefer better bite.
The traffic coming home was massive, so for
carving, I snuck her into third gear and just
soldiered along. I noticed a bit of a wobble at
top speeds around the 160kph mark, but this
is a completely naked bike and is not really
built for sustained fast travels. The Suzuki was
the smallest bike on the day so it was, perhaps
not the most comfortable of the bikes I rode.
Top pic: The NC 750 X in
it’s natural habitat.
Below pic: The Yamaha
MT07 Tracer is big on
looks and power and
very easy on the pocket.
Sean Says: (Long time rider yet
still gets it wrong sometimes but a
legend in his own fantasy)
I have never really fancied the NC750X, to
me it has always been the Corolla of the
motorcycle world. Reliable as the day is long,
light on fuel and well-priced but as boring as
all heck, so I wasn’t excited to ride it and left it
until last to ride. I was pleasantly surprised by
how nice it is to ride. Ergonomically Honda has
created a bit of a miracle, from the shortest rider
to the tallest riders were completely comfortable
on the bike all day long, although some of the
other riders bums did seem to take a bit of
strain. I am really growing to love the throaty
gruff burble emitted by the Honda twin motors.
I am also completely enamoured with the DCT
auto box, a feature I believe all manufactures
should give the option of. The handling was
neutral, predictable in corners as well as under
harsh braking, even with a pillion on the back.
All round a really great bike, I enjoyed the NC
750X a lot more than I expected to and would
happily have one in my garage or as a daily run
around to see customers.
Husqvarna 701 Vitpilen:
Possibly my all-time favourite of the bunch we
rode on this test. This is our long term test bike
and when I initially got my hands on it I did
regard it with a bit of suspicion, anything that
petite and sexy is usually really uncomfortable
for a large lad like myself but I was sooo happy
to be proven wrong. I really love, love, love
the 701 Vitpilen. It is torquey and quick, very
56 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
quick and exceptionally smooth especially for
a 690cc single cylinder Café Racer. Hang on
the gas and kick through the gears using the
quick shifter and with a couple of lekker deep
pops from the Akrapovic pipe you are soon
hairing along at 180kmh plus, definitely the
quickest bike on the day. You might think that
having no windscreen might be a problem,
but that seems to be one of the party tricks
of the Vitpilen, the wind served to support my
body weight and take the strain off my wrists,
making for a comfortable and fun few hours
in the saddle. I think I love this bike so much
because it is the pure essence of biking; the
engine is loud, noisy and brash. Acceleration is
brutal for such a small bike and the handling is
unbelievably good with just enough electronic
gadgets to enhance your riding experience
without getting in the way. Sadly …. And I
mean that from the bottom of my heart, we
have had to give it back to Husqvarna SA ….. I
really wish they had forgotten that we had it.
Yamaha MT07 Tracer:
For our last issue Linex Yamaha in Randburg
loaned us the naked version of this and Glenn
hogged it so I didn’t get to ride it and was
looking forward to riding this one. The torque
from the little 690cc twin motor caught me by
surprise. I had the office Appy as a pillion and
figured I would need to give the little motor a
bit of motivation to get off the line, only to have
it stand on its back wheel. I quickly learned
to respect the MT 07 and we were soon
tearing down the tar and hanging through
the bends enjoying life. The MT 07 handles
very well, accelerates like a demon and pulls
up to a stop like a little GP bike. It is also
skinny enough to squeeze through tight traffic
beauty of the
Suzuki SV 650 is
reasonably easy and comfort wise it can’t
be faulted even with a pillion and my lanky
chassis. The MT 07 is such a willing machine
that I was taking wild chances in traffic and
had the opportunity to really test its suspension
under extreme braking and not once did I feel
that the MT 07 might not be up to the task.
What a fantastic bike …… yeah …. I’ll have
one of these in my garage.
“Uhm ……. Where’s the rest of it?” was
my first question. It is small and feels small,
possibly due to the extremely narrow bars,
skinny tank, low seat height and acute angle
of my knees once my feet were on the pegs
but that is where my griping stops. It is basic,
no gadgets and nannies, no fairing, just a
motor, chassis, wheels and the barest of
basics to make it go ….. like the Blue Blazes.
Running on the road from Magaliesberg town
to Brauhaus am Dam the trucks have driven
a twee spoor groove into the tarmac. I stuck
the little SV 650 into the right hand groove,
stretched the throttle cable as much as I could,
and used it as a rail. I am closer to 120kg than
I am to 110kg and the suspension soaked up
all the lumps and bumps in the road better
than well enough, jamming on the hooks every
now and then to avoid traffic was a doddle for
the little SV even with my lump on it. I got to
Brauhaus well ahead of the others because I
could sneak the SV past traffic without having
to cross into the oncoming lane, the bike is
that narrow and handles that well that I felt
completely comfortable tucking my elbows
in and sharing the same space on the road
as a car or small truck and the acceleration is
quite quick if you drop a gear and bang on the
throttle. A little bit small for me but a great little
bike nonetheless and extremely well priced.
Glenn Says: (Our well rounded
Publisher with encyclopaedic
motorcycle knowledge, supposedly)
Whilst this bike is certainly not the most
exciting of the bunch, it is really easy to
understand why this bike sells so well. If I
were to explain this bike in one sentence – a
mature, practical, economical motorcycle. It is
fast enough, really comfortable for commuting
or hitting the long roads with good wind
protection from the mini faring – and the utility
box tank side is such a cool innovation. This
bike is just so easy to live with – hop on and
go – and the DCT really is something that
everyone should try out…
Husqvarna 701 Vitpilen:
The Vitpilen 701 has to be one of the sexiest
bikes on the planet. If that’s what is important
to you, then you definitely need to consider
this motorcycle. I fully expected this bike to be
SA band Evolver once
sang - ...come a little closer,
show me some skin, let’s
get naked YEAH, let’s get
naked ..drive me crazy,
good god, I got my eye on
you ..and we have got our
eye on the Vitpilen 701.
the social misfit, but was pleasantly surprised
that, for me, this was the most fun to be had
for the day. Sure it’s a single – but a single
with massive torque and speed –it never fell
behind – and it actually overtook many of the
other bikes through the twisties. What a cool
motorcycle – barrels of fun to ride!
