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BRAD MAKES HISTORY
September 2020 RSA R35.00
9 772075 405004
IN THIS ISSUE
2021 HONDA BLADE TESTED
KTM SUPERDUKE GT YAMAHA MT FAMILY
TRIUMPH ROCKETS KAWASAKI Z900
K&N Sty le Fil ters
39, 42, 48,
52, 54 and 60mm R125.00
Jump St arter & Power Bank R1299.00
Jump St arter Power Bank R1299.00
18L / min
R AC610 Infla tor R449.00 R TG5 Gauge R249.00
AC610 Infla tor R449.00 TG5 Gauge R249.00
Bi ke and ATV C overs
Bi ke and
Ring G lobes
H4 150% Power R290.00
EMGO Top B ox
Diverse and S innovative filters –
S S S S S S
also for motorcycles.
The largest filter range for maximum workshop performance.
Our filters protect not only the engines, but also the people in the vehicle. With our comprehensive filter range in uncompromising quality and
with maximum market coverage, we ensure that the right product is available for every requirement to keep dirt, abrasion and the finest particles
away from the powertrain and the occupants. With MAHLE, your workshop delivers 100% performance, today and tomorrow.
DESCRIPTION PART NO. SRP Inc. Vat
DESCRIPTION SMART CHARGER 1 AMP PART DFC150 NO. R599.00 SRP Inc. Vat
SMART CHARGER 3.5 AMP AMP DFC150 DFC530 R599.00 R899.00
SMART CHARGER R 43.5 AMP AMP DFC530 PSA004 R999.00 R899.00
SMART CHARGE R PSA004 R999.00
CHARGE Hollen 8 AMP PSA008 R1349.00
SMART CHARGER 4 AMP AMP PSD004 PSA008 R1349.00 R1199 .00
SMART AMP PSD004 R1199 SMART RRP CHARGER
CHARGER R4999 8 AMINC
P PSD008 R14 99.00 Rim Locks Fr ont and Rear
PSD008 R14 99.00 Rim Locks
ont and Rear
R110.00 R110.00 R465.00 R465.00
Tubeless Puncture Kits
Tubeless Puncture Kits
RRP R3299 INC
Li cense Disc Holde rs
cense Disc Holde rs
RRP R4499 INC
a vailab le
Scooter V Belts
Tyre L evers
RRP R4999 INC
AVAILABLE N O W FROM from
A LER S BE L O W .
AVAILABLE FROM from R120.00
LER BE PBA DEALER LISTING
PBA DEALER LISTING
PBA DEALER LISTING
PART NO. DESCRIPTION PRICE
PART NO. DESCRIPTION PRICE
50081406/L CARB CLEANER 400ML 50.0 0
CARB CLEANER 400ML
TERMINAL PROTECT RED
TERMINAL PROTECT RED
TERMINAL PROTECT BLUE
TERMINAL PROTECT BLUE
50.0 44.0 0
CHAIN LUBE 150ML
44.0 34.0 0
CHAIN LUBE 150ML
CHAIN LUBE 400ML
34.0 69.0 0
CHAIN LUBE 400ML
CHAIN WAX 400ML
69.0 71.0 0
CHAIN WAX 400ML
CHAIN WAX 150ML
71.0 34.0 0
CHAIN WAX 150ML
PETROL INJECTOR CLEANER
34.0 10.0 0
PETROL INJECTOR CLEANER
AIR FILTER SPRAY
10.0 55.0 0
AIR FILTER SPRAY
AIR FILTER OIL 500ML
55.0 55.0 0
AIR FILTER OIL 500ML
BIO FILTER CLEANER 5l
55.0 325.0 0
BIO FILTER CLEANER 5l
BIO FILTER CLEANER 400ML
325.0 47.0 0
BIO FILTER CLEANER 400ML
47.0 44.0 0
TYRE FIX 200ML
44.0 45.0 0
TYRE FIX 200ML
FORK OIL SYN 5W
45.0 125.0 0
FORK OIL SYN 5W
FORK OIL SYN 10W
FORK OIL SYN 10W
FORK OIL SYN 2.5W
FORK OIL SYN 2.5W
135.0 100.0 0
56000400/L MOUSSE LUBRICANT 100.0 0
GAUTENG ZEEMANS MOTORCYCLES 011 435 7177 NORTHWEST
BIKERS PARADISE 018 297 4700 RIDE HIGH WITH YAMAHA 035 789 1851
BIKING ZEEMANS MOTORCYCLES 011 435 7177 BIKERS PARADISE 018 297 4700 RIDE HIGH WITH YAMAHA 035 789 1851
GAUTENG ACCESSORIES 012 342 7474
INSANE BIKERS 014 594 2111 PERRY M/CYCLES GLEN ANIL 031 566 7411
ZEEMANS MOTORCYCLES 011 435 7177 BIKERS PARADISE 018 297 4700 RIDE HIGH WITH YAMAHA 035 789 1851
FAST BIKING ACCESSORIES 012 342 7474 INSANE BIKERS 014 594 2111 PERRY M/CYCLES GLEN ANIL 031 566 7411
BIKING ZEEMANS KTM ACCESSORIES MOTORCYCLES 011 012 867 435 342 0092 7177 7474 BIKERS INSANE MOTOS @ PARADISE BIKERS KLERKSDORP 014 018 297 594 468 4700 2111 1800 RIDE PERRY’S HIGH M/CYCLES WITH YAMAHA UMHLANGA 035 031 789 566 1851 7411
FAST BIKING KTM
KTM MOTOR ACCESSORIES SERVICES 011 012 867 849 867 342 0092 7000 0092 7474 INSANE MOTOS WATER RITE BIKERS KLERKSDORP MOTORCYCLES 014 594 771 468 2111 5050 1800 CAPE PROVINCE
MOTOS @ KLERKSDORP 018 468 1800 PERRY’S M/CYCLES HILLCREST UMHLANGA 031 566 765 7411 2560
GAME MOTO-MATE GAME FAST KTM MOTOR
MOTOR RIVONIA SERVICES
849 867 234 849
7000 0092 5275 7000 WATER RITE MOTORCYCLES 771 5050 CAPE PROVINCE
MOTOS @ KLERKSDORP 468 1800 PERRY’S CRAIGS M/CYCLES FITMENT HILLCREST 021 031 939 765 8944
WATER RITE MOTORCYCLES 018 771 5050
GAME MOTO-MATE MOTOR EDENVALE RIVONIA
RIVONIA SERVICES 011 234 849 234 027 5275 7000 5275 0545 LIMPOPO
CRAIGS M/CYCLE FITMENT 939 8944
WATER RITE MOTORCYCLES 018 771 5050
TRAC-MAC CAPE PROVINCE BELVILLE 021 945 3724
MOTO-MATE KCR MOTORCYCLE EDENVALE
EDENVALE RIVONIA FANATIX 011 234 027 975 027 5275 0545 5405 0545
015 297 3291
TRAC-MAC CAPE CRAIGS PROVINCE M/CYCLE BELVILLE PAARDEN-EILAND FITMENT 021 945 510 939 3724 2258 8944
MOTO-MATE KCR PRIMROSE MOTORCYCLE EDENVALE FANATIX 975 027 5405 0545
JUST BIKING MOTORCYCLES 011 016 828 421 9091 1153
K.R.MOTORCYCLES 015 297 3291
TRAC-MAC CRAIGS M/CYCLE PAARDEN-EILAND WYNBURG
BELVILLE FITMENT 021 510 939 761 945 2258 8944 4220 3724
RANDBURG PRIMROSE JUST BIKING MOTORCYCLES 016 792 828 421 6829 9091 1153
K.R.MOTORCYCLES 015 297 3291
KCR MOTORCYCLE FANATIX 011 975 5405
BELVILLE 761 945 4220
NEVES TRAC-MAC MOTORCYCLE PAARDEN-EILAND WORLD CC 021 930 510 5917 3724 2258
RANDBURG KCR OFF-ROAD MOTORCYCLE CYCLES MOTORCYCLES FANATIX 011 012 792 975 333 6829 5405 6443
KZN ROCKET RACING PINETOWN 031 702 2606
NEVES WICKED TRAC-MAC MOTORCYCLE CYCLES PAARDEN-EILAND WYNBURG WORLD CC 021 930 510 761 5917 2968 2258 4220
OFF-ROAD 012 333 6443
PERRY’S M/CYCLES BALITO 031 110 0056
PRIMROSE MOTORCYCLES 011 828 9091
ROCKET PINETOWN 031 702 2606 WICKED TRAC-MAC CYCLES WYNBURG 510 761 2968 4220
3240 MIKE HOPKINS MOTORCYCLES 021 461 5167
PRIMROSE 828 9091
ROCKET RACING PINETOWN 031 702 2606
RANDBURG MOTORCYCLES 011 792 6829 ROCKET RACING MARITZBURG 033 264 3240 MIKE HOPKINS MOTORCYCLES 461 5167
BIKE RBS YAMAHA PINETOWN 031
1311 NEVES FREESTATE MOTORCYCLE WORLD CC 021 930 5917
RANDBURG CITY MOTORCYCLES 013 011 792 244 6829 2143 ROCKET RACING MARITZBURG 033 264 3240
UMPLEBY RBS YAMAHA SUZUKI 031 303 701 8323 1311 NEVES FREESTATE
SALLEYS MOTORCYCLE YAMAHA WORLD CC 021 051 930 430 5917 3326
BIKE CITY 013 244 2143 ROCKET RACING MARITZBURG 033 264 3240
SALLEYS YAMAHA 051 430 3326
UMPLEBY RBS YAMAHA SUZUKI 031 303 701 8323 1311
BIKE CITY 013 244 2143
SALLEYS YAMAHA 051 430 3326
UMPLEBY SUZUKI 031 303 8323
BIKE CITY 013 244 2143
SALLEYS YAMAHA 051 430 3326
Intro. Keeping the wheels turning...
September Issue 2020
September. Spring has sprung.
Lockdown is almost done away with.
Brad Binder made history for South Africa
How much better can it be?
Well - even better because we managed to get
RideFast and Dirt And Tail Magazines back into
How cool is that?
And there have been some changes with Rob
Portman moving along to start his own electronic
media stuff - we really do wish him well.
Meet the team:
Kyle Lawrenson rejoins the Motomedia fold - so
we welcome him back...He has been with our
group on and off since he was in high school - a
great rider and his design work has come along
in leaps and bounds.
Stefan van der Riet joins us fresh out of varsity
with his unique eye for Photographs - he is an
avid motorcyclist which always helps.
Sean Hendley is an old Ducktail who has been
around bikes since he was a tjoggertjie. You
cannot beat knowledge and experience - he
brings all of that in.
He is going to make sure that we don’t go too
awry with all of the editorial.
Glenn Foley is the handsome one - he is the
slowest out there, takes blurry photos, his
spelling is wobbly - good spelling but it wobbles.
He somehow manages to keep the ships sailing.
Then we are going to draw on the talents of
some very experienced riders out there.
Shado Alston goes fast, goes slow and
understands the mechanics that go into
motorcycles. And he writes really well. Check out
his thoughts on the new Blade this month.
We have worked with Donovan Fourie from The
Bike Show since he was in primary school. He
is one of the most knowledgeable motorcycle
people around and he brings his unique sense
of humour with him. Just read his Moto GP story
And we don’t forget the ladies - Mieke Oelofse
and Michelle Leppan both have much
experience on the road - they will be roped in for
rides and opinions often.
For the really fast stuff, AJ Venter and the Agliotti
Brothers and many others have agreed to give
us a racers input... so that’s going to be cool.
Exciting times - and this is going to be a real
team effort from all of us to deliver what you have
come to expect.
Please keep in touch - any queries,
The RideFast Team
Pic of the month:
ADVERTISING AND EDITORIAL:
071 684 4546
011 979 5035
011 979 5035
Stefan van der Riet
Videos and more
Having shed its skin, the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R is now a
leaner, meaner and an even more menacing hyper-naked bike
than ever before. Mounted into an all-new chassis, beats an updated
version of the renowned 75 degree, 1301 cc LC8, V-Twin
heart, taking THE BEAST to the next level.
Phone 011 462 7796 for your nearest KTM dealer.
Copyright © RideFast Magazine: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed,
or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, articles, or other methods, without the prior
written permission of the publisher.
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
Harley Davidson News
Team Ash, Kayla, James, Gift.
moves to Gezina
Aaron, Neels, Suki, Symm and Pat.
The very well known, bubbly and friendly biker lady, Ashleigh
James has joined the team at R.O.C. Harley Davidson in
Alberton as the General Manager. Ash brings along with her
not only a strong following of customers from the industry but a
wealth of knowledge and experience with niché market heritage
brands which can only bode well for the Harley Davidson
brand, particularly considering her marketing background. We
at this fine publication have the privilege of being good friends
with Ash and really wish her all the success and happiness
at R.O.C. Harley Davidson. You can get in contact with Ash
on firstname.lastname@example.org or 010 492 4300 or opo in for a cuppa
coffee at the corner of Voortrekker and Louis Trichardt streets in
Alberton, just off the N12 … if you miss them, we can refer you
to a great optometrist.
Your destination motorcycle
If you have been watching our social media pages you
might have noticed that we enjoy popping in at Italian
Motorcycle Importers, just off William Nicol in Bryanston
for a cup of coffee fairly regularly. And it is not just
because we are cheap skate free loaders, but because
it is a really chilled and comfortable place to be. The
coffee is great, they have plenty of Mazzati beer in stock
and they really are a great bunch of guys.
Even though it is the head quarters of Aprilia and Moto
Guzzi South Africa, it doesn’t really feel like a bike shop
per say. It is more like popping into your mates really
sorted man cave for a bit. There are big comfortable
leather couches placed strategically in front of a big
screen TV permanently tuned into bike racing. A bar
off to the side of that with tables to park off and have
a snack from their soon to be opened kitchen with free
Wi-Fi to boot.
The decor is really something to behold, hot and sexy
Italian motorcycles, beautiful Suomy helmets, gorgeous
leather jackets, stunning boots … anything and
everything motorcycling you can dream of … oh, and
there are a couple of friendly blokes skulking around in
the shadows that will accept any form of payment for
said decor … it is actually a bike shop after all and the
decor is actually their retail stock.
The guys often host MotoGP watch parties at the shop
on Sundays and put on a really lekker spread. So, if you
are not into the big noisy, boisterous crowds and just
want a friendly, relaxed atmosphere with great company
to watch the GP’s and SBK, head down to IMI, like we
said they are just next door to Maserati at Bryanston
Boulevard, William Nicol Drive, Bryanston , Sandton. Or
you could give them a call on 010 443 4596.
This well known and long established Suzuki and SYM
dealership headed up by sister and brother team Suki and
Symm Grobbelaar have moved from their shop on Paul Kruger
street to a prime location on the corner of Steve Bhiko and
Myburgh streets in Gezina Pretoria. If you are a Pretoria local
you will recall they moved from Pretorius st to Schubart st many
years ago. After many, many years at that address they were
offered a chunk of change for that building and moved to the
Paul Kruger st location some five plus years ago. After a while
they realised that that part of town was not ideally suited for the
motorcycle industry and found this pearler location in a part of
town that has become synonymous with horse power and the
smell of hi-octane fuel burning machines.
Pat Scott, formerly of Bike Crazy joins the team of Aaron
and Neels on the front line with great service and a friendly
smile. The shop is well stocked with bikes, scooters, parts,
accessories with a professional workshop to keep your dream
machine in tip top condition. Drop into at the corner of Myburgh
and Steve Bhiko in Gezina, They are on the left, you literally
can’t miss them. Or give them a call on 012 362 5572 or drop
them a mail on email@example.com . Tell them we sent you.
MGX21 Flying Fortress
Recently, as in within the last few weeks, the Flying Fortress
landed in South Africa, this piece of art, a study in carbon fiber
and black wil have your jaw on the ground in a few seconds
flat. The fairing looks like it was nicked off a fighter jet and
everything is just so Italian in design, where form and function
meet in perfect harmony.
