New Post has been published on http://motorcygal.com/2014-kawasaki-zx-6r-performs-beautifully-in-twisties-of-infamous-westside-road/
2014 Kawasaki ZX-6R performs beautifully in twisties of infamous Westside Road
By Marissa Baecker
Supersport (aka “crotch rocket”) bikes are historically designed for one purpose – racing. Built for speed, the rider triangle is intentionally compact and not necessarily conducive to taller riders and being that I stand at 5’11″, I have intentionally shyed away from these type of bikes.
I wrapped up last riding season spending two days with Keith Code and California Superbike School on the Las Vegas Motor Speedway learning the parameters of supersport motorcycling and developing high speed cornering and braking skills. I pushed my limits well beyond what I have been comfortable with and gained invaluable knowledge about what bikes can do as well as what I can do riding one. Naturally, this season I wanted to utilize my new-found abilities and give supersport riding another shot.
West Kelowna’s Valley Moto Sport owner, Barry Wellings, handed me the key to a 2014 Kawasaki ZX-6R ABS and said, “There are no miles on it so watch the tires. The guys just put it together. They don’t stick around very long, riders love this model.”
Standing before me was a brand new, sexy, full fairing motorcycle in pearl flat crystal white (which matched my Alpinestars leathers and Arai helmet beautifully) with flat black accents. Other ABS colours for 2014 include that signature Kawasaki lime green and candy burnt orange. Metallic spark black is available without ABS. However, with the recent 2015 announcement, it appears that the staple lime green with ebony accents is rider’s only choice.
Once seated in the 32.7” saddle, I was pleasantly surprised how well I fit the bike. My thighs molded right below the beveled tank as my knees gripped either side. After a few road miles, I was even more surprised with the comfortable angles of my wrists while my gloves gripped the bars and how natural it was to keep my elbows tucked in. Steering was effortless and I truly felt like one with the bike.
A quick $13 fill up (when was the last time $13 filled anything?) of the 17 litre fuel tank and I was off for a two and half hour ‘lap’ around Okanagan Lake. The grand finale – 70 km of twisties along the thrilling rider favourite, Westside Road.
Opening throttle on the highway, and with the Kawasaki traction control switched off, this middleweight was quick to let me know that despite being the smallest sibling of the ZX lineup (10R and 14R), this 636cc liquid cooled in-line four, four-stroke produced enough torque to kick start my heart. “Let the good times roll!” all of a sudden had a whole new meaning.
A half hour of sweeping curves and spectacular scenery riding the hills above Kalamalka Lake, I settled in without any complaints from my body. Another ZX rider appeared in my rear-view and remained flanked to my right all the way to Vernon. At the first stop light, he pulled along-side, and while ogling the bike from behind his full face queried, “Is that the new 6?” New because in 2014 the ZX-6R is known as the 636 referring to a displacement boost from the previous 599cc. Our bike conversation continued at each traffic light until we headed in opposite directions as I made a turn onto Westside Road at the Head of the Lake.
There are several warning signs along this lakeside stretch reminding travelers of tricky navigation while enticing riders to the point where the road is listed as a favourite in popular rider travel books. Riding mach III with your hair on fire is not required to fully enjoy this piece of fresh pavement. Those that have tried, and failed, are marked at several points on both sides with make-shift memorials.
I kept a good pace within my limits and was exhilarated with the handling and performance of the ZX-6R. Kawasaki Traction Control gave me peace of mind knowing it was easily activated with a the quick thumb push of the button and a quick confirming glance at the digital instrument panel. ABS evenly slowed the bike down entering the curves and the low-mid range torque consistently pulled me out of the tight corners no matter what gear.
The bike weighs in at 192 kg (about 428 lbs.) but rides like it weighs half that amount. I pulled back into the parking lot after about 150 km of fun where Wellings was standing with an eager rider. “The tires are warmed up,” I smiled and I handed the key to Wellings as he walked the eager rider over to the bike.
I later called Wellings to make arrangements to do some riding photos with the ZX-6R as the sun went down and wasn’t the least bit surprised to hear the bike had been sold. MSRP is about $12,500 after manufacturer incentives.