Yamaha MT07 Tracer:
Last month I was lucky enough to draw the
straw to do the feature on the MT07 naked
– and that bike absolutely blew me away
because it is just so much fun. The MT07
Tracer hosts the same engine, but somehow
feels a bit calmer and more – well grown up
really. Include the mini fairing and comfortable
ergonomics and you have a sports tourer
that will go anywhere in absolute comfort
all day long. A great motorcycle, sexy and
comfortable with a great spread of power.
Bikes like this one are the reason that I fell in
love with motorcycles in the first place. Basic,
fast, comfortable, fun to ride. Ok it is a bit more
Spartan than the other bikes in this test, but I
personally enjoy the simplicity. The 650 engine
has always been one of my favourites. At the
price, you’d have to go a long way to beat this
bike for sheer practicality.
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 57
Donovan Says: (another well rounded
and somewhat decent rider)
It is a very well balanced well rounded bike
with great value for money. Everything is well
laid out and so easy to ride. I enjoyed the
DCT gearbox and it worked so well in the
traffic making life a lot easier with the go stop
traffic. The big utility box where the tank would
normally be is very useful to put all your small
items that would normally be stuffed into your
pockets when you’re out and about on a bike.
I did find the seat a little uncomfortable for
me though, being the only bike of the bunch
that hurt my rear end. A great riding position
though and was comfortable and relaxed on
the bike. The ability to be able to hand shift
the gears with the use of the buttons on the
handle bar also for a quick down shift if you
want to do a quick overtake is awesome. A
great all round commuting bike
Husky 701 Vitpilen:
Since this bike was launched and seeing the
first pics of the bike I have always had a liking
for the bike. It is a sexy looking bike. When I
first climbed onto the bike I thought, Oh no,
I’m not going to enjoy this much being a rather
tall podgy guy and the bike having quite a bent
over riding position which has you feeling like
you sitting over the front wheel. But boy was I
wrong, after the first few corners and getting a
feel for the bike I was grinning from ear to ear.
All though it’s only a single and you need to ride
it a little harder than the other bikes it’s such an
awesome bike to play on. The engine sounds
great and the bike handles so well through the
twisties. It definitely beats the other bikes hands
down as far as the fun factor goes.
Yamaha MT07 Tracer:
If we had to choose one bike from the lot
we tested to keep, this would be my pick. A
very comfortable easy bike to ride just like the
Honda but has a little more pepper than the
Honda. A good looking bike and everything
is well laid out and makes the bike so easy to
ride. I loved the engine on the MTO7 , it has
a lot more grunt than I had expected which
made overtaking easy and can cruise along
at well above the highway speed limits all day
long. It’s great for the daily office run and then
weekend comes along its an awesome midrange
bike that you can climb on and spend all
day riding in comfort and will not cost you both
your arms and a leg.
A very bland looking bike when compared to
the other bikes we tested, but nothing bland
about the bike at all when you climb onto it. A
very easy bike to ride and the 650cc engine is
no slouch at all. It’s easy to understand why so
many people say it’s such a under rated bike,
more value for money you will not get on any
other bike out there in the market. Build quality
is excellent and everything works well on the
bike. If you are in the market for a first bike for
your wife or kids to get them into riding this
would be the bike to look at.
Brian Says: (Not a man of many
words, but excellent with spanners)
The NC750 was bit rougher ride on the front
end than all the other bikes on the day, maybe
a bit of setting up might be needed to suit
my riding style. Very cool auto box was very
surprised by the way it changed gear, super
smooth changes. I still prefer the hands on
manual. Nice load space where the fuel tank
traditionally would be situated. Very cool bike.
Husqvarna 701 Vitpilen:
This is not my cup of tea, lekker fun ‘Windgat’
sporty bike. I wouldn’t like to commute too
far. I found the noisy motor is a bit off putting,
sort of reminds me of the Ducati’s with the dry
clutches. It has a very sporty sitting position.
Great weekend play bike but a bit out of my
price range for a toy.
Yamaha MT07 Tracer:
This is great bike and very pretty. Not
exceptionally exciting but really excellent for
commuting, it is smooth and comfortable with
a decent bit of wind protection. Good every
day kinda bike and the one I would have in my
garage out of the lot we rode on this test.
What a fantastic bike. It is comfortable and
handles smoothly with great power delivery
from the v-twin. I like the smooth gear changes
and easy acceleration from any speed. It is a
very user friendly, the type of bike that can be
ridden every day, all day for whatever reason.
A mini fairing for some wind protection would
58 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
e a nice add on for longer trips but not
a necessity at a cruise speed. If I had to
choose one to buy for all round with running
cost and purchase price a part of it, it would
be between the Yamaha and the Suzuki.
We all had such a good time on these
“little” bikes and couldn’t really fi nd a bad
thing to say about any of them. They are all
capable of speeds over 180kmh, they all
handle extremely well and for the most part
are very comfortable. I, (Sean), personally
spent all day trying to ride the wheels off of
all of them and they were each more than
fast enough to keep me entertained in a
straight a line and handled well enough
in corners to keep me laughing with glee
in my helmet. We had a “BIG” 1000cc
superbike along for another test and I
got to ride that for a bit as well and sadly
I didn’t enjoy it as much as the smaller
bikes. You can have huge fun riding the
mid-sized bikes hard all day and get the
adrenalin pumping without frightening
the crap out of yourself, whereas with the
bigger bikes are just so powerful that you
end up backing off instead of pushing
harder ….. or maybe I’m just getting old.
Get hold of the following good
people if you are interested in any
of these bikes:
Honda NC 750 X
Honda Wing Sandton
Tim Nicolson – 011 540 3000, cnr Peter
Place & William Nicol Rd, Bryanston
Husqvarna Vitpilen 701
Husqvarna SA (for your nearest dealer)
011 462 7796
Suzuki SV 650
Alan 011 975 5545 – 20 Albatross st,
Yamaha MT07 Tracer
Mark 011 251 4000 – 13 Malibongwe
drive, Strydom Park, Randburg.
