Race track vs GS800 and GS1200
Joined a BMW Rider Academy Advanced course last weekend in Pretoria where you spend just over an hour in five sessions on a race track (Zwartkops). I was the only 310GS rider out of 30 people, with a lot of 800GS and 1200GS bikes as well as some 700 and other bike makes from 700 and up - a little intimidating. Only been riding for eight weeks again after 25 years break, so I joined the "less experienced" group of about 15 other bikes. After we finished the sessions, I was amazed at the 310 performance. Bearing in mind that we were all "less experienced", and were only allowed to pass on the straight, the 310GS out performed the big bikes on the corners and I had no problems keeping up around a fairly tight race track, often shadowing the bigger bikes. The only major aspect was that while I had no problems keeping up, passing the bigger versions on the straight was difficult as the power difference really shows itself there. I did pass a few of the bigger bikes, although this was probably past less experienced riders. Also got passed three or four times, but it really wasn't much. Overall, I was blown away by this "baby GS". High revving performance and acceleration, and great handling although its not designed for the track, and incredible responsiveness. I came away really pleased with my purchase and was just so impressed at how the bike was competing with bigger versions with much bigger capacity. Not sure how I would have featured with the "experienced" group but it would be an interesting insight - maybe a future occasion. While I'm not likely to be using the race cornering techniques much, the learning and feedback from really professional instructors gave me a great boost to my confidence and belief in my 310GS.