We found this amazing video over the weekend, and share Simon Crafar’s concern that motorcycling is being dulled by ABS, traction control, and other electronic gubbins. We’ve spent time on two ABS-equipped bikes lately, and it’s a bummer when you find yourself on a fantastic mountain road with consistent corners and surfaces and want to have a go at backing it in, only to have ABS step-in and upset the bike (of course, it could come in handy if you’re braking and hit a patch of sand, etc.).
Simon Crafar is an experienced motorcycle racer who won a 500 GP race in 1998 aboard a Yamaha YZR500, won the expert class at Redbull Romaniacs extreme enduro in 2007, and in 2011 created Motovudu, a book and DVD series aimed at teaching riders how to achieve peak on-track performance. This is a clip promoting his course and mindset.
It looks to us like he’s getting the maximum enjoyment out of today’s analogue motorcycles. Good thing too—the EU announced in 2010 that ABS will be mandatory for all new motorcycles over 125 cc by 2017. We’d like to see and off-switch at the very least, so ABS could only be used in the rain or very slippery conditions.
And here’s some more footage of bikes without too much in the way of electronics: