This one day adventure is perfect for those of us who’d like to explore the fine art of off road enduro riding. perhaps you’re like one of us who have some sort of motorcycle buying commitment issues. The good news is that the team have a choice of machines available from the GasGas enduro range. These are available to rent for the day.
Mr Snow and co. are a team made up of hugely experienced professional instructors. With them we can expect an enjoy all the thrills of enduro riding. The riding varies from using fast tracks to single trails and those all important water crossings. The last one being a nessesity for those Insta posts!
It is, of course, not just available for newcomers on our bikes. You can also bring your own bike and regardless of your experience the team are more than qualified to add to your skill set. Indeed the Doon Moto Park venue, in Co. Offaly, lends itself to catering for all rider abilities.
Unlike most motorcycle events you don’t even need a licence to take part. This is because none of the riding will take place on the public road. The only caveat is that all the participants need to be over 15. Add the use of their kit and you’ve no excuse for not attending.
Indeed, they include everything you need. Part of the experience through the day is that riding instruction/ advice, use of all the clothing, armour and helmets that you'll need, as well as lunch and refreshments are all part of the package. Each group is limited to a maximum of 15 riders. Speaking of groups, if you bring a group of your own you can enjoy a 10% discount. Even the fuel is part of the deal.
There is, of course, a goody bag for everyone who comes along.
The event takes place over three days in June, on the 9th, 10th and 11th. Each day will set you back €300 with one of there GasGas range bikes or €150 on your own machine. If bringing yours please make sure that it’s prepped properly as a failed bike is a wasted day!
To book a slot please visit here. If you have any additional questions, call Gavin on 014526170 or visit CCM.
BikeFest will return once again this June Bank Holiday weekend. With the exception of that 2020 and 2021, the event has run every year since 2007. This year it celebrates its 15th anniversary at the beginning of the summer.
The event has always been open to all riders on all types, brands and models of bikes. While the vast majority of them are indeed Harley-Davidson machines. This is because, once again, the American giant co-brands the two wheeled fun and is one of the main sponsors the event along with The Gleneagle Hotel and Fáilte Ireland. There will be a full fleet of demo bikes from the H-D range on display. These will be available to test ride over the duration of the event. Simply put your name down, pick a time slot and enjoy the ride.
Being completely free, the shindig tends to attract riders, not just from here, but from all over Europe and further afield. People in their thousands descend on the town for the three day meet up. This is as much for the craic to be had over the weekend as it is to ride out and enjoy Kerry’s stunning roads and scenery.
Come the evening on each day the attendees are treated to a mini rock festival. A massive bike village is built beside the INEC venue. Here there are no fewer than three stages with bars and food stalls in abundance. It’s important, however, not to stay up too late as the surrounding country is motorcycle nirvana and you really don’t want to miss out thanks to a sore head.
Co-hosts of the event are the Harley Owners Group (HOG). The girls and boys from this club will be hosting ride outs across the county. The stop off points include some of the best restaurants, views and photo opportunities to be found anywhere in Ireland.
If, like me, you don’t fancy riding in a group there’s a whole lot to discover on a solo spin out from the town. The Wild Atlantic Way, while I’ve ridden it so many times that I’ve almost worn a groove into it, still never fails to impress me. The sparsely populated mountains have roads that would appear to have been made for motorcycling. If you stop off at Slea Head you can see the Skellig Islands in the distance.
The town of Killarney, meanwhile, is a visitors heaven. Stacked full of old world pubs, world class restaurants and what is even a more than decent cigar shop are all to be found in the town. I’ll be there, albeit on a Yamaha…
Find our more about this years BikeFest here!
Our crew at the Irish Talent Team have come up with what has to be the prize of the year. We’re offering the VIP visit of all VIP visits to WSKB this season. This will include circuit entry, paddock passes and hospitality for two on both Saturday and Sunday. There’s even a service road tour. All of this comes compliments of Puccetti Kawasaki.
The Irish Talent Team has decided to bring their riders Fionn Stephens and Fionn O’Connell to compete in the www.mirracingcup.com moto5 championship in Spain. This campaign follows their hugely successful series in the FIM Mini GP championship in Ireland.
As if that weren’t enough the team are also encouraging you to get out on track yourself. They’re adding four wonderful days on the track at Andalucía with Irish track specialists, Motocraft. The event runs over four days from the 11th to the 14th of this October.
The lads provide everything needed including the transport of your bike and all your kit from Ireland to the circuit. As with all of the companies events, hotel accommodation is included. Meanwhile, at the track you’ll have the use of a pitlane garage with full power.
Motocraft events have a well-earned reputation for offering clean, quality laps to their clients. They've chosen this company because they reckon they're not only the best in Ireland, but the best in Europe.
Tickets for the prize of the year will run you €50 each of three for €100. Sales are capped to 150 tickets with all the money going to help fund the next generation of Irish talent.
As for which WSBK round you get to attend, that’s the best bit, you get to pick which European one you want to go to!
Tickets on PayPal, reference firstname.lastname@example.org
According to Ernest Hemmingway, ‘There are only three sports; mountaineering, bull fighting and motor racing, everything else is just games.’ This is no truer than when quoted in reference to Road Racing. Nick Snow is an avid fan of the sport and an enthusiastic motorcyclist. This month in conjunction with Anthony Fox of the New Theatre in Dublin’s Temple Bar, himself a sports bike rider for many years, the team are putting on a new play about the sport. This will heavily feature and pay tribute to the Dunlop family, and in particular Michael.
