Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Let's Go For A Ride

A ride on a KTM 1290 Super Duke R motorcycle piloted by professional racer Jeremy McWilliams at the Ascari track in Marbella.

This is a street bike, unmodified for track use.  A few things to watch:

How smooth McWilliams is.  The bike simply flows around the track.
The speedometer.  It's the digital numbers in the box, shown in kph.
The tachometer.  The red light warns of maximum rpms, time to shift.
The clouds.  When you see clouds and not the track, the bike is wheelstanding, sometimes at 200kph.  The engine is a torque monster.
The other riders.  McWilliams is a superb racer.  He sets up his passes and executes corners flawlessly.  the other riders are riding the same bike as McWilliams.  He's that much better a rider than they are.
Let's go.

I used to be fast, but never anywhere near this good.  Not even close.


Shouting Thomas said...

Wheelies at 125 mph?

God no! I'm a put-put rider.

Killing or maiming myself on my Harley was never the objective.

Damned Road King is getting pretty heavy and tough to handle for an old man.

Michael Haz said...

ST - I just traded for a Victory. Surprising difference in the center of gravity.

Sixty Grit said...

Okay Haz, now you've done it - rpms - really? RsPM - it's built into the abbreviation.

Shouting Thomas said...

The new Harleys feature an even higher center of gravity than the older models.

Don't know when Harley made the change. The new models seem to me like they almost want to pop up and remain upright.

The new Road Kings, however, weigh almost 800 lbs. as opposed to my 700 lb. 2003 model. Wouldn't want to try to pick up a new one after a drop. And, sooner or later, you do have to pick the damned things up.

Michael Haz said...

Sixty - RsPM means Rhonda's pre- menstrual. Don't confuse things.

Calypso Facto said...

Ooof ... don't watch that on full screen while eating or you'll feel like your cookies are trying to climb out. Great rider who obviously knows every inch of that track.

Which model, Haz? I've been on a Hammer since I decided I needed to find a more age-appropriate bike than my old CBR. (Though I still miss that thing often ... sigh.)

Michael Haz said...

Calypso - 2013 Cross Country Tour. I traded a BMW K1200LT because either the BMW got taller or I got shorter and I could no longer flat-foot it at stop signs. Actually flopped over at a stop sign once. No damage other than to my ego.

It raised a question, though. What would happen if I tipped over a thousand miles from nowhere and broke a foot or ankle? Since my wife and I take rides to the middle of nowhere I decided I needed a bike with a lower seat height.

The candidates were Honda GL1800 (to heavy and too expensive), HD Ultra (too high a center of gravity, too expensive, dealers won't deal) or the Victory (lower c of g, dealer offered a 15% discount, plenty of room to haul Mrs. Haz's stuff).

I bought the Vic and did the usual tinkering to make it fit my body - different seat and bars, relocated foot controls, etc. It now has 5,500 miles on it (two months riding) and I admit that I like it much more than I thought I would. Great engine, aluminum frame, low maintenance, fun to ride, etc.

The engine has plenty of power, but I may swap out the cams and fuel controller in Spring --- just because.

bagoh20 said...

You might drop your Ol'lady riding like that.

Michael Haz said...

@Calypso - Here's a link to Steve Roland's story of his Iron Butt ride - 49 states in 10 days.

He lives in my area. Nice guy, Iron Butt Legend. All on Victory bikes. Zero mechanical issues.

Calypso Facto said...

Sounds like a sweet bike, Haz. Glad you're getting out and enjoying it. And of course customization ... gotta make it your own!

Great documentation by Roland. Quite the adventure and accomplishment. Not for me; I'm much more of a fair-weather rider. I agree with the durability of the Victories though. I've got 4 years on mine without any issues at all.

Lem said...

That guy was passing everybody like they were standing still.

Michael Haz said...

He was, Lem. A skilled rider on a 400 pound bike that has 150 horsepower can make anyone seem slow.

Chip Ahoy said...

\o/ Hurrah!

The guy in the gold jacket is a penis-nose for actively aggressively blocking three times like that.

Aridog said...

Since my first and last bike was a late 50's Zundapp ballshaker, I had to restrain my speed and stick to horses...among the loves of my life. In my world the excitement of the cross country phase of three day eventing was something you "lived." Those obstacles being jumped are solid, they do not fall down like in "show jumping" ...hit them and you are going down, both horse and rider. I broke my left forearm as a teenager on one of those three log numbers when I timed it all wrong coming out of a sharp turn in the dark woods...horse and I went upside down and he landed on my arm. Whoops.

Had I had truly fast motorcycles I'd not doubt have killed myself on some moto somewhere.

Michael Haz said...

@Ari - You owned a Zundapp? I knew someone did; you must be the guy.

Beautiful video. Gorgeous horse, very skilled rider.

My niece trains jumpers. Here is a link.

Aridog said...

Michael ... your niece has arrived among an elite crowd of horse folks.

Ask your niece if she "trains jumping horses" or "trains people to ride jumping horses?" A long ago teacher of mine said (more or less) "...horses already know how to jump, but people need to be trained to do it with them in a coordinated fashion."

Michael Haz said...

@Ari - Thanks. She talks nicely to the horses and yells at the riders.

Sixty Grit said...

I think I was channeling Rit Mo earlier. I am better now.

I went for a long drive, down to the Deep River. Drove very fast - many mphs, my truck gets pretty good mpgs.

Now I will STFUs.

rhhardin said...

I take it the consistent bank angle is at the limit of tire traction.

Or is it the skids not hitting the ground.

I preferred 60 degrees goofing around in an airplane. No tire problem.

Michael Haz said...

@rhardin: Tire traction is the limiting factor. Motorcycle tires are designed for leaning over, and usually have a stickier rubber compound on the outer edges for better traction.

There is a limit, however, and a 'curb' is built into the tire to limit how far over the bike can be leaned. The riders who hang off the inside of a bike and put their knee near the ground do so in order to (1) shift the center of gravity, and (2) have a knee close to the ground in case the bike slides out. The rider's suit has hard plastic pucks on each knee for this purpose.

The triangular red light you saw flashing on the instrument panel indicates that traction control was in use. The engine computer sensed too much wheel slip and momentarily reduced power so the bike didn't slide out because of excess wheelspin.

Michael Haz said...

Sixty Grits: It's all okay.

Aridog said...

Now flat dirt oval track racers (they all crazy) need something else on their Hot Shoe. Knee pucks optional. :)

deborah said...

No. Way. :)

Aridog said...

May Bob Hunt, the duck-dick photographer, get the clap.

JAL said...

Ari -- come to Rolex! We can meet for dinner and walk the course!

Doug Payne one of the 2012 riders wore a helmet cam.

One year I saw Andrew Hoy slapping hands as he galloped down a lane. What a hoot.

Here in NC we have another 3 day in early April (The Fork) that has most of the Kentucky riders "warming" up ... much smaller venue, very accessible.

Fabulous horses. Amazing athletes. Very cool.

JAL said...

BTW Haz -- what's the cup in the right with the fluid in it (one on the left is empty?)

And yes ... that was a cool ride.

Michael Haz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Haz said...

JAL, the cup on the right holds brake fluid; the one on the left holds clutch fluid. The fluids are different colors to help prevent putting the wrong fluid in the wrong cup.