Yes it is a V-Twin bagger and there are plenty to choose from on
the market. However, this one is kitted to the hilt with just about
every conceivable bit of kit that would be an ‘extra’ on all them
other baggers and it is priced at the same price as an un-kitted
version. However, the really big plus here for us is the fact that
it really stands out from the crowd with its styling, its black and
carbon fiber picked out in elegant chrome and red accents …
but let us not ramble on, pictures tell the story better than our
All the NEWS proudly brought to
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Lots of Bitz for your bike
The good guys at Trick Bitz bring in a bunch of really nice
stuff for your bike and do carry some very desirable bits for
older generation bikes as well, check out their website on
www.trickbitz.co.za to get your juices flowing. We asked for
a walk through their warehouse and had a bit of a scratch
around and found some very interesting magafters. Here
are a few of our favourites:
Chiaravalli Chain and sprocket kits
Not a new concept, but a handy one, sprocket and chain
kits by Chiarvalli, They come with the correct front and rear
sprocket, master link and chain in one blister pack kit, so
you can be sure that everything fits together nicely on your
bike and are the correct ratio’s and pitch. You can be certain
that the product is high quality made by power mad Italians
and wont let you down in a pinch, and they are reasonably
priced as well.
Rubber tech sprockets by Ognibene and JT
Yes, another ‘not so new concept’, but one we have
forgotten about as the sands of time leave us behind. Also
manufactured by some crazy Italians with a lust for speed
but with an ear for symphony and harmony. So, besides
being manufactured of the highest quality materials,
induction hardened process and attention to detail, they are
also designed with the new Silent Technology. One of our
biggest gripes, especially on road bikes is the rattle of the
chain on the sprockets. This rubber technology significantly
reduces that rackets as well as helps extend the life of
your chain and sprockets, but does not negate the need for
proper cleaning and maintenance.
Spare wheels for your paddock stands
Huh? We never knew that … and they come with new stub
axles and everything, even fancy pants colours. Now that
old paddock stand lying in the back of your garage can be
brought back to life, they even stock the bobbins to fit onto
your swing arm as well as the adjustable swivel adaptors
and pins to fir into the yolk of your bike.
Branded Key Rings
Clean, soft, elegant, sturdy and simple and branded with
your favourite bike brand. They wont damage your triple
clamp or paint work and they look good.
All the NEWS proudly brought to
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A Proudly south African
product range by Autocycle
A little can of head ache and aggravation relief,
sorely needed in every workshop. It removes
gum and varnish from carburettor throat and
combustion intake systems. We have all tried to
clean a gummed up carb before and understand
that you have to do it properly or you are just
going to have to do it again and again and again
… Well F61’s Compression Stabiliser is a bit of
a short cut and will spare your Missus your foul
temper. It also cleans dirty sparks plugs while
reducing emissions while improving acceleration,
performance and fuel economy. You know you
need it …
Brake and Parts Cleaner
How many times has your missus growled at you
for nicking your handy andy or nail polish remover
to clean your bike and brake parts? Yeah, so
Brake and Parts cleaner not only brings about
marital bliss but it also effectively removes grease,
brake fluid and other contaminants from brake disc
and pads while stopping that horrible squeaking
noise from the brakes and enhancing brake
performance. Also great for getting grit, grime
and dirt off engines and etc in those hard to reach
place that your wife’s tooth brush wont get into.
Visit www.autocyclecentre.co.za for your
Pocketbike SA was founded in 2006 by Donovan Pearce›s
passion for motorcycles and MotoGP.
While on a trip to China he came across a great product in “Pocket Sized”
motorcycles and recognised the opportunity to introduce the youth of
South Africa to motorcycling and to get them passionate and driven into
the world of motorcycling from ages as young as 3 and 4 years old and
upwards in a safe, controlled and fun environment.
Donovan initially brought in a small quantity of 50cc 2 stroke air cooled
petrol driven 3HP Pocketbikes to test the market and was surprised by the
amount of interest it received and realized that this could go somewhere
so he started to Import 50cc Pocket-bikes, Quads, Dirt Bikes, Go-Karts,
Spares, Performance Parts and Kids Protection Kits, Helmets, Gloves
and Safety Gear which he started retailing and servicing from a small 6m
container in Circle Metals Scrap yard in Kenilworth which then over time
and after growing a large client base lead to Opening a Full Retail store
with Service and Repair Facilities at 163 Voortrekker Road Goodwood,
Cape Town 021 202 7583 as well as to the creation of a website which
then grew to a Online Store which has grown their client base nationally
Their vision and drive from the very beginning was to become the largest
Importer and Retailer of 50cc Pocket-bike spares and kids 50cc entry
level bikes in the SA market and after 14 years of hard work, dedication
and with the support from all their valued customers, (who have become
friends as well), and all the motorcycle stores, service centres, mechanics
and race tracks, (who still continue to support them), they have become a
household name and they are still striving to grow, learn and become even
better over time…
‘We would like to take this opportunity to thank our customers for their
continuous support over the years and the heart that is put into the
business by all the staff on a day to day basis as well as to Ride Fast and
Dirt & Trail for this opportunity. Stay Safe everyone” - from the Pocketbike
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
OPENS NEW DEALERSHIP IN CAPE TOWN.
Triumph South Africa officially announces
the opening of Triumph Cape Town on 1
The dealership is situated in the Cape Town
city centre in the “premium motorcycle”
precinct and offers the full range of Triumph
products and services, including motorcycle
sales, apparel and accessory sales, parts
sales and motorcycle service.
“While Triumph has always offered
aftersales support in Cape Town, it is now
time to ensure that our motorcycle brand
is represented in the manner that we
had planned 2 years ago when Triumph
South Africa became the official distributor
of Triumph motorcycles. We need to
ensure that our dealerships represent the
Triumph brand in a way that ensures a
comprehensive and premium customer
experience, which Triumph Cape Town will
now be able to deliver” says Bruce Allen,
CEO of Triumph South Africa.
“Triumph Motorcycles is delighted with
the confidence shown by Triumph Cape
Town with the opening of a new Triumph
dealership in these challenging times.
The Western Cape is one of the largest
motorcycle markets in South Africa, and
we are pleased that customers will once
again have the opportunity to buy and
ride Triumph motorcycles locally. I want
to congratulate once again the Triumph
SA team for this achievement.” says Paul
Stroud, Chief Commercial Officer, Triumph
Triumph Cape Town will welcome its
customers with the highest level of service,
thanks to the factory trained sales and
technical personnel, and with a wide range
of demo motorcycles that covers all our
product families, customers will be able to
view and test the full Triumph range. The
dealership is already well stocked with
men’s and ladies’ quality Triumph apparel,
which includes boots, rider wear, and an
exceptional variety of casual wear.
Contact details for Triumph Cape Town are
125 Buitengracht St. Cape Town
Tel: 021 300 5217
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
GIVI GRT 711
The guys and girls at DMD do bring in some really cool gear
and accessories, for instance the new GIVI GRT711 is a
practical off-road backpack with plenty of compartments. It
has been developed by the Givi R&D department to offer
the market a backpack actually designed for motorcyclists.
Dedicated mainly to off-roaders, with its -25litre capacity, it is
water resistant and anti-UV thanks to its high tenacity 1200D
Equipped with a thermoformed back panel in breathable EVA,
it offers greater comfort to the rider wearing it, avoiding heat
build-up and sweating by allowing the air to pass through.
The backpack is secured to the body using padded shoulder
straps and adjustable chest and waist straps to prevent
uncomfortable bouncing and ensure perfect adherence to the
This well organised backpack has several compartments;
it has a removable inner bag and is equipped with a handy,
easily accessible zip pocket for keys, small objects and a
smart phone. This is also waterproof thanks to the hot-taped
seams. At the bottom of the backpack there is also a special
separate compartment designed to store tools or clothes. An
additional compartment is available on the back, accessible
from the outside with a bellows opening and space has been
provided for an optional liquid bag. A removable boot bag is
also included and can be attached externally. It is made in
fluorescent yellow Nylon/PVC. The extraordinary modularity
offered by this Gravel-T backpack also makes it possible to
directly connect bags and small «additional loads», such as
the Givi GRT717 tool carrier.
Finally, there are side slots to attach small objects using a
set of 4 accessories for the M.O.L.L.E. System, provided as
standard: 2 D-rings and 2 universal hooks. The new GRT711
has everything it takes to be the ideal travel companion for
everyone, not just enduro bikers, because it not only meets
the needs of the most extreme riders but also of those who
use their bike every day and need a backpack that is strong
For more info and to find your nearest stockist click on
AS Racing’s - Rapid Laser Alignment system:
Now, here is something that caught our attention, something
that we have wondered about from time to time. Do you need
to do wheel alignment or any kind of alignment on your bike
and if so - how?
As it turns out you do. You can do a quick and easy test
on your own bike... Find a flat, smooth paved surface like
a concrete slab or something. Grab some baby powder or
even a bit of very fine sand, anything that will make a print.
Spread it over the surface at about a metre wide and about 3
metres long. Then push your bike through it as straight as you
possibly can. If your bikes alignment is true then there should
only be one line made by the tyres, as the rear wheel should
track directly behind the front wheel. If there are two lines …
Well then you need to get your bike down to Alfie at AS
Racing out on Van der Hoff road on the western side of
Pretoria. Alfie has just procured the latest in motorcycle
alignment technology by HealTech Electronics. The RAPID
LASER ‘Professional frame and chassis check-up tool’ uses
some pretty fancy lasers, measuring tapes and a whole bunch
of other cool tech that we don’t quite understand to check the
whether your frame is twisted, (even if it is ever so slightly),
same with your swing arm, sub frame, head stock, triple
clamps and can even be used to make sure your chain is
running true between the sprockets. Sadly, those little marks
on your swingarm are not exactly micro-millimetre perfect. So
when every milli-second counts during a race so does every
micron that can rob you of that little bit of advantage over
your competitors. Thus a true and straight race bike will be
more stable and agile in the corners, more a focused under
acceleration and braking and more compliant and confidence
inspiring to the rider.
But how does this affect us mere mortals you may ask?
Well, for one, as in alignment with cars, your tyres should
last a bit longer, as would your chain and sprockets, wheel
bearing, swing arm and head stock bearings. And in today’s
day and age, anything that can save you a bit of money is
a good thing. But there is also the safety as well as the fun
factor. A proper handling bike is always more fun to ride, being
able to out manoeuver your mates in an impromptu dice and
whip their asses is even better fun and being able to do that
with a bike that won’t try kill you with a sudden wobble or try
to chuck you off … well … need we say more?
Give Alfie a shout on 084 523 9229, or drop
him a mail on firstname.lastname@example.org
This is a design concept for a new Triumph Trident, which
the brand says will take on the class leading middleweights.
Currently the entry-level models into the Triumph brand are
the Street Twin and the Street Triple S. «This bike is going to
be aimed at people who have been riding a while but this is
their first, new large-capacity machine,» says Steve Sargent,
Chief Product Officer at Triumph. «It’s going to be very
competitively priced but we’re sticking with Triumph’s roots to
maintain a premium presence in that market.»
For now Triumph aren’t releasing any figures about the new
The frame is new, designed just for this bike to deliver the sort
of ‘roadster’ handling Triumph has become famous for.
The styling is fresh, taking hints from Honda’s ‘neo-café’ retro
meets-modern approach where classic Triumph design cues,
such as the cut-outs in the tank, work alongside the modern
shapes of the subframe.
There’s even a dash of Italian flair with the work of Rodolfo
Frascoli, whose previous penmanship has brought us the
fantastic Tiger 900.
The new bike should be right up there technology-wise, with
all new switchgear clearly visible, alongside a brand new
dash and funky LED lights. There’s no indication what tech to
expect, but based on the Hinckley operation’s current models,
that switchgear and a desire to outdo the competition, don’t
be surprised to see riding modes, cornering ABS and leansensitive
Triumph plans to reveal the full machine, along with all the
specs and price in just a few weeks, ahead of its arrival in
dealers early next year…
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
swingarm replacement concept…
Amongst the landmarks in motorcycle design, the swingarm
stands out as one of the greatest. But now BMW have come
up with a revised version of the idea that takes advantage
of their extensive experience with carbon fibre.
With the launch of the HP4 Race in 2017, BMW snuck in
before Ducati’s 1299 Superleggera to offer a full carbonframed
Yamaha Europe and YART team up for limited-run Petronas
MotoGP replica R1
Yamaha Europe has teamed up with Yamaha Austria Racing
Team (YART) to create a run of 46 individually numbered
Petronas Sepang Racing MotoGP team replica YZF-R1s.
The 46 machines have been commissioned to celebrate 46
years of Petronas – the satellite squad’s title sponsor – and
will cost a measly 46,000€ each, excluding VAT. The bikes are
available to European customers only.
With the team currently leading the championship, thanks to
two wins for Frenchman, Fabio Quartararo, at the beginning
on the season, each bike has been dusted with a number
of performances enhancing goodies to help the rider extract
more on circuit.
YART run one of three GYTR Pro Shops in Europe – specialist
outlets selling ‹Genuine Yamaha Technology Racing›
performance parts to everyone from track day riders, to World
Starting on the outside, the four-cylinder superbike gets
a carbon fibre fairing kit, complete with MotoGP-inspired
winglets and special livery supplied by the same company that
do the race bikes. Hidden beneath that is a racing ECU, which
will work in tandem with the quick action throttle for greater
acceleration. Helping further and unlocking more of that
yowling crossplane crank soundtrack is a full racing exhaust.
Away from straight line punch, each bike will also get Öhlins
FGRT series forks and a TTX rear shock, plus a new steering
damper. For faster rubber changes in pit lane, there is also
a quick release for the rear wheel. All bikes will be shod with
Michelin race slicks upon sale.
While the exotic track-only BMW wasn’t exactly a machine
for the masses, it demonstrated that they were serious
about transferring their knowledge of carbon fibre to
motorcycles. A next-gen version, based around the
ShiftCam engine from the latest S1000RR, is surely on the
way, and a new patent suggests the firm might have another
ace up their sleeve when it comes to weight reduction.
The HP4 Race had a conventional aluminium swingarm,
despite using carbon for its frame, bodywork and even
wheels, but the new design shows a chassis with mouldedin
The term swingarm doesn’t really apply, since it doesn’t
have a pivot to swing on. Instead the design relies on the
fantastic properties of carbon-fibre, which can be made
incredibly flexible – think carbon fishing rods, pole vault
poles or archery bows – or immensely rigid, like the HP4
Race’s frame, simply by changing the layout of the fibres
within.The two properties can even be combined, orienting
the fibres in such a way that the component can bend in
one direction and remain rigid in others, and that’s what
BMW are doing here.
In the centre of the swingarm there’s a hollow carbon box
section but BMW have added four layers of carbon above
it and another four below, all with the fibres aligned so they
run from front to rear. These allow the arm to flex up and
down, providing rear suspension movement.
What’s more, the layered pattern of the fibres mean they act
like leaf springs – eliminating the need for a conventional
coil spring. Composite or carbon leaf springs are already a
known technology, pioneered by the Chevrolet Corvette in
the early 1980s. They’re far lighter than steel springs and
can be designed to have linear or rising spring rates.
BMW’s been messing around with carbon-fibre motorcycle
frames for years. Does that mean we’ll see a carbon-fibre
swingarm on an upcoming superbike? Don’t get your hopes
up. A patent application is no guarantee of production, even
if the problems and questions can be ironed out. No doubt
BMW’s finest boffins are slaving away on this question at
this very moment!
Aint Technology something?
R 139 900.00
R1200GS LC 2017
Stopping power is provided by Brembo, with GP-4RX calipers
biting onto chunky T-Drive discs. Brembo have also provided
the clutch lever and front remote brake adjuster. The bike will
also roll on seven-spoke aluminium Marchesini wheels.
It’s not all about the motorcycle though and alongside your
race-ready superbike, each buyer will also receive a KYT
helmet, Petronas Yamaha polo shirt and the opportunity to be
a VIP guest at a future MotoGP round of their choosing.
R NineT Scrambler 2020
BMW Motorrad Bloemfontein
8 CP Hoogenhout Street,
Tel: 051 400 0000
Cell: 081 571 8420
All the NEWS proudly brought to
you by HJC HELMETS
Yamaha Withdraws Request
To Unseal Moto GP Engines
Yamaha has withdrawn its request to
unseal the engines to replace internal
components which they believe caused
issues for Maverick Viñales, Valentino
Rossi, and Franco Morbidelli at Jerez.
