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motorbike-sunset-silhoueteThere is something about motorbikes that scream out at our inner bloke, something about them is so raw and powerful, dangerous and exciting that it’s hard not to get excited about them.

Whether it is the guttural roar from the engine as the throttle is pulled back and huge amounts of torque are unleashed through a single tire. Or it is the sleek and sexy lines of shaped metal and plastic.

Whatever it is, there is one thing that we can agree on, blokes and bikes go hand in hand and this blog will serve to show off these manly creations and their riders every week.

You can look forward to interviews with the top racers in New Zealand, reviews on bikes and products, coverage on bike events, Bike of the Day features and much more.

If you have any stories that you think should be covered on the page, flick me an email on: matt-w@live.com.au

Be it a custom bike build, motorcycle event, epic story of a ride around our beautiful country or anything else of interest, I want to hear from you.

Keep an eye out for new content and whilst you are doing so, crack open a cold one, sit back and relax and have a look throughout the site.

Matt Wishart

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Guy Martin talking his way through the course.

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So to kick the day off, work was going swimmingly, preparing food for the day and chopping various items with my large, sharp knife. I had a pot of butter on, simmering away when as some silly girl walks behind me and bumps into me, I knock the pot of hot butter onto my hand and in retaliation, swing wildly around with my knife and ‘accidentally’ slit this poor girls throat as she falls to the ground with a thud and warm, crimson blood soaking into my nice clean Chef’s clothes. 

I quickly realise the gravity of the situation and make my way out of there as soon as possible, I jump onto my motorbike and pin back the throttle. Then I remember to turn the bike on, and now I am off on my way to my safe house which is prepared for one such occasion as this. On the way there I stop at a set of traffic lights as a scooter rider pulls up beside me with only a bicycle helmet on and 3 small children on the back of his 50cc Zongshen scoot. 

He tries to smile at me with a large toothless grin and spits out some foreign language in an attempt to make polite conversation. Since I am not in the mood to talk I ignore him, but he persists on trying to talk to me and all I can make out from the muffled, dying dog sound coming from his mouth was “” Hello, I like your bike!” Or something along those lines, I get angry that he is still trying to talk to me so give his little scooter a swift kick with my armoured boots and watch as he slowly but surely, topples over to the ground. 

Unfortunately at this point a large bus decides to pull up beside us and… you get the idea. 

So that is my current predicament, I am typing this from the safety of an internet cafe on Queen St in Auckland city and I am sure that they will not find me here. Though there are quite a few people looking at me, but I usually get this because of my good looks. 

Oh hang on, I think they are calling the cops?! 

Will update later got to ru…

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MotoGP 2014 Suzuki Prototype

This is what is believed to be the Suzuki prototype for their 2014 MotoGP bike, looks pretty nice and I look forward to seeing how it performs!

New Suzuki MotoGP bike?

Taken from http://www.cycleworld.com/2012/05/22/spied-2014-suzuki-motogp-prototype/ and written by Kevin Cameron.

Insiders tell us this is a prototype for Suzuki’s return to MotoGP in 2014. The project was, we are told, “hot for a while” and then cooled off. Now, with these photos from a test earlier this month at Sugo Circuit in Japan, it clearly has momentum again.

What have we here? We see from the exhaust pipes that this is a transverse inline-Four, just like all GSX-Rs. That is a departure from Suzuki’s V-Four GSV-R MotoGP architecture. While the usual pipe arrangement for a flat-crank inline-Four is 4-into-2-into-1, this bike has two long-taper megaphones, each connecting to a pair of cylinders. That suggests this engine does not have a flat crank but instead is fitted with a 90-degree “crossplane” crank shown by Yamaha’s engineer Masao Furusawa to improve grip.

A Japanese informant said, “New Suzuki MotoGP racer is certainly inline-Four. It is not, however, normal inline. When guess from exhaust sound, kind same as YZR-M1.” All the other trappings of MotoGP are present: top-level Brembo calipers and carbon discs, Öhlins suspension, plus carbon-fiber bodywork.

