Author: Rob Brooks

2022 Yamaha Ténéré 700 First Impressions

First introduced in 2019, Yamaha’s Ténéré 700 has been a runaway hit for the “Tuning Fork” moto brand, despite the pandemic difficulties it debuted under. It’s midsize displacement, narrow body and tank, flat seating and neutral riding position, as well as a reasonable price tag, have given it a wide appeal in the ADV motorcycle segment. Yamaha offered us an opportunity to sample one for a couple of months, and we were more than a bit enthusiastic.

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Age Is But A Number

Josh Hayes just proved that age is but a number, by stunning the MotoAmerica Supersport field this weekend with a win on Saturday and a tight second on Sunday at VIRginia Intl. Raceway. This after a fourth place finish in the legendary Daytona 200 back in March, all of these against riders half or more of his age, which by the way is 47. The adage, “old age and treachery beats youth and exuberance” certainly held true for Hayes.

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The Shocking Demise of IMS Outdoors

I got the call while driving out to the Scull Shoals ADV/Dual Sport Ride, a call I’d been expecting but with different content and purpose. Leah with the International Motorcycle Shows Outdoors dialed me up, not to discuss details of our 2nd year partnership with them, but to inform me the shows were all abruptly being cancelled. “We’ve made the difficult decision to suspend all of the 2022 shows,” she informed me, “we just made the decision today.”

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Legendary Bikes: Vincent Black Shadow Series C

When the topic of the world’s most historic motorcycles is discussed, often among the first to come up in conversation is the iconic Vincent H•R•D Black Shadow. Jet black throughout save chrome pipes and various polished bits, the Black Shadow of the late 40s-mid 50s is still a stunner to behold, whether in photos, video or in person. There is something alluring yet menacing about the motorbike, with those sexy curved chrome pipes, that distinctive 50 degree OHV 998cc v-twin and those blacked out engine casings decades before it was modern-hip. These where the original “Black Edition” motorcycles.

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Playing In The Dirt Again

I am chasing Barry down another rarely-travelled unpaved road out in east central Georgia, barely able to make out his silhouette ahead of me from the cloud of red clay and gravel dust he and others ahead of him are kicking up. I’m alternating between sitting and standing, bouncing and sliding along about 45 mph, hard on the little 300’s throttle, trying to keep them at least vaguely in sight. I am telling myself, audibly at times, “Relax, breathe, keep a loose grip on the grips, let the bike float and move beneath you. You’re doing fine.”

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Riding a Classic

The “modern retro” segment in motorcycling is filled with motorbikes that hearken back to the “golden age” of motorcycling of the 60s-80s. And brands with bikes in that segment sell them by the droves, especially these past three years. I believe that is no coincidence. Young and old(er), we seek to touch that bygone age, to rediscover and feel it, even if only for a few miles and minutes.

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Royal Enfield Debuts A Modern Classic

Royal Enfield North America pulled the covers off their all-new, re-engineered Classic 350 down in historic Savannah, Georgia. The legendary motorcycle company revealed the brand new Classic to select journalists from across North America, and we were honored to be counted among them.

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Honda’s Hooligan- 2022 Honda CB1000R

We were granted the opportunity to sample a CB1000R Black Edition for a little over a month, and what struck me first was the attention to detail in this all-blacked out motorbike. No substantial chrome or brushed aluminum anywhere, from the tank and fenders, to the forks, wheels, radiator and airbox covers, swingarm, headers and pipes, you name it. Black on black. To top it off, Honda tacked on very nice machined bits all around, on the handlebar clamp, swingarm pivots, rear hub, wheel spokes, footpeg mounts and engine covers. This bike is an attention-getter, everywhere we’ve ridden and parked it.

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Lane Filtering Gains Traction

Arizona has approved a bill that will allow the practice of lane filtering in stopped traffic across the state. The law goes into effect at the end of their 2022 legislative session, meaning September. The practice, which essentially means motorcyclists passing in between vehicles and lanes when traffic is at a standstill, was signed into Arizona law a few days ago, and gives riders the option to pass around automobiles stopped in the same lane. Utah has been experimenting with a similar initiative since 2018, and has since extended their research another five years to fully gather data on the safety success of lane filtering in their state.

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