Yamaha had made a formal request to
the MSMA, the MotoGP manufacturers’
association, to open the engines and
swap out defective parts.
Initially, the suspicion fell on sensors
inside the exhaust port, but it is now
believed that the problem was caused
by the valves. Yamaha had set out
its reasons to make the change in its
submission to the MSMA.
Under the technical regulations, the
manufacturers are allowed to unseal
the engines to replace parts only if they
can get unanimous permission from the
other MSMA members, and that such a
change does not confer a performance
advantage and is necessary on safety
That is where Yamaha’s case appears
to have fallen down. The other
manufacturers were not convinced by
Yamaha’s explanation, and asked for
more information to be able to make a
decision on approval.
This put Yamaha in a very delicate
situation. They would have liked
to change out the parts, but to get
permission to do so, they would have
had to reveal a level of technical detail
which could have given away too much
information to their rivals.
Instead, Yamaha has decided that they
can manage the rest of the season on
the engines they have.
The fact that the Red Bull Ring was
the toughest track for engines left on
the calendar may have influenced their
decision.After Spielberg, the factories
face the front straight at Barcelona once,
and a double header at Aragon, though
Aragon’s fast back straight is downhill.
Yamaha’s predicament is in part a result
of the dysfunction inside the MSMA. The
manufacturers’ association has long been
unable to agree on anything, with the
disagreement between Ducati and the
other manufacturers at Qatar 2019 over
their use of the rear swingarm spoiler
being the final breach.
With no goodwill between manufacturers,
they are not inclined to give each other
any leeway in situations such as this.
Naturally, this is likely to come back and
bite the other manufacturers in the future.
If another manufacturer suffers a similar
issue to Yamaha in the next few years,
and it is a factory which denied Yamaha’s
request, Yamaha are likely to treat them
in exactly the same way, and deny a
request to unseal engines.
Yamaha must now juggle their remaining
engines for the rest of the season.
Three engines have been withdrawn
for allocation: 1 each for Rossi, Viñales,
and Morbidelli, all three having suffered
issues at Jerez.
The engine in the bike which was
involved in the crash between Franco
Morbidelli and Johann Zarco has
not been withdrawn: the engines are
designed to withstand crashes, but the
extreme temperatures at Jerez may
have put the bikes outside their operating
That leaves Rossi, Viñales, and Morbidelli
with four engines for the remaining ten
races, and Fabio Quartararo with five…
The engine lists to be published by Dorna
on as we type may reveal a little more.
However, the engine lists only track
whether engines ARE used, not whether
they CAN be used.
Only in the next few weeks will we learn
whether Yamaha will use them for the
races, for practice, when there is least to
lose, or leave them crated as a backup
option in case one of their other engines
Interesting times for Moto GP fans!
More BMW News
Tom Sykes will spend a third season with the
BMW Motorrad WorldSBK racing team, signing a
one-year deal with the German outfit this week.
He will be joined in the garage by Michael van der
Mark, who will take his first season on the BMW
S1000RR next year.
The re-signing of Sykes is no surprise, though the
real news here might be the shifting of Michael
van der Mark from the Yamaha squad to the
A riding star in the World SBK paddock, Van der
Mark might be the added extra that could make
the BMW World SBK project a real contender in
the World Superbike Championship, though the
Sykes and the S1000RR have made marked
improvement with each outing.
“Tom has been part of our World SBK Team
from the very start and is an important pillar of
this project”, said Marc Bongers, BMW Motorrad
“We are pleased to be able to continue along the
common path in 2021, which we embarked upon
with the first tests back in December 2018. This
gives us continuity, which is very important for the
successful development of a project.”
“We have already achieved a lot together, and
the goal is now to definitively close the gap to the
front-runners. Tom’s extensive knowledge of the
BMW S 1000 RR and his input will play a key role
in achieving this.”
Source: BMW Motorrad; Photo: WorldSBK
for both South africa and ktm
MotoGP: The greatest show on Earth!
2020 Crazy Crazy Stuff
Story: Donovan Fourie@thebikeshow
At the beginning of 2020, the predictions for the season were
all the same – Marquez. Marc, to be more specific.
Obviously he was going to win; the man was unstoppable!
Last year, he finished every single race in the top two, apart
from COTA where he crashed from miles in the lead because of
a glitch in the Honda’s software.
Who would win the 2020 championship? Marquez.
Before every race, who will probably win? Marquez.
Conversely, we have KTMs where 2020
A complete overall of their Moto GP
machine, with a new type of frame, has
seen Team Austria become the darling
of the paddock – two wins so far from
a manufacturer that, in four years, had
seen just one podium in the wet after
everyone else crashed.
It’s amazing what a slight dose of The
Plague can do.
With the season starting in July and being
compacted into a few months, it was
imperative that riders stay afloat without
injury because there would be no time
off. Every rider said precisely that, urging
caution as part of their season strategy.
And by caution, they seemingly meant
By Round Five at the second Red Bull
outing, we’ve seen Dovizioso break
a collarbone on an MX bike, Alex
Rins completely ruin his shoulder, Cal
Crutchlow snap his hand, Johann Zarco
snap his hand at a faster speed and
Pecco Bagnaia snap a leg off.
Then there’s the curious case of Marquez.
The humerus crash (please read that
correctly) at the beginning of the season
was damn silly. We realise people say
things like ''He rides hard no matter what''
and ''He's either full taps or nothing'', but
this is a load of bollocks, especially when
he was one of the riders that subscribed to
the Caution Strategy.
Also, at Jerez One, he was more than
half a second a lap faster than anyone on
Why the hell did he push so hard?
And now, because of The Plague, he
could be out for the rest of the year.
If it weren't for The Plague, there would
have been a three-week gap between
the opening round and the next, with
bigger gaps between the rest. With such
pressure, Marquez took a gamble and
attempted to ride just four days after
major surgery on the second-largest bone
on his body, one that has a six-month
Naturally, it all went somewhat wrong,
and he was back under the knife for a
second round of titanium instalments.
And so, he is out for the rest of the
season—what a bummer!
Well, not such a bummer when we look
at how the season has turned out. By
round five, we have four different winners
including two first-timers, namely Miguel
Oliviera and of course the sensational Mr
And who is going to win the next round?
No one knows. Six weeks ago, we would
have said Marquez. It's sad that we don't
have his speed in the paddock but also
not that sad.
What has also created a new spectacle
is the double round system introduced to
help the paddock cater for The Plague.
At the time of print, we have had back-toback
races at Jerez and Red Bull Ring,
and both have presented interesting new
Every time a team goes to a different
circuit, they sort of start with a fresh
piece of paper. The bikes will have base
settings, but each track has a different set
of challenges with a different approach
to each. Often, they get it wrong, and
riders that were previously challenging
for podiums are suddenly struggling for a
Where having a round at the same track
a week later helps, is that the teams get a
second chance without starting afresh.
Examples of this are Rossi’s podium
at Jerez Two after a dismal showing at
Jerez One, and the close racing during
Red Bull Two after each team managed
some form of catch up.
Except for Yamaha, who found
themselves putting on the brakes and
finding the lever planting the bar, causing
Vinales to abandon ship.
This is of course after their engine
debacle during the Jerez' where three of
their motors went pop!
These events are indicative of a simple
underlying issue – the motor. It's too
The problem is simple, but the solution
is less so. At Jerez, the heat and the
slow speeds of the circuit were most
likely the cause of their problems as they
attempted to more drag more revs than
those poor conrods could handle.
Until they overheated the system and
kinda stopped braking entirely, as
Quartararo found when running off the
track twice, and Vinales discovered with a
wall fast approaching.
It’s unsure what dilemmas Yamaha will
face during the rest of the season but,
thankfully, none of the other tracks offer
these unique challenges.
If Yamaha is being a bit reckless, Honda
seems to be overly cautious. For 2020,
they added weight to their motors to
increase rotating inertia. Put simply, too
little rotating inertia causes the rear wheel
to spin, and too much rotating inertia
causes the bike to push the front.
Seemingly, they added a little too much
weight, and so we have three 2020
Hondas circulating where the KTMs used
Where KTM is thriving, Ducati sees
its share of woes. Miller has been a
delight with his Australian charm mostly
outclassing the two factory machines.
Dovi and Petrucci have had difficulties
with the new Michelin rear tyre that has
too much grip meaning they cannot
slide the rear and use it to aid the
The handling concerns might be a bane
in Ducati's existence, but then so is their
star rider. Dovi and the Bolognians have
been engaged in a contract war, one that
was reportedly about money but turned
out to stretch way further than that.
During Red Bull One, Dovi's manager
made the shock announcement that
the Italian would end his eight-year
relationship with Ducati at the end of
this year, citing more than just money
concerns. More so, there are no plans for
his future right now.
Boldness has a new meaning – the only
seat available for next year is with Aprilia
on a MotoGP famously not as good as
anything else. It may seem nutty, but his
decision has some merit – he is 34 years
old, he›s a multimillionaire, and has been
racing since before he could walk. Should
he continue where he isn't having fun?
Speaking of fun, Rossi said he would
continue racing until he stops enjoying it.
At the moment, the maximum age limit
is MotoGP is 50. They are thinking of
At Red Bull, the problem was again -
With engine reliability already an issue,
they had to make up ground in other
areas, such as on the brakes. For this
reason, teams ignored the notice from
Brembo to use their updated calipers
and opted instead to use the standard
calipers that, presumably, offered better
Suzuki is another brand on the surprise
list, especially at the Red Bull Ring where
they have notoriously sucked in the past.
Rins was passing for the lead during Red
Bull One when he crashed, and Joan Mir
managed to nab a second place.
During Red Bull Two, Mir looked to have
the pace to take the win until the red
flag incident where he had no more front
tyres and had to restart on an old one, a
mistake that cost him the race.
Speaking of red flags, Rossi saw God
like never before during Red Bull One
after the collision between Morbidelli and
Zarco sent both bikes narrowly missing
him and Vinales at 200km/h. Actually,
Rossi didn't see God until he watched
the replay, because Morbidelli's bike flew
past so quickly and all he saw of Zarco's
bike was a shadow as it flew over him.
What was interesting, while watching
the onboards of both Rossi and Vinales,
is that both riders saw the near-death
moment, paused off the throttles for just
a few seconds and then immediately
resumed racing in case there was no red
These guys are proper heroes.
The world is also seeing the talents of
Miguel Oliviera shine through, plus a
We South Africans all knew how good the
Krugersdorp Boytjie was. We know that
KTM made a mess of the 2019 Moto2
Championship by supplying their riders
with orange cement mixers (a mistake
they more than made up for with this
year›s MotoGP machines).
We know that Binder overcame those
hardships to lose the championship only
by a narrow margin. Perhaps it is no
surprise to us that he took a win in just
his third race.
He will win more – he has to! He›s come
too far not to.
It takes a particular sort of mind to travel
to Europe, a land of funny languages,
funny customs, funny places and funny
tracks, from the bottom of Africa to
overcome a severe lack of budget and
riding motorcycles made of cheese to
make it into a factory team, and move
with them to the premier class.
It takes a mind of nails and steampowered
determination to get there,
and nothing will stop him. KTM have a
winning bike and a rider that has been
through so much hell that nothing more
Brad has single handedly re-ignited
passion for Moto GP in South Africa!
You go boytjie!
This bike! Wow! Honda listened to what everyone
wanted, took notes and applied them for 2020…”
“So cool, she flies! Thank you Honda!”
Just a couple of the comments chucked around at the
New Fireblade introduction at Redstar Raceway earlier
this month.We roped in the skills of Shado Elston and
International lady racer Savanna Woodward to thrash
the bike around the track and give us some opinions.
The all-new 2020 Honda CBR1000RR-R has been
talked about so much and now it is here. It’s bold and
gorgeous. Honda fans, you need to go and ride one…
Honda South Africa invited a cross section of press
and friends to take the bike for a ride. Moseying around
the pits and listening to feedback from some pretty fast
riders, the comments were all incredibly complimentary
– the changes have put Honda back into the game by
Eye on the prize Savannah Woodward
Our lot felt that it would have been cool if
Honda had left the standard gearing on
the bike. They geared it really short for
Redstars collection of curves. We’ll have
to convince them to put the bike back to
standard so that we can go and play on
the road some time…
Our Shado waxes Lyrical on the bikes
The time has come to recount an
epiphany that Mr Honda is smiling down
upon, from the lofty heights of racing
I write today, regarding an encounter I
was privileged enough to savour, albeit
for only around 32km, around a closed
circuit, namely; Redstar Raceway, in
Delmas, Mpumalanga, South Africa.
Allow me to bring your attention to
the 2020 Year Model SC88 Honda
CBR1000RR-R. I can’t outright begin by
bringing the feel and character of this
epic machine to words as yet, without
first delving into some of the changes that
have been made to the machine. In fact,
I would be spewing untruth if I told you
that there are ‘changes’ to the outgoing
CBR1000RR, the SC78.
Bluntly, there are no changes
made to the old machine, as the SC88
is a completely new design from the
inside of the tyres upwards. That is all.
It appears in two formats, the RR-R and
the RR-R SP. The SP has full Ohlins
electronic suspension and Brembo
clamps, while the RR-R employs the use
of the Nissin callipers and the more-thanadequate
Showa shocks, front and rear.
We all know and love the Blade, in any of
its generational guises. And I believe we
would be hard-pressed to fault the rich
racing and design heritage the machine
boasts since its inception in 1992.
The philosophy of the machine design
was always hinting at
superior control, rideability and
reliability. To push the Blade up a
notch, the design team headed by
Mr Yuzuru Ishikawa, (ultimately also
involved in the development and
production of ALL of the -4stroke
MOTOGP machinery) had a task of
taking the market to task and birthing
a motorcycle that would address the
need to provide a machine that would
satisfy the far greater market demand
for people to take their superbikes to
the race tracks and enjoy a machine
that spews racing heritage and
adherence to design excellence.
Noting also that the 2020YM CBR
1000RR-R SP has already attained the
highly coveted 2020 Red Dot Design
award, Ishikawa San and his team
has produced a unit that will no doubt
check most, if not all of the boxes, for
the track day enthusiast and extremist.
Attention to bring you over 214Hp of
pure, unadulterated Honda revolutions
has been made possible by more than
the following points I will attempt to list as
The piston bore has been increased
from 76mm to 81mm while the stroke
has been decreased from 55.1mm to
48.5mm. This brings the need for the
engine revolutions to be up in the top
third, in “angryville”, to pull your cheeks
off of your face.
My immediate translation of this lot,
through the bars is that it’s akin to the
CBR600RR, that makes its power above
the 9000RPM, all the way until almost
16000rpm, if you’ve got the kahoonies to
reach the limiter…
The materials used on the pistons and
rods are exactly the same types used
in the MOTOGP RC213V. Titanium
connecting rods, forged aluminium
pistons and nickel phosphorous coating
on the piston skirts to reduce friction.
This, people, is a REAL Honda. It revs
to kingdom come. Changes to the valve
train and lifting mechanisms, using
followers also reduce internal friction.
Camshafts have received the special
DLC coating to reduce friction too. There
is a new slip-assist clutch deployed with
ten slightly smaller in diameter plates for
less internal inertia. The starter motor
has even been moved to minimise
weight on the internal gears! Even a
complete redesign of the fuel injection
mechanisms, geometry and controls has
been optimised to provide peak power.
All the attention to the small details have
been addressed with the mind to give
maximum power at the top of the rev
range, like one would expect from any
thoroughbred racing machine.
We have seen the Akrapovic OEM
Euro5 homologated Silencer on
side of the machine, moving away
from the under-slung units on the
previous three generations. The
outgoing units had the under-slung
unit to improve on what Honda calls
‘mass centralisation’. The new unit is
completely crafted from Titanium, so
it weighs almost nothing. In the lower
rpm, there is a valve in the exhaust
that when closed, provides improved
back pressure and, under certain
conditions; it opens up to release the
muffled decibels we have all come
to love from an Akrapovic exhaust
system. It sings the song of both
fight and flight, easily one of the best
sounding Blades there has been.
The chassis, oh my…
Being a completely new design, it has
some marked features worth noting.
