I was half way through the first year of my biking career, and I found myself reviewing what I’d achieved and what I still wanted to do before the year was out. Two tours within the UK seemed achievable, and indeed one had already been done; the second I was looking at doing somewhere around September/October time. Then next year I want to stretch myself further – depending on how successful the first two tours were – and go in to Europe, but with a bigger bike. My choice lay between the ST1100 Pan European and the Blackbird, and I had a few reservations on both – but not enough to stop me from getting either one should the opportunity arise. It was not a priority however: I would wait until the end of the year/early next year to try and focus on it.
But I did keep scanning eBay once a week – just to see what was out there. And then one day in mid August a bike came on to the auction which immediately caught my eye; so I put a bid on it. Unfortunately I was outbid but the reserve price didn’t get reached, so I emailed the seller and we struck a deal. So, brothers and sisters, I introduce to you: bike number two (name tba) 🙂
It’s a 1999 Pan European ST1100; well-known within the biking community as being a ‘bullet-proof mile-muncher’. Mileage is only 60,000 which, for a 20 year old bike, is extremely low. This insha’Allah is what I will use for my foray into Europe next year – if, of course, we’re still allowed in!
Now at this point you’re probably thinking “well? what’s it like to ride?”. Well I’ll tell you. But not here. Because the following weekend I took it out for its first proper outing so that we could get to know each other. And it was an event that was so memorable that I’ll probably do it every year: The Ace Cafe Brighton Burn Up.