Red for the Road

Like this road, yesterday morning, 5:00 am.

Like this road, yesterday morning, 5:00 am.

This is a long-term review of my Ducati SuperSport S motorbike. I’ve had it since last fall and started riding it exclusively a few weeks ago. The cow rests for the summer.

These two motorcycles of mine couldn’t be more different. My son, who has no connection to motorcycles at all but a deep understanding of systems (mathematician) once characterized the BMW R 1200 GS as ugly but full of solid German engineering solutions. It would be tempting to characterize the Ducati as beautiful, but being in the shop for repairs. Some years ago, that prejudice was well-earned, but no longer. In it’s first 8000 km, it has worked flawlessly and seen the shop only for tire changes.

Beautiful it is, though!

Beautiful it is, though!

It’s a bit hard to do it justice in a photo, but visualize this: Take a Ducati Monster with it’s trellis frame and put a snub-nosed version of the Panigale fairing on it. Leave the single-sided swingarm and pair it with a 2 in 1 in 2 exhaust on the other side. Put the clip-on handlebars on risers for a more relaxed seating position than on the Panigales. There you have it.

Loose some style, gain some road comforts!

Loose some style, gain some road comforts!

Do I miss the Panigale? Not since it tried to kill me. No, seriously, at 54 and overweight, a racing bike and the associated Walter-Mitty-esque idols are no longer appropriate.

And I've yet to get a knee down. This is how far I got in Barcelona, and it hasn't improved.

And I’ve yet to get a knee down. This is how far I got in Barcelona, and it hasn’t improved.

Speaking of Walter Mitty, you know who else is overweight, doesn’t get his knee down and is FAST? Michael Dunlop. 😉

4365

From an article in The Guardian.

He rides on the road on some island in the Irish Sea …

I’m not as brave as him, nor do I have that family history but the daydream analogy still makes sense to me with regards to the Ducati SuperSport. It is made for the road. If you’re sure about no oncoming photo opportunities, you can wring it out in fourth gear on some small country roads and have some Isle-of-Man fun. I don’t know what the two top gears are for, the Autobahn, I suppose. No fun awaits there, but these small roads with their challenging curves to be ridden exact, they speak to me. The “furniture” at their borders gives me respect and thrills, I have to admit. Riding the SuperSport on them is a blast!

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