The total width from bar end to bar end
has increased by 25mm, bring it in to
745mm, and those extra few millimetres
of bar length assist in a silky smooth
steering experience. The total length
of the outgoing machine has been
increased by only 35mm, to 2100m. That
being said, the wheelbase of the new
unit is around 50mm longer than the
2019 model. Longer wheelbase makes
for more high speed stability and makes
your cornering experience a little more
confidence-inspiring than you’d expect
from a machine with a telephone-numbersequence
The whole bike is now 15mm (read
115mm ground clearance) closer to the
ground, so I would expect that one would
need to be cautious of our speed-bumphappy
metros. To further assist with the
increased power and rev-happy motor,
the caster angle is now at 24 degrees
and the trail figure rests at a comfortable
102mm for added stability and not so
slap-happy front end. I’m only 65kg in
the shade and never did I once feel
intimidated by the characteristics of the
machine’s handling and responsiveness.
It’s too easy to ride, in fact.
One noticeable item on the list of
changes is that the turning circle has
increased, and you might find yourself
doing a few ‘point-turns’ if you park in
the wrong spot. Remembering that this
ride was at a closed circuit, there wasn’t
much time to move around the pits or
through traffic to really get a feel for tight
space maneuverability. It felt good on
the idle and quite easy to move around,
and I didn’t feel that it was in any way to
be a challenge. The rear shock now also
mounts to the back of the motor and has
been revised to save weight.
Now, the binary factor on the machine
is something else, the ride management
package is phenomenal and again,
the tech trickles down from the HRC
racing pedigree. The interface is simple
enough to use, and to my finding,
was even a little easier than the Africa
Twin interface. Having said that, I urge
everyone to RTFM (read the manual)
before you just jump on and ride because
there are so many different degrees of
settings and control to customise the
experience for the road or track you are
going to cut up… Colloquialisms such a
wheelie control, ABS, traction control and
quick shifter settings are all available.
There is even a launch control and
different degrees of steering damping are
available, as the new unit is fully focused
at being a racing machine, and, as such,
it wants to be ridden in a focussed and
controlled racing style for best results.
I would say that the best way to gain
the full experience from the IMU and
the hardware is to get your pen and
notebook, go to a track and play with
the track settings. Then, take it to Sabie
and make notes with the road settings,
find your happy place and save them for
It is my humble opinion that the
aesthetics receive special mention. They
are a world apart from where the Blades
in history have been. The thought behind
the class-leading drag coefficient of the
Blade has given rise to the employment
of MOTO GP-derived winglets
incorporated into the side fairings. This
might not look like much, but it is said to
improve down-force at speed and I just
think it looks like the mutt’s nuts. Styling
is on queue with the HID headlights, the
massive RAM-air duct that now goes
through the steering stock, much like
the CBR600RR, and the ability to carry
a pillion, which the outgoing SP model
Ergonomically, the bike wants you to sit
in the racing posture, and comfortably
seats my 65kg, and 1.76m. Doing a
back-to-back ride with the 2019 model
and then straight onto the 2020, I found
that the 2020 model feels more like
you’re sitting IN the bike as opposed to
on top of it. Having said that, maybe it
will be possible to do a fuel economy
test and a bit of a ‘street-test’ to offer
a better opinion than only doing a
speedy 40km on it. Also note that from
Mr Honda San’s mouth, the bike is
specifically NOT made for a comfortable
ride, it is a racing machine.
As for the ride, Redstar Raceway is the
one race track that will teach you how
to corner properly, many, if not all of the
corners, have decreasing radii and forces
you to square them off and apex as late
as possible. The CBR was an absolute
pleasure and never once got out of
sorts, noting that I’m not by any means
the fastest rider out there, and well, you
know, it’s not my bike either.
I have the 2009 derivative that has
served me well for one hundred
thousand kilometres, without any
rider aids or ABS or fancy trickery.
It has also served me as a fantastic
commuter, holiday bike, weekendblitz
and track machine. I can barely
articulate the world of difference
between ten years of development.
The machine is as civil as they come,
and will not put you in a place of fear
and loathing. Moreover, it makes you
want to go faster to enjoy the rev range.
As far as what I could see, the changes
made to the demo unit we were fortunate
enough to be invited to test, had some
minor changes to the final drive and was
also fitted with the optional quick shifter
device. The sensitivity on the quick
shifter, for my technique in ‘race-shift’
setup was probably not as sensitive as I
would like to have had it, but you know,
the settings are fully customizable, as
with the steering damper.
The stopping power on the machine also
has a noticeable change in the form of
an increased 330mm diameter disc, also
thickened to 5mm, from the previous
320mm 4.5mm thick discs.
Going around Redstar in the anticlockwise
direction allows you to get
the straight along the highway on the
The final drive ratios, for this test, were
adjusted to DRASTICALLY shorten the
gearing, to avoid the excessive use of first
and second gears in places where some
would prefer a shorter ratio, in a higher
gear. This unfortunately does not give a
good representation of the power delivery
and character as the gear ratios were
absolutely too short for the road and to
feel the delivery over a longer internal gear
ratio. According to the speedo on the bike,
I had managed to get around the 260km/h
mark, while my GPS registered only
207km/h. I can’t recall if there was a one
or two tooth smaller difference on the front
sprocket, but I know for sure that the rear
sprocket was increased by five teeth. This
works on the circuit, but unfortunately not in
every-day riding. It would be a completely
different animal on the street, say, cruising
up and down “the 22” or Franschoek pass.
The brakes are super and the ABS enjoys
different modes for street and track. The
Pirelli 55/200 rear tyre size increase also
gives a planted feel in the corners and
sucks up the traction control adjustments
like they weren’t even there.
It is not my point to compare apples with
oranges, but this machine, I believe, is
going to be tough to beat.
It has already shown promise in the BSB
and we would do well to watch the results
at the Suzuka 8hr, JSB and the WSBK
series. This is nothing short of an epic
machine and I have to make mention of
Riaan Fourie and Paul Jacobs from Honda
South Africa, Quintin Coetser from Redstar
Raceway and Glenn and Sean at Ridefast
for the amazing opportunity to review the
Thank you and watch the excellent
feedback pile in on what is nothing other
than the sharpest Blade as yet.
The long and short of it is; go sell a
kidney or re-mortgage your house and
buy the bigger box. It’s worth every cent!
for your closest dealer
It’s not every day that you are invited to ride a brands premium
products for a full two days. When Suzuki SA made us the offer,
we jumped at the opportunity.
The guys were not keen to head to the track, because we had
them out at RedStar last year. Everyone wanted to go and play.
So that’s exactly what we did along some of the most famous
twisties that we know.
THE ALL NEW
Suzuki has two versions of the
The GSXR 1000A and the GSXR1000R.
Although the two versions share the same
frame, the suspension systems are very
different. The base GSX-R A, uses Showa
Big Piston front forks, and a Showa rear
shock, while the GSX-R1000R is supported
by Showa’s top of the line Balance Free front
forks, and rear shock. Another difference
between the two bikes is the fact that the IMU
on the A model has a 3 point system – and the
R boasts 6. A visual giveaway between the
two models are the sexy LED riding lights on
The base model GSX-R1000 uses the
same 190bhp*, liquid cooled 999cc inline
four-cylinder engine as the more expensive
GSX-R1000R. It features VVT (Variable Valve
Timing), which gives a less peaky, wider
spread of power. It also has a six speed close
ratio gearbox. Both of these bikes came with
up and down quickshifters with two settings
– and a very subtle autoblip.*Dependant on
which Dyno you talk to.
Keeping all that power accessible and under
control are three throttle response modes,
a cassette-style, -6speed transmission, an
assist-and-slipper clutch and a six r three
(dependant on model, see above ) direction,
three-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU)
that sends data to the new -10level traction
The brakes roll with dual 320 mm discs
and four-piston Brembo calipers up front
and a 240 mm disc and Nissin caliper
out back, and the anchors come with a
very special sort of ABS on board; the
Motion Track Brake System. It reads the
bike’s motion and attitude as recorded by
the Inertial Meaurement Unit, calculates
the available traction and tailors the
intervention levels to match. If you
overbrake up front and start to lift the rear
end, the system feathers the front brake
to maintain even traction and keep the
Some ride impressions:
Once again, we roped in a selection of
riders and took off on some of JHB’s best
loved breakfast run routes. The bikes are
just so much fun. So fast, and you always
feel in control. Open the throttle and the
world starts to pass you by in a blur. It
feels as if you have a swarm of bees
under the seat as that big Suzuki mill
starts to rev… man – such a cool feeling!
Mpumalanga twist: “Tight corner, slow
way down, lean over and take a wide line
to straighten out. Pick the bike up and
twist the throttle, the road bends slightly
to the right as it crests a small rise. Gear
up, up, up again, so quick! Accelerate
hard 220 ,210 ,200! WOW!!! Sit upright,
get hit in the chest with a great blast
of wind, squeeze the brake lever, a bit
harder, tense up, hold on tight. Everything
comes back into focus, slow down hard
and fast, downshift, downshift, downshift,
knee out, set up for the next corner,
breathe – and do it all over again…”
We found that the GSX-R1000 is seriously
potent with a wide spread of power that’s
perfectly suited to the stuff that breakfast
runners and twisty racers love.
Horsepower might be lower than some of
its rivals, but the bikes have an elephants
sufficiency of grunt for any road. In SA –
we all tend to be fixated on horsepower
figures, but the simple fact of the matter is
that in the real world, most normal people
will never use these bikes to anything near
their full potential. Your eyes are wiiiide
open long before you reach anything near
what these can do.
With its compact cast ali frame and longer
swingarm the Suzuki is recognized one of
the sweetest steering and neutral handling
superbikes you can buy. On the road, it’s
one of the most comfortable, too – far less
aggressive than many of its rivals.
Even Glenn who spends most of his time
in the dirt and on adventure machines
was totally happy to hit the long roads
“I fully expected to be bunched up like a
Pretzel, but, relative to some of the other
supes I have ridden recently, these gixxers
are actually pretty comfy. You do ride in
the typical crouched position but of the
hyper bikes, you sit more in the Gixxers
than on top of them. Not so much force on
those wrists for sure.”
All of our lot preferred the firmer stance
of the R model in the twisties and faster
stuff. It feels slightly a bit more positive
and you seem to crouch a bit less than
on the other one.
Some interesting things happened while
we were out and about, like the time we
stopped for Coffee and a muffin at one
of the stops – a little boy literally dropped
everything that he was up to, RAN across
and just gazed at the bikes in awe.
That has not happened for a while
– the kids of today seem to be more
into Playstations and cell phones than
The Master of Adventure - Now Available
- Hill Hold Control System
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- Cruise Control System
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anything else. This little guy just stood
for a full ten minutes taking it all in. We
sure hope that his parents get him on to
a bike soon. Everywhere we stopped,
people did a second take. Suzuki has
always built pretty superbikes and this is
one of them.
Mieke, Kyle, Sean, Michelle and Glenn
took turns in twisting the bikes ears and
the Suzuki’s proved that even though
they have not had serious upgrades for
the latest models, they are still a mighty
force to be reckoned with.
There are thousands out there with
more power and more aggressive
personalities, the Gixxer 1000R tempers
the delivery for a user-friendly ride that is
easy to manage. And that’s exactly what
we all appreciated.
www.suzuki.co.za for your nearest Suzuki
Lady Rider Mieke says:
Run. Turn. Stop.
The three fundamental capabilities
required by a sportbike. Has Suzuki
mastered all of them in this 6th
A simple answer? Yes. But the R model
is the better buy, even with the slight
The R model, with Showa BFF and BFCL,
has considerably better road manners than
its base-spec counterpart. Providing better
road feedback in terms of traction to allow
the rider more confident throttle use, it
also absorbs uneven road surface, almost
canceling it out as one would background
noise. To me, riding them back-to-back it
was like riding 2 different motorcycles.
As you get on you immediately notice
the slender frame and handlebars closer
together; a more compact riding position.
This is definitely a bonus if you have
a smaller physique; everything is at a
comfortable distance without making you
feel you’re reaching for it. The bike is
so well balanced that if you’re vertically
challenged it is not impossible to slide off
the seat to get a foot on the ground either.
The bike immediately instills a kind of
confidence in the rider, and I found myself
loosening up and moving freely in the twists
Having ridden many previous GSX-R
models, I found it slightly lacking that
exhilarating Raw Suzuki aggression.
Maybe for me, Suzuki has made the bike a
bit too refined?
It won’t disappoint a newbie but might
make a die-hard fan scratch his chin. The
compact powerplant delivers power in a
more linear fashion, and the bi-directional
quick shifter contributes to a fuss-free ride.
What a cool day it was.
See you out there soon!
This Lightie rushed over to the bike and
gazed at it for a full 10 mins.
Get a grip in the twisties.
Trick Suspension on the R
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GRAPHICWERX ADVERTISING & DESIGN CC
FIRE IT UP IS THE MOST TRUSTED PURCHASER IN SA!
WE PAY INSTANTLY, WE COLLECT, WE COME TO YOU!
Fire It Up! Does it differently.
F.I.U. QUALITY PRE OWNED Kawasaki ZRX1200R 28,000kms - SOLD - you
have to be quick here - they move stock fast.
Selling a bike? Buying a bike? These
guys seem to know their stuff…
Fire It Up! Is one of the biggest pre
owned motorcycles dealers around. We
had a chat with them about their
is accurate? Has every service been
done correctly? Has every accident been
fixed back to OEM spec?
Have there been any factory recalls - and
were they done?
Thus, an extended warranty is a good
purchase but you need to do your
homework and find the one that gives you
the best cover, because some of them
are very limited in what they will pay for
based on age and mileage of the bike.
They do not give you an estimate over the
phone and then kick you in the nuts once
they have inspected your bike. They will first
inspect your motorcycle thoroughly and then
discuss their findings with you before they
make you an offer.
Once the offer is made and accepted they
do payment immediately, be it to settle your
outstanding finance agreement and give you
the balance or pay you directly. Naturally
you can opt to have them use it as a part
payment or deposit on your new dream
machine from them.
Fire it Up! has taken this very different
approach in terms of their TRUST
commitment and advertise all their
motorcycle stock accordingly, so that you as
the buyer can have absolute peace of mind
when buying your motorcycle from them.
Once they have inspected the bike they
categorize the bikes under the following 3
1. Premium Collection: This is basically
as close to a new bike you can get for preowned
• This is a One owner motorcycle
with a full and traceable service
history with the official agents
for that brand.
• The bike has its owner’s
manual, tool kit and
everything that came with the
• It has all of its Spare keys.
• The bike is completely accident
free including touch ups from
small tip overs.
• Premium bikes are sold with
a free 3yr/30 000km service
plan that covers all labour costs
and fluids and oil filter. Worth up
to R30 000.
2. Quality Pre-Owned
• This bike may have had one or
• The bike has a full traceable
service history at agents and
other appointed dealers.
• The bike is accident free but
there may be a scratch on a
panel from a small tip over
or stone chip that has been
• The owner’s manual is
available as is the Service
history, (be it the service booklet
and/or invoices to as proof
• It has been given the full FIU!
Now listen to this:
The quality check includes having
an oil sample taken and tested at an
approved laboratory for aluminium
content, (excessive engine/bearing
wear indicator), carbons, fibres and a
whole host of other things which will
allude to the state of the valves, rings,
clutch and etc, so as to ensure
We have never heard of this before.
Great idea! Once a quality check and
oil sample have been performed, a 2
year service and mechanical plan
F.I.U. PPREMIUM COLLECTION 2016 Triumph 1200 Thruxton R - 1
owner - 2,300km - R129,000.00.jpg
Peace of mind.
Basically what you are hoping for when
buying a pre-owned motorcycle, an
assurance that you are not buying a
lemon. Obviously things can still happen.
It is impossible to accurately predict the
life span of electronics and such - it is a
used bike after all. Then, we get to their
third category and the one we are most
interested in as Fire It Up!’s reputation
speaks for itself on the first two.
3. Fire It Up 2nd
• These bikes are traded in
and are often in perfect
condition but may have
an unknown service
history meaning the owner may
have done some of the servicing
himself or had a mechanic mate
do it after hours and a panel
may need repair here and there.