New Post has been published on http://motorcygal.com/suzuki-v-strom-1000-is-economical-affordable-and-will-take-you-as-off-road-as-you-want-to-go/
Suzuki V-Strom 1000 is economical, affordable and will take you as off-road as you want to go
By Marissa Baecker
My spirit for adventure was awakened the moment the 2014 Suzuki V-Strom 1000 SE was unloaded from the trailer. Bright red and adventure-ready, the road less traveled was calling my name. Equipped with hand guards, centre stand, side panniers, and a nine-way adjustable windscreen right off the showroom floor, the SE is ready for the long haul before your imagination can decide where to take you.
I closed the pannier, plugged in my iPhone to the 12-volt outlet, set the trip meter to zero, and navigated the quickest way out of downtown Vancouver I could find, intent on racking up 800KM in search of the smell of fresh cedar. The V-Strom is still the original tried and true bike it always has been, but it has had a makeover for 2014.
A redesigned fuel-injected engine, with increased cooling capacity, serving up low and mid-range torque for those tricky off road areas, redesigned exhaust, transmission tweaks plus a chassis and suspension upgrade, all equating to an eight-kilogram trim down from the previous model and improved stability.
Recent increased speed limits on B.C. highways showed off the V-Strom’s sport handling and the inverted front forks absorbed every slight bump. I slipped through the gears and into sixth for a smooth ride as the city skyline sank rapidly in my rear view and the mountains grew taller every passing mile.
Roaring past sprawling pastures of livestock and agriculture, my adventure mirage was intermittently halted by an offensive slap in the face of freshly spread manure enveloping the Trans-Canada Highway through Chilliwack. No visor or helmet could rescue me — just a twist of the wrist and my new found ability to hold my breath longer than originally anticipated.
Having survived the sensory assault, I resettled in the saddle just in time to enjoy the onslaught of sweeping curves on the approach into the mountains. I was reacquainting myself with Mother Nature when Aeolus, the Greek God of Wind, decided to take over in the rocky canyons of the ascent up the Coquihalla highway (now coined the Highway Thru Hell by Discovery Channel). A quick push of the adjustable windscreen sent the wind up and over but even so, no better time to exit the pavement for a more sheltered experience.
Over the dirt and into the woods, the digital fuel consumption and range meter gave me the confidence to explore the dirt path. The banks of Sowaqua Creek were ready to burst with rapidly flowing mountain runoff as I rode alongside wondering if I would get an opportunity to cross when I arrived in the clearing of a private canyon paradise whose occupants were lounging creek-side and I would ponder crossing no more.
After a dirt-bike slide u-turn, a quick push of the button turned on the traction control and my rear tire gripped the gravel as opposed to spitting it. Some knobby tires would be an asset for this terrain. Back on the highway, I accelerated past the coughing 18-wheelers up the ascent to the 1,250-metre summit. Crisp mountain air wafted through my visor after a 10-degree temperature drop and the road continued to ebb and flow from right to left. I marveled that my backside had yet to complain after 2.5 hours in the newly shaped carved out seat.
Near the 1,728-metre Pennask Summit of the Okanagan Connector Hwy97C, I again exited the pavement for a descent through Bear Creek. The sun was dipping and it wasn’t long before I tried out the ABS and stared down a path-crossing cow moose still keeping my hand on the throttle in case she decided to introduce herself. We watched one another with a spacious distance until she meandered back into the brush and I continued on my way thinking, “This is what it’s all about.”