Bringing the story to the boards was quite a challenge. Yet in many ways it’s the perfect place for it to be told. When we step back from it, this very much has all the features of one of Shakespeare’s plays. It is, indeed, a story which contains equal amounts of glory and tragedy. Both are delivered in a powerful and uncompromising way. Nick elaborates, “I knew I wanted a simple two-handed dialogue, and I knew it would depict a debate involving Michael, William’s younger brother, at a time when he had to decide whether to continue his career and pursue his chance to surpass his own Uncle Joey as the most winning Isle of Man TT racer in history”.
Shakespeare’s tragedies were inspired by the Greek Myths. In the play Michael was faced with the classical ‘Achilles Dilemma’. Is glory, and its often tragic price, the better option to take than the safe and quiet life?
In it’s telling the play asks not just Michael, but also the audience, how are we to calibrate what is safe enough, versus what that safety costs to the quality of our lives? The safest possible option often seems to be the obvious choice but, it is not without consequences.
On stage these themes are seen through the prism of the extremes of Road racing. The risks that road racers take are ‘insane’ by normal standards. Yet who but they can say whether the rewards are equally outsized? And what of us, the fans, who watch and cheer them to glory and mourn them when they don’t finish the ultimate lap? Are we vicariously living through them, allowing them to take our risks? After all, life is never so vivid as when presented with a pressing and immediate mortal risk. To quote Achilles, ‘The gods envy us, for any moment may be our last.’
Nick, like many of us, has a powerful love of motorcycles. Riding them as a teenager and then in 2020, he went to training school, passed the test and got himself a bike. He describes it as “The very best thing I have done in years, and I wanted to convey an inkling of the special autonomy, the rare agency, that comes with riding. A person and a machine in partnership, in harmony. A computer can drive your car, but good luck to any microchip that tries to take control on two wheels!”
We couldn’t agree more! The Safety Catch is on at The New Theatre in Dublin from the 1st of November until the 12th. It’s directed by Joe O'Byrne and stars Andrew McCracken and Fra Gunn. To buy tickets see, click here and we’ll see you on opening night!
Sometimes, just sometimes mind, we get a little bit tired of listening to ourselves. Where Motocraft, Ireland's premium overseas trackday company, are concerned we cannot say enough about how good the team, tracks and transport as well as their help in the paddock are. So rather than listening to us suggesting that you improve your riding in the best possible way and the best possible company to do so with, we’re delighted to introduce our guest columnist, all round great guy and tidy motorcycle rider. Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. Aidan McDonnell.
2018 was my first trip away with Motocraft. I travelled out on this one on my own and as such I didn’t really know anyone else. To say I was nervous would have been an understatement! Within a few minutes of meeting the guys from Motocraft and the rest of the clients on the trip I knew that there was nothing to be worried about as I was made feel so welcome. I finally started to relax! What Paul and the team have done is put an event together that really does feel like one big family!
Now five years and seven brilliant trips later, I’ve ridden some of the best tracks in Europe. I’ve taken in Monteblanco, Portimao, and the most recent trip was to Mugello in Italy. I’m certainly no Rossi or Marquez, nor do I have any allusions about being a race star, but each and every trip away I’ve learned something new. Whether it be improvements on my riding or improvements to my bike or both.
This comes from both the team from Motocraft and the rest of group travelling, as they do seem to attract a great group of riders. The craic that’s in the pit lane garage is fantastic. There are often riders as diverse as racers, track day enthusiasts and road riders. The combination of all three types of riders creates a fantastic atmosphere and also offers a great opportunity to learn and improve.
If things should go wrong, the way everyone comes together to help is unreal. Like I said earlier it does feel like a family.
On one last point, never have I met an organization like Motocraft. Their passion for what they do is unmatched. They covering everything from getting your bike to the track, organizing the accommodation, and in getting your bike safely home. They do all of this while always there to help and advice.
I’m looking forward, if my knees allow, to many more years travelling to the best tracks in Europe with the best company for the job, Motocraft.
Motocraft will be loading up the truck again and heading to Monteblanco from March the 1st to the 4th next year. If you’d like to come along see motocraft and get your name down now.
This coming August the 6th we’ll be riding out from Buttevant in Cork to raise much needed funds for Pieta. This worthy organisation does much needed work for the prevention of suicide and self-harm.
It’s been a long few years of staying put and we’re delighted that The Friends of Mick O’Regan have organised this Motorcycle Run. This year’s event promises to be the biggest and best yet. Kit Roaches bar will be both the start and finish of the run.
A lot more will be on offer this year. There will be music on the street before the run, as well as face-painting for the kids. Adults will have to wait at the back of the que! Refreshments will be available before the run and there’ll be a barbeque afterwards.
Several spot prizes will be awarded at the end of the run. With the big prize being a top of the range Bell helmet. Winners will be drawn from the names of people that sign-in on the day and return after the run.
Bertie O’Regan elaborates; “This is a special year for the run as it is the 10th year, organised in honour of our fallen friend, Mick O’Regan. It is utterly astounding that out of that awful tragedy this run has raised €163,463.86 for suicide charities so far. On the first year of the run €9,500 was collected and donated to Suicide Aware. And in the last eight years almost €154,000 has been collected for Pieta. This year all the proceeds will be donated to this outstanding organisation once again to help them carry on with the great work they do with the vulnerable among us, and they do all of this work free of charge”.
“In 2019 a representative from Pieta House, as it was known then, outlined the cost of getting a vulnerable client through treatment and back to health at €1,000. Therefore, by that information the Mick O’Regan Memorial Motorcycle run, its organisers, its amazing helpers, its sponsors and all the wonderful bikers that attend have saved 163 lives over the years”.