• These bikes are always offered
at a substantial discount, so
there is a plus for the cash
• They are aimed at customers
who love to fix, customise or
perfect the bike themselves to
their own taste.
• All of these bikes are in running
condition and more often than not
are indistinguishable from their
“Quality Pre-Owned” in a lot of
Donovan Fourie will do a semi regular feature
on some of the delectable used motorcycles
out there. This month, he bumped into a very
desirable bucket list motorcycle in Fire It Up’s
premium collection, the Ducati 996 SPS Pista.
By Sean Hendley.
As a general practice most used
motorcycle dealers put all there stock on
their showroom floor and are sometimes
a bit vague about disclosing the full
history or condition of their stock. So,
unless you as the customer or buyer are
really clued up about the finer ins and
outs of motorcycle maintenance, repairs
and engine condition you would need to
do a huge amount of research on that
motorcycle using the VIN number or
But even then where do you begin?
Who do you go to find out all the details
of said motorcycle and even if you do by
some far off chance, how can you know it
And the list of questions goes on and on.
More often than not, as is the case with
any pre-owned vehicle a whole bunch of
latent and unforeseen defects can creep
in a few months down the line. Yes, you
do have recourse through the CPA, but
that is such a ball ache that you really do
not want to go that route as it very often
costs you more money in legal fees
To cover themselves, many dealers insist
that you take out an extended warranty.
They only have the word of the seller to
go on as far as the pre-owned bike is
concerned and what their mechanics can
determine without stripping the whole
bike down to its bare nuts and bolts.
Craig and his team at FIU! tell us that
they have done the homework for you
and have some very nice packages on
offer that make a whole lot of sense when
buying a pre-owned motor cycle and in
some instances, will even include an
extended maintenance plan.
They have had a good, long and
hard think about this and have taken
a different approach right from the
beginning of the process and this is to
protect you as well as them, while still
giving you a great, clean deal.
And it all starts with the way they
FIRE IT UP IS THE MOST TRUSTED PURCHASER IN SA!
WE PAY INSTANTLY, WE COLLECT, WE COME TO YOU!
Though, the crowning moment of the 996 was this, the SPS
Pista with an increase in horsepower from 112 to 123, lighter
five-spoke wheels, Öhlins suspension and a seat at the head of
The bike on Fire It Up’s! floor sits among a gaggle of legendary
Ducatis all awaiting a re-templement. Even among with the likes
of the Superveloce – MV Agusta’s latest soul-catcher – in its
company, it holds the throne like a battle-hardened king daring
his cowering subjects to try defying him.
Journalistic obligations dictate that the bike needs to be ridden
and this might be arrangeable – Fire It Up could chat to the
owner who might appreciate his bike being paraded for all to
see, but journalistic obligation can go to hell!
Peasants! Mere mortals! Do they not know what it is we are
dealing with? Would they lick their fingers while paging through
the Book of Kell? Would they wipe down the Mona Lisa with a
kitchen rag? Would they use the Holy Grail as a flower vase?
Besides, there's a personal reason for never swinging a leg
over the 998/996/916 range.
I was just 12 when the 916 was unveiled, and it was this point
that my undying love for superbikes was truly awakened. I
would stand outside the Ducati dealership in my school shorts
gazing with growing eyes through the window at the machine
that would grace my bedroom posters and my dreams for years
before any such insipid thing as girls would ever get a look-in.
Through my journalist years, I have ridden heavenly machines
of every shape and style but never a Ducati 998/996/916.
And I never will.
I'm told that even by today's enormous standards, these models
pull their weight admirably but, sadly, they will never live up to
the standards I have set for them in my overworked imagination.
No motorcycle, past or present, will ever be able to meet such
miraculous proportions. Let them stay gods in my mind.
This unit is both pristine and has just 14,400km on the clock,
and it has no price tag hanging from its mirror, and nor should
there be. If you, reading these words now, have a bank balance
with many many zeros on the end of it and you don't buy it for
whatever Fire It Up is asking, we can never be friends.
Blast From The Past
Ducati 996 SPS Pista – Motorcycle Religion.
Story: Donovan Fourie
Pics: Meghan McCabe
Bow, heathens! You are not worthy!
Gracing the hallowed floors of Fire It Up!
Motorcycles is a creature that transcended the
realms of mere motorcycling and assumed the role
of a deity. Spawned from fires within the temples
of Bologna, under the watchful gaze of the Prophet
Tamburini, the 996 SPS Pista grew millions of loyal
subject throughout the world, each gazing upon its
splendour and knowing in their hearts that they are
living in the time of greatness.
Of course, it began in 1994 with the Odin of all
motorcycling – the 916. For many, this momentous
occasion represents Year Zero in motorcycling and
everything since is nothing but a desperate attempt to
replicate this glory. That single-sided swing-arm freeing
that beautiful, three-spoke wheel, the monstrous twin
cans under the stinging tailpiece, the sultry waist and
the predator face with dual eyes sussing their next
victim. Growling life into it was a 916cc, 90º V-twin with
a divine desmodromic system negating the need for
such peasantry items as valve springs.
In 1998, the 996 inherited all the family traits, except
the cylinders were drilled further to increase the firebreathing
to 996cc. Accompanying the bigger pistons
were bigger valves and a stronger crank.
Pic by:Polarity Photo
Roun d 4 BRNO (CZE)
BRAD BIN DER
Words: Séan Hendley & Glenn Foley
Pics: Stefan van der Riet
When we tell people about bikes – it’s often quite difficult to get going
simply because – well - just about every modern motorcycle is so good and
competent. But sometimes you get a bike that is – well – perhaps a bit unique.
A bike that stands out from the crowd like your really naughty buddy from
school days, and that makes telling the story a lot easier…
We love Nakeds. Why? you might ask. Well
that’s quite simple really – most of our team
are no longer teenagers – so we appreciate the
more relaxed riding style offered by bikes like
And the fact that they are powered by
(Slightly) de- tuned superbike engines mated
to superbike-esque rolling chassis makes
them just that much more fun. Add to this the
inherently aggressive naked lines and looks –
and you have three good reasons.
When the guys from Kawasaki offered us a
day or so on their Z900, we thought that they
had alocated the retro model to us. Instead this
beasty was offloaded – and we are pretty glad
that it was.
Sometimes you get a riders motorcycle. A bike
that is simple, powerful and easy to ride.
The Z900 is one of these.
A Rich heritage:
Let’s chat briefly about the Z900’s
The Z800 claimed 113
horsepower, had a -32.5inch
seat height, and weighed more
than 225KG’s with a full tank.
The monster Z1000 boasts 142
ponies, very similar seat height,
and weighs in at just on 220, all
fueled up. Lighter, incredibly with
a whole lot more power.
The first-generation of Z900 was
already lighter than both of those
bikes, and made a claimed 125
horsepower. A great addition to
the family, slotting seamlessly
between her predecessors.
For 2020, the meaty 943 cc
four cylinder engine is largely
unchanged, except for an update
on the intake funnels in the air
box to meet emission control
The Chassis is pretty much the
same as the original. Kawasaki
updated the tubes of the frame
around the swingarm pivot
to be stronger, and made the
rear shock spring a bit stiffer.
Mechanically, it is a fairly
straightforward traditional inlinefour-cylinder
plant, bolted to a trellis-style
frame with flat handlebars and not
too much else.
ABS, switchable traction control,
individual power-mode selection,
and four ride modes to choose
from. All controlled via a neat TFT
display behind the screen. This is
now standard-issue hardware for
Kawasaki in 2020, you’ll also find
it on the H2 and Ninja 1000SX.
The screen also offers Bluetooth
connectivity to Team Green’s
Rideology app, and changeable
night/day backgrounds. And then
there are the cool styling updates
— little bits around the LED
headlight, more compact shrouds,
and an updated fuel-tank cover.
Who Came Along?:
For this ride we roped in four
different riders to take The Zed
for a spin. Sean and Glenn are
effectively the older gen riders
here – they grew up riding the
early GPZ’s and Zeds and have
ridden pretty much every rendition
Did you know that Kawasaki once
built a GPZ750 Turbo? A KR250
Tandem Twin -2stroke? Well we
rode em too.
Then there are two newer models
who have grown up around
some of the latest and greatest
innovations in the motorcycle
world. Kyle lawrenson and Mieke
came along to give a younger
perspective on this big machine.
Where we went:
We all decided that a track day on
this would be completely lost. We
wanted to see what the bike was
like to live with every day – and
we undertook an urban adventure
of some note, from the Far East
Rand, through the winding passes
of Primrose, the suburban sprawl
of Bedfordview to some pretty
frikken dodgy Jo-Burg alleys that
we used to terrorise when we
were lighties in search of a cool
Lots of time was spent carving
the back roads – and a bike like
this is built for blasting along the
freeways. We turned a full tank of
fuel into nearly 400 kilometres of
What’s the bike like?
There is a sense i indestructability
that comes with any big, naked
Kawasaki. She is really comfortable
with wide bars and ergonomics that
will suit just about any rider. We did
not find her tall, which is a good
thing. The TFT dash is clear. For
a naked, the bikini screen offers
reasonable protection from the
elements. We can tell you all about
the amazing tech that goes into a
bike like this and very often, things
get lost in translation.
This is a compact, comfortable
smooth muscle bike. It has
impeccable manners when you
feel like doddering along, but
she loves to be opened wide and
pointed at the nearest corner.
Her road manners are impressive
– although we need to tell you
that at speeds above the speed
limit, the front end starts getting a
bit light. In the right hands, she’ll
point her front wheel at the sky,
or happily back into the corner all
with a great big howl from that ohso-smooth
Short squirts on the throttle are
ridiculously good fun as she
steams her way well past legal
street limits – but, as with most
nakeds, wind buffeting will limit
any sustained top-end runs.
We are pretty sure that guys like
Trickbitz can hook you up with a
taller aftermarket screen for those
longer rides. We saw speeds
around the 200kph mark in a blink
and she was still accelerating.
Best of all, getting there is a simple
twist of the throttle away. The
clutch is light, the gearshifts, silky,
the brakes are fantastic with a firm,
planted chassis suspension to
match – even the nasty potholes
failed to ruffle her tail feathers.
But she loves to be ridden fast.
Not only from a sheer naked
acceleration perspective, but
listening to that brawny engine
howling away from robot to robot
is one of those very cool things
in life…She’s a bike that we
could happily live with. So much
sweet power in such a fun to
Take note of the 'Z' Tail light
I am a huge, huge fan of the
naked bikes, they are real lookers
and proper riders bikes in my
humble opinion. Being an old
school rider I am more familiar
and comfortable with slightly more
upright sitting position.
I also lust after the power
and agility of a sports bike
and really enjoy all the new
technology being thrown at the
sports bikes in particular, so
bikes like the Kawasaki Z900
are right up my alley.
I don’t know why, but I have
always been a fan of green,
and paired with black it is just
completely irresistible to me,
especially the metallic green
and gloss black of the Z9. Then,
Kawasaki has really put some
special effort into the detail,
simple little things that make you
look twice and go, “Really, did
I really see that?”, like the LED
tail light configured into a ‘Z’,
might not be much but that really
appeals to me.
If they are putting that much
effort into something as utilitarian
as a tail light, then how much
more effort have they put into the
rest of the bike?
Settling into the saddle is
surprisingly comfortable for
the taller rider such as myself,
everything was where I
instinctively expected to find,
which is a really good feature,
often I climb onto bikes for
the first time and almost end
up crashing in the first 3 km’s
looking for the indicator switch
or the display and mode
The relationship between the
seat, foot pegs and handle bars
were more than comfortable
for me at 2 metres tall even
with the relatively low seat
height. You sit in the bike as
opposed to on top of it inspiring
much more confidence for me.
Sometimes I feel a bit exposed
and awkward sitting on top as
opposed to in a bike.
We quickly found ‘sport mode’
which ups the power and makes
the Z900 even more fun to ride.
Getting used to the handling
dynamics is quick, even though
as with most bikes of this genre
the chassis is a bit shorter, it is
not twitchy on take-off or in the
corners nor under braking as
some might be. Even with my
115kg bulk on board. The power
from that howling 4 cylinder
motor does encourages you to
misbehave, mainly because that
948cc power plant pushes out so
much lekker power.
This particular model was not
fitted with a quick shifter, but the
gearbox is really smooth and the
clutch soft enough that you don’t
really miss it. All that stuff is
great, but how does a bike make
Is it just a form of transport or a
tool to win trophies? Or, do you
look back at it when walking
away from it? Does it haunt your
dreams? Do you just sit and stare
at it, or does it make you want to
constantly want to ride, buy things
for it, redecorate your home for it?
Does it move your soul?
(Yes, I know that is a bit of a
cliché, but … Does It?).
If not, you’re on the wrong bike!
In my opinion, the Z900 is an
affair of the heart. When it was
dropped at the office the other
guys had picked up a couple of
other really gorgeous bikes and
were standing around admiring
them, until the Z900 pulled up.
The next morning there was a
bit of a bun fight about who was
going to ride the Z900 first on the
days testing. And it was like that
at just about every stop during the
Every single rider smiled from
ear to ear and always gave a
thumbs up while pointing at the
Z9. Not only because it is soul
stirringly beautiful, but is just
does everything so well, from
diving in and out of corners, to
hauling ass in a straight line and
to complete misbehavior. I’ve got
a few superfluous organs and
body parts for sale if anybody is
interested, I really think a Z900
needs to be in my garage.
www.kawasaki.co.za for your
Man! Wow! Flip! DAMN!.....
Just a few comments from every one
of our lot who rode this bike. The KTM
1290 Superduke GT is something quite
special. Read on…
It all started when we were sipping on a cuppa java at the RAD
KTM dealership the other day. Miguel asked one of his team
just to please bring the GT around for a client to view. Our ears
perked up because – the last time we rode one of these a few
years back. We honestly cannot remember what other bikes
were involved, but we do remember the GT very well. It’s one
of those bikes that makes a firm impression. “And that’s the old
one!” says Miguel. “The current model is even better!”
You don’t need coffee to
appreciate this bike. Plans were
made (that included a bit of
begging) to collect and take her
for a proper spin… And a few
days later, we were grinning our
way along the freeway outside the
store towards the Far East Rand.
The sales blurb.
“Meet the next generation of the
KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE GT.
At first glance, the “GT” betrays
the distinct, extremely aggressive
base of the 1290 SUPER DUKE
R that became famous as the
“Beast”. Even though it was
drafted as a separate model, the
GT approaches touring from a
very sporty angle.”
This KTM is the cutting-edge
interpretation of a sport bike fit for
travel. “The 1290 SUPER DUKE
GT is not a slimmed-down super
tourer with racing stripes, it is
an extremely sporty real-world
champion, which for the first time
masters the seemingly impossible
split between mountainous
twisties, comfortable long-distance
highway travelling and breathtaking
track day use, thanks to
intelligent and innovative design
The 1290 SUPER DUKE GT
features a new LED Headlight,
Handguards, improved wind
protection, a full colour TFT
Dashboard, a whole new shape
of the front and many details
like storage compartments
and connectivity features. The
GT’s engine also sees updates
including titanium inlet valves,
resonator chamber technology and
new mapping, resulting in even
further refinement, speed and
Include every single electronic
innovation known to mankind and
you have a breathtaking package
that is actually rather practical
(And the folks at KTM will hate that
description but we will explain…
Is it all true? Here is what
KTM is Brash, loud, innovative
and in your face with many of
their unique ideas. They can
never be accused of copying.
The styling on this bike is – well
unusual to say the least. The
cross section of people that we
spoke to had mixed reactions.
Certainly not classic looks – and
they take some getting used to.
But we will tell you – every time
we opened the garage… it looked
better and better.
Ergonomically we expected a
very racy feel, but the GT is so
well thought out and comfortable.
The relation of feet to seat to bars
is very natural and comfortable.
She is not tall either – your feet
are flat on the ground. We love
all of the nooks and crannies that
they have included for storage.
They did their homework and
listened to what people wanted
– from USB ports to power ports,
this is a very comprehensive
package. The adjustable screen
is simple and effective.
We spent 300KM’s (We would
gladly have done more) in the
saddle with everything from fast
freeways, suburban streets and
country lanes. The only place that
we didn’t really ride it was on the
track – but we can assure you that
on the track, this bike would have
been properly cool.