Engine type: 754cc Twin, four-stroke
Power: 54.04 HP @ 6250 RPM
Torque: 68.00 Nm @ 4750 RPM Seat height: 830 mm
Kerb Weight: 217.3 kg Fuel capacity: 14 litres
YAMAHA MT07 TRACER
Engine type: 689 cc liquid-cooled 4-stroke; 8 valves
Power: 74.8 HP @ 9000 RPM
Torque: 68.00 Nm @6500 RPM Seat height: 835 mm
Kerb Weight: 196 kg Fuel capacity: 17 litres
Engine type: 645cc V2, four-stroke 90-degree V-Twin
Power: 75 HP @8400 RPM
Torque: 64.00 Nm @ 6400 RPM Seat height: 785 mm
Kerb Weight: 196 kg Fuel capacity: 14 litres
HUSQVARNA VITPILEN 701
Engine type: 690cc single cylinder, four-stroke
Power: 75 HP @8500 RPM
Torque: 71.00 Nm @ 6750 RPM Seat height: 830 mm
Kerb Weight: 177 kg Fuel capacity: 12 litres
Mat Durrans is a very well known name in the South African motorcycle
game and is one of the three ugly faces you will see on the weekly “The Bike
Show” program featured on Ignition TV. We have managed to convince Mat to
take time out of his busy schedule to supply us with a monthly column.
Riding fast, relatively.
Speed is relative,
according to me
and a certain Albert
Einstein. Okay, I made
the Einstein reference
up because what he
actually said is that
time is relative.
To paraphrase a genius is borderline
sacrilege, but I’m a biker so sacrilegious is a
fairly common theme in my life. Anyway, back
to my dodgy summary of Mr. Einstein’s theory
of relativity which states something along the
lines that 10-seconds holding your hand over
a naked fl ame feels like it will never end, while
10 minutes with a beautiful woman feels like it
lasted only seconds.
The same theory of relativity holds true
for speed as I have discovered on many
occasions. During the international launch
of BMW’s S 1000 RR at Estoril earlier this
year I managed to see 292km/h on the main
straight, and it didn’t feel particularly fast. Or
at least it didn’t until I had to hit the brakes for
the next 2nd gear, 90-degree right-hander, and
then it suddenly felt way, way too rapid.
About 20-years ago, while Suzuki’s
Hayabusa was still a fresh and wondrous new
thing I was determined to reach an indicated
200mph (320km/h) on its speedo. Along the
super-smooth French motorway that was
my impromptu test track the last few km/h
were proving diffi cult to get, but I could spend
extended periods at these velocities because
the highway was as straight as it was smooth.
Truth be told, although I was going for a
speed I’d never before attained, and even
though it was a public road (allegedly, offi cer) it
felt safe and in control.
And then it didn’t. Out of nowhere came
a series of gentle sweepers – at the 130km/h
motorway speed limit – that had me fi ghting
for my life as I forced the ‘Busa onto it’s side at
well over 270km/h. First to the right, and then
over to the left, all while trying to gently scrub off
speed while not upsetting the bike or myself.
It was a frightening experience, but only
seconds before it had been blissfully calm and
controlled. Speed is obviously relative to the
Which is why I want to talk to you about
a cruiser. Yeah, yeah, I know this is Ride
Fast magazine, but with my Einstein inspired
philosophising you should now be open to the
idea that you can achieve the same sensation
of speed at 150km/h on a cruiser that you get
at 300km/h on a superbike.
Riding at speed on a cruiser offers its own
challenges, and comes with its own rewards.
That’s not even taking into account the theory
of relativity’s impact on coolness. There’s no
getting away from this, but no matter how cool
you feel in your full leathers on your ballistically
fast Ducati you simply are nowhere near as
cool as the rider in scruffy denims and scuffed
leather on a badass chopper.
Cruel, I know, but it’s just one of those
unarguable facts of motorcycling life.
So, in an attempt to remember why I
started this, my fi rst column for Ride Fast
magazine, I want you to consider one of the
most interesting new bikes I’ve encountered
for a long time: the BMW Concept R 18.
It’s a cruiser, and although only a concept,
what you are looking at here is a production
ready chassis with some other details (like
carbs and bar-end mounting for brake and
clutch levers) that won’t make it out of the
factory. But, this bike should be on sale in the
second-half of next year in pretty much the
same state that you see it now.
What is not up for debate is that the R 18
cuts a striking fi gure with its minimal clean
lines dominated by a huge 1800cc boxer twin
that is itself engineering as art. Even the most
cynical of sport bike purists will surely concede
that their heart strings are tugged ever so
slightly by this return to a simpler form that
celebrates its engineering, rather than hiding it
behind some aerodynamically effi cient fairing.
It may not arrive with too much in the way
of horsepower, but you just know that there
will be enough torque in that massive lump of
an engine to whisk you through the gears at
what I confi dently predict will be a borderline
alarming rate of knots. Make no mistake, this is
one cruiser that will feel fast.
Riding Fast is what you, me and editor Rob
live for, all I would add is that Einstein had the
inside line on what ‘fast’ really means. Were he
still with us I’m sure his garage would contain
both a S 1000 RR and a R 18, both with their
tyres frazzled, just like his hair, right to the edges.
60 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
ANOTHER POINT OF VIEW
62 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
K A W A S A K I H 2 S X S E
The phone rings the other day – Kibble from Kawasaki South Africa is on the other end. Mr Foley – when last did you ride a real
mans bike? “Errr Herrrm…. What do you mean?” Well you’re always messing about in the dirt – but if I recall correctly, you did ride
some pretty fast bikes some years ago. He’s right. It’s been a while… but I vaguely recall Turbo’d ‘Busa’s and maniacal ZX10’s and
12’s, but - “What do you have in mind?” Why not come and grab the H2 SX, keep it for a week and tell us what you think….
Words Glenn Foley
We have featured the bike before – Rob did
a track test and all that…. Yup, we appreciate
that but we’d like a normal oake who does
not race to live with the bike and give us
some feedback. Take it on the roads go for
a breakfast run – you know – that kind of
stuff. So I’m not going to bore you with all the
technical stuff – you can go and look that up if
you like – I’m going to try and explain what this
bike would be like to live with. Cool?
