A week after we came back from our first adventure, I received a call from the shop that works on my bike. “Hey Andres, your bike is ready!” Best call ever!
I packed up my “trailer in a bag” and headed up to pick up my baby, my money pit, my headache.
Let me introduce you to “EVIL” that’s her nickname; it is a 2010 Ducati 1198S with lots and lots and lots of mods. It was at the shop for service and to fix a few issues. (shout-out to European Cycle Services in NY for always taking care of my bikes!)
I went out for a few solo rides around the Bear Mountain area in NY; this is probably the most popular place to ride for people from NYC and NNJ. I wanted to make sure the bike was running perfectly without any issues.
Once I knew EVIL was good, I started riding with my unemployed companion aka @motomilosh.
At this point she only had a few hours of riding under her belt (and some of those hours were carrying my butt. see pic below) but little by little she started getting more comfortable and better.
We started heading north, each time we would increase the distances, I took every opportunity I had to ride and to also put some miles on other friend's bikes.
Going to the track is always both exciting and scary, especially when you don’t have a dedicated track bike. You cannot avoid the thought of “Oh man I hope I don’t crash my baby”, which I think is the reason a lot of people don’t actually go to the track.
This particular day, I was invited to join a couple of friends and fellow DOCNYC members (Ducati Owners Club of NYC) for a fun Monday. Being a little down and not having a job definitely made me a bit reluctant about going, but the fact that I did not know what I was going to do with my life meant that I had to grab every chance I had to do fun things. After thinking about it, I packed up everything in my car; put the bike up on my trusty trailer and off we went.
I made the two and half hour drive the day before, the idea was to set up my camping tent and spend the night in comfort; well I did not realize how could it would get so I ended up sleeping in the car with the heater on (sorry environment).
The next morning (backpain and all) we set up our garage, geared up (thanks Rob and Raj for helping me lol) and went over the bikes before taking them for inspection.
After inspection, we all went to the riders meeting where we were given the schedule and they sent us off.
I took the time I was off the track to walk around and see what other bikes were there:
Once I was out on the track, everything that had been going through my head was forgotten; it was just me and the bike, no other thoughts (other than the occasional OH SHIT moment going through a turn).
shout-out to The SB Image for the awesome pictures.
Sorry for the low youtube quality, I will re-upload the video directly to the site tonight; btw go check out other videos here.
It was a great day, a little cold and a few accidents but everyone walked away. I cannot emphasize enough how much fun track days are; there is something about the people, the general experience that makes it truly unique.
Thanks to Rob, Raj and Chris for the invite; hope to join you guys at a lot more track days next year.
I had the opportunity to check out and test ride the amazingly cool Energica Ego; this bike is advertised as the first Electric Italian superbike and it definitely looks the part.
We were greeted by the marketing team and the engineers, a group of cool Italians that were traveling around the US showing off the bikes. They explained the characteristics and specs of the bikes while we looked around and inspected them; the first thing you notice is the carbon fiber body which looks great, then you see that amazing cluster which is nothing short of an attraction in itself.
Unfortunately I did not realize my camera had turned off while I was on the bike so I did not get any footage of the ride, but I can give you my own impressions of the bike:
When I jumped on the bike, the first thing I thought was “damn this thing is heavy” and it is at 570lbs. The first thing the team tells you is “do not hit the throttle hard”, and they are right because the torque on this bike is just short of unbelievable!
Once we got going, the bike started feeling lighter. The lack of clutch and gears felt weird but you become used to it quickly once you are able to open it up a little because that torque is just intoxicating.
Going into turns was a bit tricky; it didn’t inspire a lot of confidence because the suspension felt a bit loose and the weight of the bike definitely makes itself felt. I spoke to one of the engineers and he told me that due to the nature of the test ride, they had to set up the suspension in soft settings… I didn’t buy that but ok.
Overall the bike is an engineering wonder; it might not be for everyone but if this is any indication of the future of motorcycles, I personally will not be disappointed.