Another week, another update! It’s time for the Bike Devil Week on Two-Wheels…
And ‘hot off the press’ comes the announcement of a new Africa Twin from Honda, available in three trims; the Africa Twin, Africa Twin Adventure Sports, and Africa Twin Adventure Sports EERA (standing for Electronically Equipped Ride Adjustment – of course!).
Euro5 compliant, the updated parallel twin engine puts out 101bhp, up from the 94bhp of the previous generation, while the chassis is revised with slimmer spars, a new swingarm, and new subframe. Suspension is provided by Showa on all three models, but the EERA variant gets the electronic stuff. Tech includes touch screen dash (with Apple CarPlay!), rider modes, cornering ABS, traction control, and Honda’s selectable torque control. And as before, there are two transmission options – a six-speed manual, or DCT semi-auto.
Spec varies between the three with differing screens, bodywork, and as previously the Adventure Sports gets a bigger fuel tank, too. We think they look great!
At the other end of the scale, Built has launched a 50cc version of its Hero 125 model. Aimed at younger riders with it’s 50cc twin-cam four-stroke engine, it’s a great option for those riders who want to nail the ‘cafe-racer/scrambler’ vibe but are restricted by their age. We wish there was something this cool when we were learning to ride…at least we could have oozed ‘cool’ while riding around at just under 30mph!
It was a busy weekend of racing, as MotoGP went straight to Aragon from Misano, the Bol d’Or took place at the historic Paul Ricard circuit and BSB was at Assen.
In Grand Prix it was, of course, the Marc Marquez show – he put in a commanding performance all weekend in Spain, and added another win to his tally at the Aragon circuit. What is it about that kid and left-handed circuits? It was also good to see Andrea Dovizioso return to podium form and take second place ahead of everyone’s favourite Aussie Jack Miller.
The 83rd running of the famous Bol d’Or 24-hour race was cut short due to seriously adverse weather – otherwise known as a big wet thunderstorm! – but ended with Suzuki Endurance Racing Team [SERT] taking victory by a whole lap. The team’s celebrity racer, Vincent Philippe, took his ninth Bol d’Or win – a new record as no-one else has nine wins at the iconic event.
BSB’s Showdown got underway at Assen, with title-favourite Scott Redding moving closer to the crown with a double win. He heads to Donington – and the penultimate round on the calendar – with a 14-point lead. Bridewell’s ambitions suffered when he crashed out of second in race one, leaving Josh Brookes, Jason O’Halloran, and Luke Stapleford in a titanic scrap for the podium. Bridewell recovered in race two to finish runner-up, ahead of a resurgent Danny Buchan.
And while there was no World Superbike action over the weekend, Alvaro Bautista finally put us out of our misery and confirmed he was joining Honda’s World Superbike project in 2020. And rumour has it, it will be aboard a new Fireblade. Already the 2020 season is shaping up to be a cracker and we’re not done with 2019 yet.
That’s all for now, we’ll see you next week
Log On, Tune In, Ride Out…