“For each person that dies by suicide, 70 people are adversely affected by that tragedy. So, 11,573 lives are changed for the better because of the Mick O’Regan Memorial Motorcycle Run”.
Once again, we motorcyclists show our true colours by helping out those more vulnerable than ourselves”.
The run takes place on the coming 6th of August from Kit Roaches Bar in Buttevant with sign on opening at 10.30.
The Distinguished Gentlemen’s Ride takes place this Sunday, the 22nd of May 2022. Being a partner of the Triumph Motorcycle Company, the rideout commences from Dublin Triumph at 11.30am where the team will have refreshments on and always offer a friendly welcome to all brands of motorcycle and their riders.
The concept for the ride was first muted by a Sydney based rider way back in 2008. The idea then was simply to dress ‘Dapper’ and ride a bike with some like minded individuals around the centre of the city. The Distinguished Gentlemen's Ride allowed riders of some pretty cool machinery to link up, ride together and raise both money and awareness of some of the things that the men in our lives need.
After a few years of this the event was adopted in a number of different cities. By 2012 the DGR was taking place in no fewer than 64 cities across the world with a little over 3,000 riders taking part. At this point the rideouts had gained quite a lot of attention. As a result the team joined forces with the Aussie prostate cancer foundation. All of a sudden the numbers jumped with 11,000 riders taking part in 145 cities across the globe the following year. Not only that, but they also raised €400,000!
By the following year the run was supporting prostate cancer charities across the planet. The numbers went up with 20,000 riders taking part in over 250 cities globally. So did the funds raised with over €2 million in the bank as far back as 2014. Since then the event has continued to grow. With a record of a staggering 116,000 riders taking part in over 2,500 cities and more than €29 million raised to date.
As the event has evolved the team have partnered with Movember, of moustache growing fame. This allows the Distinguished Gentlemen's Ride to better distribute the funds raised to a host of worthy causes. These include prostate cancer clinical research in addition to health services for the same condition. Now there is also a dedicated investment in mens mental health services and suicide prevention programs. Quite importantly, the team at Movember also make sure that the funds raised locally are used locally.
Here in Ireland, the event has taken hold with events in Clonmel, Cork, Donegal, Drogheda, Tullamore as well as Dublin. This year there are over 400 riders registered to take part around the country. Since 2014 the event has partnered with Triumph Motorcycles globally and as such the dealership in Dublin is hosting the biggest event in Ireland again this year.
Ladies on bikes are more than welcome to attend as are riders of other brands and types of motorcycle. Donations are not mandatory. However, you are very much encouraged to drop a few Euro off at the Distinguished Gentlemen's Ride website. There are some pretty cool prizes up for grabs when you do! Meanwhile the store opens at 10am for coffee and breakfast bites and the ride commences at 11.30. Dress dapper and we’ll see you there!
Inspired by the new PanAmerica and its Revolution Max engine the team at Harley-Davidson have engaged REV’IT! to make co-branded gear for those of us who like our adventure touring motorcycles.
This kit has been designed to offer stylishly cut top of the range protection, versatility and ease of movement, as well as being suitable for everything from a commute to the office, a touch of trail riding or even a trans global adventure.
REV’IT! As a brand has been around for long enough to have perfected their offering in terms of functionality, providing four-season versatility and storage, as well as style. The new range for H-D was designed by the company with a huge amount of REV'IT rider feedback over years of producing top quality kit.
The Motor Companys dealers are now going to stock four offerings of head to toe clothing, two for the girls and two for the boys, the ‘Passage’ and the ‘Grit’.
First up are the Passage. These jacket and pants are tough, comfy and are guaranteed to keep the water out. The breathable membrane uses Hyrdratex 3L membrane technology. This piece of cleverness keeps the wind and rain out while also being very good at being abrasion and tear resistant. There is, of course, a thermal liner. This is detachable in case the weather ever gets warmer.
This is all supplemented with a Scholler C-Change Membrane which is an adaptable waterproof membrane used in areas of the jacket where its stretch properties facilitate that little bit more mobility.
Both jacket and pants have a ventilation system called VCS Aquadefence. This will keep the air flowing in warm-weather riding. These vents can be opened and closed so simply that only one gloved hand can do it. Mechanical fasteners secure the vents in an open position, using a system similar to a magnet. When opened it lets a comforting breeze in, when closed it’s completely waterproof.
Made with a PW Shell 500D textile ensure tear and abrasion resistance as well as durability. It also gives the kit real off-road kudos. The Passage jacket even comes with a detachable kidney belt!
The Grit Jacket and Pants, meanwhile, are also built for year round riding. They come with both a thermal and a waterproof liner, both of which are independently removable. The rider gets the versatility of adjustable comfort. Once again that Hyrdratex 3L membrane lines the jacket and pants. Unlike the Passage this liner is detachable from the Grit pants and jacket.
Also used again here is the Aquadefence ventilation system as is the PW Shell 500D textile. Both suits carry CE certified armour at the knees, shoulders, elbows and hips. A back protector is available separately as are similar specced gloves for both ladies and gentlemen.
There are two helmets, the premium Passage offering and a cheaper Grit lid. Both will take a comms set. Boots, meanwhile, are the Quest for the girls and the Gravel for the boys. Both are tough, protective and waterproof.
All will be available at Ireland Bikefest in Killarney this weekend on both dealers stands.
When it comes to Harley-Davidson, for quite some time, a number of people have had somewhat of an aversion to the Milwaukee company’s bikes. We’ve seen them as being somewhat heavy and somewhat underpowered as well as being just that bit too pricey. While this hasn’t always been the case, some riders like air-cooled cruisers with cool custom styling and the like. Let’s not forget the Motor Company also has a formidable fan base for its Touring motorcycles. We cite the big, bold, iconic mileage eaters Road Glide, Street Glide and the super-iconic Ultra Glide to name but a few.
