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Thread: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

  1. #1
    MotoGrapher Sunny's Avatar
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    Default The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Everyone I know has a dream. Big or small - it is relative. When xBhp was founded as a single web page back in 2001, downloading a 4MB file for learning ASP to create the website over the internet over a dial up in India was a dream. But one fine day it did happen.

    That day the seeds of the xBhp forums were sown. Within a year or so, by 2003, grew to have 10,000 registered members. Real people. In those days with dial up and GPRS mobile internet.

    Those were the days. As they say. But better were on the way!

    Then there was another dream. To shoot and upload better photos, inspire a generation to ride and document. The best available on any motorcycle or car forum or website in India. That too became an eventual reality. The first camera that xBhp chose to shoot with was a Sony 1.3 MP with 3X optical zoom and a swivel screen. That was 2002. The first DSLR that we got our hands was not until 2005. Things took time. Dreams took time to materialise. It was never easy.

    In 2003 there was another dream. I wanted to have the best available bike in India back then - a Hero Honda Karizma - powered by a fiery 17 Bhp 223cc engine. That bike was the first one in India to have a proper bikini fairing. There was no fully faired motorcycle available in India back then. The Karizma (a 75,000 INR machine) was a dream made into reality by paying the money over 18 months.

    Yes, dreams take time to materialise. But they keep changing. Human desire and ambition is insatiable.

    Then there was a dream to do an all India roadtrip on a 1000cc superbike. An unheard of task back in 2005. But that too did happen. The Great Indian Roadtrip saw a '05 Honda Fireblade 1000RR accompanied by moto-scooters go around India for a good 13,000 Kms. Superbikes were not available in India officially until much later.
    The dream again shifted a notch above. Another check mark later it morphed into a dream of doing xBhp and my first out of India ride. It happened to be Australia.

    That was a lesson in many things, including my first real brush with the western world of motorcycling.

    We thought that was it. We had achieved whatever there was to achieve. No Indian motorcycling community, magazine or journalist had achieved that so far together.
    That was 2007. The Great Australian Roadtrip saw two of us ride 22,000 Kms on South Korean Machines.

    We were on top of the world. Let me correct that, bottom, actually, down underside of the world.

    That was the year when Casey Stoner also realised his dream of becoming a MotoGP champion. We just remember because lot of people in Australia thought we were on red Ducatis from afar on the road.

    That was cute.

    Then we went around this great country again on a Ducati Multistrada in 2013.
    Anyways. Dreams fuelling other dreams.

    54 countries and thousands of photos later we were sitting in a coffee shop in Delhi. The seeds of this very roadtrip were sown there. Might as well have been coffee bean seeds for all you know.

    It is strange where you can get inspiration from. We just wanted to do what hadn't been done anywhere before. In a way it had never been done before, and with bikes that it's not meant to be done.

    The first bike of choice was a Ninja H2. There is nothing like this on the planet. With it's ECU flash upgrade 260 Bhp sounded too tempting along with that sweet Akrapovic and the flutter of the supercharger. I had been told it accelerates like nothing else on the planet on two wheels while being ultra reliable. It was time to try it out, but the way we wanted to.

    The first time we saw it was in EICMA 2014. This was the first image of it :

    It was the most hyped motorcycle in decades and rightly so. We were blown away when we saw it. And read the specs on paper. It was so fine, so unattainable.

    In fact it took us almost one year to get our hands on one, and that too we only rode for around 10 kms. That was super exclusive for us. We were like happy little kids.

    Dreams are the sweetest when they materialise slowly. Especially if they involve fast bikes.

    Here we are. So many dreams later. We embark on a ride of a lifetime on bikes that are pinnacles of human engineering and unrelenting lust for beauty and power.

    However, to make it even more special we decided, with Ducati announcing a Final Edition of the 1299, that we wanted to mark the occasion and celebrate the twin-cylinder Superbike by doing a power trip right around Australia. So the second bike was the Ducati flagship and one of the most beautiful bikes in the world - the Ducati 1299 Panigale. I have been privy to the Ducati camaraderie and ethos unlike very few people. Having ridden the Multistrada across 20 plus countries and meeting countless Ducatista I can vouch for that.

    We can almost see the ground trembling with 450 Bhps rolling into the horizon in the Australian outback and a few Kangroos hopping here and there (hopefully missing the bikes).

    This is going to be one hell of a trip. The perfect amalgamation of technology, nature and the wanderlust that ails us. We will do our best to let you live through us vicariously.

    Talking about machines. Our better halves. On the road we are one. And here they are.

    The 2016 Kawasaki Ninja H2
    Supercharged madness.
    1000 CC .
    210 BHP Stock.
    Reflashed to 280 Bhp with
    Akrapovic slip-on. Pannier solution from BikeBiz Au. Paint protection from TrackPro Au. Puig Racing Screen from Online Racing Spares Au. AirHawk Seat.

    The 2016 Ducati Panigale 1299
    King of the Track.
    1299 CC.
    200 BHP Stock.
    Puig Racing Screen from Online Racing Spares Au. AirHawk Seat.Ridden by Sunil

    The ones who made it all possible -with their support & resources

    Castrol POWER1:
    The world leader in the field of motorcycle lubrication products, this big guy keeps things cool, especially the supercharged 240 Bhp Ninja H2 & the Ducati 1299 Panigale, one of the most powered V-Twins in the world!
    Powered by Cox & Kings, these guys are poised to be the biggest collective adventure junkies in the world. And make you one too! Their motto is, "life begins just outside your comfort zone."

    You can see our route here and see live updates here.

