September issue

Riding a bike hard should put a smile on your face, even if there are points and prizes at stake. I don’t know about you, but the first time I grabbed a pair of handlebars it was to enjoy myself, but it’s easy to forget when bikes and racing seem so serious these days.

PB’s road tester Michael Rutter has been racing bikes since I was a nipper. I talked to him after his trip to Imatra, and all the man whose very living, whose whole life depends on riding bikes in circles, could talk about was how much fun he had. Not how great it was to win – his lasting memory was of the smile it planted on his wizened old chops.

Long time friend of PB, Guy Martin found the same at Spa Francorchamps. After a frustrating few months with the Honda ride his year was based around, he found welcome release at a rain-soaked classic race on a twinshock Suzuki, among genuine petrol heads on a brilliant circuit. We sent Rupert Paul to see how he got on (and make his dinner).

Still, it can’t all be fun and games: The Rutter Test this month pits the Fireblade SP against the Yamaha R1M to see what the best of Japanese engineering is made of. Though the noise both made at their absolute limit made us smile in appreciation again...

Enjoy the mag!

What's inside Performance Bikes this issue

"It's the best short circuit I've ever ridden"

The Spa four-hour classic endurance is the first race Guy Martin has enjoyed for years. PB went to watch and make sandwiches.

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The Rutter test: 'Blade SP vs R1M

Just how much quicker are these considerably more expensive bikes that the base models from which they'er derived? Michael Rutter has the answer...

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Spark Life

Electric bikes are coming: but how far? PB pits one of the most developed production battery bikes against its petrol rival...

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