Unfortunately, in order to meet the newer and more stringent emissions standards – especially within the EU – the MoCo have had to do the unthinkable and add liquid-cooling to the range. For a manufacturer who used the fact that their air-cooled big V twins were such an important part of their identity this shift was a bold step. And one that might have seemed to be somewhat contrary to their ethos.
What has happened, however, is that these small changes have paved the way for some pretty big ones. While the current Milwaukee-Eight engine is definitely different, it’s still an evolution of what has come before it. Then there’s the all-electric LiveWire, a totally new concept for Harley that shows what the dudes at Milwaukee HQ can do when they want to. Such radical design and thinking has led to something else that’s new and shatters the traditional H-D Big V-Twin mould. It comes in the shape of the all-new Revolution Max engine.
What the Americans have done is build an entirely new engine from the crankshaft outwards. This new donk has all sorts of modern-day tech. Twin spark plugs on each cylinder, dual overhead cam cylinder heads with four valves per head and Variable Valve Timing (VVT). And it's very much liquid-cooled. This adds up to an engine that produces a rather impressive 150 HP while redlining at 9,500 rpm. The 1252cc block also produces 94 Nm of torque. Impressive figures for the first of a new breed from a company still using imperial measurements in its old-school range.
The Revolution Max first appeared, to great fanfare, with last year’s Pan America 1250 adventure bike launch. It’s now being woven into different models with differing engine capacity. In the Pan America, it was tuned as much for low speed work on a soggy Welsh hill as it was for blatting down a German Autobahn. And while the press releases were full of the usual Americana the bike was (and still is) hugely different to anything else that the company has produced before.
All of a sudden we were seeing modern bike technologies being weaved into the bike’s overall design. For example, the engine being used as stressed member of the chassis. In plainer English, the motor is so strong and yet light that it reduces the overall weight in whatever chassis they cared to wedge it in. Maybe the well established traditional design team in Harley had, perhaps, been replaced with a much younger and non-gender identifying forward thinking team. Whatever, we the riders, are reaping the rewards.
Sportster S followed the Pan America 1250. This modern replacement for the aging Sportster range was a genuine surprise. The raised exhaust hinted at how powerful this was going to be, while the nod to previous designs from the company were obvious.
Again, loaded with electronic tech and rider safety aids, Sportster S proved to be a tarmac ripper. Tuned for low-down drive, there aren’t many Harley bikes that cause the traction control to cut in with barely a half of turn of angrily abused throttle grip.
On the heels of Sportster S, is the latest offering featuring the Revolution Max engine.
Design. Say hello to the new Nightster. Ok, so this new model is a smaller capacity 975cc offering. It too is impressive in the way it delivers the horses and torque. And all neatly tucked in a very rider friendly, good handling chassis. Good in the sense it will make every rider smile.
The latest vibes from Harley-Davidson is that there are more motorcycles to appear using the Revolution Max engine and the accompanying new chassis. Awesome.
But the best news so far is that all three of the new generation bikes – Pan America, Sportster S and Nightster – will make up part of the Harley-Davidson demonstration fleet coming to BikeFest in Killarney this June Bank Holiday weekend, running from Friday June 3rd until Monday the 6th. If you haven’t yet ridden Harley’s latest then it’s definitely time to challenge your perceptions of the brand and take one, if not all, for a spin…
There’s a great big truck on the way over here. And its full of a host of new, as yet to be ridden, bikes for you to take a spin on. The brand in question is Harley-Davidson. And the ‘tour’ is going to be here in Ireland this weekend, the 21st and 22nd of August where it will appear at both Waterford and Dublin Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealerships.
Harley have been busy during the ‘Great Unhappiness’ and have developed a duo of new bikes. These are the, already delivered, Pan America adventure bikes as well as the recently announced, but yet to be released, Sportster S. The duo have been added to with the eagerly awaited LiveWire as well as the thoroughly re-designed, yet fundamentally old school Fat Boy.
The first of the new owners have already taken delivery of their new Pan Americas. This is a bike that has taken the American giant in a whole new direction. While it brings the game to some of the European giants such as BMW and KTM, it’s a bold move for the old brand and one that may yet work.
First reports of the second one, the Sportster S, are just going to press this week. This is a traditional name on a bike that is anything but. It has the looks to go with its 121 bhp engine, Brembo brakes and Showa suspension. With this kind of power and specification it’s no longer possible to stick the brand into the ‘big weight, low power’ category.
Both the third and fourth are machines we’ve already heard of. They are the LiveWire and the Fat Boy. While the Fat Boy may have been around for decades at this stage, a new frame, engine and fuelling system make for an even better ride without losing any of the bikes street presence.
The last one is the long awaited LiveWire. This all electric machine made a massive impression on me when I first rode it over five years ago. The power delivery, the handling and that beautiful noise are all much more than would be expected.
The Dublin event takes place in Dublin Harley Davidson. Drop email@example.com an email to book a slot on the one(s) on the 21st. Or reach out to Alan at Waterford Harley Davidson, who will be hosting the event on Sunday the 22nd. Visit his booking page https://bit.ly/3CLiQ5q. See you there!
Less than one month after the last acquisition announcement, Aston Lark Ireland has today announced the acquisition of Principal Insurance Ireland DAC, further strengthening its already significant personal lines insurance expertise.
Based in Dublin, Principal Insurance was established in 2015 and has since grown to become a leading player in the Irish motorcycle insurance market, with a 30%+ market share.