#ferrari 458 #Italia on #vw lot?? #nottradingitin #supercar in my dreams
@hondapowerca #VFR800 headlights provide so much improved visibility that you don’t want to get off the road. On a hot summer night under clear skies and a full moon I was still riding past midnight. Thank you technology! #motorcycles #motorcygal #summer #riding #bikes (at Gasthaus on the Lake)
Great night for riding @alpinestars @hondapowerca #CBR500 #girlsonbikes #motorcycles #summer @beautifulbc
New Post has been published on http://motorcygal.com/2015-indian-chief-offers-two-tone-paint-scheme/
2015 Indian Chief offers two tone paint scheme
Keeping in theme with its classic vintage look, Indian motorcycles has revealed that the 2015 Chiefs will offer two-tone paint. If you haven’t had a chance to ride one yet, and are planning to be in Sturgis, SD, the 2015 line-up will be on display and available for demo rides at the 74th annual Sturgis Motorcyle Rally from August 2 to August 9. Dealers will see them by the Fall of 2015. CLICK HERE TO READ 2014 VINTAGE CHIEF REVIEW.
Featured Two-Tone Colors for 2015 are:
- The 2015 Indian Chief Classic available in Indian Motorcycle Red/ Thunder Black. (Also available in solid Indian Motorcycle Red)
- The 2015 Indian Chief Vintage available in Indian Motorcycle Red/ Thunder Black, Indian Motorcycle Red/ Ivory Cream, and Willow Green/ Ivory Cream. (Also available in solid Indian Motorcycle Red and solid Thunder Black)
- The 2015 Indian Chieftain available in Indian Motorcycle Red/ Thunder Black, Indian Motorcycle Red/ Ivory Cream, and Springfield Blue/ Ivory Cream. (Also available in solid Indian Motorcycle Red and solid Thunder Black)
If you are in Sturgis:
Indian Motorcycle Display, 3rd & Lazelle St., August 2 -August 9, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. daily
Motorcycling fans are invited to stop by and explore the Indian Motorcycle display in Downtown Sturgis to check out the entire lineup of 2015 models. The Indian Motorcycle exhibit will offer hands-on product demonstrations, apparel sales, accessory displays, and much more. The display will also feature the American Motor Drome company with live “Wall of Death” show where daredevils risk life and limb to thrill and entertain Sturgis attendees. Shows performed daily, on the hour; starting at 11 a.m. with the last show at 5 p.m. Tickets are complementary, courtesy of Indian Motorcycle. Riders can also enter for a chance to win a 2015 Indian motorcycle.
Indian Motorcycle Demo Experience, I-90 and Exit 30, August 2 -August 9, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily
Sturgis Rally attendees can be among the first to ride the all-new 2015 Indian Motorcycle lineup at the Indian Motorcycle Demo Experience at I-90 at Exit 30. Rides will be led daily with the first ride leaving at 9:15 a.m., last ride at 4:30 p.m. Riders must be 18 years of age and must provide proof of endorsement along with a helmet and appropriate riding attire.
Indian Motorcycle the Crossroads at Sturgis Buffalo Chip, August 2 -August 9, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Riders can also explore the new Indian Motorcycle display at the Crossroads to learn about the model year 2015 lineup, the brand’s heritage and sign up to win a 2015 Indian motorcycle.
Indian Motorcycle Night at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip, Sunday, August 3 – Buffalo Chip, 8:30 p.m.
Indian Motorcycle will host a party on Sunday, August 3 at Sturgis’ famous Buffalo Chip, known as the Largest Music Festival in Motorcycling™. In addition to southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd performing live on the Chip’s main stage, Indian Motorcycle will take the stage to celebrate and showcase its all-new 2015 Indian motorcycles. For details and ticket information, visit www.buffalochip.com.
Indian Motorcycle Owners’ Activities
Owners of new and heritage Indian motorcycles will receive VIP treatment throughout the rally week starting with the Indian Motorcycle Owner Event on Sunday, August 3. Owners are encouraged to stop by for complementary lunch at the newly opened Indian Motorcycle of Sturgis dealership from 12 p.m.–2 p.m, followed by the opportunity to participate in any of a number of exciting planned rides. All owners are also invited to take part in Indian Motorcycle Night at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip for dinner and an evening of live music and enjoyment. Throughout the weeklong rally, Indian Motorcycle owners can present their key to receive a special complementary gift at the Lazelle St. display, sign up for the Indian Motorcycle Riders Group, and much more. Owners are encouraged to watch their emails for information on how to sign-up.
