Sunday, 13 June 2010

I just wanted to say…

Got a few things on my mind. Excuse the slightly stream-of-consciousness nature of this blog post but I wanted to get my thoughts on ‘paper’ while they were fresh.

Great in theory:
As part of getting my ‘bike licence I need to do the theory and hazard perception part of the driving test. It seemed a bit daunting but having had a look at the DSA interactive DVD on the subject I’m much more confident. Most of the things expected should come naturally to an experienced driver but it hasn’t done any harm to refresh those skills. One of the reasons for learning to ride a motorcycle was to improve my driving; it is nice that I can already see the benefit.

Choose your bike:
Still on the subject of motorcycles; the Get On website suggested I might like to take its interactive mini quiz to see what sort of motorcycle would be best for me. It asked some odd questions, such as how I have my hair cut and what sort of tent I’d use to go camping (suffice it to say that fourwheelsteer does not go camping). The first time I used it the application crashed, second time it came up with ‘adventure sports’ which appear to be bikes on stilts. That didn’t seem right at all so, third time lucky, I tried again and it came up with sports tourers – which look much more promising. What I think I want is a bike with outstanding steering, strong brakes, a decent ride, slick gearbox and a powerful, interesting, nice sounding engine. Although, to be fair, even a humble 125 ‘bike feels amazing if you’re used to cars.

On the road:
Not that cars can’t be good too; I took the Honda over to Luton for the Festival of Transport. Eschewing the obvious route I made my way via places beginning with B; Banbury, Brackley and Buckingham (we’ll ignore Milton Keynes).It was nice to let the car stretch its legs, including a romp up Sun Rising Hill and – on the way home – giving chase to a bright green Ford Focus RS. I don’t think the Ford was taking it easy as it set off out of a village with an audible chirrup from its tyres and I had to work quite hard to keep it in sight. Still, it is nice to know that my old and slightly scruffy Prelude can still move quickly when circumstances allow.

Grinding gears:
One thing that could be improved in the Prelude is the gearbox. It is pretty good but I couldn’t help thinking that with the close-ratio six-speed gearbox from the S2000 it would be even better. For that matter, what price a fast, beautiful, poised, rear-wheel drive Honda coupé?

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