Triumph Street Triple RS
“IT’S NUTS, ISN’T IT?” Rutter says of the Street RS during a quiet moment of reflection at lunchtime. “I mean, how can the bike here with the least power feel like it’s got the most?” What he is referring to, of course, is how the bike accelerates just as quickly as its more powerful stablemate, which is a different thing altogether to how much power it makes. But Rutter has ably identified that the power to weight ratios of the Street Triple RS and Speed Triple RS are almost identical. This means that the two bikes feel incredibly closely matched through the initial part of Donington’s many corner exits. It’s only when you’re higher up the gears and speedo that the Street Triple loses out to pretty much everything else on track with it, including the Speed Triple.
The Street Triple’s 765cc motor is a peach, and this is the first time Rutter has sampled it. He’s full of praise for it, noting especially the way it revs. “It doesn’t hang about does it? The motor spins up really quick, and revs really hard. I like it a lot. It’s dead keen, and doesn’t do that Triumph thing of revving and revving, then stopping abruptly. There’s just enough warning before the rev limiter to shift up and get through the next gear. There’s no vibrations or anything. When I sat alongside the other bikes in pitlane waiting to go out, it was hard to tell if the engine was running or not.”
The Street Triple 765 wasn’t Triumph’s first attempt at ride by wire. The Tiger 1200 was the first, followed by the 2016 Speed Triple, which was very good barring a few little quirks. The ride by wire set-up on the Street Triple, which includes rider modes, traction control, anti-wheelie and throttle maps comes in for praise from Rutter. He is a fan, and singles out the throttle action, its weight and response which he, like many, refers to as “throttle connection”, that feeling of having confidence and a clear passage between neurons, wrist, nerves in the palm of your hand and rear tyre. It is arguably the most important relationship between man and machine when it comes to chasing lap times, and the Street Triple’s is just about perfect according to Rutter.
Rutter has been having a blast on the Street
‘At its heart is a belter of an engine, in a lightweight, nimble chasis with high-end suspension and brakes’
Triple, and doesn’t have much criticism to lay at its door, other than the fact that the ABS kicks in a bit early for his liking, and the set-up is too soft for the track, even after James had adjusted it. Rather than be too hard on the bike for those things, he acknowledges that it’s still good for a cheapish naked bike. It has a ticket price of just £10,200, which makes the Street Triple RS the cheapest bike on our leaderboard. It was never going to set the leaderboard alight, but a lap time in Rutter’s hands of 1:41.66 does demonstrate just how deep the Street Triple’s reserves of performance are. There are people who will do hundreds of laps of Donington on trick sportsbikes, yet never get close to a 1min 41sec lap time. At a sold out trackday, you could probably count on one hand (two at the most) the amount of people who would be lapping that quickly. In the end, the more powerful Speed Triple set the faster lap time, which is more of a reflection of the nature of Donington’s stop/start nature towards the end of the lap. The Street Triple hardly disgraced itself, ‘affordable’ price tag or otherwise. It scalped the lavish Ducati Monster 1200S and was within the blink of an eye of the Yamaha MT-10SP. At its heart is an absolute belter of an engine, with
RUTTER ON STREET RS ‘Apart from the ABS being a little too keen to chime in, there’s much to like here. It’s punching well above it weight, and great value, too’
sublime throttle control and fuel injection, housed in a lightweight, nimble chassis with high quality suspension and brakes. What’s not to like?
As a point of discussion as I load the bikes back in the van, Rutter repeated his observation that the suspension was way too soft for the track, even after being set up. It’s safe to say that with some heavier springs, the Street Triple could go a lot faster still, but then that would be a set of clip ons and fairing away from being a Daytona 765...
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Cornering confidence was sky-high on the Street RS