Steve Par­rish

Fast Bikes - - COLUMNIST -

Good month folks? Mine’s not been bad by half, in­clud­ing zap­ping about on an In­dian, be­lieve it or not. The In­dian range is ac­tu­ally based on the Vic­tory bikes (which is now de­funct), and while it’s big and heavy it’s not a bad bike at all, and they are way, way bet­ter than Har­leys which are ba­si­cally trac­tors. You can even grab it by the scruff and hus­tle it about a bit, within rea­son of course, though mine has been ground out fully on both sides al­ready!

So then, Mr Rossi, well that must have been a nice straight­for­ward break for him to have healed enough to race at Aragon. But that was still re­ally im­pres­sive from the Doc­tor; if the un­think­able had hap­pened he could have re­ally screwed him­self up, po­ten­tially ca­reer end­ing. And he’ll have to be a lit­tle cau­tious for the rest of the sea­son, as I can’t see him hav­ing the pin re­moved be­fore the last race, can you?

He’s done his bit of heroic rid­ing, per­son­ally I’d have it taken out, give the fly away races a miss and come back for Va­len­cia. But then I’m not Rossi, and he con­tin­ues to surprise us even in his dotage. As for Mo­toGP, I still think Marc Mar­quez will do it this year. He’s coming into real form with no­body else in his league. Apart from Dani Pe­drosa some­times, though he and Jorge Lorenzo are the same in that all the stars must align and ev­ery­thing must be per­fect for them to be com­pet­i­tive. Es­pe­cially Jorge I think, but then I see him win­ning on that Du­cati be­fore the end of the year, it’s coming, he’s get­ting closer and I’m very im­pressed with his im­prove­ment. We also have two Du­cati tracks coming up too, which could be the only fly in Mar­quez’s oint­ment.

Speak­ing of his ti­tle ri­val, Dovizioso, a sev­enth at Aragon wasn’t a cham­pi­onship ride es­pe­cially be­ing beaten by the Aprilia. That’s also coming on nicely, they just need a top rider to make the big dif­fer­ence I be­lieve. And then there’s the Mar­quez to KTM in 2019 ru­mours. Why would he do that? He doesn’t have the same ego as Rossi, want­ing to go win on an­other man­u­fac­turer, he’s happy on the Honda and they must be pay­ing him well. Un­less KTM or Red Bull come up with some stu­pen­dous wage for him, and the KTM starts win­ning next year (highly un­likely…), then I can’t see him leav­ing

HRC. In fact I think he’d be daft to.

I did the com­men­tat­ing at Por­ti­mao for WSB, and Rea was in a dif­fer­ent league once again. He’s not go­ing to Mo­toGP, I had a long chat with him and he said he’d think about go­ing there if Kawasaki do, and he wouldn’t welch on his con­tract with Team Green. I guess af­ter next year it’s not com­pletely out of the ques­tion, but then his life is per­fect and he’s no spring chicken. There’s no shame in be­ing happy with your lot, or win­ning in WSB.

His ri­val, Chaz Davies, threw away a safe podium in the sec­ond race, and I won­der if he got a bol­lock­ing for that? He does crash too much, but then I guess he’s over-rid­ing the bike to make up for its de­fi­cien­cies, too. And on the sub­ject of crash­ing, Alex Lowes, two big crashes again in the races. He and his brother do it far too much and I know it’s be­cause Alex is push­ing hard, but now his team-mate is start­ing to get the bet­ter of him he’s only go­ing to push harder, isn’t he?

It must drive Paul Den­ning nuts, I used to run my own WSB team and you could al­ways ac­count for ev­ery­thing in your bud­get ex­cept crash dam­age. Even if the bike slides down the track in a gen­tle look­ing crash, I’m telling you that’s the best part of £10,000 once the bike is all patched up. It mur­ders your bud­get, and yes crash­ing is a risk, but then it’s eas­ier to stop some­one crash­ing than teach them to be fast, er, ap­par­ently! Did you see Tom Sykes’ huge off? The en­tire bike went in the skip aside from a few parts from in­side the engine. Tom him­self got away with only mi­nor in­juries, it could have been re­ally nasty. And all those crashes in BSB at Sil­ver­stone? Nuts!

I did the Good­wood Re­vival again, and it was fun. We came ninth over­all which wasn’t bad given the young­sters up front, and our com­bined team age was 132! I did the fifth fastest lap though, which wasn’t bad given the Dun­lop broth­ers et al were all there.

Lastly, I’m cur­rently on hol­i­day in Ma­jorca and the place is ru­ined by cy­clists ev­ery­where, rid­ing en masse in their bloody pelo­tons. So I get my knack­ered moun­tain bike out, dress like a tit with a back­pack on with ten­nis rack­ets hang­ing out of each side and whizz af­ter them to catch them up. Then I ring my bell, coming through style, and the look on their ly­cra ad­dicted faces as I barge through them is ut­terly hi­lar­i­ous. I can only last about half a mile be­fore I’m out of puff but, boy, is it worth it! Till next month!


No com­ment... Last of the­sum­mer swine?



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