It all starts when you start the bike
and open the throttle. Few engines
transmit soul like a KTM V-Twin.
And 1290cc’s of it at that. Blip the
throttle a bit and the burble emitted
from that Akarapovic system
guarantees that the hairs at the
nape of your neck start to rise…
Snick her softly into gear and you
know that you are in for something
special. Let her loose onto the
freeway and you are, absolutely
the king of the road. The bike
points and squirts beautifully – no
hesitation just massive, controllable
horsepower for overtaking.
Combined with the rumble from
the pipe, the LED lights give the
bike a presence that cuts a swathe
through the traffic – anyone looking
in the rear view mirror knows that
you are coming for them… and that
was just the ride home.
We literally could not get the
different riders off the bike. Kyle
kept saying – but I want to try this
– and can we JUST do that. Sean
– stuff you guys – you can walk,
you can’t have it back. It’s that kind
Big, Bold, Brash – but so
practical and comfortable…
And here is where the KTM lot
might raise their eyebrows…
If you have ever had the pleasure
of experiencing the SuperDuke.
You’ll understand what a totally
maniacal beasty that is. The GT
shares that engine. But KTM has
managed somehow to make it
work so damn well for touring
application. If you open the throttle
and play silly buggers, best you
hold tight because she will ride
you back – make no mistake – the
1290 Duke hosts one of the most
exciting engines on the planet –
but it all depends how you would
like to ride…
The Duke GT’s styling is very eye
catching. Not having come up
through the ranks of the superbike
and touring bike world over the
last few decades, KTM brings an
exciting and new take on these
types of machines. And like
Marmite, you either love it it or - not.
And this also translates to the
ergonomics, chassis, suspension
and handling as well as engine
design and power delivery. Once
you start understanding the
SuperDuke GT, you really start to
appreciate the forward thinking
styling and design behind it.
Ergonomically the GT, despite its
aggressive styling, does seem to
have made a bike for everyone.
My one constant problem is,
at 2 meters tall I dwarf most
motorcycles and have issues
trying to get comfortable, so I get
excited when I find a bike that I
fit on comfortably, but that then
generally makes it it too big and
cumbersome for anybody shorter
than 1,8m tall. The Duke GT is
very comfy for me and the tank
design does encourage a proper
sport touring sitting position with
your toes on the pegs as opposed
to the usual flat foot riding style a
lot of people seem to prefer. Diving
onto the freeway on-ramp at
Redstar, I overcooked it it a bit and
would generally be looking for the
brakes and begging the ‘The Good
Lord my soul to take …’ if if I don’t
get it it stopped in time and hit the
However, with the GT, I just
chucked my left shoulder deeper
into the bend and kept the gas
open and the GT happily obliged,
which possibly wasn’t a good thing
because then it it was game on.
Chassis and suspension on the
GT are unbelievably good. As
Glenn mentioned earlier on, (and
he is quite a bit shorter than me),
the relationship between foot
position, knee angle, seating
position and handle bar position
is natural and instinctive giving
you the confidence to ride harder
and challenge your riding abilities
a bit more. For riders north of
100kg’s in weight as we are, often
times the suspension becomes a
bit squirly with the rear sagging
away, lightening up the front wheel
and messing with your directional
stability and almost creating an
uncontrolled 2 wheel drift like feel.
Not so with the GT.
She is absolutely planted and
stable in a corner under an overenthusiastic
rider of questionable
riding skills overdoing it a bit on
the gas. Now, with that stability
you might think the Duke would
be quite a firm, if not bordering
on jarring over some of the less
than perfect road surface we are
finding more often than not these
days. Not so! I purposefully went
looking the rutted out lanes from
heavily loaded trucks to see if
I could get the wheels off the
deck and the traction control to
kick and mess with the power
delivery, and honestly…
Bright and breezy the next day,
we pointed her in the direction of
Redstar for a bike launch.
If every day started like this – life
would be hassle free. Rural back
roads were gobbled with glee.
Superbike mad ass performance
in a supple, comfortable forgiving
chassis. If you feel like cruising
along and looking at the daisies,
she is quite happy to join you. If
you feel that you need to get the
horizon closer in a big hurry… well
all you need to do is open that
throttle and the GT does the rest.
And don’t even talk about twisties,
the superbike ready to race
genes are always bubbling just
under the surface.
I barely felt any feedback through the
seat or the bars and she remained
perfectly planted, stable and
comfortable no matter what.
Engine and power delivery, another
point I was prepared to take the big
KTM tourer to task on. Previous
incarnations of the big 1290cc
V-twin power plant in the Super
Duke had me shying away from
them – just too much for an average
Joe like me. Until I came across
them in KTM’s legendary Super
Adventure R, where they really
made that horsepower friendlier.
The power delivery on the GT is as
explosive as a V-Twin of that size
should be but the new mapping
keeps it linear and predictable
and always useable. And if it does
happen to catch you sleeping, the
traction control quickly comes to your
rescue and gives you a brief moment
to gather yourself.
However, for the moderately insane,
(like our Kyle), you can mess with
the mapping, power delivery, traction
control, ABS and wheelie control
in the mode and various other
electronic settings. Kyle seemed to
enjoy the ‘SuperMoto’ mode quite a
lot as you will be able to tell from the
Sadly we only had the big DUKE GT
for a day or two, but we would really
like to borrow it over a weekend and
head down to Clarens or E.T. or
even further to test out its GT (Grand
We do think this is the ideal bike for
such a trip to such a destination,
comfortable kilometer eater couch on
the freeways and byways and then a
corner carving scalpel along the tight
and twisty mountain passes….
• 1,301cc LC8 V-Twin thunderbox
with titanium valves and revised
intake resonator chambers.
• 6.5” Multifunctional TFT
Dashboard with KTM MY RIDE
Navigation displays all important
information in a clear and bright
• Windscreen and height adjuster
offers easy adjustment and better
wind and weather protection.
• Handguards provide excellent
• LED Headlight.
• Cruise Control design features
switches on the left side of the
handlebar and a display in the TFT
dashboard to intuitively set and
change the requested speed.
• KTM MY RIDE comes as standard
and features a Bluetooth connection
to the rider’s smart phone to control
audio playback and to accept phone
• WP Semi-Active Suspension with
three settings: Comfort, Street and
• Pirelli Angel GTs.
• MSC (Motorcycle Stability
Control) with Cornering ABS
by Bosch incl. Supermoto
mode, Ride mode
technology and multistage,
down shifts. The
shift action is
• KTM keyless system. We
personally don’t like Keyless but it is
the way of the future.
• Optional dealer-installed
competition closed course only
Track Pack with ‘Track’ ride mode
which allows 3 Drive Modes, Antiwheelie
off, TC slip adjust and
• Heated grips for cold riding
• Colour-matched panniers are
available with enough storage to fit
most full-faced helmets.
This one from
Rad Moto KTM:
WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN
BUYING USED TYRES..........
WE NOW HAVE TWO CASES WHERE
CLIENTS HAVE BOUGHT USED
TYRES FROM TYRE DEALERS
AND FITTED THEM ONLY TO
DISCOVER THAT THE BEADS
HAVE BEEN CUT.
The bead is what holds your tyre on the rim. Dealers are cutting
the beads on used tyres that are deemed unsafe so that they are
This is a “Must Read” it is for your own good:
It is not a debate about whether to buy a new or used tyre it is
about people who buy and sell used tyres making sure that the
tyres are SAFE.
Times are tough - we get that. We have also bought used tyres
and most times they have been OK.
Earlier this month we received a call about a gent who bought a
used tyre for his GS from a dealer on the East Rand. No problem -
we have all been there, it is a saving, not everyone can afford new
tyres, especially in our current economic climate.
The tyre looked OK, the tread was decent, no obvious cracks etc
- but the gent failed to notice that the bead had been cut - which
means that the tyre is KAPUT and not good for use. He had the
tyre fitted and headed out - and promptly got a huge tank slapper...
Luckily he controlled it and managed to get the bike through to the
Bike Tyre Warehouse outfit.
Upon closer inspection, the cut bead was discovered. Please guys,
be very careful.
Tyres are one of the most critical safety components on your bike.
New is always best - but if you do buy used do not only look at the
tread. It might look great but there is more to it:
Inspect the sidewalls for cuts, cracks, ballooning and structural
Inspect the beading to make sure it is not damaged, cut or
pulling out of the rubber.
Check the inside of the tyre for hidden patches, gators, cuts and
objects piercing through and the like as well as for something
that looks similar in texture to elephant skin, this is indicative of
the tyre having been run flat for extended periods.
Look for cracks between and in the treads, this can show
perishing from age as well as a further indicator of the tyre
having been abused or run flat.
Any used tyre has generally been replaced for a reason. What
is that reason? Did it run flat? Is there a hole?
Too many patches? Is it old? - look for the date of manufacture
on the side if the tyre wall.
As we said earlier, new is always better and there are always
some very affordable options and great specials from most of
the major tyre brands… ask your local dealer about them.
Dealers, We cannot tell you how to do your job, but - If you sell
a used tyre please inspect it properly...
We are very glad that there was no serious injury...
Panniers are available as a
Words: Séan Hendley & Glenn Foley
Pics: Stefan van der Riet
“I'm living on an endless road, Around the world for rock and roll,
Sometimes it feels so tough, But I still ain't had enough, I keep
saying that it's getting too much, But I know I'm a liar..”
Those were the words of the late, great Lemmy Kilmister blasting
through my head as we pulled outside the Sandton head office of
Triumph SA on a bright and sunny Highveld winters morning. We
were about to drop into the saddles of a couple of 2 and a half
litre beasts and hit the open road for the day.
How could this day get any
better? Well, our good mate and
well known SA musician Garth
Taylor just happened to be there
picking up another of our all
time favourite bikes, the Triumph
1200 Scrambler. As you will
have read about this time last
year when we rode the Husky
Pillens, Garth is an avid biker
and decided to join us.
Another good mate Lani, a
mad keen Triumph fan with his
previous gen Rocket 3 joined us
on our shenanigans for the day.
The plan was to head through
The Cradle and then on to Harties
for some lunch and then back
to Triumph. A combination of
good twisty roads and some nice
long sweeping roads to test the
touring capabilities of the all new
Two All New Rockets …
Same but different
There are two new Rocket 3
variants available, namely the GT
and the R. So, why and what are
the differences? We are not going
to bore you with all the technical
details, you find those all over the
net, we are going to give you
our experiences with these two
hot and sexy ladies that are so
different and yet - so much alike.
What is the same?
The chassis, the monster 2.5
litre motor, the suspension, the
electronics (both the models we
rode were fitted with the quickshifter
option), fuel tank, seats,
pillion foot pegs, (so neatly
sculpted into the chassis that
it took us a while to find them),
wheels and tyres are common
to both bikes which you might
imagine would make the two
Rockets pretty much identical
in just about every way. Same
Same? Why bother with two
models we hear you ask?
Well, thanks to bars and footpeg
positions, they are very different
in their application and riding style
and you will really either love one
or the other - or both.
We all had very mixed and
differing views after riding them.
The GT’s bars are slightly taller
and sweep back quite a bit. The
foot pegs are mounted with a
more mid to forward bias creating
an almost ‘easy rider’ or touring
The R’s handle bars are straighter
and lower with the pegs mounted
more under the rider and putting
the rider into a more sporty,
aggressive street fighter type
These differences just make the
bikes feel worlds apart, especially
when riding and shifting through
the slick gearbox.
Because your legs are more
forward on the ‘GT’, you use your
legs, (quadriceps), more to stabilise
yourself under braking and the
laid back position of the handle
bars keep your shoulders in a very
natural and relaxed attitude, ideal
for for crossing continents. The ‘R’
however, with its more aggressive
seating position has you using your
core and your shoulder more when
braking and dipping into corners,
which is great fun in mountain
passes and the like but it gets a bit
trying on the long straight roads.
This is not to say that the GT
is averse to taking a bend
enthusiastically, it just feels a bit
insane diving into a bend laying
back with your feet leading the
way instead of your elbows
and shoulders which certainly
does add another dimension
of adrenalin pumping fun into
the mix. The foot pegs on both
bikes can be shifted forwards
or backwards by 3 positions
to obtain optimal rider comfort
and confidence and naturally
the bars and levers are all
adjustable. What we really like
is the fact that all the parts are
interchangeable between the two
models so you can retro fit your
bike to your personal aesthetic
and riding style.
Rocket 3 GT
The GT is definitely aimed more
at the touring market. This is a
muscle bike with a very relaxed
attitude. Swinging a leg over and
dropping onto the saddle is very
satisfying and natural, although
at just on 2 metres tall I would
look at a slightly taller and wider
handle bar option for myself if I
ever owned one, but for ‘normal’
sized people the ‘off the shelf set
up’ is perfect.
Hitting the starter button awakens
the beast of a motor with a
beatial rumble and the whole
bike becomes a living thing
underneath the rider, rolling
and shuddering in anticipation
with every twist of the throttle.
Unfortunately for our young new
photographer, who was only
encountering the Rocket for the
first time, he had to pillion with me
… Another unknown to him.
He was soon to experience a
baptism of fire, as early as the
first bend in the road heading
towards the Freeway from
Triumphs head office. Knowing all
of this and being the evil jerk that
I am, I hit the gas hard, banged
on the quick shifter into second
and chucked the big machine
into the reasonably tight double
apex, uphill left hander and tilted
over even further into the second
apex giggling with glee as I felt
the appy tense up and try to grab
onto anything and everything with
every part of his body and being.
I do believe that had it been any
other bike we might have been in
a lot of trouble. The Rocket 3 is a
very torquey and heavy bike and
its riders are literally passengers
on it. Where other bikes are
largely affected by the input of
the rider and pillion’s weight and
trajectory the GT maintains its
That been said, you do need
to plan ahead and be entirely
certain of what you want to do
or be really strong and assertive
with the handling if you are riding
enthusiastically. (On a side note,
at one stage later on in the day
I swapped with Garth Taylor
and climbed aboard the 1200
Scrambler, which suddenly felt
more like a little 250cc plastic dirt
bike as opposed to its 1200cc of
iron and metal).
Acceleration is as sublime as only
a 2,458cc triple with 220nm of
torque at just 4,000rpm can be,
but you are quite happy to call
on all those torques all the time
because the length and weight of
the Rocket keep both wheels on
the deck and the suspension and
chassis keep it all neat and tidy in
the corners. Twist its ear and the
BIG Triple growls in appreciation
and hurtles off towards the horizon
in a huge hurry. Grab the anchors
and she scrubs off speed and
comes to a stop elegantly and
perfectly stable with the gigantic
320mm front and 300 mm rear
rotors and 4 pot Brembo calipers
keeping all that weight and power
in check very nicely, inspiring the
rider to have a lot more fun with the
The “GT’s” party piece though, is
it’s relaxed riding style and sitting
position with all of that huge power,
but still keeping your grin out in the
breeze with the little wind-deflecting
screen taking just enough pressure
off the rider to be comfortable,
ideally crossing the divide between
car like cocooning and joy and
freedom of pure ‘bugs in the teeth’
real spirit motorcycling. The pegs
pull your legs out just far enough
forward to be comfortable and
natural, the seat has enough lower
back support to take off the strain
and the handle bars hang your
shoulders comfortable low to ease
all tension off them easily keeping
you in the saddle all day long.Of the
two, the GT is most pillion friendly
with a roomy seat and plenty of bits
for the pillion to hold on to.
Rocket 3 ‘R’ Naked Musclebike...
So, why do you need the R
version then of the GT is so
capable and comfortable?
Well, because some of us still
want to try and chuck it into a
corner and scrape whatever we
can and will invariably end up
perpetrating some form of abuse
to the Rocket in an attempt to
customise it for said purpose. And
Triumph knows this, so they have
saved us the effort and the money
making the R slightly cheaper
than the GT.
When we went out on the first
ride just before we were robbed
of rights by the national lock
down, I came back loving the GT
and not really understanding or
appreciating the R. Even though
the pegs are further back than
on the GT and the bars more
forward and straighter, my 2m
long chassis and old school riding
style wants the pegs a good 5cm
further back to push me into a
more superbike riding style.