Trying to compute a bike with these
performance levels as a day to day runabout
is quite a task – the modern1000cc plus bikes
are just so fasssst… and I am personally
not a massive fan of out and out superbikes
because of the Pretzel like seating position
– but sports tourers have always been
pretty cool! Over the years I’ve owned a few
Kawasaki road bikes – notably, a very souped
up aircooled ZX1100 and a ZZR1100 that Neil
from NS 2-stroke loaned me when my bike
was stolen and I was on the bones of my arse.
Interestingly – the fi rst bike I ever owned was
a lowly little Z200 that served me for lots of
kilometres. So why not?
Arriving at Kawasaki’s base to collect caused
a double take. Not trying to sound like a softy
or anything – but this sure looked like a lot of
motorcycle for a bloke who has not actually
ridden anything this fast in at least ten years.
But it is just that. A motorcycle. And hey
man – this guy loves motorcycles.
Kawasaki refers to the H2 SX as “The
second generation” of its supercharged
engines, after the H2/H2R and have strived to
create what it calls a ‘balanced supercharger’.
As a result, the new engine has been designed
to offer more low to mid-range power than
the H2 while Kawasaki is also claiming similar
consumption fi gures for the H2 SX to that of its
already frugal Versys 1000.” Add to this all of
the electronic gadgetry - it’s a lot of motorcycle
for your money.
The forms were signed, a small “Our
Father” mumbled (no – seriously), and I
pointed what seemed to be a weapon of mass
destruction into the traffi c. The gearbox is silky
smooth, the fl y by wire suspension so well
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 6 3
The analogue speedometer is
complemented by a full colour TFT
display that’s easy to read even in
brakes to help
get it stopped.
dialed in. The route ran from the KMSA offices in Kramerville, onto
the busy Marlboro Drive and onto the N12 towards the Far East
where we operate from. For some reason, the traffic was really
backed up on the onramp, the Kawasaki was pointed into the
white lane on the inside and as we came around the apex, there
sat the local constabulary issuing tickets to all and sundry. It’s like
the national sport at rush hour in JHB at the moment.
A burly looking lady checked out this big green bike
thundering towards her and imperiously pointed to a spot
neatly alongside her. I geared right down, applied brakes and
rolled alongside her - and just a few metres further along. She
ponderously turned and started waddling towards the bike – and
when she got close – I opened wide and grinning like a fool took
off back into the traffic. My favourite trick. I sure hope that she
didn’t think to get the registration number.
Maybe one day we’ll grow up!
The bike blitzes along – absolutely amazing to say the least – it
is actually really difficult to ride it within the prescribed speed limit.
Open the throttle – even a little bit and this bike accelerates to
impressive velocity – and it is sooo smooth. Nimble – she is a big
girl but in the saddle the sheer size disappears and she becomes
a proper street racer. Comfortable too – the Track bike pretzel
effect is non-existent.
Let’s stop in at Holeshot – oops missed the turnoff, Ok
Shimwells, Eep! – missed that too, Game Services? Flip there
goes Snake Road…
It’s funny. Whenever we get a really cool bike to ride – the
route back to the office takes a really long time. Ever been from
Sandton to Kempton via Witbank before?
This bike is just so buttery smooth, fast and comfortable (you
might read this a lot during this story. Sorry.), it simply eats the
mileage. 200 KM’s from Kawasaki’s offices to our spot, 30 km’s
away near the airport.
Not bad. And that was just the intro ride.
Stop at home, admire the bike – a lot. The kids come home
from school and get all googly eyed…
64 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
The left switchgear contains heated
grips button, cruise control and
selectors for engine power modes
and traction control.
C’mon Dad take us for a spin. Fight the temptation and park
her snug in the garage… waiting for the actual ride on Friday. A
bit like a kid in a sweety shop.
Friday was breakfast run day and it came and went in a blur.
It’s just so easy on a bike like this.
Our route went from out home base around JHB on the
Krugersdorp freeway. And down the Hekpoort pass. If you think
that this bike is good on fast straight freeways, you have to take it
on a road like this. It is designed to be ridden through the twisties,
so well planted and so much fun. Utterly smooth, effortless power
but also amazing composure through the sweeps. Nothing about
it feels flighty or nervous. It is just so flippen quick and smooth
and – surprisingly comfortable (see I told you?), with fist clenching,
breathtaking acceleration from the 998cc supercharged in-line
four. The power spools up deceptively quickly in every mode,
and response from the throttle-by-wire is just perfect, while the
hydraulic-actuated assist-and-slipper clutch is silky smooth.
Fuel economy is directly tied to performance and that TFT
display gave us an average of 10 kms to the litre… significantly
thirstier than the sub 750 bikes that we were riding on the day, but
SO worth every cent! Handling and braking – exceptional for a
normal everyday rider like myself – we even tested the suspension
on those annoying little speed bumps near Bekker schools.
Totally smooth and
always in control.
But there was more waiting. We got back quite late after
stopping off at Raceworx to meet with stuntman Aras Gibieza
and the sun was well on its way down when I stopped at my kids
soccer club for training. It was dark when we left – the headlight
lit the road beautifully – and as I swung into the curves, I realized
(Duh! Should have read up a bit before riding it…) that this bike
comes with cornering lights too. How cool is that!!
This bike is surprisingly practical and so easy to ride – but
at the same has the mid-range arm stretching supercharger
whistling grunt to take your breath away. I flippen loved every
second! The combination of supercharged useable power, fused
with seamless electronic wizardry and comfort is sheer genius!
If I could afford one, along with the speeding fines that are
virtually guaranteed to come with it – this bike would be front and
centre in my garage.
A joyous 600 odd kilometres in the saddle and this rider
wished that we could have had it for even more. It’s just one of
How fast is it? Well this bloke chickened out long before the
bike did. It’s not about how fast it goes – it’s more about how
quickly you get there! And holy cow is this bike cool!
Go and chat to your dealer.
The single sided
swingarm is a
work of art...
Engine: 4-stroke, 4-cylinder, DOHC, 4-valve, liquid-cooled, supercharged
Bore x Stroke: 76.0 x 55.0mm
Electronic Rider Aids: Kawasaki Corner Management Function (KCMF),
Kawasaki Traction Control (KTRC), Kawasaki Intelligent anti-lock Brake
System (KIBS), Kawasaki Engine Brake Control.