Indian Motorcycle Sturgis Dealership
2106 Lazelle St.
Visit the newly opened Indian Motorcycle dealership in the heart of downtown Sturgis. The opening of the new Indian Motorcycle Sturgis marks the first time that the brand has had a dedicated retail presence in Sturgis for decades.
Open daily for retail sales and service during the rally from 8AM – 7PM
Sturgis® is a registered trademark of Sturgis Area Chamber of Commerce
Sturgis Buffalo Chip® is a registered trademark of Buffalo Chip Campground LLC
New Post has been published on http://motorcygal.com/14-year-old-stunt-rider-opens-vintage-flat-track-races-with-ride-through-firewall/
14 year old stunt rider opens Vintage Flat Track races with ride through firewall
As we age we all remember the days when we were young and fearless. For 14 year old Williams Lake resident, Danielle Schultz, she is living it.
At the 26th annual vintage flat track races held at O’Keefe Ranch in Vernon, B.C. July 5, 2014, Danielle wanted to pay tribute to her late daredevil father, Dan Schultz. Dan had been a stunt performer and vintage flat track racer for several years before he died when Danielle was a mere 9 years old. Since his passing the event has held a memorial ride in his honour but this year, Danielle wanted to do something more personal to pay tribute to her father – perform one of his stunts – ride through a wall of fire on her vintage Kawasaki 125cc motorcycle.
Even though she had practiced riding through flames in the grass at home, this would be the first time she would attempt an entire wall of flames and the first time she would do it publicly.
At the peak of the afternoon heat, 30 degrees, Danielle stepped into her fire retardant suit, warmed up with three laps around the track and then made a go for the wall. Onlookers cheered her on (and held their breath) as Danielle approached the wall of flames and immediately burst into cheers after she successfully came out the other side.
After her success, I asked her what was going through her mind as she approached the wall, “I was nervous about the timing,” she said. “Timing is everything. I had to get my head down and I was worried that the wall had been lit too soon. After I broke through, I had a board stuck to my bike and I almost hit the fence.”
When asked if she would do it again, there was no hesitation, “Yes! I want more flames next time though!”
Proud of her success, Danielle autographed remaining charred pieces of the wall for fans and then went on to win the first heat of the open 125cc class vintage flat track race.
#harleydavidson #StreetBob #Motorcycles #riding #beautiful #britishcolumbia
New Post has been published on http://motorcygal.com/whirl-wind-romance-with-2014-harley-davidson-street-bob/
Whirl wind romance with 2014 Harley-Davidson Street Bob
By Marissa Baecker
The sun began its descent to the West and turned the sky that beautiful orange glow as my love affair with Street Bob began to flourish – the 2014 Harley-Davidson Street Bob that is – and it was love at first ride.
I admit, I was skeptical to return to the bars of a Dyna after having my heart broken by the vibration issues with the Switchback some six months earlier but decided to get back in the Harley saddle and try to find love again. Just looking at it reminded me of a previous love I had several years earlier with the Cross Bones.
No surprise I was drawn to it – a muscly ‘bare bones street custom’ with a blacked out powertrain with textured covers. The Street Bob was refined where it needed to be yet rough around the edges. Add some styling attitude with gun metal tank medallions in classic iconic fonts, a hint of chrome, dual, straight cut, shorty, chrome mufflers and chopped rear fender and this bobber was a looker with bad boy charm. If this relationship was going to go anywhere however, Street Bob would have to offer more than just good looks.
I have always had an affinity for the bad boys but I quickly discovered that Street Bob had a deep, dark soul. With an air-cooled, Twin Cam 103.1 cubic inch, rubber mounted, V-Twin (1690 cc) producing 98.8 ft pounds of low end torque, being spontaneous was a non-issue. Any whimsical thought could be realized with a simple twist of the wrist and paired with a six-speed transmission, he was ready to travel and capable of a more meaningful relationship than just coffee dates around town.
