Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Taking a pillion on a Suzuk Hayabusa 1300

A review by Ivy Bowman,
Welcome to the web site of speed. So you want to find out what it is like to ride pillion on a Hayabusa.

You want to experience speed, but you don't want to be the one up front. Well which bike would you choose. I chose the Hayabusa being a bit of a speed freak. The first thing that I did was to find an experienced rider or should I say 'pilot' as these bike do seem to touch the road, they seem to 'fly'.

My 'pilot' for the day was Nigel. Nigel is not just any rider, he is police trained (ex bike cop), he is also an Advanced Riding Instructor.

Nigel arranged to loan the Hayabusa on the following Thursday from D & K the motorcycle specialists for Stoke-on-Trent, what more could I ask for ?. Thursday came and I thought ''what have I done ?''. I had arranged to meet Nigel at D & K at 10 am, I didn't sleep very much the night before, couldn't keep it off my mind what it would be like to fly without wings. Parking up my bike, I turned around to see Nigel with a beaming smile on his face and by his side a black & red Hayabusa. I knew then that I had made the right choice. Nigel asked '' well are you ready to ride ?'', the sky was overcast and there was a threat of rain. We stopped to pick up some petrol and then headed off onto the open road.

Nigel tried me out at first on some shallow bends and then when he'd got used to the way that I rode pillion, he went for it on some of the more sharper bends. We took some tight bends which would have been bad enough on a track, but with cars coming at you sometimes over the centre line could be horrendous, nevertheless Nigel took it all in his stride. Well he should, I have not mentioned so far that Nigel is an advanced riding instructor. I could not see the speedometer, but I don't think we broke the speed limit, it just felt on the back as though we were going twice as fast.

He made a pit-stop and discussed the ride so far. I made a remark that it was the first time that I thought that I should have been wearing knee sliders. Nigel just laughed and said that we still had the return journey to make. By the time we started off on the return journey, the roads had become wet and greasy however the bike took all that we could through at it. It just purred like a big cat and seemed to be saying ''what would you like me to do next ?''.

When we returned to D & K, Nigel still had not ceased to surprise me, he rode the Hayabusa through the garage between rows of parked bikes with the isles no wider than the Hayabusa and I just closed my eyes, for the first time that day. After parking the bike Nigel asked ''Well did you like that'' , what could I say, I replied ''Yes and when can we do it again''. Which bike next ! Thanks Nigel.

IVY BOWMAN
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