With a strong customer first ethos its 18-strong team of passionate professionals, led by Dave Bowcock and Aly Dixon, have been the driving force behind the growth of the business. With further investment Principal Insurance Ireland DAC will now look to extend its footprint in motorcycle insurance and seek out diversification opportunities.
Robert Kennedy, Aston Lark Ireland CEO, said: “The management team at Principal Insurance Ireland DAC are well known to us at Aston Lark. Not only have Dave, Aly and the team built a fantastic business, they share our vision of care for customers and staff which makes it a perfect fit. We are very excited to welcome them to Aston Lark.”
“This acquisition significantly diversifies our existing personal lines business, broadens our capabilities and will fuel the next chapter of our journey, as we work together to become the leading independent and most trusted insurance broker in Ireland.”
Commenting on the acquisition, Peter Blanc, Aston Lark Group CEO, added: “One of Aston Lark’s stated aims is to grow in a wide array of specialisms - and Principal Insurance could not be more specialist! They truly know bikes and bikers and Aly and Dave’s passion for the sector is obvious to see. I’m delighted to welcome them to the group and congratulations to Rob and the team in Aston Lark Ireland who are going from strength to strength.”
Aly Dixon, Principal Insurance Ireland DAC’s Chief Executive, welcomed the deal, saying: “When we set out on this journey, our customers and staff were at the forefront of our consideration. Aston Lark very much shares our ethos in terms of delivering service excellence and completely recognise the existing expertise held by our Dublin based team who have been and will be testament to our continued success.”
“As Aston Lark is fast-growing its presence in Ireland and committing the resources necessary to support expansion across a broker portfolio, myself and my team are extremely excited and proud to join the group.”
Founder and CEO of Principal Insurance Ltd in the UK, Dave Bowcock added: “We’re immensely proud of what we’ve achieved in Ireland so far but felt now was the right time to hand over the reins to someone for the next exciting phase for the Irish office. We believe we have found the perfect partner in Aston Lark to fuel future growth and diversification even further. Our UK operation remains very much focussed in embracing the multitude of opportunities we have in front of us and we wish Aly and her team the very best for the future going forward as part of Aston Lark.”
Out in the West of the country is arguably one of the best places to ride a motorcycle here in Ireland. The droves of foreign riders who descend on the Wild Atlantic Way are testament to the fact that the roads, the people, and the scenery are all second to none. Indeed, we’re heading over there later in the season with Celtic Horizon Tours.
It can, however, be a little bit inclement during the winter. So the bikes on these roads are sometimes a bit unexpected. Particularly when it comes to the local and visiting car traffic. In an effort to raise awareness of our two wheeled presence a group of riders who live in the parish have come up with a novel, yet simple, idea to raise awareness of our existence with other road users.
Ultan Queally is a member of a group of riders who call themselves the North Clare Bikers. They have long since set themselves up with a social media page to arrange meet ups and ride outs. The core group of ten riders now have over 500 motorcyclists on their page. Being very aware of how many of us pass through their motorcycling nirvana and the amount of motorcycle accidents that have happened this year, the crew have come up with a novel approach to making their corner of the world just that little bit safer.
The girls and boys of North Clare Bikers managed to cobble together a budget of €600. They have invested this money in safety signs. These are simple yellow diamonds that read “Watch For Motorcycles”. We can only commend Ultan and the rest of the North Clare Bikers for their ingenuity. And we wish them the safest most enjoyable of motorcycling seasons.
We can heartily recommend the new BikeSafe initiative if you’d like to sharpen up your act when it comes to avoiding becoming part of someone else’s bad day!
Milan will once again be the world’s two wheeled capital this year. EICMAs chairman of the exhibition promises that they are all “Hard at work to return to exhibitors and the public what is theirs”
If you thought that was a bit sketchy for an opening sentence then how’s this for Italian English, “The path towards EICMA 2021 is marked by great expectation and concrete optimism, our event is one of the most important and attractive exhibition-events at international level and it will proudly play a decisive role for the recovery of the Milanese trade show system and for the country.” This is what Pietro Meda, Chairman of EICMA Spa said the other day. Pietro, he’s a bit of a legend in his own right, is the main man at the company that organizes the, now, one hundred-year-old International Cycle and Motorcycle Show. This year it’s scheduled to run from 23 to 28 November in the halls of Fiera Milano in Rho, Milan.
“EICMA”, Pietro continued, “is back after a stop of a year, strengthened by the renewed importance that the mobility market has given to two wheels and to the industry of reference; Milan will once again be the world capital in this sector. Our aim is to give back to exhibitors and the public what is theirs: a great container of passion and opportunities for development for businesses, which this year is even more significant and exciting.” That sentence carried all the structure and predictability of watching Wes Grainger prepping an old Kawasaki for a track day.
Never the less we’re pretty sure that his Italian is a whole lot better than ours and when it comes to putting a gig like EICMA together his show is legendary. While there have been all sorts of issues around the production and delivery of bikes since the ‘great unhappiness’ started, we can be pretty sure that the design teams have been flat out and will have loads of new toys for us in the new year. What better place to showcased them than at the biggest show on the planet?
EICMA runs this year from the 23rd to the 28th of November. Both the green planes and the blue ones fly direct from Dublin and as Milan is a little chilly at the end of November you should bring your coat.
Yotsuba Moto is a Japanese motorcycle parts and accessories company, owned by a company called Dirtfreak, they started production back in 2017. The parent company have been around since 1990, when they began supplying products for off road and motocross markets. These days they are the exclusive distributor for Fox racing, Alpinestars Off road kit, as well as MTB and few other bits for the Japanese off road motorcycle market. They even operate their own off road circuit.