Front Brakes: Dual radial-mount, opposed 4-piston monobloc calipers,
dual semi-floating 320mm discs, KIBS ABS
Rear Brakes: Opposed 2-piston calipers, single 250mm disc, KIBS ABS
Seat Height: 83.5 CM’s
Curb Weight: 256 KG’s
Fuel Capacity: 19 litres
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 65
Words and pictures by Peter Goodacre. www.warp10.biz
2019 ISLE OF MAN TT Fuelled by Monster Energy
The 2019 Isle of Man
TT was by no means the
Grand Historic race Rob
attended last year where
he got to enjoy the world
greatest road race in
some of the best weather
conditions ever seen on the
Island. No, this year was
rather all about rain delays
and shortened races and
we had one of our own,
Mr Peter Goodacre, there
to capture and report on
what was a stop, start,
frustarting 2019 TT.
Road racing veteran John McGuinness
reckoned that this year’s TT weather was the
worst he’d known at a TT, and who are we
question the opinion of the Morecambe Missile
with 23 wins under his belt since his first TT
appearance in 1996?
It wasn’t that the weather was terrible – it
was just consistently bad enough to put a stop
to the racing. In previous years, TT campers
might have returned to the campsite to find that
a mini hurricane had relocated their tent to a
field 2 kilometers away. That didn’t happen this
year, but there was just enough rain and mist to
ensure that activities on the TT Mountain Course
couldn’t proceed as planned.
Practice and qualifying sessions were
delayed then cancelled during the opening
week, as riders and officials sat by their radios
waiting to hear whether the sessions were
2nd placed James Hillier
powers out of The
Gooseneck in the first
Lee Johnson on the way to
his maiden TT win in the
66 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
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going to take place and if so, when. On those
days TT stood for Thumb Twiddling, as entire
mornings, then afternoons were lost to wet
roads and fog with fi nal negative decisions
being handed down late in the day.
One must feel sympathy for Clerk of the
Course Gary Thompson who had to make
the call on whether racing would go ahead or
not. The safety of the riders is paramount and
races and qualifying sessions won’t get the
green light unless the road surface and visibility
are adequate. Thompson had an incredibly
hard task and, in my opinion, managed
the alterations to the TT fortnight schedule
There were some unavoidable
compromises prompted by the inclement
weather. Race distances were shortened and
a new record was established on the sunny
Thursday of Race Week when fi ve races took
place in one day. Of the 35 laps of racing
originally scheduled, 23 were run.
Top: A tough TT for Michael Dunlop on his return after
the loss of his brother. Middle: First TT Podium for
Honda rider David Johnson (3rd Superstock TT)
The opening race, the RST Superbike
TT won by Peter Hickman, was originally
shortened from 6 to 4 laps but was redfl
agged after two, due to the incident that
tragically claimed the life of popular and
talented rider Daley Mathison. On the same
day, the 4 lap Monster Energy Supersport TT
was halted after 2 laps due to rain, handing
a maiden TT win to Lee Johnston. Of the
remaining races, only the fi rst Locate.im
Sidecar Race (3 laps), SES TT Zero race (one
lap) and the premier Dunlop Senior TT race (6
laps) ran their originally scheduled distances.
Despite the rain, there were some amusing
moments. “Isle of Man TT Radio fuelled by
Monster Energy” broadcast a news bulletin
reporting that the Manx government was
planning to invite tenders for Weather Providers
for the 2020 TT Races. The Isle of Man
Constabulary also posted on Facebook that
they had received information that the poor
weather was due to some bikers not greeting
Winner of the RST Superbike
TT Peter Hickman on the
new BMW S1000RR at The
winner of the
Race 2 on his
Smith’s / Trooper
Peter Hickman made it
3 wins in this years TT
winning the Superstock
TT Race as well.
68 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
the fairies and reminded the public that this is a
requirement under Manx (folk) lore.
While the record laps of 2018 were always
going to be tough to top due to the lack of
track time during TT Practice Week, there were
some outstanding results.
Ben and Tom Birchall set a new race
record of 118.317mph in the first Locate.im
Sidecar TT Race, later equaling TT legend
Rob Fisher’s ten wins after taking their second
victory of the week.
In the SES TT Zero race, Michael Rutter
beat his 2018 time by just under a second
to set a new average speed record of
Michael Dunlop claimed his 19th TT
win with a victory in the 2-lap Bennetts
Lightweight TT while riding with a wrist injury
sustained in a crash prior to the NW200 and
Dean Harrison wrestled the Senior TT Race
laurels from early leader Peter Hickman,
reversing last year’s results.
Peter Hickman’s hattrick of wins in the RST
Superbike, RL360 Superstock and Monster
Energy Supersport Race 2 earned him the
Joey Dunlop Solo TT Championship Award,
with the Birchall Brothers taking the Sidecar
TT favorites Ian Hutchinson and John
McGuinness both experienced challenging
fortnights. On the second day of qualifying
Hutchinson suffered a high-speed crash
which he later described as his worst yet,
despite being able to walk away from the
accident. John McGuinness endured regular
mechanical problems with the Norton, which
despite sounding and looking amazing, failed
to translate those assets into podium finishes.
McGuinness did manage a second place in
the SES TT Zero race which might have partly
compensated him for his Norton woes.
Some fans attending TT2019 might be
feeling short-changed by the concessions that
needed to be made due to the bad weather.
While the racing is obviously the major selling
point for the Isle of Man TT, there’s much more
The Red Arrows still displayed their
precision flying over the bay (although perhaps
fittingly, the display was cut short due to low
cloud), the dazzling Thursday night fireworks
display prompted “oohs” and “aahs” down
the length of the Douglas promenade, the
numerous bars and restaurants kept the live
music and drinks flowing into the early hours
and the historic sites and museums of the
island could all be visited for the one-time price
of a £10 Manx National Heritage TT badge.
