Do you occasionally track your car and love the thrill of heavy braking and sweeping bends? Some track enthusiasts only have their daily drivers to hand when it comes to pulling on a helmet, and whilst others may have separate track cars, costs can spiral when your skills increase and you demand more and more from your car. When you start demanding Ferrari Enzo performance, what do you do to satiate that need for speed?
You could go for one of those Ariel Atoms or KTM Crossfires, but they cost a packet and are just as expensive to maintain. They are also closely compared to superbikes and are raced against each other on the car shows (Topgear) and internet videos. Let’s not forget the Caterham Super 7, but again – and this is borderline – the latest bike competitive model is going to cost at least £25,000.
Superbikes might not be to everyone’s taste, but you can’t deny the staggering performance they offer. For half the price of a Caterham Super 7 you can pick up a machine capable of hitting 60-mph in 2.5-seconds and comfortably on to 200+mph.
Of course, the safety aspect comes into it at some point – everyone knows hospital staff call bikers, “Donors”. Granted, crashing a bike at high speed on the public highway is very likely going to put you in a coffin, however, with added safety gear and the vast run off areas tracks provide, crashing isn’t as dangerous as you’d think – it usually involves a lot of sliding and a new set of leathers.
If you want mental high-revving speed and a completely different experience, grab a second-hand superbike like the almighty Yamaha R1. Once you are competent, hit the bike stores and stock up on performance enhancing parts and sticky tyres. J & S Accessories stock everything you could think of for tearing up a track – stock up on plenty of knee sliders; you’re going to need them.
I’ve always fancied buying a superbike, but family members and my significant other know better – they know too well I’d become addicted to the speed and would never be home, or I’d take it to the ragged edge on the road and wouldn’t ever make it home.
If you are lucky enough to have the freedom to just go and buy a superbike, I hate you and envy you. For a little over £10,000, you can drive an atomic bomb capable of shaming most supercars. Did I also mention I hate you?