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I’m kind of at a loss as to what’s going on inside my head right now. I’m confused.

I know it’s not an age thing, but others may disagree. It’s not the Jack Daniels (honeyed variety) with Lemonade that I had last (every) night. It’s a bike thing. Do you ever have moments like that? Moments of indecision. Moments of crisis when you have made your mind up and then, not exactly regretting having committed to something, but not having thought it through properly. Might be the heart ruling the head kind of thing. I dunno.

Suzuki GSX-8S

It’s been happening since the back end of last year when I had on test a Suzuki GSX-8S. I thought it was a stunning bike, so decided to buy one; to trade-in my Honda Rebel 1100. I had been offered an insulting price at one dealership in Lincoln, so never followed up on that, before going to the Suzuki dealership and spying a black GSX-8S, ex demo with 600 miles. Offered a more respectable price on the Rebel, a deal was struck, with only £200 passing on in cash from my end, plus the Honda, of course.

Come winter, come crap weather… rain, snow, high winds, road salt, road crud, muddy shit spewed from tractor wheels, you know the scene. Many a sensible biker previously had stored their bikes for the winter, but I don’t mind riding throughout the year, given the right conditions.

A few rides later on the GSX-8S, and I already had my eye on a Suzuki V-Strom DL1000… perfect for some more sports touring-cum-adventure opportunities in 2024. So that landed in my garage. 2019 model with only 4,000 miles on the clocks. Fairly basic spec, no quick shifter, but I did have heated grips fitted.

Faun Cafe

But I was still twitchy, still looking for the right complement of bikes to suit my rides. And so it was I spied a 2019 Ducati Multistrada 1260 S at a dealership in Cardiff. I thought it would be an opportunity to px the GSX-8S. What a fucking hit I took on that. The dealer – an honest chap recommended by a biker friend – did some checking on the internet and noted 49 other Suzukis on the market, similar age with less miles, and far less money than I was looking for. I can only imagine that Suzuki, knowing their target market well and realising that they would be on to a winner with GSX-8S, possibly over-produced the model, and with the imminent launch of the GSX-8R, offloaded a bunch of GSX-8Ss to auction. Bollocks. Anyway, the Multistrada had less than 10,000 miles on the clocks, had just undergone a £1,000 service, including belts, was at a fair price… and I was set to lose almost £2,200 on the Suzuki. It is not often I come such a cropper on deals. Time for another large slug of JD and bite the bullet, eh. So I did.

The Multistrada is with me now, and I love it. Apart from the seat. That needs to go. The material is slippery, and when braking, I tend to slide forwards more than I want. Checking on Ducati forums, it seems a common problem, one which Ducati have yet to sort. It’s something to do with the weird contours of the seat design. So I am hoping to check out a Ducati Touratech Comfort DriRide seat. We’ll see.

But hang on, there’s more. Suddenly I had no need for two sports tourers, so it was time to wave goodbye to the V-Strom. I know some people love Japanese bikes, and after only a brief spell of ownership I had grown to like the bike, but I wasn’t going to find myself in an eeny, meeny, miny, moe situation in the garage.

Indian/Ruroc day

Always something to ponder… and no, that’s not me, obviously

With a cruiser (Indian Scout), muscle cruiser (Ducati XDiavel S), and sports tourer/adventurer (Multistrada), I just needed a sports bike to complete the line-up. Nothing tank-hugging; nothing that would crunch my neck muscles. He presto, I spotted a Ducati Supersport S (three Ducatis in the garage, that’s going to be fucking expensive servicing-wise), contacted the dealership, and a deal was struck with a px on the V-Strom, with not too much monetary pain.

Result: Okay, lots of monetary pain, but plenty of gain on two wheels.

So that just leaves the Harley-Davidson 883 Iron to pay for and collect, but that’s for next time…

Gonzo

  • Main image | mudnwaffles from Pixabay

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