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Old 21st May 2005, 02:47   #1
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Default My day out with 18+ SBKs

This topic has been posted in xbhp and here simultaneously as I wanted to share my unforgetable experience with all.

It is a dream ride for any of u guys out there. Here goes . . . . . .
Just for the info of members who're not aware, I own a CBR 600 F2 since about 8 months now.

I used to get occasional calls from superbiker friends to go for Sunday rides but used to politely turn down the offers as Sunday's r for the family.
Last Saturday this guy calls up and says that next day a combined group of Mumbai & Thane SBKs were planning to ride to Amby valley and were planning to meet at Vashi (my area). We had just come from Singapore a day before so the family was not plannin to go anywhere and I jumped at the opportunity.

7 AM Sunday morn I reach Reliance pump at Thane belapur road to find a busa 2 R1s (04) & a 954 waiting for me. Unfortunately the pump had run out of 98 octane and we 5 proceded to the next meeting point below the bridge on Palm beach road. Till that time, I was not sure of the number of SBKs expected.
We reached there, and by about 7:30 about 17-18 SBKs thundered down the ramp and under the bridge. They were swarming all around !!
U cannot imagine the reverbrations of those beasts within the confines of the Bridge. It was almost orgasmic

Totally unaware of what to expect, I had gone with just a plain ordinary helmet and simple gloves. Not that I have any fancy suits, but I could have always borrowed. All the other guys barring a couple (me included) were covered with the finest riding gear money could buy.
Most had Alpinestar complete suits with all the padding with gloves & riding boots. Some wore joe rocket and some had the official racing team attires.
Helmets ranged from Arai, Shoei, Sumoy, Shark, some customised and a few AGVs

The bikes were parked over almost half the road but noone seemed to mind and that resulted in a mini traffic jam even at that early hour. School buses with squealing kids, office buses, kids on bikes people on walks . . . .
Everyone wanted to know "rally / race hai kya, ya koi shooting ?"

Greetings over, the Mumbai gang wanted to fill petrol and they had come hopin to get 98 octane but had to do with plain power.
Regrouped under the bridge by about 9 AM and started towards Amby valley.
The leaders made their intentions very clear by roaring away. Now u know how infectious that can be when u have a SBK under your a$$
The palm beach tarmac was gobbled up within a few minutes.
Every one rode with headlights on and the local traffic just moved aside & slowed down to let us pass.

A couple of bikes turned back from vashi itself and another couple came back from Panvel.
The final list of 18 bikes that touched Amby valley and came back were.
3 (04) R1s - all red
3 ninjas
2 Busas (including the one with an extended swingarm and 240 tyre !!)
Riding right behind this busa on one occasion in the ghat section at about 120 was totally mesmerising !! I just could not take my eyes of the tyres and the dexterity with which the bike was navigating the bends.
2 1000 RRs
2 954s - both yellow
1 929
1 Shimmering brand new Silver Harley Davidson !!
1 Gigantic goldwing - yellow (for those who don't know, a goldwing has a reverse gear, a cd player, tuner, AC (yes AC !!), remotely adjustable rider & pillon seats and other hi-tech gadgetry)
1 650cc BMW (not funduro, but similar)
1 600cc Yamaha (old model, did not pay much attention)
1 CBR 600 F2 - MINE !!

As this was my first long drive after having bought the bike, I was not very confident of taking corners at high speed and gradually fell behind. But that had its advantages. I got a whole lot of attention from people on both sides of the road who had just seen more than a dozen SBKs zoom past them & were too startled to react.
And for those illiterate bystanders a busa & a CBR 600 are both 'Dhoom' bikes.

One guy by mistake went up the expressway. I saw him and tried to call him up but he realised it himself. We regrouped at just before the Lonavala exit after the tunnel & waited for the guy who had gone on the expressway.
He joined us a few minutes later and said that he had to pay 200 bucks. We thought "not a bad deal !! maybe we could return that way". But then Plain old tarmac is preferable to concrete road. Besides the old Mumbai Pune road was newly laid and almost perfect.

Next stop was at the right turn in front of Kumar's resort to go towards Bushi dam.
The first couple of bikes in their enthusiasm had gone straight. So the subsequent bikers stopped at the busy junction to redirect the rest. There were a big group of pandus behind us who approached us and to our surprise, almost stopped the remaining traffic and took over the responsibility of redirecting the bikes.
We waited there for some time till the errant riders had retraced their paths.
But soon the overenthusiastic crowds who were till then, just staring from a distance, started inching their way towards us.
We obvioulsly did not want to do any 'interview sessions' and answer atrocious questions like 'kidhar modify kiya / average kya hai !!' So we decided to move ahead and stop at a more secluded location.

The spot was before the Amby valley climb. Where there is a bifurcation into some defence area. That is were the first 6 pictures were taken.
The purpose was to fill up the Harley's 11 litre tank.
Oh, I forgot to mention, as many of the guys were bigshots, there were about 5 - 6 cars following us which included a Sumo, Qualis, Accent, City and even a Mondeo !! They were driven by uniformed chauffers and parked at a respectable distance unless called for.

No sooner had we started the climb to amby valley, we encountered a landslide. Vehicles were parked on both sides since a long time and initally we were told that it was not possible.
When the the crew saw all the bikes, they summoned the labourers immetiately & cleared a path just enough for us.