What else do we see? We see a radically forward rider position, and that the engine’s cylinder block is inclined forward, perhaps as much as 30 degrees. This moves the intake throttle bodies to where they need to be in the airbox. As the rider accelerates (note that in one of the cornering photos, he has the throttle pinned, suggesting advanced electronics in use), his face is directly over the steering crown. The fuel tank sits behind a large carbon-intake airbox and consists of a thin forward vertical portion as tall as the airbox, with a long and quite thick “foot,” which effectively forms the rider’s seat. You can see fuel pipes to the injectors entering the front of the airbox. Note also that as the rider accelerates, his butt is three inches clear of the two-inch-thick seatback pad, further underscoring the far-forward rider position.

What has happened here is that as the engineers have sought to lower the placement of the fuel toward the machine/rider center of mass, putting most of it under the seat, fuel mass has moved rearward. If the front tire is not to become unweighted during off-corner acceleration, something else must compensate by being moved forward. And not only that, each year, as tire grip is increased, more power may be applied without wheelspin, increasing the tendency to lift the front.

Under the rider’s hands are bulbous ducts leading from the chin intake in the fairing nose, through the chassis sides and into the engine airbox. Although a rear-wheel starter can be seen in the garage shot, there is Suzuki’s usual round “starter door” in the right side of the fairing, through which a starter dog can spin the crank if the slipper-clutch setting is too soft to permit rear-wheel starting.

2014 Suzuki MotoGP Prototype

It’s hard to see what is going on with the airflow to the two radiators. At first, the “covers” between them and the front tire look solid, like carbon fabric. But they could also be stone shields. In one photo, the upper cover has come loose and moved forward along one edge, as if there were pressure behind it. If solid, it would be a first in ducting ram air from above the tire to the front faces of the radiators. Airflow behind the front tire is always disturbed, providing poor pressure to push it through the radiators. This is part of the reason radiators are as big as they are. Four large hot-air exit slots are provided in the fairing sides.

And when I look at where the cylinder head must be, it might suggest the upper radiator is U-shaped to make clearance for it. Suzuki did this during the early 1980s to move its disc-valve RG engines farther forward.

Recently on the Italian website GPone.com, journalist David Emmett asked Suzuki racing technical director Shinichi Sahara if the company will change to an inline-Four. Sahara replied that they will “stay faithful to our engine layout.” And in a Peter McLaren story from this past February, veteran Suzuki test rider Nobuatsu Aoki said he “rode it last week” at Ryuyo.

Conflicting information? Not at all. It is normal for manufacturers to build and test multiple prototypes before determining which is most promising. Veteran tuner Eraldo Ferracci has told of testing endless prototypes when he was at Benelli—and most were not produced.

There is also another possibility here: Suzuki is known for making multiple uses of projects, so an inline-Four MotoGP prototype could also gather information useful in design of next-generation GSX-Rs. Could such a machine also be the foundation for a production-based CRT bike? Might Suzuki build the MotoGP equivalent of a production racer in the spirit of Yamaha’s TZs of the 1970s?

It’s a guessing game, and we enjoy it. We shall have the pleasure of anticipation.

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My new song, I’m the one singing.

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New tyres on the SV650


Pulled off the tyres on my race bike today to throw on some Michelin Power Ones that I picked up for $150. I took them off yesterday after hoisting the front end up by a tow cable and a dodgy rear stand on the back, unbolted everything and got them off, after that I gave the whole area a good clean with some Kerosene to get rid of all the grime and crap that had lined the swingarm and underneath the bike.

Then today a friend of mine came over with some tyre levers, an air compressor and a bead breaker. Changed over the tyres for me and helped me balance and put them back in.

He is also shortening the connector for my muffler as it is too long and doesn’t fit very well.

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Now I know this isn’t about motorbikes, but it is to damn good to not write about so here I go.

