Following a couple of email exchanges with Practical Sportsbike editor Chris Newbigging, who was searching for a ZXR for an upcoming feature, it transpires he was after a regular ZXR and not a homologation. His interest is piqued however with the idea that this is a NOS bike and a plan hatches to cover what it’s like to be running a NOS bike after so many years dormant. This bike had effectively covered 24 miles in 24 years, now 26 years old, what horrors (or not) may await!
He informs me a month or so later, that he would like to send motorcycle journalist Jim Moore down to cover the bike who he assures me is a”safe pair of hands”.
After a phonecall with fellow Katana owner Jim, a date is therefore set for a visit, accompanying Jim is photographer Stuart. We’ve also managed to arrange with Lydden Hill to borrow their circuit as a backdrop for some photos to which they very generously agreed.
After a morning in the garage, where my beautifully clean R enjoys being papped by a professional, Jim and myself go through much of the ownership experience and how it came to be. It’s raining outside so we decide to scope out Lydden and see if it will be suitable. It is. Fortunately on our return the rain has stopped and Jim rides my bike to the circuit. Stuart snaps away and banks some decent shots for the feature. The ZXR is in its home environment here, an apt setting for this race homologation special.
Moving on from Lydden, we take an extended ride to seek out some corners for some road shots. Jim covers 50 miles on the ZXR and we’ll have to await the publish of the magazine to read his thoughts…in the meantime…a couple more unprofessional cameraphone photos of the day…
It’s the first time Jim has ridden a homologation ZXR so it will be intriguing to learn how he feels and what memories he has of it once he’s had a chance to gather his thoughts after a day that involved many hours of a round trip as well as what was nearly 7 hours worth of talking and riding that seemed to pass far too quickly!!
It’s always a pleasure to chat away with fellow bike owners and the day was made all the better by some genuinely great company!