And the 'race' restarted . . . .
These guys had special fittings onto which the video cameras were attached to capture the breathtaking speeds.
I was told that on straights they would do 200 - 250 & tackle the curves at almost 140 !!
The max I had the guts to touch, was 180.

On the way to Amby valley, as u know, U have to pass through many hamlets.
The scene of the highway was repeated here, only here it was CLOSE !!
The first riders obvioulsly took the villagers by surprise. Seeing more bikes following, the kids and other folk stopped what they were doing and lined the roads. I being one of the last, once again, got a huge number of waves. Like before, I felt like waving back, & I did . To everone who waved to me.
Believe it or not, this small gesture, made the younger kids break into screams of ecstacy. Some would jump up & down hysterically chanting . . . . . . . . (wanna guess ?!) . . . . . . . . d . h . o . o . o . o . o . m
Needless to say, I had a grin on my face all the time.
Of course the priority of the leaders of our pack was to outdo each other.

We touched Amby valley, made a u turn and headed back. Some distance further on the same road, at a junction, we stopped & lined the bikes for another photo session. The lower 8 pictures are taken at that location.

Next stop was at some 'Motiram' hotel for grub. There it took almost 1&1/2 hr. Ride back was uneventful. I was one of the first guys to reach Vashi at a little after 1 PM. Amazing, how much improvement just one ride can do to your skills.
Of course it is very much possible that the guys behind decided to stop again for something else.

One close shave:
On the way back, while alone on the entire stretch of road (after Khopoli) I was doing 180 and trying to touch 200. About 1/2 km ahead, I see a cow standing on the road but on one side. Suddenly she decides to saunter to the center of the road and then stops and hesitates !! I decide to cross from the side her head is pointing and as I cross it, it again starts moving towards me. I almost went off the shoulder at about 150 !!

As I said earlier, many were big shots and may not like their identities to be revealed so please do not ask me such questions.
All I can say is that there was a famous surgeon, industralists, sons of film-makers, export consultant, property dealer, automotive dealer etc.
Remember . . . . .

These guys were well versed with their babes and really knew how to rip them unlike the posers who're usually youngsters and prance around on carter road or other happening areas on saturday nights just to attract chicks.

I'm sorry for the poor resolution that my outdated phonecam has given.
I was planning to take my digicam, but that is a little bulky with the 10X zoom and besides as said earlier, I did not know what to expect.
Of course everyone else had fancy cameras and I'll try and get better pics / movies next week.
(FYI, bike in the first picture in the secondlast row, between the yellow goldwing & the red R1 is mine)
Other than my CBR & a couple of other bikes the rest were looking like they've just been riden out of a showroom.

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Old 21st May 2005, 03:12   #2
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Wow........what an experience buddy...i'm sure it made you heady with so many great bikes......

amazing review....

Looking forward for the more pics you promised...

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Old 21st May 2005, 03:25   #3
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U r one lucky guy. Just awesome. No words to describe the excitement it has generated just by reading ur article and the images.

More pics please the next time around!
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Old 21st May 2005, 10:25   #4
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Man, that's awesome! Reminds me of the same emotions I went through on my first ride with a group of sbk's. It's a bug, and once you've caught it, it's hard to get rid off!
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Old 21st May 2005, 14:51   #5
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Fabulous! Good thing to read on a lazy afternoon Btw I can't even imagine what it must feel like to do 180 on a bike....so much adrenalin rush!

Last edited by RJK : 21st May 2005 at 14:53.
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Old 21st May 2005, 14:57   #6
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hey abhinav

excellent write up and good pics too. i know u must have truly enjoyed ur ride and surely ur bike's performance would have been as good as its looks.

keep it up

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Old 21st May 2005, 15:47   #7
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Hey bike freak great outing there. Awesome pictures too and I see that the Harley with you guys was the VRod

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Old 21st May 2005, 20:18   #8
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hey bikefreak
awesome pictures man. i wonder how all the people going by must have reacted seeing 18 sbks.
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Old 21st May 2005, 22:33   #9
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hey watz the bike in the 5th pic?? the yellow??

and awesome bikes dude..enjoy ridin these monsters!
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Old 22nd May 2005, 04:32   #10
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watz the bike in the 5th pic
its the Honda Goldwing (cruiser)
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Old 22nd May 2005, 22:00   #11
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Wow man,
U seem to have had so much fun.. Can just imagine how much u guys enjoyed..
And all the things about the goldwing, man the AC.. Phew, all that sounds so kool.....
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Old 22nd May 2005, 22:23   #12
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Hey Bikefreak.
Seems like you had an awesome time.
The bikes look awesome and i am a big fan Of the Harley (i sat on one in a showroom in Swiss and in Gruere) and the Goldwing (in some place in Delhi).
Awesome bikes.
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Old 22nd May 2005, 23:04   #13
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Nice rides man ...
Miss the days when i used to ride my Yahama TZF600R Thundercat on these long biking rides to Mahabaleshwar and Lonawala...
Well maybe some time in the future will buy another bike and continue with these escapades...
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Old 22nd May 2005, 23:14   #14
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damn those are hot looking bikes. love the way the yellow goldwing looks. seen it many a times at bandra
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Old 22nd May 2005, 23:31   #15
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Error in first post ... Should read as YZF600R and not TZF600R
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