2019’s TT Races will also be talked about
for years to come as the first time that five
races were held in a single day – and this
year’s fans can boast that they were there to
watch it. That’s got to be worth a return visit
AJ Venter competing in the
Lightweight TT. AJ’s TT was
plagued by mechanical
problems in both the Stock
and Lightweight classes. He
did manage to pick up a 5th
overall in the TT Zero class.
TT Zero Race
Rutter on a Mugen
Lightweight winner Michael
Dunlop on the Paton
Conor Cummins at
in the opening lap
of the Senior TT
70 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Dean Harrison, runner
up in the Supersport
TT Race 2
Tragically the RST
Superbike TT claimed
the life of rider Daley
Mathison early in his
3rd lap causing the race
to be red flagged
Gary Johnson on the
675 Triumph in the
Supersport TT Race 1
The Birchall brothers
on their way to their
second win of the week
dogged by reliability
issues with the Norton,
which saw him retiring
from the Senior TT in
the opening lap
Dean Harrison at The
Quarterbridge in the opening
lap of the Senior TT
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 7 1
Words by Dave Houreld / Pics by Dave Houreld & Shark Helmets
S H A R K H E L M E T S L E M A N S M O T O G P E X P E R I E N C E
Nothing comes close to
experiencing a MotoGP
race weekend LIVE and
in person. The sights, the
smells and the sounds are
out of this world seductive.
Shark Helmets hosted
the 2019 LeMans MotoGP
round and the boys from
(official SA importer) went
along to enjoy a behind the
scenes experience of the
greatest sport in the world!
Let’s unfold this story right from the
beginning of time - I am based in Cape Town
full time as Brand Manager for Langston
Motorsports. As it happened to be I was up
in Johannesburg for my best friend’s wedding
and thought I would use my very short time
there to swing by the JHB based head offi ce
to sort one or two things out that I needed to
I walked into the offi ce, greeted everyone,
had a quick chat and headed up to Hans De
Beers Offi ce (Managing Director For Langston
Motorsports) and the brief was , “were is your
passport “ , umm at home I did not know I
needed one for Johannesburg? The reply that
came from Hans was ‘no, you going with me
to the Le Mans Moto GP in two weeks’ time ,
get your visa sorted out as soon as possible!!!
The next two weeks following up to actual
fl ight was the longest two weeks of my life!
During this time we received briefs from Shark
Helmets in France as to what was going to
happen for the period we were going to be
there, this experience was nothing short of full
VVIP with Shark Helmets, who were the title
sponsor for the LeMans MotoGP round.
On the 17th May at 23h50 we departed out
of Cape Town International with Air France on
a direct fl ight to Charles De Gaulle Airport in
France, all-in-all a 12 hour fl ight.
Bearing in mind the 17th May was a Friday,
we landed in France on Saturday afternoon at
around 12h00 - now the mad scramble was
on as we needed to catch the high speed train
(TGV) to Le Mans, in this time we were missing
out on all the free practise sessions and even
72 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
qualifying. We tried to change our fl ight tickets
but Air France was having none of it.
If you have ever been to France you will
know that CDG airport is insanely massive, it’s
so big we had to catch a tram just to get to our
next terminal. After what felt like a lifetime we
made it to the train, it was now an hour and a
half’s ride to Le Mans - thankfully the train does
300km/h on some stretches, by car it would
take your around 3 hours.
Once we arrived in Le Mans it was once
again a task to navigate out of the train
station and fi nd a taxi to get us to the race
track. Again, while this was all happening,
free practise and qualifying was already going
down in all the classes at the track so it was a
matter of urgency to get there as soon as we
could. After a bit of running around we found
a taxi and he took us to our accommodation,
which was literally 5 minutes’ walk to one of
the main entrances to the Le Mans circuit,
what a pleasure!
We were met by Francois Berni from Shark
Helmets France and handed VIP passes for both
Saturday and Sunday, these had to be visible
at all times as you would walk through sections
at Le Mans that would require a certain pass to
gain access. We were then taken to the Moto
GP VIP Village where Shark Helmets had set up
a full VIP lounge with 6x TV’s , food, drinks and
our very own viewing deck on turns 9 and 10
of the track. We managed to catch some of the
Moto 3 action on arrival, which was awesome
taking into account we arrived very late that
afternoon, but we had so much planned for us
even though we arrived late. Next we headed to
Shark Helmets second VIP lounge which was
on the main straight just before turn 1, there
we had riders come to us for a meet and greet
with some photos, we were lucky enough to
meet and chat with Shark helmets riders Jorge
Lorenzo, Sam Lowes, Miguel Oliveria, Johan
Zarco and Iker Lecuona, this experience alone
had us smiling from ear to ear.
We had some time to walk around and
experience all the stalls before we needed to
be at the Motul Boma for the Motul after party.
The branded clothing stalls at any Moto GP
race are out of this world, anything you can think
of can be bought there in terms of Moto GP
memorabilia and even some of the best know
riding brands had stalls up that were bustling
every minute of every day.
At 18h00 we headed over to the Motul Boma
where there were a few speeches made from
the head of Shark Helmets and Motul, it was all in
French anyway which we don’t understand at all, I
managed to make use two words when I was there
and that was “merci” Thank you and “Bonjor” Hello,
other than that it was just a lot of head shaking and
agreeing to whatever we were being told.
The rest of the evening was spent socializing
with people from all around the world and then
at around 23h00 we decided to call it a night
and head back to our accommodation as
Sunday was race day!!!
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019 73
We walked back to our accommodation
and just outside the track boundaries were
people camping, making fi res, revving their
bikes in true Rally style all night long - I almost
felt right back at home.
Sunday Morning, people we fl owing into the
track in there 1000’s, Le Mans can only hold
60,000 people, race day would see 105,000
arriving! The atmosphere was electrifying.
At 09h00 we made our way to the track
and straight to the Shark Helmets Moto GP VIP
Village to get things underway for the day. The
weather was grim and really cold on the day but
that was the least of our worries, it was D- DAY!