However, after attacking some
proper bendy roads I have a
deeper appreciation for the R and
would possibly say that it is now
my favorite of the two models
- and had I been riding in full
leathers, I might have had a bit
more of a go in the corners than I
did in my road riding gear. I would
love a go around a track on this
thing in the near future. it begs to
be ridden hard and is impressive
to ride in the twisties.
Muscling all that weight and
power through the corners does
require some definite and positive
input and planning from the rider
making it a proper riders bike,
but once you get used to the
handling dynamics of the R and
your low proximity to the tarmac
it is hilariously fun to ride and it
was all the other guys could do
to get me away from the curves
and head for the horizon on
After the lunch stop Glenn had
to arm wrestle the keys, (FOB,
keyless - AAARGH!), away from
me so he could find out what I
was grinning about like
a Cheshire cat. I will however
concede that I would possibly
still opt for the GT on a long road
trip, but on a weekend burn down
to ET for the twisties, I would
definitely go with the R.
In parting … tyre saving traction
control and surprisingly good fuel
On our way back into town we
tried a few robot to robot drag
races and in all instances I had
forgotten to put the big beast
into ‘sports mode’ and ended up
bogging down and almost falling
over when the traction control
kicked in as the back tyre lit up,
great for saving tyre life on a
220nm bike, not so great when
dragging racing your mates off
the line. By the way, lani›s old gen
Rocket ended up sideways more
than once - no fancy electronic
Then we stopped to top up the
tanks. Both bikes were really
close in fuel usage - each used
just on 12 litres of fuel on a 250
km trip - riding with some vigour,
giving us about 25 kays per litre
… if our maffs is correct.
That›s not bad at all for such
Glenn says …
I rode Triumphs first Rocket when it
was first released way back when.
A bike like this simply did /does not
make sense until you ride one. I
could not get my head around this
giant engine in a looong frame - but it
works. Astonishingly well.
Riding Lani›s older gen 3 is still
massive fun - even though it is now
what is considered old tech. We
understand completelly why guys who
own rockets are reluctant to sell them.
Fast forward a generation or so
and Triumph is still at it - but they
have kept the Rockets so fresh
and up to date with all of the latest
tech from brakes to electronics
and suspension. Just go and have
a look at one sometime - it is a
thouroughly modern machine with
some very cool features. Its certainly
not an old fuddy duddy›s bike or
your traditional tractor like cruiser.
These are performance muscle
bikes of some note.
For those of you (and there are a lot),
who have not ridden a Rocket - we
will use a cliche - You need to ride
one to understand. And by the end
of this ride - each of us understand
full well why this bike has so many
A full day of riding and shooting the
breeze on this British muscle passed
in a blink. We live in a great country
with awesome biking roads - and so
many cool little spots to visit.
On the Rocket, you can take your
time and enjoy the scenery - or
you can twist the big girls ear and
really get your heart pumping
through the corners.
Given half a chance - one of them
would certainly be parked in our
But we all differ in opinion about
which model it would be.
What cool, innovative motorcycles.
Not everyones cup of tea for sure
- but go and pay them a visit JHB
side in Kramerville - or you can
kuier at the new CT branch (check
the news section for more info).
And do try to ride one.
Triumph South Africa -
The R makes you want to hooligan
The GT is just so chilled and
Pics by Beam Promotions
Urban exploring on the MT
Last month, we got a call
from the chaps at Linex
Yamaha. “Hey guys, we have
the full MT09 lineup on the
floor – and oh yes!
How about a ride on the new
Cool beans! We roped in a mate
or two (yes we have some)
and headed to the store in
Four gleaming MT’s were lined
up for our perusal, the naked,
the Tracer, the GT (touring
version), and then, of course the
latest addition to the MT family,
the MT03. If you read our last
issue, you would have caught
our impressions of the new
MT03. It really is a nippy, sporty
little package that compliments
Yamaha’s MT lineup so well.
As far as the 09’s go, aside from
the naked MT, which boasted a
full Yoshi exhaust system, and
the GT that had some touring
baggage mounted, the bikes
Let’s chat a bit about the 900’s.
Yamaha has a bike for most
If you’re a typical street bike rider
and do most of your riding in the
real world, the Yamaha MT09-
engine is pretty spectacular for
all applications. In fact we have
often wondered why Yamaha has
not made an adventure machine
with this configuration. It just
The 900cc three-cylinder
Crossplane Crankshaft Concept
CP3 motor produces tons of
low-down torque and is a dream
to ride on the street. The motor
spins up quickly, and seamless
power is delivered all the way
to the limiter. It all happens so
efficiently that in the lower gears
it is easy to hit the rev-limiter
on a regular basis. There are no
flat-spots in the power delivery,
and low-down torque feels
exceptionally good. The MT09-’s
gearbox is generally very smooth,
clutch actuation is soft and gear
changes are smooth and precise.
The MT09- has three
riding modes. The default
STD (standard) mode is
complemented by A mode, for
increased throttle aggression.
B-mode has reduced power and
aggression, which is useful in
low-traction conditions such as
wet weather. Needless to say, this
lot stayed in A-mode for the day.
The MT09-’s electronics are
pretty simple and effective.
ABS is standard and cannot
be switched off or adjusted. In
contrast, the MT09-’s traction
control has two settings, plus off.
Level 1 has the least intrusion.
Level 2 is quite a bit more
intrusive and does come in at
even quite a modest pace.
The Brakes on these MT09-’s are
excellent. There is plenty of feel,
and even the slightly more porky
GT brakes in a hurry. Sometimes
you could feel the ABS pulsing a
little especially on loose surfaced
The KYB suspension offers a pretty
sporty, firm feel. No complaints in
that department! Let’s run through
the different derivatives:
Even though the bikes all have
the same engine and drivetrain,
they feel distinctly different. We’ll
try to explain it…
The naked MT09- is the hooligan
of the show – and quite frankly,
with that Yoshi pipe clearing the
roads ahead, is without a doubt the
most fun of the pack. Sadly, Sean
jumped on to this one first and we
literally needed to donner him with
a crowbar to give the other riders a
turn. It is just so quick, nimble and
fun to ride that you do not want to
climb off. Plenty fast too – and in
the right hands, you’ll be popping
wheelies all over the show at every
The chassis is very sporty, she
turns on a penny rails through the
corners like a GP bike and rockets
out with torque all the way from
the bottom until you can no longer
take the buffeting wind.
It’s an absolute head turner too.
At our stop for a lockdown burger,
we noticed more than a few peeps
sauntering over to leave drool
marks on the tank. If you are keen
on a sporty performer that is so
nippy and fun to ride, then this is
definitely one of the bikes that you
need to look at. It is, quite simply,
The MT09 Tracer:
The ‘C3’ triple is essentially
identical to that of the base
Yamaha MT09- but with slightly
revised and updated mapping to
the different mode settings. It has
a more upright seating position
and more fairings means better
wind protection. It also gets
a bigger tank which is a good
move. The fairing is comprised of
lots of different bits (rather than
a single unit) and incorporates a
variety of different, finishes. The
screen is manually adjustable
through 30mm via two tightening
knobs inside the fairing (plus
there are adventure bike-style
hand guards. It’s a well-specced,
You can never use the word
conservative – but compared
to the naked this bike is a bit
more chilled. It is enormous fun,
handles beautifully and looks
fantastic – but it lacks that
hooligan factor that the naked
delivers. Dare we say that the
Tracer is a more sensible bike?
Well yes, it definitely offers better
protection from the elements,
more rider comfort – and your
pillion will certainly be a lot
The Tracer 900GT:
We had this bike a few months
ago when we spent a full two
days touring about. It’s great
to ride a bike for its intended
purpose. But as an urban ride, we
also had a lot of fun on the GT.
Despite being essentially a halffaired
MT09- with a longer swingarm,
the Tracer GT is a built-forpurpose
all-rounder, designed to
be a perfect do-it-all bike. Fully
adjustable KYB suspension, with
130mm plus travel at both ends,
works well in a new frame with a
longer swingarm and a new subframe.
Once again, Yamaha has tamed
the engine somewhat making it
more suitable for long distance
touring – and everyday street use.
We appreciated the little touches
like the cruise control and heated
We do like the small display
a lot – it is easy to read and
informative – and switching
between riding modes is
pretty simple. Sports-oriented
performance and amenities
including advanced rider aids,
uprated suspension system,
a reshaped height-adjustable
windshield, newly refined
bodywork, an adjustable riding
position with new seats, 12v
electrical outlet, integrated
sidecase mounts, and a generous
18l fuel tank…This is a lot of bike
for your money.
Smooth, capable fast. Not huge
like some of the other tourers out
there, the GT is a very comfortable,
capable ride. Take the panniers
off and use her through the week
to get to and from the office. Pop
them back and hit the long roads
to carve the 22 on the weekends.
Fast, smooth, comfortable. The
MT09 Tracer GT.
Conclusions: The MT lineup has a
bike for everyone!
The MT09 is the hooligan of the
pack – especially with that SWEET
Yoshi pipe. It’s loud,
brash, in your face and sporty.
The Tracer is perhaps a bit more
quick and a real world every
day motorcycle. The GT is
comfortable and user friendly
for day to day use – and on the
weekends you clip on those
panniers, pop your nearest and
dearest on the back and head for
These ones came from Linex
Yamaha – (4000-251 )011
Or chat to your nearest Yamaha
Séan says …
As you wander through life you
have a friends that you just know
who is always just spoiling for a
fight. Not because they are
malicious or anything, it is just
the way they are wired or put
together. Then there is that buddy
who is up for the same, but
knows when to call it a day and
be sensible. And then you have
that mate who has the brawn,
but who uses tact and subtlety to
stay out of trouble…
The MT range has all of those
buddies lined up.
To be fair I spent most of this
test in the saddle of the MT09.
Because I liked it – and I did not
want to get off it.
The MT09 is the naughty buddy,
especially with a loud pipe,
performance filter and etc. It’s the
Oake who starts the fight and the
sees it through. The triple motor
revving into the stratosphere
issues all sorts of challenges
through a loud exhaust pipe and
induction system. The aggressive
styling, reminds me of that mate
in a vest with muscles bulging
and flexing while sparring with
someone. Just swinging a leg
over the saddle and twisting the
throttle gets your blood running
hot, rolling into the first corner
and feeling the nimbleness and
agility of the shorter chassis and
the mad acceleration from the
triple 900cc CP3 engine you just
know “Hier kom ‘n ding!” and
even though you are a little bit
nervous, you just know it is going
to be worth the fun.
I first rode the MT09 way back
when it was first launched at a
mates Yamaha dealership down
in Richards Bay. That particular
model had been fitted with an
Akarapovic exhaust and an
aftermarket air filter and that
at sea level. The performance
from that ‘little’ bike was mind
bending, the sound of her
snorting lungs full of air through
that performance filter and
bellowing out the loud pipe while
trying to point the front wheel at
the heavens and light up the back
wheel at the same time, quickly
had me in lust and fear all at the
same time, a very confusingly
satisfying feeling. I was terrified
that I might die, but I didn’t care
… I just wanted more and more
Fast forward to 2020 and I had
never forgotten that little fling
with the MT09 all those years
ago, so when we were told that
we would be testing the MT09
family from Linex Yamaha in
Randburg I was pretty interested.
The current rendition of the MT09
is a lot more refined, smoother
with all the latest technology
without losing any of its savage
mischief and sense of fun. The
MT09 is a very emotive bike, yes
it is technically excellent as a
corner carving, arm stretching,
butt clenching weapon of a
technical marvel, but for me
motorcycling has always been
about the emotion of riding, the
freedom from the daily bollocks
we have to deal with and about
standing out from the crowd.
And that is exactly what these
types of bikes do for me.
To me naked bikes and the MT09
in particular are proper riders
bikes. As a rider you get the
full freedom of your grin in the
wind, with a comfortable and
natural but still sporty sitting
position and all that with most
of the advantages of a proper
superbike. Like a powerful high
performance screamer engine, an
agile planted chassis, stable and
compliant suspension which is
always adjustable, quick shifter,
changeable and customiseable
fuel mapping, fat grippy wheels
and tyres, great electronic
packages and the whole works.
Danny Mulder founded Linex Yamaha
way back. He is still in the shop spreading
But the most fun of all is trying
to knock your mates out of the
saddle with the loud barking
percussion emitted from that
Yoshi with a well-timed quick
shifter induced gear change.
Go and ride an MT09, you will
understand what I am getting at.
Even the Tracer and the Tracer
GT are great to ride, the
fairings keeps you cocooned
from the wind and the slightly
longer wheel base does make
them a bit more stable under
acceleration and in corners.
And, if you are into the whole
comfy tourer market but still
enjoy superbike like performance
and getting your knee down in ET
then the GT is the way to go.
Get down to your local Yamaha
dealership and work out which is
your favourite MT.
are the greatest peeps!
Aletta Theron received the devastating
diagnoses of cancer on the 24th of
She then underwent three sessions of what they
call the “Red Devil” treatment and thereafter,
twelve sessions of chemotherapy. After
completing six chemo treatments, the results
of Aletta’s scan indicated that the cancer was
gone! This was incredible news and Aletta then
completed her last 6 sessions of chemo.
As expected, the chemo took its toll on her health
and general well-being, yet she always remained
brave and never complained.
On Saturday, the 15th August, a group of
lady bike riders decided to celebrate and
acknowledge Aletta for her courage and strength
of character. The ladies came together from
various parts of our beautiful country – Boksburg,
Rivonia, Pretoria, Fourways and even all the way
from Middelburg, to surprise Aletta. The riders
met at Total Garage on Atlas road to start the
morning with a Mugg & Bean cappuccino and to
plan the surprise meeting. It was then that two
ER24 ambulances pulled into the petrol station
and began chatting to the ladies and admiring
the beautiful -2wheel machines.
Once they heard Aletta’s story and the reason
for our gathering, they did not think twice and
decided to join in our mission to show Aletta
that she is special and admired by all of us for
her bravery and courage. Stephan Schoeman
from Pick ‘n Pay Farrarmere, donated the most
beautiful bouquet of flowers and pot plants to
hand over to Aletta. And what a surprise she got!
The arrival of the bikers and two ambulances
ensured that there was not a dry eye in sight.
The heartfelt emotions that were shared that day
by one brave lady, seven lady bike riders and
four ER24 paramedics will be cherished forever.
It was a brief encounter yet it will stay with Aletta
everyday of her life going forward. One small,
random act of kindness showed Aletta that the
world is filled with love, care and support, at a
time when she least expected it.
“Remember there’s no such thing as a small act
of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no
logical end.” – Scott Adams
Stasie and beyond.
Words & Pics: Séan Hendley & Trevor Webb
On BMW’s 1250’s...
So, about a month back, after a
Not the most inspiring route, but it was out
seemingly endless, (and pointless in my on bikes with a good mate and that was
opinion), lock down with no apparent good enough for us.
end in sight we desperately needed to
shake off the cabin fever blues before
going postal on our local council offices
and thus decided it would be better to
test the limitations of our work travel
permits and headed out for a proper ride.
We managed to scratch the last two bikes
on BMW’s demo fleet, a R1250R-HP and a
RT and decided to head out for a day in the
saddle and under the sun.
The vague plan was to head north through
Pretoria, follow the old road out past
Gerotek, turn right just before Harties
towards Brits and then on to Thabazimbi
with a stop off at Beestekraal Stasie for a
properly decent chow.
That’s pretty much how it all went, only
we did not have a return route planned.
We were just so excited to get out into the
countryside that going home was never
really thought about. So we decided to take
the road out to Warmbaths and then head
back down the 101 through Hammanskraal
and Pretoria North CBD onto the R21 back
to Kempton Park.
The route was chosen for its climate,
road conditions, nominal traffic volumes,
choice of restaurant and the least
likelihood of interfering blue suited
bullies. The climate, because we left
the East Rand in just a little bit over
1℃ temperatures even with the sun
shining brightly overhead - and that side
of the map book is generally warm with
reasonably good quality road surfaces,
not a huge amount of traffic, lots of open
countryside and bushveld and the quaint
and really pleasant Beestekraal Stasie.
