A Wee Trident Run

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A wee late night run to Arrochar, decided to avoid the Loch Lomond route and headed up through Cardross, Helensburgh and Rhu. The road leads up the side of the “infamous” Faslane, where the subs dock with the trident missiles, but you don’t see much except lots of fence and barbed wire. Lucky that this road leads to the newly resurfaced road that follows the loch Long shore line, a twisty, hilly road that makes you think your racing, but not too fast, its a two way…. once you have done your best Rossi impression, you arrive at Arrochar, where you can enjoy the beautiful sights, whatever the weather. Here is the map

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Ducati 1299 Panigale S Anniversario

atdAlway at the front line of design, Ducati have brought out some stunning bikes over the years, the new Ducati 1299 Panigale S Anniversario is no different. Every angle of this bike is exquisitely beautiful. This is the new anniversary edition of Ducati’s flagship super bike. weighing in at 162kg, this bike rocks 205 horsepower with Ducati’s Superquadro 1285 cc engine. They have put the latest technology thats on a bike with one of the best power to weight ratio in it’s class, make this a bike thats setting the benchmark for other super sports. This is the type of bike that makes you put a couch in your garage, so you can spend some time admiring the details.

Loch Jumping

After hitting the beaches on previous journeys, I thought I’d head for the Loch’s this time. Starting, by crossing the River Clyde, over the Erskine Bridge and heading for Dumbarton, Cutting up North on the West side of Loch Lomond. I don’t mind keeping in with the slow traffic on this road, as the views are stunning, but after Luss the trees take over, so overtaking on the wide roads is easy. Before you know it your at the Tarbet Hotel and heading left to Arrochar, that sits on the banks of Loch Long. Arrochar has a biker friendly cafe called the pit stop, but no time to stop here. I follow the road west, passing the rest and be thankful, another beauty spot where you have a choice of hot food and drinks curtsey of the burger van (well, it is Scotland). Keeping on the road you get to Loch Fyne, which has the amazing Fyne Ales brewery at the top end of the Loch. Further round and I arrive at Inverary. It’s a nice day, so I grab something to drink and look out on the Loch for a while, before starting my journey back. Heading back the same was is something I try to avoid, so I take the same road back…. Only until I reach Arrochar, where I take the cut off that goes down the side of Loch Long. The twisty single track road takes you down to Faslane and along the side of Gare Loch until it joins the Clyde estuary, through Helensburgh and onto the town centre of Dumbarton. A good 2 hours on the bike with amazing scenery and a good view of what Scotland has to offer. Here is the map.

Coffee to Ice Cream

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Thought I’d abandon the obligatory bag of chips for this run. Apart from the fact it was warm, it was only 10 in the morning, so I went all continental and got myself a coffee. Drinking my coffee and sitting on a bench in Largs, watching the ferry leave and take people across to Great Cumbrae. I got on my bike and headed south along the coast. Although, most of the road is not coastal, some of it is, and it was such a nice Sunday, that it didn’t matter. The road takes you through the wee towns of Fairlie, West Kilbride, Saltcoats and Irvine before ending in Troon. This run can be done in 45 mins. This was where I stopped for some ice cream and admired the Mediterranean looking beach. It was a sight to behold, everyone had their summer clothes and i was sitting in my thick biker denims and a motorbike jacket…. Here is the map

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Wetsuits

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You know the story, not a cloud in the sky, you get on your bike and 20 minutes into your journey, the sky clouds over and your in the middle of a mini monsoon. Here are some one-piece suits to keep you dry in those downpours.

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Hein Gericke Competition Rainsuit. Around £60

Oxford Rainseal Oversuit. Around £40

Held Monsun Over Suit. Around £100

Triumph Roadster Options

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Triumph are a unique motorcycle manufacturer, the British leaders make a full range of beautiful machines that have a cult following. The roadster range are one of the best looking of any manufacturer. They have 3 models to choose from.

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The entry level Street triple from £7,499. Has 675cc inline 3 cylinder engine, daytona sports chassis.

The Speed 94 MY16 from £8,999. A stripped back version of the Speed triple, with brembo breaks, ohlins suspension and the same great 1050cc Triple engine.

The Speed Triple from £10,200. Has 1050cc Triple engine and brembo breaks, the Speed triple is now 21 years old and is claimed to be the start of the “streetfight” category of bikes.

If you look at the reviews of triumphs, the owners are a loyal bunch, there are always more to them than just a bike, they have bags of character and plenty of passion for the brand.

Like most companies these days they have a massive range of extras for each bike, including clothing.

Vanity of the Flying Fortress

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Moto Guzzi are known to make nice bikes, the Flying Fortress MGX-21 is no exception. The first bagger to be produced by Moto Guzzi is a stunner, using the California 1400 engine and made of mostly carbon fibre, the MGX-21 also has 3 riding modes, two channel ABS, cruise control and ride-by-wire system as standard. But it’s styling is very Honda NM4 Vultus, but a more classic batman-edged style. The red tips and callipers are a nice feature.

What’s on the BOX

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Action cameras are becoming popular for bikers, and you don’t have to be jumping over 10 double deckers to justify buying one. Even if your just going on a bike ride round the streets, just to stick it on you-tube for other people to watch when it’s too wet for them to go out. People like Royal Jordanian have made this enjoyable to watch, with a clip show of interesting bits round London. I have covered some cameras before, and two new ones have come out that are worth a look at. The GoPro Hero4 Session and the Polaroid CUBE.

The GoPro comes in around £160 and can record up to 1440p but you can also use 1080p and 720p for up to 2hours. It has 2 internal mic’s for better sound quality, it can take up to 64gb micro sd card, has one button record feature and works with all GoPro mounts. Full specs here..

The Polaroid CUBE+ is the cheaper option coming in at £130 but also has a cheaper option with no wifi at £90. It records in the same video formats but the battery only lasts for 90 minutes. It takes micro SD card up to 32gb and has a built in magnet at the bottom that works with the range of accessories made for the CUBE. Full specs here.

The Miss Moneypenny of Bikes

The kind folks from Mototainment (New York) have grabbed one of their Triumph Bonneville off the show room floor and set about it with, what looks like, copper.

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Customised by a collaboration between Marcos Martines and Ducati Triumph NYC, the customer wanted a bike that looked unique and they could park outside and still look stunning parked in a living room (well, we all dream of that). All the panels were taken off and replaced with copper and they finished it off with a beautiful custom leather seat. Just add baking soda and lemon juice to your cleaning bag.

Crossover Overcross

New bikes are coming out all the time. Dealers are refining and tweeking the latest models, and adding in the latest tech, but that all gets a bit boring after a while, then someone goes mad and makes a whole new category of bike. The guys at Portland area Ducati dealer, MotoCorsa have acted like the mad scientists and created this bad boy. A 2013 Ducati 1199 Panigale S with a set of Continental TKC80’s, A lovely “Desert Storm” coloured paint job, raised the ground clearance by adjusting the suspension and messing about electronics, we all love a bit of customisation. Just what would you call this crossover and what kind of sport could you use it for? I recommend “SuperOffSport” and make a few racetracks in the woods.