Yotsuba means four leaf clover in Japanese, and it’s a symbol of happiness in Japan. Now the company are spreading that happiness with a new childrens’ electric motorcycle called the Meow. This is designed as a bike in between small pedal or balance bikes and engine powered bikes for kids. During testing it was found that small kids who are too young to ride engine bikes or real racing electric bikes, can ride these bikes very easily.
So this is just what you need if your youngster cannot ride a bicycle or is scared of the sound of a two stroke engine, and after all who in their right mind isn’t? These things are light weight, small, easy to ride and environmentally friendly machines. Because of their simple design they can be ridden almost anywhere, on dirt, gravel roads, through those deep puddles that seem to draw young children in to the deepest muddiest part of. They are also easy for the child to stand back up once they’ve fallen over.
There are two sizes. The first has 12 inch wheels and is the more compact model. It’s a shade bigger than a balance bike.These are designed for children whose height is from 85cm – 90cm. It doesn’t have any sharp or rotating objects such as disc brakes or a chain and sprocket kit. They are equipped with a unique 3 axis falling sensor and steering support equipment which are designed to help your child on their first ride. White or black frame colours are available.
Then there is the 16 inch wheel size model for riders who are more than a metre in height. Their basic functionality is the same as with the smaller machine, but this one comes with a lighter and stronger rear hub motor. The larger wheel size is for better rough road riding ability. And, it bridges to 50cc engine bikes such as Yamaha's PW 50. Once again, they are available in white or black.
Small and lightweight in design coming in at only 12.5kg. The light weight makes for a much less intimidating machine for the younglings as well as much less drama when they have an ‘off’. Because it weighs so little it doesn’t need suspension or a huge amount of power. The company even developed a small Lithium-ion battery for this bike. Rather cleverly the motor stops automatically if it falls down thanks to its three axis sensor.
One of the safety features is that after picking up the bike, the rider will have to completely close the throttle for a re-start. The bike cannot go out of control once the bike is picked up and the wheels are back on the ground. The electric throttle side grip diameter is 19.1 mm, small and designed for childrens small hands. The control levers are also thinner sizes than standard levers for easy to control.
A specially programmed speed controller provides smooth starts. You can select three different maximum speeds, from 6km/h to 18km/h with the mode selector switch. 6km/h is a fast waking speed for a parent. The rider can stop the bike by pressing the foot brake and the motor lives in the wheel hub. These new machines are available from all good dealers now with prices starting at €759.
Mr. Michio Arai was awarded the Nicolas Rodil del Valle Gold Medal and praised for meritorious service by the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) as president and representative of Arai Helmet, Ltd. a manufacturer of rider helmets based in Omiya City, in the Saitama Prefecture, Japan.
The FIM is an organisation of international standing as the head of supervising motorcycle sports in no fewer than 80 countries around the world. They are based in Switzerland and the FIM is also recognised by the International Olympic Committee. This special gold medal, which was first presented in 1983, is only ever awarded to persons who have made significant contributions to two-wheel racing activities.
The FIM awarded Mr. Arai this medal for what they describe as “achievement in contributions to the safety of many riders and numerous advancements to motorcycle sports over many years”. Furthermore, while Mr. Arai may well be the 23rd person to be awarded a gold medal. He is still the first ever awarded as a maker of rider safety equipment.
The team who design and manufacture these helmets understand the reason for this award, Arai Helmet continues to make helmets without compromise for the sake of rider protection. They have done this since the company’s foundation as the first motorcycle helmet manufacturer in Japan. It’s no exaggeration to say that these contributions are recognised around the world by the granting of this award. Mr. Arai received the award from the FIM at the end of November in Monte Carlo, Monaco at the 2019 FIM Awards Ceremony General Meeting.
Arai were founded as a helmet maker all the way back in 1950. The company, Arai Helmet, was the very first manufacturer motorcycle helmets in Japan. As for the high level of protection for motorcycles, touring riders of course needed it. And Arai Helmet also received overwhelming endorsement from racers using the helmet in what they wonderfully refer to as ‘severe conditions’. These days it’s still very much a family affair with Mr. Michio Arai having taken over the Arai family business in 1986 from his father, Mr. Hirotake Arai. You’ve only got one head, wear an Arai!
Speedart is the work of well known Motorcycle Racing promoter, PR man and now artist, Fergus Brennan. Brennan runs the Dunlop Masters Superbike Championship. Having only started painting in April as something to do while the championship was dormant, Brennan's work was well received by all who saw it. He decided to make his new hobby a commercial enterprise when he received multiple requests for copies of his paintings along with a number of commissions.
The artists aim when it comes to motorcycle racing prints is to concentrate on Irish riders. From both road and short circuits. And to do this with an increased emphasis on circuit racers who are currently under represented. Having purchased prints himself over the years, Brennan was disappointed by the lack of accurate detail in many of them. The focus with his own painting is producing accurate work.
The print we received celebrates Jack Kennedy's double British Supersport Championship success. Copies are now available for sale as print only or framed. There is the additional option of having the print signed by the rider. The detail in the bike, rider and sponsors logos is top class. It is a match for anything we have seen previously.
Original artwork has been supplied to riders for presentation to sponsors and for their own use as a memento of their time racing. A strong demand for framed prints has prompted the artist to broaden his horizons.
For more info see Speedart.
The team at Motomojo were born on the racetrack. A nice exotic, very fast race track in southern Spain where prompted by an unheeded need in the motorcycling community the company’s founder and executive chairman, Mr Michael Walsh, felt compelled to supply his fellow track heroes with a set of emergency top quality SRT Medical ID tags.
