First Ride Out

Post by Mark

I just came back from my first ride out in the public streets. I have been learning how to ride the whole week and I just wanted to get a feel of my Ducati and how much it differed from the Bajaj bike I am training on.

I strapped on my full gear, got on my bike and drove out of my underground parking lot out into the public streets. I circled the block and rode into the old Salmiya, it was around 4PM so there wasn’t much traffic, just a handful of cars but it still was very freaky. The bike is literally a monster. I have been training on the Bajaj Pulsar which is 180cc and pumps out 16.5HP. My Ducati is 618cc and pumps out 83.5HP. As you can imagine the jump between the two bikes is huge and I was prepared for it but it was still very shocking.

The bike stalled with me once and it was when I was nearly back home. Other then that I did fine. I don’t think my ride was very smooth though since I am still not used to the throttle. Just a small twist on the thing and the bike flys off leaving me hanging on like a mad man. The whole ride was just an incredible adrenaline rush but I was really glad when I got home. Next time I take it out it will be after I have more riding hours under my belt.


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Stunt Rider

Post by Mark

This is going to be me in a few weeks on the Gulf Road. [Video]


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Riding Lesson #3

Post by Mark

Today was pretty straight forward. Just drove around the parking lot for an hour. Its was pretty uneventful until I had my first fall. Don’t think its counted as a fall since the bike fell while I was still left standing. I was turning a curve slowly, I think a bit too slowly and the bike just fell down right under me. Luckily it was dark so it wasn’t that embarrassing…


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The Pulsar

Post by Mark

the pulsar

This is the bike they have given me to train on. Its the Bajaj Pulsar, a cheap 180cc bike that I am having a ton of fun on at the moment. The name The Pulsar makes it sound a lot more hardcore then it actually is. [Link]


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Riding Lesson #2

Post by Mark

Today I had my second riding lesson and it went really well, much better then I imagined it would go. Yesterday I was stalling on the bike a lot except near the end of the lesson where I finally managed to get things right. Today I managed to start off exactly where I left off yesterday which was really good. I was taking off without stalling and I even started shifting. Everything just got wayyy easier today and I was having a lot of fun just driving around the parking lot stopping and going, just getting the hand of riding. The hardest part of my lesson today was actually learning how to use the turn signals, it just made my life mor confusing.

Anyway at this rate by the end of the week I should be ready to take the driving test next week. I actually think I could pass the test now since I heard the test is easy, but, I would rather get as much riding as possible in this parking lot before I go out into the streets. Tomorrow is my third lesson.


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Riding Lesson #1

Post by Mark

Today I had my first riding lesson. It was really cool because I got there and there were two training motorbikes, two mechanics, this cool American biker called Kevin AND Jafar Behbahani, the owner of TriStar where I got my bike from. I had heard a lot about him and how cool a guy he was so meeting him was like really great. He spent the first half of the course teaching me how to ride but then had to leave for a meeting but Kevin continued in his place.

My lesson didn’t go that bad. I was stalling a lot in the beginning but near the end of my lesson I started getting the hang of it. My left hand and right hand can not coordinate together which is what made my lesson difficult. Its hard for me to do one thing with one hand and a different thing with my other hand, but they told me with practice I will get the hang of it and I can’t wait till that day comes. My second lesson is tomorrow, I am going to try to finish up all my lessons very quickly so I can get my license ASAP.

I really have to say I am extremely impressed with TriStar, Marzouq had told me before about how good they were and thats why he had recommended I get my bike from them but I didn’t think they would be this good. They are real professionals. If anyone is interested in a Ducati, KTM or BMW motorbikes, new or used then you should pass by them or give them a call. They are located in Kuwait City, at the end of the Istiklal freeway, opposite Al Khaleejiah Complex. You can call them on 2405194 (ask for Salem) or visit their website on tristarkw.com.

Tomorrow is my second lesson, should be really fun.


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Alpinestars Stroke Shoes

Post by Mark

alpinestars stroke shoe

Today I finally have my first biking lesson. It really sucks having a bike and not being able to ride it and now I can’t wait till I finally get my license. Since I am going to the lesson right after work I have my helmet, gloves and jacket in the car. I am also wearing my biking boots which are the Alpinestars Stroke shoes. They are pretty cool and they don’t look half bad either. They also make me feel like a biker even though I still don’t know how to ride a bike which is pretty lame.

The weather is getting really better really quickly. I can’t wait till Ramadan starts since the roads would get deserted at around 5:30pm which would be perfect for a newbie biker since I can fuck up and not have to worry about getting run over.


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Review: Long Way Round

Post by Mark

Long Way Round

Two years ago I read somewhere that Ewan McGregor was going to ride a bike around the world. I didn’t think much of it then and totally forgot about it until a few weeks ago Marzouq mentioned Long Way Round on his blog. Turns out Ewan McGregor took cameras with him on the trip and he turned his adventure into a documentary. So right after I read Marzouqs post I download the series from the Internet and I watched it none stop for 2 days.

Long Way Round is a documentary that is 7 episodes long and it takes you on an adventure with Ewan McGregor and his best friend Charley Boorman on a 151 day journey from London all the way to New York. They headed East from London through a couple of countries in Europe, then they headed into Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia then Russia again followed by Siberia where they then took a plane to Alaska. From Alaska they then rode down to Calgary and then down into the US until they reached New York. It was a really incredible and extremely exhausting journey. Mongolia for example has only 80 miles of tarmac so the majority of their ride was on gravel and offroad.

It was really fun to watch the documentary and by the end of it you just want to quit your job, go out and buy a bike and then travel the world on it. I was really disappointed when it finished and I really wished it was longer because it felt like I was with them on their adventure. My final rating is easily a 5 out of 5. The only other series I have given a full 5 stars to is Band of Brothers so its not a score I give out easily unless its really worth it.

You can buy Long Way Round on DVD from Amazon


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Motorcycle Wreck

Post by Mark

A really freak motorbike crash. [Video]


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My first ride.. kinda

Post by Mark

Ducati Monster

My motorbike lessons don’t start until next week and I have had my bike for two weeks now and its really frustrating not being able to ride it. Since I know how to drive a manual stick car, and I also know how to ride a bicycle, I decided to go ahead and try to ride my bike since I figured it can’t be too different from driving a stick shift and balancing it can’t be too different from a bicycle.

So around 30 minutes ago I headed down to the parking lot and turned on my bike and tried to ride it. The first 6 times I tried to drive off I ended up stalling the bike. I was releasing the clutch too early I think because as soon as I gave it some gas and moved like a centimeter the bike would stall. Finally I got the hang of it and was able to release the clutch right and my bike took off! I drove the length of my parking the whole time expecting the bike to stall with me but it never did. Once I got to the end I did a u-turn and headed back and then started driving up to higher floors of the parking. It was really cool and I loved the accelaration.

I stayed in first gear the whole time and I was able to speed up a bit and then brake with my hand when I realized I was actually riding the motorbike as if I was riding my bicycle. I wasn’t using the foot brake which I am guessing I should have been using because my braking wasn’t very smooth, I also wasn’t changing gears because I didn’t know what would happen if the bike stalled while I was moving or if the brakes would continue to work with the bike off. For my first time riding (if I can call it that) I think I did pretty good. I think I will go back down later and try riding some more and maybe even try shifting. I am really having fun with this although I am not doing much.


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