After some breakfast and coffee we geared
up for the start of the Moto 3 race, now if there
is something everyone should at least once in
their lifetime experience is a Moto GP Race,
but more so the sound of the bikes hitting their
start limiters before the lights go green. I’m
even getting goosebumps just typing it! it is out
of this world to hear it live, we were on turns 9
and 10 and it sounded like they were starting
right next to us, and this was only Moto 3! After
screaming our lungs off for our very own SA
hero, Darryn Binder, it was time to get ready
for Moto 2 where we would be doing some
more screaming. In fact, all we did was scream
throughout all the races…
It was great to see our proudly South
African Moto 2 stars Brad Binder and Steven
Odendaal in real time action. Shark Helmets
had fi ve new BMW X5 at their disposal with
drivers to take us around the service roads
right next to the track, this just made the
experience that much more special. As Moto 2
started their warmup lap we were ushered into
one of these BMW X5 and taken for a grand
tour, this was an amazing experience as we
could access just about every corner of the
track and be right there with in 10 meters of
the riders as they came past us. We managed
to watch at least 6 -8 laps from the BMW X5
vantage point. Brad Binder managed to fi nish
in an impressive 4th place with Alex Marques
taking the win for that round and from what we
heard Brad was having to fi ght with the bike
through every turn and was not all that happy,
but considering this he placed well and it was
a great privilege to have seen him race in the
fl esh, it’s one thing to watch a race on TV but
let me tell you these Moto2 boys are super
quick and so smooth in every corner! We
unfortunately did not get a chance to catch up
with Brad in the pits this time around.
It was time for the main race, the riders
headed out for their warmup lap and things
got real very quickly. The pure sound of the
Moto GP bikes is heaven on earth, especially
when they bolting down a straight and start
gearing down to enter the corner and of
course the corner exit as they punch up
through the gearbox again.
For the fi rst good few laps it was a battle
between Marques and the Ducati riders to get
In front and take the lead, Marques maintained
74 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
R I D E F A S T T E A M S H I R T
PRE-ORDERS NOW OPEN.
Dean Harrison at The
Quarterbridge in the opening
lap of the Senior TT
ONLY 100 SHIRTS AVAILABLE.
A L L S I Z E S A V A I L A B L E
072 834 9665
the lead and later pulled a considerable gap on the other
riders and went onto win the Shark Helmets Le Mans
Moto GP followed by Dovi, Petru, Miller and Rossi.
And just like that the Shark Helmets Le Mans Moto
GP was over, we now needed to get out of the track
grounds along with 105,000 other people to get a tram
and then onto the train station we go. A promised 20 min
walk to the tram turned into an hours walk, bags and all.
We now don’t trust Francois Berni from Shark Helmets
with anything in time or distance calculations, you can
easily double that to get the true distance or time.
Once at the train station it was an hour back into Paris
via train to our next hotel, the fun was over and now it
was onto more serious stuff for Monday and Tuesday.
We arrived at our new hotel at around 20h00 that
evening, refreshed and headed out for dinner and a bit of
Paris Night tour and then called it an evening as Monday
morning was work bright and early.
On Monday morning we jumped into a taxi and
headed to Trophy’s Head Offi ce in Paris for two days of
product training for two new brands we will be bringing to
the South African Market very soon.
Trophy is another division of Shark Helmets but an
entirely different business on its own, offering state of the
art rider apparel in two different segments.
After two days of product training it was time to head
back home and back to reality. Shark Helmets will remain
the title sponsor for the Le Mans Moto GP for the next 3
years to come, so until the next one keep an eye out for
more info on the below two brands COMING SOON!
Bering - http://www.bering.fr/
Bering offers Race Suits, Leather Jackets, Textile
Jackets, Gloves, Boots, Backpads and so much
more. Bering apparel is fully CE certifi ed, in most cases
only the protective armour in jacket and pants are CE
certifi ed. Bering have gone one better and made sure the
entire garment is CE Certifi ed offering you the ultimate
protection all around.
Segura - http://www.segura-moto.fr/
Segura is a high end retro/classic range of fully CE
Certifi ed riding apparel, made from some of the best
materials possible, giving you the ultimate protection and
keeping you looking classy on your café racer.
Both these brands will be available soon in South Africa,
very soon at selected dealers - for more info please email
76 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
Dean Harrison at The
Quarterbridge in the opening
lap of the Senior TT
Words by Keith Botha - “The Rookie 2019” Catch22Media / Catch22DeadRabbitRacing / Morphine Racing. Pics by Tshepo Phiri
THE ROOKIES BRIDGESTONE RACE REPORT
On June 8th, the
Extreme Festival once
again played host to some
racing at this year’s 4th
Round of the Bridgestone
SuperBikes and the Red
Square Kawasaki ZX10
R Masters Cup held at
the Phakisa Freeway in
Welkom, Free State.
For those who may not know, this amazing
4.242km track played host to Valentino Rossi’s
first ever victory for Yamaha back in the 2004.
Ultimately, with that kind of history it goes
without saying that on race day all riders get
that extra bit of motivation to give it horns on
the former MotoGP track.
With some very cold morning air and track
temperatures, we only saw new rookie riders
go out on a few medium paced sighting laps
to get their bearings around this very fast and
flowing Grand Prix circuit. In Q2 and Q3, we
started seeing temperatures rise and perfect
track conditions allowed riders across all three
championships to really start pushing for the
top spots on the grid. Some of the faster riders
got into the low 1:40’s and some of the back
markers did just under 1:58 and faster across
all three championships.
As always the racing was fast and hard and
the female riders in the Bridgestone Challenge
#83 Morongoa Mahope and #85 Landi Sinden
brought their A game, completely sweeping
the floor with the rest of the pack. Both women
got themselves in the top four places in both
races and gave local rider Mark Myburgh a
good run for his money on his pursuit for the
double race win on the day.
78 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
The championship front runners #16
Michael Dixon and #17 Naasief Wadvalla
kept the pressure on fighting to end
the race meeting with some valuable
championship points helping them stay
ahead in the overall standings.
In race two, we saw #73 Nigel Brandt
forced off the track to avoid a head-on
collision with #122 Keith Botha. Keith
managed to save a high-side coming out
of turn 4, with rear brake failure on the
gravel he jumped back on track in turn
5 as Nigel was coming out of the turn.
Luckily for COC Johan Fourie there were
no major incidents or crashes on the day.