These simple, lightweight tags could be worn around the riders neck and they would be imprinted with the riders details as they wished them to appear. The rider could, for example, list their date of birth, blood type and any drug allergies that they had. Now in the case of an unfortunate accident the medical staff would have some information that may not always have been readily available.
There was also the option to attach a next of kin mobile phone number. Supposing that if, at the end of the event, the wearer drank themselves into a ‘state of distress’. Their fellow celebrants could contact their better half and make arrangements to have them taken home to spend the night in the shed. That’s if they were lucky enough to have a shed... Side note: Under no circumstances should the management or staff at Motomojo be called upon for relationship advice.
The company are all about the love of Motorsport, or anything that propels you faster than you naturally move with their first love being motorcycling. These days, as well as the tags, they provide customised, innovative and bespoke laser cut products. These statuettes can be generated from one of your own images and mounted on a similarly generated image.
They make a fantastic gift to commemorate a birthday or anniversary. Or as an alternative to a club prize. This is instead of the traditional piece of cut glass or trophy. From their quality SRT Medical ID tags to these 3D statutes the team at Motomojo has what you need so get in touch and get add a bit of quality and safety to your events this coming season. They also make an excellent gift.
To find out more take a look for Motomojo on Facebook.
Some very interesting news has reached us - Ducati have now started to fit radars onto production bikes. The adoption of these systems promises might just be a game changer with the impact of ABS or TCS in the world of two wheels. This system looks like it’ll be especially useful on long motorway journeys. Radars are advanced rider aid systems capable of supporting and making riding more comfortable thanks to the ability to read the real time situation surrounding the motorcycle. Ducati's interest in this type of systems goes back a few years, they first started to look at this technology back in 2016.
Now the system has been fine tuned to a level where it can be used in a mass produced road bike. The new technology has been developed and produced in close cooperation with Bosch, a top-level technology partner, and sees its first commercial use on the new Multistrada V4. Bosch are the same people who gave us that very clever cornering ABS a few years ago.
There are two units on the bike. The one positioned in the front of the vehicle controls the operation of the Adaptive Cruise Control. This piece of cleverness works by means of controlled braking and acceleration and automatically adjusts the distance, which is selectable on four levels, from other vehicles when riding at a speed between 30 and 160 km/h.
The rear radar, on the other hand, is able to detect and report vehicles positioned in our spot, that is the area not visible either directly by the rider or through the mirror. The Blind Spot Detection (BSD) system also signals the approaching from behind of vehicles at high speed. The system allows for more comfortable riding, especially on long motorway journeys.
The new bike has just landed in Rosso Ducati where a test ride can be organised by appointment. Call Declan on 014642211 and start livin’ the dream…
Franklin Motorcycles, Ireland's importer and retailer of Zero Motorcycles, have taken the two wheeled world by storm with ground breaking machinery such as the award winning SR/F. To celebrate the arrival of Spring and the riding season they’re now offering purchasers of this particular model an additional 6kw of fast charging. This comes in the form of a free accessory rapid charger, worth a cool €3,295 fitted.
With over 1,300 fast charging points across Ireland, an impressive amount of riders have chosen to take the plunge and start riding an electric motorcycle. The additional rapid charger increases the on-board charging capability to 12kw on the premium version or 9kw on the standard machine. This allows a standard machine to be refuelled three times faster than the stock bike. It also cuts the charge times on the posh one by half!
Most riders charge their bikes at home through a regular three-pin plug. The dealer fitted rapid charger accessory gives greater flexibility to tackle longer tours. When connected to a three-phase public charging outlet, a Zero SR/F Premium, which has been fitted with the rapid charger, can be recharged in just under an hour..
The Zero SR/F is a motorcycle which has been very well received since it was introduced as part of the 2020 model line-up. This wasn’t surprising as it has a healthy 190Nm of torque. The bike offers superbike beating acceleration and performance. Indeed, aside from regular consumables like tyres and brake pads, Zero’s range of all-electric motorcycles are pretty much maintenance free. A full recharge at home costs less than €2.50 and gives up to 259 kilometres on a single charge. Here at Franklin Motorcycles, as well as Lee Motorcycles in Cork, the SR/F is available from €22,250.
The free Rapid Charger offer is available for new Zero SR/F motorcycles, but only while stocks last. Call either Nicole or Keith on 015385005 to organise yours.
Indian Motorcycles have announced their 2021 model-year range. The new lineup, which includes new model iterations, next-level technology upgrades, and a robust offering of genuine Indian Motorcycle accessories, is made available following the brand’s strongest sales quarter ever.
“We’re extremely motivated by the significant brand momentum we’re experiencing, and we’re as focused as ever to provide our riders with best-in-class products and experiences,” said Reid Wilson, Vice President of Indian Motorcycles. “Our riders are extremely discerning, with high expectations across the board and it’s incumbent upon us to stay on the cutting edge in style, performance, and technology. Our 2021 lineup additions and upgraded features are a result of the hard work and dedication we pour into every bike in the lineup.”
Developed in direct response to rider feedback, Indian Motorcycle’s 2021 enhancements and new offerings span across its Thunderstroke, PowerPlus and Scout line ups.
Joining the Indian Motorcycle cruiser lineup is the new Indian Vintage Dark Horse. For riders who want timeless style with a mean attitude, the new machine comes with soft black leather bags and fully blacked-out styling.
Featuring significant upgrades in 2021, the Roadmaster lineup is better than ever. Apple CarPlay is now standard across the lineup, while both the Roadmaster Limited and the Roadmaster Dark Horse models feature Indian Motorcycle’s all-new ClimaCommand Rogue heated and cooled seat with Ride Command integration.