Beestekraal is nestled between all sorts
of game farms and holiday resorts and
is owned and operated by the bubbly
On the way to Pretoria we tried to ride
through the Fort Klapperkop reserve area
to get some really nice pics on the bikes,
but it wasn’t to be as the council had
deemed it necessary to shut the gates…
for who knows what bit of splendid
Government logic. The advantage of the
lock down was that there were a whole lot
fewer vehicles on the road.
The disadvantage was that those out and
about are possibly suffering from hypoxia
from breathing in their own CO2 driving
with their mass hysteria masks on and
driving like real carrots.
So, it was fairly quick getting through
Pretoria CBD and out onto the old road
north west to Harties and Brits where the
traffic was a bit more challenging for some
reason. I really enjoy the bit of road
out of Brits that runs in between all the
vegetable farms, with its green fields, fruit
trees and colourful Bouganvilla bushes
with the canals reflecting up the sunlight,
something just really serene and beautiful
riding through there. Then it was a right
turn at Die Blou Bul Slaghuis and onto the
open road to Thabazimbi.
Possibly one of our favourite destinations
whether I am on any kind of bike, (there
are lekker dirt routes and tar routes there),
or in my 4x4 with my camping trailer in
tow. The atmosphere is always chilled
and relaxed, the restaurant is clean with
an old world nostalgia about it, the food is
always brilliant and very well priced with
man size portions - and Lynette is always
so accommodating, her staff super friendly
and efficient. It is always worth a stop in,
even if it is just for a softy and a chocolate.
Lynette says she can do functions there all
you need to do is give her a call on
072 288 2094.
We are thinking of hosting a bike
something there once this flippen lock
down is finally over.
My mate Trevor is a bit of a
tourer fan and very much more
conservative than me and looked
lustfully at the RT when we picked
the bikes up from the office.
I, on the other hand am not and
quite happily let him take the old
man bike. The HP looks like a
small bike and handles like a small
bike for the most part, but man
does it kick off the line with sinus
wobbling torque, especially in
dynamic pro mode. My sinus’s were
quite congested that morning and I
wasn’t quite ready for that kind of
acceleration - problem solved pretty
The R1250R-HP has everything
BMW could throw at it on it except a
windshield and I loved that. Top end
might not be anywhere near 300kmh like
some of the fantastic plastic missiles
out the but the acceleration is mind
bendingly quick as mentioned earlier
and where that comes into play is in
the tight and twisty stuff, booming out
of turns in just about any gear while
still cranked over will bring a rush of
adrenalin and an evil giggle from the
rider, then banging through the gears
using the quick shifter while hanging on
the gas will just intensify that glee and
even the big standard silencer plays
along with a good healthy cough when
changing hard all the while remaining
true on course without any underpants
staining unexpected wobbles.
Sadly though, there were very f
ew of those types of riding opportunities
on this particular route and most of it
was fairly mundane, straight or slightly
curved roads. Nevertheless, this brought
about another sort of fun, especially
because the roads north of Brits were
fairly quiet and in surprisingly good
condition, and that was open wide in top
No, I’m not going to tell you at what speed
that happened as I am not a fan of “The
Blue Lantern Inn” or its innkeepers. A point
to note here is that, even though it has
no wind protection, the sitting position is
condusive to holding on more with you
knees than with your shoulders and arm
Lynette, the ever effervescent Boss Lady
at Beestekraal Stasie.
and thus your neck, shoulders and back
do not seem to take that much strain like
they would on a normal sports bike and
we did about 450km’s for the day with 1
refuelling stop in Warmbaths.
I really enjoyed riding the R1250R-HP…
possibly a bit too much. I understand
exactly why Glenn came back raving
about iot after the SA launch.
At the lunch stop at Beestekraal we
swapped bikes and I got to ride the
‘toppie’ bike, R1250RT.
Earlier this year I had the opportunity
to ride the RS down to Durban and
back solo on a business trip and
enjoyed it so much that I took the
very long way down through Petrus
Steyn, Lindley, Bethlehem, Clarens,
a couple of laps in the Golden Gate
National Park, Little Switzerland,
Bergville, Winterton and eventually
getting onto the N3 close to Mooirivier
and banging down the freeway into
Hillcrest and loved absolutely every
minute onboard the RS.
But true to my predictions the RT is
more civilised and although great for
long straight roads at reasonably high
speeds does take a bit more effort
and concentration to coax some fun
out of it.
Maybe when I am closer to 80 than to
50 will I appreciate this bike more.
72 RIDEFAST MAGAZINE AUGUST 2020
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE AUGUST 2020 73
It is big, it is comfortable, it is powerful, it is
fully kitted out and highly spec’d with all the
electronic gadgets you can imagine, it is
of a very high quality, it is convenient with
its boxes and panniers and it is very pretty
and I reckon with the Mrs. on the back it
would be the perfect bike for long distance
touring … but it is a very conservative bike.
I eventually dialed the cruise control in and
sat back taking in the scenery and to be
fair that was very pleasant in its own right,
but if I had to choose between the RS and
the RT right now, the RS would win hands
concerned about stability. This proved to
be unfounded – like everything else on this
bike the suspension is liquid smooth and
It took me a while to get used to the
position of the side mirrors as they are side
mounted in line with the handlebars. This
means that the rider looks more down and
to the side as opposed to up and to the
side when checking the mirrors.
This is more habit driven and once I had
adapted it felt easy and natural.
This is a big bike – make no doubt about
it, you don’t want to park it on its side and
have to lift it upright without the benefit of
a crane! It is however superbly balanced
and I was pleasantly surprised at how
responsive the engine is.
Power delivery is fantastic – the bike has
an insane ability to put a child-like grin
on the face inside the helmet – and keep
it firmly there – all the while looking at
how quickly other road users disappear
into the distance when playing with the
throttle and checking the mirrors!
We experienced some difficulty figuring out
how to open the panniers. This is on the wrong
side of intuitive logic, but a quick call to a friendly
BMW dealer had this sorted out fairly quickly.
The bike comes with power-shift, (shift
assist). This means that you actually don’t
need to use the clutch when changing
gear. I personally don’t like this, more
of an old school riser. This is possibly
something that would change with more
familiarity - I did use it but very quickly
resumed my normal riding behaviour.
Only much, much later did I realise that
my lack of experience and knowledge of
the new tech on bikes that I didn’t have
to roll off the throttle to change, once I
adapted to keeping the throttle open while
shifting did I realise the true benefit of the
shift assist system.
The bike comes with the usual
assortment of gadgets that you would
expect on a big brand (BMW) luxury
tourer such as this – electric windscreen,
heated grips, heated seat (that was
fun!), electronically set suspension etc.
Overall impressions in short.
Hells bells I want one!
If the transition from my previous bike to the R1250RT took a bit then
you can imagine what it was like going from the RT to the sporty
To start of with the seating position is very different and I felt almost as
if I was crouching over the front wheel. The lack of a fairing takes a bit
of getting used to as it feels as if there is no barrier between yourself
and the afore mentioned front wheel. This bike is a very different
Power delivery is incredible (HP does stand for High Performance..)
and those engineers have obviously spent some time figuring out how
to get huge dollops of power onto the road in a very short space of time.
This is a naked bike – however, the same engineers have also spent
time figuring what the important bits of information are and have
presented them adequately – there was not much that had to be
figured out with regards to where info was located.
I found that I couldn’t get comfortable on this bike. In hindsight this
would probably not be an issue as the bike would be setup relative to
height and riding style (my version of riding style with this bike was to
open the throttle and hang for dear life!)
I am not used to direct wind exposure and I found this a bit challenging
– I never realised that my front end could attract that much wind
resistance (I might need to go on a diet…) Oh, and put Velcro on the
This bike is an insane amount of fun for short hops – anything over
150kms I think would not be much fun for somebody of my biking
And for open road riding the RT would definitely be my choice.
Two vastly different bikes, powered by the same 1250 BMW mill, ridden
by two similarly aged riders but vastly different in their riding styles and
expectations from motorcycles.
Our advice is check out www.bmw-motorrad.co.za for your nearest
dealer and grab a test ride on any of these models yourself.
Rolling into the fuel station in Warmbaths
I fairly kicked Trevor off the HP because
I wanted to have a bit of fun on the
homeward leg of the trip, fortunately he
was only too happy to oblige.
Trevor says ….
What I experienced riding 2 very different
(and fantastic) bikes …
Of the 2 my definite preference is for the
luxurious, powerful R1250RT.
To start off with there was a definite
adjustment period to both bikes as they
are both different riding positions to my
previous bike (Triumph 1200 Adv). The
first bike I rode was the R1250RT. Once I
adapted to the different riding position it
took a short while to get comfortable. The
layout in front of the rider is great – all the
required info is adequately presented and it
wasn’t long before I was familiar with it all.
Seating is relaxed and almost qualifies as
being as comfortable as a Gomma Gomma
couch (I might be revealing my age with
For a long ride (+500kms) this would
definitely be a bike that I would
recommend. We experienced some
surfaces that were less than ideal during
the course of the ride. Initially, due to the
size and weight of the bike, I was a bit
RIDEFAST MAGAZINE AUGUST 2020 75
TYRE TECH TALK
by Bruce de Kock, owner of Bike Tyre Warehouse Group
ALL THE PREMIUM BRANDS
THAT COUNT UNDER ONE ROOF
Chances are good that you will need
to refer back to this feature every once
in a while. There is a lot of info, but it
is important – and relevant, no matter
what bike you ride.
The Basic’s of Reading a Tyre:
Wow! Provinces open & the sun is
shining. Rider’s are getting back onto
their bikes in full force to hit the countryside
and enjoy the open road.
If you have been off your bike for a
while, make sure that you give it a
good scrutineering when you are dusting
it off in the garage.
Critical is to check your tyres if your
bike has been standing for the last
If you’re not sure about the condition
of your tyres, pop into a reputable
motorcycle tyre fitment centre and
have them checked out. The Bike Tyre
Warehouse Fitment Centre Group will
give them a free inspection and check
you have the correct specification
tyres for your bike as well as the correct
tyre pressures before you head off
into the sunrise or sunset.
If you need new rubber, here is a very
basic guide to reading a tyre.
It is important for you to take the time
to run through this content as it will
assist you in making the correct choice
by that I mean not the brand of tyre
but the type of tyre specific to your
bike and your bikes requirement which
could - essentially save your life.
We can’t tell you the number of times
that riders come in with issues concerning
road handling, road noise, tyre
life etc – and it is usually because they
have fitted the incorrect tyre/s to their
bikes, 90% of the time due to
ignorance about the basics of motorcycle
HOW TO READ A TYRE’S MARKINGS :
1.Tubeless: No tube is used, when
mounted on a tubeless rim; abbreviated
2.Rear: Direction of rotation for rear
tire, indicated by an arrow on the tire
3.Michelin: Tire manufacturer
4.73 Load index: For example, 73 corresponds
to a load of 805 pounds (365kg)
6.Pilot Power 3: The tire’s model name
7.190: Nominal section width of the tire,
expressed in millimeters
8.55: Aspect ratio, the sidewall height
as a proportion of the tire width
9.R: Radial construction
10.17: Bead-seat diameter of the wheel,
expressed in inches (1 inch = 2.54 cm)
Let’s kick off with the tyres LOAD INDEX
which is a numerical code associated with
the maximum load that a tyre can carry at
the speed indicated by its Speed Symbol
under service conditions specified by the
This is important, and more especially so if
you are carrying more than just the weight
of the bike and yourself. Loading your panniers,
the wife’s kitchen sink, pillion etc. all
has a dramatic effect on the tyres capability
to do what it needs to under load.
Again the amount of times bikes come
in with tyres that are totally incapable of
carrying a load, sport touring heavy weight
The table to the right is self-explanatory
so have a look see and check that the
tyres you have on your bike are the
correct load index.
Just as important is the SPEED INDEX
which indicates the maximum speed at
which the tyre can carry a load corresponding
to its Load Index under
service conditions specified by the
Load index Load index Speed index
Every bike requires tyres with a specific
speed index. The table below defines the
maximum speed at which a tyre can carry
the maximum load indicated by its load
index under the conditions of use specified
by the manufacturer.
The maximum speed is clear when the
speed rating is defined e.g. J = 100, S =
180, H = 210 etc.
The (W) speed index is not restricted,
(known as unbounded, shown by the use
of brackets around the speed index letter,
the tyre manufacturer must be able to
supply the maximum speed capability of
It is important to know the maximum speed
capability of the bike before a (W) speed
rated tyre is fitted. If the bike is capable of
a higher speed than the tyre is, the rider
MUST be warned of this.
This is also a consideration for off road
biased DUAL SPORT TYRES such as the
Michelin Anakee Wild.
In some cases the speed index is lower on
the Anakee Wild than the speed capability
of the bike and the OE tyre fitment.
Riders MUST be warned of this fact yet
again ignorant tyre sellers do not do this,
so it all comes down to you as the rider
knowing the basics and servicing your
bikes tyre requirements by professionals
who specialize in motorcycle tyres and
have the knowledge to advise you on the
correct set up for your bike.
I have decided to tackle quite a few topics
concerning tyre technology related to
capability & safety in the future. There are
some specific subjects I have written about
over the years which now need revised
detail as the capability and technology of
motorcycles has increased substantially
and so does the tyre technology therefore
it’s about updating and increasing your
So many times I read the write ups on the
new bikes hitting the market, most of the
time mention of the tyres is only made if it
is a well-known brand that is OEM fitment
or if a brand importer has sponsored tyres
for the bike test. Sometimes I have noticed
that even the test tyres sponsored have
not been the correct specification tyre type
for the bike.
Education is key and the Bike Tyre Warehouse
Group is driving motorcycle tyre
education in your interests; we are always
available to discuss your concerns, so pop
in at any of our branches and talk to the
A Big Thank you to Ryan Robertson –
Business Development Manager, Auto
Cycle Centre JHB for sponsoring this
September Tyre Tech Talk in the interests
of promoting rider safety.
More than most, bikers have felt the lock
down as we are so used to our freedom
and open roads so enjoy the sunshine &
Bruce de Kock – Managing Director - Bike
Tyre Warehouse Group Holdings Pty Ltd
Tel: 011 205 0216 • Cell: 073 777 9269 / 083 467 1349
Unit 9 Sable Park, 997 Richards Drive, Midrand
Facebook @BikeTyreWarehouse • Twitter @biketyrewhse
Schultz leads the charge 2nd
McFadden - a good 3rd place in both superbike races.
Nicole van Aswegen back
racing on her Ducati.
Michael White - always
It goes without say that the national lockdown has really
buggered everyone around when it comes to racing, but things
are starting to happen again.
The Zwartkops track hosted their Extreme Festival on the 8th of
last month. Our Neil Phillipson went along to capture the boys
and gals in action…
Jonty Collard, Appanna Ganapathy.
Jordan Agliotti on the charge.
Race 1 in the ZX10 Cup, Veteran Graeme Van Breda led from the
Jordan Agliotti held second from Michael Smit. Agliotti fell back
down the field with Smit taking second and holding on till the end.
The race was well spread out and it was a fairly emphatic win for
In race 2, Gareth Bezuidenhout was on Van Breda’s heels for the
entire race. Smit put on a great show to fill the 3rd spot on the
podium. The second race was far tighter with some great dices.
In Race 1, Clint Sellar let from pull off, followed closely by Garrick
Vlok and David McFadden.
McFadden slowly fell back and kept his third. Mike white came in
in 4th place.
Saw McFaddon lead from the line with Sellar and Vlok close
behind. For the first few laps the lead changed constantly.At
about half way, Sellar got to the fronand managed to open a gap
between the other two. McFadden opened a gap for Vlok and
finished in 3rd.
The consistant White came in 4th.
Bike Days @ Zwartkops: e: email@example.com w: www.
• 23rd August – BruchCruise Sunday
• 20th September – BrunchCruise Sunday
• 25th October - BrunchCruise Sunday
• 15th November - BrunchCruise Sunday
• 13th December - BrunchCruise Sunday
Hein McMahon on the Beemer.
Clint Sellar leads Garrick Vlok.
He took both races.
Mcfadden leads the start of the
2nd race - ZX10 Cup.
The start of Race 2.
Michael Smit, 2nd in first race.
3rd in the second.
Van Breda took the day in
Teddy Brooks consistant top
GET A GRIP ON 2020!
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Get a Grip on 2020! Email Nicole Swanepoel at
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