I wrapped my hands around the grips of the mini-ape hangers and headed West for as far as the 4.7gl/17.8l fuel tank would take me and with 43 MPG, I set my sights on the beach for a romantic sunset. Rubber mounted risers absorb any unwanted bar vibration thereby lessening arm fatigue over time. The evening air was riddled with flying insects and I could feel them hit my visor over and over again. A windshield would be a welcomed long distance addition, especially if you are a shorty helmet wearer but as I am a girl who likes protection, my full face Shoei Qwest was just fine.
Mile after mile, my perfectly sun-painted silhouette roared over the black top dancing in and out of sight with every slight change of direction. The black, steel laced wheels housing the 31″ Michelin scorchers – slim 100/90 in the front and beefier 160/70 in the rear – beautifully rounded out my visual work of pavement art.
The rear coil shocks with about 3″ of travel paired with the aluminum 49mm fork fronts with 5″ of travel absorbed enough bumps for a comfortable yet still rugged ride. The wide saddle, at a seat height of only 25″, sits low in the steel tubular frame and offers easy access to the maintenance free 12V below should you need it.
Mid-mounted controls with brake and gear levers are equally low as ground clearance is a minimal 4.7″ – not ideal for a heavy load. As I intended to keep Street Bob all to myself, this suited me just fine. Even though I prefer a monogamous relationship, not all riders feel the same. “A solo seat,” gasped one admirer. “How am I supposed to pick up chics with only one seat?”
The 4-piston fixed front brakes paired with the 2-piston torque free floating rear are OK but if you want more confidence bringing this low rider to a halt, ABS brakes are available.
Over time I learned that Street Bob’s boyish charm attracted a lot of unwanted attention no matter where we went. My insecurities were subdued somewhat with the Smart Security System that activated when the key fob in my pocket and I were distant from the bike. If anyone tried to move in on Bob when I wasn’t around, the ignition was disabled and the alarm activated. If someone tried to tamper with the ignition switch or attempted to move the motorcycle, the alarm would immobilize.
After a two week whirlwind romance, things with Bob began feeling a little cramped. I needed space. My rider triangle (bars-seat-pegs) needed a few more inches to accommodate my size in order to maintain a long term relationship. I decided to see other Harleys. Street Bob and I parted ways.
The good news is Harley-Davidson offers personalization options through the H-D1 Factory Customization program including forward controls for the longer-legged and dual seat options for that guy where ‘picking up chics’ was important.
MSRP for vivid black is $13, 349. Charcoal Pearl and Black Denim will run at $13,749 and Hard Candy Custom Voodoo Purple Flake is $14,079.
New Post has been published on http://motorcygal.com/a-new-monster-in-town-ducati-unveils-its-newest-motorcycle-monster-821/
A new Monster in town - Ducati unveils its newest motorcycle - Monster 821
What’s all the fuss about? Another Monster? With the introduction of the the Monster 821, 112 HP water cooled naked roadster, there is now a Monster for all sizes and shapes. Goldilocks now has another option (albeit we are not talking porridge here). A Monster 696 (too small) or a new Monster 1200 unveiled in November at the Milan Motorcycle Show (too big) or the 821 (just right). I haven’t ridden it yet but will decide for myself one day soon if it is actually just right.
The latest Italian beast boasts the 821 Testastretta 11° engine, 112HP and 65.9ft-lb of torque and weighs in at a mere 179.5kg – 395.7lb (dry weight). Ducati stated in a press release that the bike is “super comfortable” but that remains to be seen as my experience, as well as other women I have talked to, the ergonomics of the seating position delivers pelvic pain. Perhaps that has changed with the latest line and the adjustable seat height. Traction control with Ducati motorcycles is always a favourite and this model combines 8-level traction control, 3-level ABS and 3-level Ride-by-Wire into Ducati’s user-friendly, press-button Riding Modes.
You can plan on seeing them on showroom floors as early as July and onwards. The Monster 821 Dark is presented in dark stealth with black frame and black wheels, while the Monster 821 is dressed in Ducati red with red frame and black wheels or star white silk with red frame and matte red wheels. Both red and white liveries are equipped with colour-matched single-seat covers.