Joining the Roadmaster lineup is the Roadmaster Limited, which features gloss paint, chrome finishes, a modern fairing design, open front fender and ‘slammed’ saddlebags. Meanwhile, the restyled Roadmaster Dark Horse includes fully blacked-out finishes for mean and modern attitude. Each model is powered by Indian Motorcycle’s powerful, air-cooled Thunderstroke 116 with premium features, including Metzeler Cruisetec tyres, lower fairings with adjustable airflow vents, heated grips and a push-button adjustable windshield. Standard amenities across the entire Roadmaster lineup include remote-locking saddlebags and trunk with over 140 litres of combined storage, adjustable passenger floorboards, ABS, cruise control, keyless ignition, tyre pressure monitoring and full LED lighting.
The power buttons on the Chieftain, Roadmaster, Springfield, and Challenger models have been relocated to the switch cube on the handlebars to accommodate a new 12-volt charge port on the dash. The charge port provides riders with an opportunity to plug in and connect to a wider range of electronics.
The new lineup boasts new ride-enhancing technology, both as standard equipment and as an upgrade. In addition to being as standard on the Roadmaster Limited and Roadmaster Dark Horse, the new ClimaCommand heated and cooled seat is also available as an upgrade across all of the Thunderstroke models. New for 2021, the ClimaCommand seat is available in two style variations, Classic and Rogue, which has more modern, streamlined style. Additionally, the 2021 this seat now allows riders to adjust heating and cooling directly through the Ride Command infotainment system on select 2020 and 2021 models.
Thereby offering riders a new, and easy way to manage comfort while on the road. With a low, medium, or high setting, the thermoelectric technology is used to independently cool or heat the rider and passenger seat, while a flexible graphene material allows the heating or cooling to disperse through the entire surface area of the seat. The non-perforated seat is 100% water-resistant and highly durable. It is also available as an added accessory for all 2014 through 2021 Thunderstroke models, though 2020 and 2021 Chieftain and Roadmaster riders can integrate the seat within the bike’s Ride Command system.
Standard on all 2021 Roadmaster, Chieftain, and Indian Challenger models equipped with Ride Command with navigation is Apple CarPlay. This delivers an easier, more customised level of control for music, navigation preferences, and mobile device information. How you’ve managed to last this long without it is anyone’s guess.
Also available as an accessory upgrade, the company introduces the all-new Pathfinder S LED Driving lights for most Chieftain, Roadmaster, and Challenger models. The all-new Pathfinder S LED Driving Lights have superior illumination, providing riders with even more nighttime visibility. Finding yourself caught in Wicklow after dark need never again be as frightening as it currently, and quite understandably, is.
New for next year, riders can now upgrade the Indian Challenger’s audio experience with the PowerBand Audio Quick Release Trunk Amplified Speaker Kit. When paired with PowerBand Audio Plus, this is a system that delivers exceptional sound and clarity from high-output fairing and saddlebag speakers that are 50% louder than the Challenger’s stock audio system.
Next year Challenger riders can pack for the long haul and enjoy a host of new touring amenities. The new bikes Quick Release Trunk adds no less than 64 litres of additional storage. Similar to the Roadmaster trunk, the Challenger unit is lockable via a key fob and can fit two full-face helmets. Rather cleverly when paired with the Slim Trunk Passenger Backrest Pad, passengers have up to 50mm of additional room for comfort. That’s a lot of space on a motorcycle.
For both the Challenger and Thunderstroke models, a new low-profile quick-release padded sissy bar with low-profile passenger pad is available to those who want added passenger comfort without sacrificing the bike’s low-profile and sleek styling.
Additionally, Challenger and Thunderstroke riders can add even more wind protection. There are now taller accessory windshield options and added comfort with an extended reach seat, infinite highway pegs and a pinnacle heel shifter. For those riding two-up, a quick-release passenger sissy bar, passenger backrest pad, and passenger floorboards add a world of comfort for your pillion.
For Thunderstroke models, the company offers a full package of comfort and passenger accommodations, including extended reach seat, mid-rise and 16-inch ape hanger handlebars, rider and passenger backrests, and a colour matching Quick Release Trunk, as well as passenger armrests and more. Challenger riders, meanwhile, can upgrade with mid-rise handlebars, a tinted curved windshield, and front highway bars.
Indian Motorcycle’s robust Scout lineup offers both classically-styled and modernly-mean designs. With a 1000cc motor, delivering 76 horsepower, the Scout Sixty and Scout Bobber Sixty are each approachable and at an attainable price point. Riders looking for more punch can opt for the 1133c, 94 horsepower, engine in the Scout and Scout Bobber.
The new year’s Scout line up receives a refresh with new paint colours, thereby further enhancing the iconic style and lines of the bike. Colours like Metallic Maroon and Crimson Metallic on the Scout and Alumina Jade Smoke on the Scout Bobber add to the aggressive, low profile look that riders love with Scout Bobber models.
And for aspiring and new riders, the Scout and Scout Bobber models will of course continue to be available in A2 compliant specification.
While there is already a robust line of genuine Scout accessories, Indian are adding even more in the new year. With all-new Scout touring parts, riders can turn their city cruiser into a capable long-haul touring machine. A Scout Bobber low or mid wind deflector protects riders from the elements, while heated grips for all 2017-2021 Scout models keep your hands warm in cold weather conditions. In addition, a new fairing bag and semi-rigid saddlebags add stylish storage options. Finally, a colour-matched quick release fairing with a cool 2 inch windshield is available for all Scout models in the new colours.