Bridgestone Challenge Race Results
Race 1 podium
1st: 99 Mark Myburgh
2nd: 83 Moronoa Mahope
3rd: 165 Ian Thomas
Race 2 podium
1st: 99 Mark Myburgh
2nd: 83 Moronoa Mahope
3rd: 85 Landi Sinden
The Bridgestone SuperBikes class was
filled with nothing but drama and upsets
in both races. In race one, the first man
over the line was #66 Micheal Pypers,
who was later pushed back to third
on the podium as he received a time
penalty for a jumpstart. Unfortunately,
after taking the lead in race two, Michael
lost the front coming out of turn ten and
took a tumble. With his eyes on the
championship, #95 Hendrik De Bruin
got left behind on the starting grid with
a technical problem leaving him in first
gear for most of his first lap. Bridgestone
SuperBikes front runner #51 Shaun
Vermaak was up against technical issues
with his ZX10, but thanks to fellow
teammate, Hennie Swanepoel who
offered his Yahama R1 bike to Vermaak,
who then went on to take a double win
on the day.
Shaun Vermaak had announced his
retirement from racing a week prior to the
round, as a result of his withdrawal from
the series it will leave the championship
wide open. There will definitely be a few
underdogs smelling a possible top five
Bridgestone SuperBikes Race Results
Race 1 - Podium
1st: 51(66) Shaun Vermaak
2nd: 95 Hendrik De Bruin
3rd: 66 Micheal Pypers
Race 2 - Podium
1st: 51(66) Shaun Vermaak
2nd: 13 Harry Timmermann
3rd: 27 Marius Koekemoer
RedSquare ZX10 Masters Cup
When a starting grid is packed with
twenty-six angry ZX10 Kawasakis’, that
are all there to do some serious racing,
we know we are in for a treat. Like
always, the masters in this championship
attacked the track with all they have and
then some. #41 Graeme Van Breda and
#43 Jaco Gouws managed to get great
starts in both races and pulled aways
from the rest of the pack. There were
a few big battles in the mid-pack with
groups of four to five bikes swopping
positions as if it were a Moto3 race.
Red Square Kawasaki R ZX10 Race
Race 1 - Podium
1st: 41 Graeme Van Breda
2nd: 43 Jaco Gouws
3rd: 22 Gareth Bezuidenhout
Race 2 - Podium
1st: 41 Graeme Van Breda
2nd: 43 Jaco Gouws
3rd: 18 Kyle Robinson
After wrapping up another round
of exhilarating Superbike racing at
the wonderful multi-track complex at
Phakisa, we are looking forward to the
next race meeting on July 20th at Red
Star, a track known for its much slower
and more technical layout. Be sure to
catch all the action on the day and come
and support your local Suoerbike riders.
TEST BIKE HUSQVARNA VITPILEN 701
Words by Rob Portman / Pics by Gerrit Erasmus
The famous musician, Mr. James Blunt,
wrote and sang these famous lyrics which
passed through my mind when returning the
Husqvarna Vitpilen 701 - “Goodbye my lover,
goodbye my friend. You have been the one,
you have been the one for me.”
Over the 7 months of having this bike we
grew a very strong love affair, but it did not start
out like this. Like most unbreakable bonds this
partnership grew stronger and stronger over
time. Unfortunately, this is what hampers sales
for the Vitpilen 701 and the entire Husqvarna
street bike range here in SA - it’s not given a
chance to impress!
Us as South Africans are often to narrow
minded and close our minds off to anything
that is not the norm. We live in our comfort
zones and don’t like to stray away from that.
I know this because that’s exactly how I am,
so when Fred from Husqvarna asked me to
sample the Vitpilen 701 for 6 months I was
very apprehensive. I did not want to have to
report back to him with negative vibes about
the bike as I was worried it wasn’t going to
come close to impressing me. Yes, it looks
great, but it’s a single powered motor, how
could it possibly leave a lasting impression on
me - a sportsbike nutter who craves modern
day tech and proper power fi gures, those of
the 3-digit kind.
How was this 2 digit 75hp raw Swedish
street machine possibly going to impress me
over 6 months? Well, it did...
Just like in any loving relationship trust is a
key word and that’s what I built up over the 7
months with the Vitpilen 701. It never let me
down once - not one loose nut or bolt, not one
mechanical failure, not one glitch in the matrix,
Its charm is not that of most other bikes
on the market today. It’s doesn’t lure you in
with massive amounts of electronic tech or
power fi gures, but what does grab you is its
uniqueness and free spirit. It stands out of the
crowd and offers a different perspective to
anything else out there right now. Its overall
design is both simple and progressive, taking
tried and trusted parts, such as the single
powered motor, and combining it all into an
inspiring silhouette of which the eyes never get
tired of seeing.
Fitted with Metzeler M7RR tyre’s it was a
combination close to that of Freddy Mercury
and a microphone - just meant to be!!!
This bike was the perfect everyday partner
for me. It catered to my every request - when
I wanted a sport, fast through the streets ride
it willingly played along, and with a big smile.
When I just wanted to chill and commute
slowly it did so happily and all the while
maintaining great fuel consumption (I saved
plenty cash over the 7 months on fuel for sure).
We transformed the Vitpilen 701 over
the months from gorgeous stock bike to
sensationally gorgeous using the Powerparts
available from the Husqvarna catalogue. Really
well priced, quality products that just adds to
the bikes overall all-inspiring look and feel.
This bike is for sale at the incredible price
of only R120k with all the extras on and I can
100% promise you that it has been looked
after and has a full service history making
it a massive bargain. Contact your nearest
Husqvarna dealer to enquirer about the bike.
So, to the Husqvarna Vitpilen 701 I once
again say this, “Goodbye my lover, goodbye
my friend. You have been the one, you have
been the one for me”!
I urge you to get down to your nearest
Husqvarna dealer and take the Vitpilen, or any
of the streetbike range for a test ride. It won’t
impress you straight away, but if you go in with
an open mind I promise you’ll be blown away
by its charm over time, just as I was. There is
only a few new Vitplien 701’s available at the
new price of only R129,000, so don’t miss out
on the chance to won one of these beauties.
80 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE JULY 2019
19 TIMES TT WINNER
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