Just as a matter of record, most of my bikes are listed below.
My very first was never captured on camera, it was an utter heap of an RM125. Bought for pennies, rarely ran, couldn’t afford to fix it. But great fun in the barley stubble fields when it did run.
My first road bike, my Superdream 250N. It felt like a big bike way back then, wasn’t a bad old thing. Pulled it apart more than I needed to, served me well.
Then the step up to a 750, a CBX750f, this was sold to me by a couple of local lads. It was a lemon of the highest order but I always loved the looks. Broke my heart, it spent more time in garages than on the road and ended up in a court case when crooks masquerading as Bimota dealers kept it for the best part of a year then wrote it off on a ‘test ride’. They then asked for full payment for the work carried out…
Then a real bike, Suzuki Bandit 1200S, bought from a dealer. What a lump this was, blew me away with the power it had. Didn’t handle so good as I remember but never caused me a problem in the years I owned it. I spent a lot of time on this and traded it in with big miles on it, did a couple of European trips on it I think.
Then the first of the sporty bikes, this was a revelation and I loved it. Heavy lump, but distinctive and fun. I kept it for quite a while, toured Europe on it and then turned it to track use later on. It came to England with me in 2001.
Then my dream bike – 2002 RSVR. This was my reward for moving to England, one of the last 02Rs on sale, I bought it new in early 2003. A beautiful bike, I met an awful lot of good people through owning one of these. It was my first experience of track riding too, riding to Folembray with a bunch of strangers for a few days. Eventually sold as the garage filled up, would be nice to still have it. On track it was a bit much for me at that stage – too big and too tall but I’d love a rattle round track on one now!
As well as my TLR gathering dust after I bought the RSV, I also bought a DRZ thinking I would do some dirt riding on it. I didn’t and the fact I don’t even have a photo demonstrates my lack of excitement about the thing. Sold on.
I think the KTM 200EXC was next, a two-stroke piece of orange fun. I did a fair bit of green laning on this with a couple of enduros. A great bike but eventually it didn’t get used enough.
Big Katoom came next, what a fantastic bike – 950SM. Beautiful carbed engine, only problem was it got a bit out of shape over 100. Brilliant bike, it went on track and round Scotland.
The next bike (I think – the order is a bit confusing) was the 2007 GSXR750 and the bike I really started to learn track riding on. The most forgiving bike I have ever ridden, crap on the road as it is too track focused but a little dream on track. It went round Scotland and quickly became a track bike.
This bus was bought for the London commute. Great for what it was bought for, although the battery was never quite strong enough to be confident in starting.
And then the best bike I have ever owned – by quite a margin. The S1000rr is still my race bike. Bought in 2010, did a trip to Scotland and a trip to the NW200 – the year before I did the NW200 trip on the CBF and I can tell you the Srr is much more comfortable and a lot more fun over 1000 miles. Quickly realised it was too good for the road, it was put to track use and has been exceptional. Love it and the only problem with it is it is too good to replace. Very high spec now other than the engine.
This was a bit of an ornament – I thought I would have time for some more dirt riding, but it was a waste of money. Sat around for a year and sold. Lovely bike though, 250ECX-F (not sure what year).
The Grom – 2015 paddock bike and silly toy. Great fun but I really should get shot of it!
Apart from the above, I have an old Speedfight stripped to the bones in the back garden for 50cc off-road racing and a 1985 GSXR750 ready for restoration. Neither worthy of a photo in their current condition!