My previous post talked about how confused I was when I stepped off the Ducati. I am now thinking that it wasn't the kind of bike I was looking for.
This afternoon I stepped off another test ride, this time something a little less exotic - a Suzuki GSXR-600. This was a 2012 version, I have also ridden a 2006 version a few years ago (that wasn't a test ride, it was a loaner bike), and the feeling I had on that was sort of the feeling I expected on the Ducati, but didn't.
The 2012 bike gave me more of that feeling that I was looking for and I stepped off the test ride today with a big grin and a happy contented feeling. A promising start.
I'm actually interested in the GSXR-750, but the shop didn't have one to ride. However they did have the 600 and that and the 750 are physically the same size (from a riders perspective), so it was a good place to start.
Much smaller, and felt like I could throw it about a lot easier. I'm sure that kind of comment is no surprise to most. The seating position was very different, however I felt confident as I had good grip with my thighs, not much weight on my wrists and whilst the pegs were far up by comparison I normally ride the VFR with my toes on the pegs not my instep, so sort of the same. The lack of anything to grip with my thighs was one of the real down points on the Duc.
Engine was good and brakes were fine. The 2012 has Brembo stoppers, like the Duc. I really enjoyed the test ride as I rode places I knew, so I could concentrate on the ride and the bike.
I half feel like I should give the Duc a second chance, but sort of not. I may have a second option at the Duc instead.
As I don't really want a 600, there aren't a lot of choices, but the Ducati 848 is a clear option to consider. I can't think of any other 750-850 sized sports bikes, oh actually the MV Agusta F3, but that's even more exotic than the Duc. The Triumph 675 is a bit less than I want. Open to suggestions.
Something else that put these two (the GSXR and the 848) high in the running as there are excellent examples of both up for sale at work. Second hand, but great condition, both with a bunch of extra goodies (bags, exhausts etc) included.