Motoring

Yamaha RX 100: A ride apart from the rest

Beverage Savant Pankaj Balachandran   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

A month after I turned 18, I got my licence to drive; this is exactly when my dad finally decided to hand over his most precious jewel to me: a 1989 Yamaha RX 100 II with a gleaming red body. The RX 100 series has a cult following to this day, largely comprising major bike fanatics — myself included.

I’m a bike person, after all. The thing is, I hate enclosed doors... I know that it’s probably safer, but it’s just who I am. I like feeling the fresh air around me, as well as seeing things in full clarity. I’m not a speed-a-holic, don’t get me wrong, but I know a good bike when I see one.

Given my house was very close to a beach, I have enjoyed many evening rides by the long stretch of the beach. My visits to Munnar with buddies were made possible only with this beauty.

I probably shouldn’t share this, but before I got the bike, I used to take it to the top of this bridge in the middle of the night and, without turning it on, I’d ride it down the incline, letting it gain momentum. That was the taster I needed, and I retain a bond with her because of memories like this one. Now, every time I go back home to Kerala, she gets a proper pampering. Even after 29 years, she is in mint condition because of the proper servicing and loving care.

I actually taught myself to do upgrades and basic repairs, and spending money on restorations and upgrades never pinches a true RX 100 lover.

Yamaha have come a long way in India from the simple 100cc RX 100 to their latest R1. Back in the day, RX 100 was a style statement, and now it has become a legendary bike. They have some amazing bikes loaded with power. In a way,Yamaha have always kept it interesting for both ends of the spectrum. In that sense, they’ve never let me down all these years.

Being on the frontline of this year’s Ultimate Bartender Challenge, I have not been back on the saddle for some time now.

Sadly, I haven’t kept a schedule of sorts for the long rides I used to have. I’d rather love for it to happen naturally, and that’s exactly what is going to happen shortly, with the brand’s new 500cc motorbike.

I’m looking forward to many more frequent rides on my official schedule.

If I were to speak of my dream bike, I’m over-the-moon to be getting it. It’s the simply elegant Thunderbird 500X; fully-customised to my requirement as the Monkey Shoulder India Brand Ambassador.

— As told to Divya Kala Bhavani

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Printable version | Feb 26, 2021 4:58:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/motoring/a-ride-apart-from-the-rest/article24201708.ece

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