It’s 7pm and a large crowd takes over most of the outside area, they are all waiting for one thing, Roger Waters. There is a huge variety of people walking around, from young to old, hippies and business men to people in wheelchairs and walking frames. The atmosphere is electric and you can see the excitement in everybody’s faces.

People are lined up at the food stalls, trying to fit in the last hot dog before the show and inside people are buying t-shirts and overpriced alcohol. There was a problem with our seats so we were upgraded to  near-best seats and we had a great unobstructed view of the stage.

Along the stage are large white bricks, stacked up close to the ceiling and humongous rows of speakers adorn the beams across the ceiling. Between the background music you can hear the anticipation building in the crowd and when the announcement comes through the speakers that the concert is about to start, the crowd gets even louder and with the appearance of the actors it gets even louder still.

Men dressed in a dark military uniform drag a lifeless puppet across the stage and the show begins, more actors spread across the stage with flags held high with the hammer symbol emblazoned in the middle of each flag. Narrative describes a trial and afterwards the puppet is thrown to the ground and Roger steps out from the darkness and gets into a long leather coat and dark glasses and walks along the stage.

As the music begins, fire works shoot up from the stage and light up the arena as the punchy tunes from “In the Flesh” blast into our eager ears. The crowd is apoleptic at this point and a chill runs down my spine as my childhood dreams come true.

Later in the set, giant puppets drop down with glowing eyes and take part in the song which just adds to the authenticity of the set. This is where Rogers creative brilliance really comes to play, with a set including close to 20 projectors, pyrotechnics, fireworks, dancing puppets and a gigantic wall of cardboard bricks adorn the stage.

It reminds you of the movie “The Wall” with it’s somewhat disturbing character drawings and animations and it truly lives up to it’s reputation.

The Wall is played in it’s entirety and the band plays it impeccably well with Roger at the age of 68 still able to belt out all of the tunes with a chilling accuracy. Snowy White is also on the stage as well as John Carin, both of whom, have played with Roger and David many times before.

Throughout the set, workers set up bricks across the stage untill the whole stage is blocked by a gigantic, white, brick wall and the music carries on. At this point I was a little sceptical as to whether the rest of the set would be played behind this behemoth of a wall and for a few songs it was.

Intermission came and the crowd flocked through the doors to refresh their drinks and food supply and around 20 minutes later the set begins again.

Roger steps out onto the stage in front of the wall and begins singing again, with the marvellous graphics behind him, it added a fantastic element to his performance, he appears again on a portion of a wall that fold out, with furniture bolted down onto the platform, the sullen notes of “Nobody’s Home” ring throughout the arena.

Comfortably Numb begins not long after and the crowd goes wild, along with myself and Roger begins to sing. The bridge and Chorus are sung by a name I have now forgotten standing atop the wall with a spotlight shone directly upon him. Both solo’s are played by another guitarist on the other side of the wall and he executes them perfectly with not a note or bend out of place, and the crowd is silent listening intensely to the sound of the lead guitar gracefully echoing through the room.

Soon enough, the panels in the floor raise up and gear and band rise from the depths to play the rest of the set, which brings delight as I was looking forward to seeing the band in action. After the set the floor lowers once more and near the end of the last song shouting “Bring down the wall!” The wall falls to the ground, lying in a pile of bricks at the base of the stage. This was completely unexpected as the wall actually looked very solid and as it began to move the fans sitting in the front rows must have began to panic as it began to break apart with a brutal jolt.

As the band came up on stage to play one last tune the fans cannot contain themselves and the roar is deafening. Roger begins to thank the crowd and tell us what a pleasure it has been and that when he first did this concert 30 odd years ago he never felt like playing to a crowd and he never enjoyed it, now things have changed and he has enjoyed himself immensely.

As he farewells us the twang of banjos ring on and come to a finale as the lights shine down and all that you can see is a sea of smiling and amazed faces.

This concert was one to remember and it was performed brilliantly and left us with a memory that will be told for years to come, all we need now is for David Gilmour to come and play a show and that shall be the icing on the cake.

Matt Wishart


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