How fast is your bike really?

So I made the mistake the other week of watching motorcycle content from across the pond. Against my better judgement that is, I find European and Asian motorcycle journalism to be much more objective. Indian motorcycle in particular is genuinely on the ball vastly more than UK based, they seem to keep an eye on international releases as well as its own domestic releases….Anywho….

A particular group of of reviewers from North America were meant to be reviewing the Royal Enfield GT 650, not exactly my favourite RE (although you know I love an Enfield!), I thought I would give it a watch. A few minutes in and one reviewer described it as “slow”, ok I’m pausing from what my usual rant would be about the complete lack of objectivity in describing a Cafe racer styled bike as “slow”. Ignoring the fact that’s about as helpful as calling a BMW GS “heavy” for review purposes, it highlights a strong and very prominent point when it comes to reviewing bikes: Actually how fast is your bike?

Neither fast or furious.

Bull by the horns here, do you do track days? Yes/no here folks it’s a really simple question. I follow some very fast and highly talented people on twitter who do, apart from being absolutely nuts, I’ve no doubt they are getting the absolute best from their bikes and can push several hundred miles an hour on a corner.

For the rest of us the answer is 70, just 70. If you’re on a 125, you might just make it.

Let’s be fair, unless you’re in one of those rich European countries, the last time the council filled in the pot holes, there was a guy in a white suit with his foot up against a window.

Sorry folks, we spent the road budget on buying a golf club. (This actually happened)

So you’ve got your replica race bike (CBR9001RRRR-RRRR or equivalent) and while giving it a good ‘Brarp’ down the high street, somehow dodging a surface that looks like it recently featured in the destruction of a Russian tank detachment and you get to the open road. Miles upon miles of tarmacked dual carriageway heaven just waiting for you to open the throttle….. But wait….

The wild speed camera in it’s natural environment.

Worse still, some of these are theit average speed cousins so you can’t even cruise past and then ‘Brarp’ all the way to the next one and pretend you were doing 70 the whole time. Then the envelope of suffering hits the doormat and the fines spill out.

Bastard” – Sean Bean.

That’s not even counting other road users, I legitimately saw the most Norfolk thing last week. A tractor overtaking another tractor on the dual carriageway, neither backing down and blocking both lanes for a good few miles. I’m not even mentioning the local old Doris who drives everywhere at 45mph. Motorway, D/C, single lane national, 30mph zone etc. etc.

So realistically speed is as useful as a Tesla in a power cut, as relevent as CC’s in an EFI market, as pointless as a ‘weight-watchers’ meal after 15 pints of lager…..

Ride what you want, but unless you’re on the track, your top speed is 70.

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