    I will be updating this thread with photographs from the road as often as possible. Next up is the blog of the first day.
    Ravikiran and WindPacer like this.
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  2. #2
    Rusted itsmevini123's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Was waiting for this thread. Awesome narration with mind blowing pictures

    Waiting for the live pictures now. Good to see @sunilg on the red hot beauty
    KTM RC390 - Current
    Yamaha R15 v2 - Sold
    Hero Hunk - Sold
    An IT Engineer by profession and a rider by soul.

    Delhi to Sach Pass -
    Delhi to Mana -
    Delhi to Munsyari -
    Spiti circuit -


  3. #3
    MotoGrapher Sunny's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 1 of the #powerTrip360 saw us riding around 325 kms from Sydney to Gloucester via the Putty Road. The Putty Road is full of high-speed twisties and is a famous hangout zone for motorcyclists from Sydney. You can see a lot of them riding there particularly on a weekend.

    It was also the day that saw us riding the fully loaded Ninja H2 and the Ducati 1299 Panigale for the first time. The arrangements we had made for the required luggage on the bikes didn’t disappoint and we managed to fit everything we wanted, well almost everything! The bikes looked out on a task with all those bags loaded. And indeed a big task this is! Covering 20000 kms of one of the greatest riding countries in the world. For me it was the third time around, however for Sunil it was a whole new experience altogether!

    Almost the entire route was through the mountains and it took us around 8 hours of riding, shooting time included, to reach our destination, which is the quiet hill town of Gloucester. The speed limits on most of the route was hovering between 100 and 80 and it was pretty easy to maintain that easy pace throughout the ride. It can be very demanding for anyone who is tagging along with us to keep their wits around when we do our plethora of riding stops.

    The twisties and the scenery reminded me of the Himalayas back home, though the traffic was much less and the road infrastructure was far better, not to mention the discipline of the road users. One thing that almost all the bikers in Australia warned us of about are the animals suddenly jumping in front of you from the bushes, particularly post dusk and pre dawn, and we realised soon that we must take them seriously. We had 2 close calls when a rabbit and a fox like animal decided to cross the road while we were riding. This and the already dead animals lying on the road sent a chill down the spine because the danger of hitting an animal, particularly a Kangaroo, on Australian roads is very real and it claims several bikers as their victims every year.

    Day 2 saw us ride further north through Thunderbolts Way and Oxley Highway to Port Macquarie.
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  4. #4
    MotoGrapher Sunny's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Ultimate #powerTrip360: 20000 kms on the Kawasaki Ninja H2 and Ducati 1299 Panigale

    Day 2 & 3 : Gloucester – Port Macquarie – Byron Bay

    Day 2 turned out to be rather eventful for us. First, we were not going to take the fastest route to reach the destination for the day, i.e., Port Macquarie. The highway route from Gloucester to Port Macquarie is about 150 kilometers and 2 hours. But then we were here to take the longer scenic route whenever we could.

    We were told to take the Oxley Highway, Thunderbolts Way by a lot of riders here and going by the conviction with which they were suggesting us to take this route, we could imagine that this is going to be something special. And special it was. And though it increased the distance to be covered for the day by a substantial amount, it was worth every second spent riding there. This highway, like the Putty Road, is the favorite hangout zone for bikers from nearby areas.The whole route is very beautiful and what you get is an endless saga of high-speed twists and turns.

    Another highlight of the day was meeting Leura Kowald in Walcha over a cup of coffee at the Walcha Royal Cafe. This cafe is run by motorcycle enthusiasts themselves and is a must visit if you are doing that circuit. And Leura is a motorcyclist from Armidale, NSW who had ridden all the way to Walcha to say hello us.

    She rides a Honda CBR 600RR and when not thrashing around the Honda 150 at her neighborhood race track, she can be found roadtripping in India. And that girl can ride! She can give riders a good run for their money on the twisties of the Oxley highway. We rode with her for some 100 kilometers while on our way to Port Macquarie. She also goes by the name of HippieChick on the worldwide web and her FB page can be found here

    Chasing the HippieChick

    The magic of Sony Alpha 7S - the above 2 photos were taken at a beach in Byron Bay at around 9 p.m. with nothing but the moonlight as the source of light with ISO set at 51,200 & 40,000 respectively. It wasn't even possible to see the subject clearly with naked eyes. But look at the results. The final images posted here have been given a round of de-noise filter treatment.

    The next morning, Day #3of #powerTrip360, was spent at the Lighthouse Beach of Port Macquarie where we met a gentleman who thought that the Boblbee backpacks on our back were some sort of Jet packs or personal flying device. Can't blame him for it though. These backpacks, especially the one in Chrome, look something straight out of a sci-fi movie. There is a lot more to be done at Port Macquarie than what we could manage, but on a roadtrip like this time has always been the scarcely available commodity and we were already struggling with the after effects of a late start of the day.

    the Boblbee Hard Shell Back Pack - Who wouldn't think this is a personal flying device like a jet pack?

    So there was no choice but to push towards our destination of the day - Byron Bay (that rhyming was purely unintentional, trust me!) Byron Bay is another popular tourist destination known for its beaches, scuba diving, and surfing sites. Due to the paucity of time, we stuck to the motorway route to Byron Bay and were instantly rewarded with boredom that comes as part of highway riding package.

    More so, because reduced speed limits were imposed at many places throughout the route due do road work. But that got us to Byron Bay much faster and we called it a day but not before bumping into Captain Behl at a petrol station. Captain Behl is a biker/sailor and is from Delhi. He was enjoying his holidays, riding around on a Harley Davidson on the Brisbane-Gold Coast route for a couple of days before heading home.

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